Raise your hand if you’re a control freak? Okay good, it’s not just me. My not-so-inner control freak led me down the path of having a verrry DIY wedding, which forced me to wear about a zillion different hats, many of which didn’t exactly come naturally to me. Because, you know, I was a broke twenty-something and not an experienced event planner/designer/stylist/catering manager/DJ/etc. And even so, I’ve since realized I was super lucky that the one thing that came naturally to me was… writing. I prettily easily wrote my vows (ahem, the night before), and both sets of our vows hang in a shadowbox with some photos in our bedroom and are an excellent memory and reminder of what we signed up for.
But to this day (as in, literally as recent as yesterday), I’ve fielded enough panicked emails and texts from friends asking for help writing all things wedding, that I’ve come to think it’s legit bananas that the world encourages you to outsource every. single. other. part of wedding planning while ignoring the fact that not everyone was an English major.
All that to say why I’m super excited to introduce a brand-new business to APW, XO Juliet, which offers personalized custom wedding vows (secular or religious!), hashtags, and even maid of honor and best man speeches (genius) and public speaking coaching. (Rates for custom wedding vows start at $149, and all the deets about their services can be found here.) Founder Alexis Dent, came across APW while planning her own wedding, and she is our people y’all:
In a market that can be all too exclusive and heteronormative, we are committed to inclusivity in a major way. We welcome couples of all races, religions, and gender and sexual identities. In fact, that’s part of our mission statement that is right on our website’s homepage, and many queer couples have decided to work with us for that reason.
For us, this isn’t a side hustle or about dollar signs—we eat, sleep, and breathe weddings. I write all the vows myself, and I am a professional writer with bylines in Washington Post, Marie Claire, Glamour, and more. I also released my debut book this year. I specialize in personal essays, poetry, and heartfelt writing, and can help make your vows shine!
“But isn’t it weird to have someone else write something so personal?” you ask. Well I’m glad you asked, because it’s really not much different than letting a stationery designer do what they do best instead of struggling to teach yourself Photoshop. (And no one even needs to know if you used XO Juliet’s help if you don’t want them to.)
Alexis’s process of working with couples to write vows is very similar to how we work with wedding vendors to write sponsored posts, and let me tell you, it works magic. You fill out a questionnaire and/or have a phone call to share your thoughts and feelings with Alexis, and then she takes that raw material and puts it into words and sentences that sound good—and more importantly, sound like what you’ve been trying to say but have been struggling to put into words, like all these happy clients attest.
The part of Meg’s book that always gets quoted back to us (for good reason!) is the idea of prioritizing the things that matter to you, and I think the same can be said of outsourcing the things that matter but that you know will be a struggle. If that’s you and writing, and you want wedding vows that you look back on and cherish, then $150 can be a small price to pay for XO Juliet to take the stress off and capture the essence of your relationship. You just tell them how you feel about your significant other, and they’ll make it sound gooood.
USE coupon code APWcouple BY NOVEMBER 30th For 15% off ALL XO Juliet services!