Weddings: Here Come The Brides

Amy Miller, a New York-based pharmaceutical rep, is getting married in January. Twice. Once on Jan. 5 in Mexico and once on Jan. 21 in New York. "The first one's for us," she explains. "The second one's to appease everybody else."

That's a lot of stress. Thankfully, Miller has support. In fact, she has an entire support group, thanks to last week's launch of New York's Bridal Survival Club, a free monthly meeting for brides who need help navigating the wedding-planning process. "A wedding in today's culture can become a crisis," says the Rev. Laurie Sue Brockway, a wedding officiant and co-head of the New York group. "We try to not only give the brides tools for survival, but to get them to enjoy the experience." With wine flowing at the inaugural event, the girls gabbed with experts and "veterans" about wedding themes and etiquette dilemmas.

The Bridal Survival Club has been running for three years in Boston, "graduating" hundreds of brides. This is the first time that founder Arlene Cronk has taken it to another city. "There was just so much demand," she says. The club's meeting sites, refreshments and guest experts all come from the New York Wedding Group, a conglomeration of wedding businesses in the area. The brides aren't pressured to employ group members, but the advertising doesn't hurt. Last week's launch took place in The Mark, a luxury hotel on the Upper East Side--and Miller's choice for her Jan. 21 ceremony. If only it were so easy for the Mexico wedding.