Today I'm sharing a few books (as well as a magazine) that I've been reading during my wedding planning. There is so much amazing inspiration and information available online, but sometimes the craziness of Pinterest. the constant scrolling through Instagram and the huge array of wedding blogs to choose from can become a little overwhelming. Sometimes you need to step away from the digital world and there is something so nice (and much more relaxing) about holding a physical book in your hands.
These books are absolutely beautiful, but are also filled with well curated information that I found to actually be very helpful in my planning. As well as just making gorgeous coffee table decor ;). While you could get by just fine without them, if you're a book lover like myself, picking up one of these is a real treat and they've definitely inspired me during my planning! (7 weeks to go now!!!)
1) A Practical Wedding - by Meg Keene
While this is not the first book I purchased I would highly recommend putting this at the top of your "to read list" when starting your wedding planning. Meg Keene started the blog "A Practical Wedding" which, as the name suggests is a site dedicated to keeping your planning "practical" and a little more down to earth (while still being beautiful, meaningful and memorable!)
I heard about this book when listening to The Bridechilla Podcast (that's another recommendation - seriously go listen to it, it's awesome!) and ordered it when I was about halfway through my planning. I feel like it would have been most beneficial to have read this from the very start though!
This book is the perfect reminder about what REALLY matters on your wedding day - "what you'll remember 'till you're old and gray, is not so much how it looked as how it felt" and helps cut through some of the craziness. From helping you pinpoint what matters most to you and your partner and going through the basics of what you actually need to get married (surprisingly, not that much!) to communicating with family (dealing with expectations/drama/whatever madness wedding planning stirs up) and creating a master spreadsheet for the day, this book covers it all.
It's refreshing, as it really does make you realise it's not so much the aesthetics that make a wedding incredible, but the celebration of love and the joyfulness and fun that fills the day because of it.
2) Hello May Magazine.
Okay so this one's not actually a book, but it is my favourite wedding magazine so I just had to give it a mention. Filled with a huge array of beautiful weddings as well as fab vendor recommendations, it is just simply a lovely read. They feature big weddings, small weddings, elopements, brides in white dresses or crazy colourful flower covered dresses and it really shows how a wedding should be something that reflects you both as the couple. There's always an overview of the day from the couples perspective, which gives an insight into their planning and their thoughts, and it always inspires me to makes sure we're focusing on what is important to us. Hopefully that will come through in our day too! :) I'd recommend checking out the Hello May blog too - it's great!
3) Celebrate by Lauren Conrad
This book is one I know I'll be going back to again and again. Not only because it is filled with absolutely beautiful photos, but also because it is set out in a way that is so easy to dip in and out of. Perfect for giving you a little dose of inspiration!
Not just about weddings, this book covers a whole bunch of celebrations and is separated into two parts:
- Part 1: Prep - goes over the basics of party planning, giving general and quite in depth advice when it comes to the concept of the event, deciding on the menu and bar, invitations and decor. Useful information that can be applied to any celebration.
- Part 2: Party - gives examples of twelve different celebrations (The Birthday Party, The Housewarming, The Baby Shower and of course The Wedding - to name just a few), and goes through Lauren's own process for the planning from deciding on the theme, talking about the menu (there's a few nice recipes in there too!) decor ideas, the little details and specific tips relating to that particular celebration.
This is one of those books that is such a pleasure to read - and perfect for the coffee table!
4) The Honeymoon Handbook
This is actually a book that Tom bought and I initially told him was totally unnecessary! Books are our weakness you see - we can never walk past a bookstore without going in to browse, and we can never walk out of one without making a purchase, and Tom is particularly bad!
Giving advice on planning as well as inspiration on where to go, I found the most useful piece of advice was this: When choosing accommodation try to trick yourselves so you feel like you're "winning at travel" by making sure each place you stay gets progressively better (or at least maintains the quality of the previous stay). Basically start with the more budget friendly ones and end with the fancy schmancy splurgey hotel for the grand finale.
While it's not an essential, it has proved to be a useful book with practical tips that we may not have thought of and if you're a book lover you'll enjoy it! Sometimes it's just nice to have everything laid out succinctly in front of you, instead of trying to figure it all out yourself!
5) World of Wanderlust by Brooke Saward
Another travel book that will give you some serious wanderlust and get you excited for honeymoon planning. I am completely head-over-heels in love with Brooke's blog and inspired by how she has created a business for herself out of her passion for travel. Brooke started World of Wanderlust as her online journal, sharing "cities visited, people met and destinations conquered" when she was on a one year trip after finishing University and has turned it into her full-time job! Her book, like her blog, is filled with beautiful images as well as useful travel tips - where to go, what to see and do, photography advice... It has everything you need.
I hope these give you a little inspiration if you're planning a wedding or even just planning a fun party or holiday! Let me know if you have any wedding or travel related book recommendations!
Lots of Love