Planning a wedding is a big deal. And when you’re wondering how to word your invitations, make a table plan or need help with your budget, you’ll find an expert’s ‘how to’ guide essential reading. Here’s our pick of the best wedding planning books, complete with real reviews on why they’re so great.
The Essential DIY Wedding Planner
‘Useful and straight forward without being overwhelming, this book covers all the big issues involved with planning a wedding and the smaller ones too. It also includes handy checklists to fill in as you go along so that you can keep all your thoughts and plans in one place.’
“I love this book, from the wedding tips to the wedding planner! It has encouraged me and given me the confidence to step away from ‘tradition’ and become a hands on bride who won’t conform – your wedding is your wedding, put your own stamp on it!”
How to Wear White
‘A funny, eclectic and essential addition to every twenty-first-century bride’s trousseau. True, you may not ever need to know the names of all of Elizabeth Taylor’s spouses or how to say ‘My husband’ in Norwegian, but isn’t it fabulous that you do?’
‘Packed throughout are tips, tools, checklists, spreadsheets, and schedules to help brides (and grooms) manage everything from building a wedding timeline and organizing the dreaded seating chart to getting the wedding party matched and fitted.’
‘1000 creative ideas for designing a modern wedding with hundreds of entirely modern style ideas for every aspect of a wedding, in eight eye-catching and vibrant colour palettes. Lusciously designed and bursting with vivid photography, this book has everything you need to design a stunningly colourful affair.’
“It really is a classic essential to have by your side ensuring you do things “right”. It explains all the etiquette surrounding weddings from the initial announcement onwards and explains why certain traditions are in place. It has been fully updated to allow for modern customs and changes to convention so is it not old fashioned. Although certain things do need to be taken into account but not necessarily followed to the letter it does provide peace of mind. I would highly recommend reading this cover to cover before starting to plan anything. An essential for any bride/groom to be.”
‘The definitive guide to arranging a wedding with style, sophistication and panache, by one of the world s leading party planners. Beautifully presented alongside inspirational imagery from real weddings. Packed with detailed advice and shopping tips, planning solutions and checklists, with easy to access money-saving advice for the bride on a budget.’
“I’m NOT the Bride. I’m the friend of the Groom and sympathetic ear to the Bride!
I had to step in and do something as it was clear the Groom was doing nothing, and over the past 10 years of our friendship I can happily conclude that he would have carried on doing nothing if action wasn’t taken. So, I bought this book as a belated Engagement present to save the Brides sanity and to give the Groom a good kick up the backside.
As a result, the Groom has now woken up to the fact that there is plenty to be getting on with even if they do have 12 months before the wedding. The Brides sanity is saved.
For the Bride she has found this invaluable as it’s helped her with wedding etiquette and planning, and of course getting the Groom to make some decisions before the BIG day. It’s fantastically illustrated, beautifully presented and insightfully written. The Author REALLY does know what she is writing about.
I can therefore say with confidence that this is a very good buy, so good in fact that I have bought two copies and I can imagine I will be buying many more in the future as more of my friends get married. It’s a life line for all future Brides and Grooms.”
Bride’s Instruction Manual
‘At Last! A No-Nonsense Guide to Bridal Essentials! Feuding in-laws, rehearsal dinner meltdowns, controlling wedding planners… Have no fear: The Bride’s Instruction Manual boils it all down to the basics, covering every topic you need to know to march down that aisle with confidence, from setting the date and choosing The Dress to creating your guest list.’
“A lighthearted look at a serious matter, going through most aspects of the whole process and not only the wedding itself (eg, how to choose a ring and how to propose). More or less this is a checklist of various bits and pieces you have to consider. Although it is all quite funny and with witty diagrams (think of a photographic camera instruction manual), there are plenty of nuggets of information and the authors are quite reasonable. It makes for a tidy small gift.”
Style Me Pretty: Weddings
‘Full of lively and oh-so-lovely ideas, and more than 250 photographs, this swoonworthy volume will help you distill the wide world of wedding inspiration into the most meaningful, utterly original day you can imagine.’
“Beautiful ideas! Beautiful decorations! Beautiful book! I really love it and recommend!! It is awesome! Perfect for a perfect day!”
Style Me Vintage: Weddings
‘How to source and put together bridal outfits and event styling for a themed occasion, from the Edwardian era, through the decades to the 1970s. From the dress itself, through to accessories, flowers, make-up and hair, even extra details such as how to style the attendants, venue, cake, stationery, photography, and entertainment are covered. ‘
“This is a lovely book for some vintage wedding inspiration. It’s set out in sections by era and has some good ideas for modern ways to bring the vintage feel to your day. It’s almost a bit magazine-like but it’s great for a flick through and to get you in the right mood for a bit of planning!”
My Handmade Wedding
‘A practical, friendly guide to planning and personalising your big day. It contains over 20 tried-and-tested projects, with helpful advice on cost-cutting, time-planning and preparation. Whether you want to hand-make your entire wedding, or just select a few ideas to personalise it, this book will show you how.’
“From the very first page until the last,this book is bursting with helpful tips,planning and lovely crafty makes. Full of easy to follow instructions for items like paper flowers, home made rose confetti, bunting and many other items. Your special day will be extra special if you use this book. It makes me want to get married again. You will find you come back to this book again and again as many of the makes could be used for parties of all ages. I give this book 10/10.”
Handmade Wedding Crafts
‘Create beautiful items at a fraction of the cost of buying new, often in a far more environmentally-friendly way and all with a vintage flair. Betty Bee’s 35 step-by-step projects show you how to make your bouquet, centrepieces, invitations, favours and more. ‘
“I’ve bought a lot of these books over the years and bought this one as my sister is getting married and we want to add some unique touches. Straight away this is a book that stands out from the rest. The projects are unlike anything in other books yet are simple to do (despite my best crafting intentions, I’m a novice). There are simple step by step guides and lovely photography as well as tips on how to customise your project further, something I have never seen before.”
These are certainly some of the best wedding books around now and don’t forget if you’re looking for free information and inspiration it’s all right here, with brand new features on different wedding topics every day in Ideas/Wedding Blog.
Kate Thompson is Confetti's features editor and wedding expert, and has worked in the wedding industry for 15 years. A widely published lifestyle writer, she has made BBC television and radio appearances discussing wedding trends in the UK.