A few weeks ago I went to my local library to look for wedding books. I love online searching, but my eyes get tired from staring at the screen too long, and I do a lot of work on the computer at work, so I wanted some good ol’ fashioned books.
I was amused to discover that they are cataloged in the “Folklore and Customs” section. Happy to find there was quite a large selection, I set about trying to determine which ones I would enjoy and benefit the most from reading.
I ended up checking out six books:
Eco-Chic Weddings by Emily Elizabeth Anderson
Anti-Bride Etiquette Guide by Carolyn Gerin and Kathleen Hughes
A Bride’s Book of Wedding Traditions by Arlene Hamilton Stewart
The Wedding Guide for the Grownup Bride by Shelley Christiansen
How to Have a Big Wedding on a Small Budget by Diane Warner
and The New Essential Guide to Gay and Lesbian Weddings by Tess Ayers and Paul Brown
I have devoured almost all of them already, finding so much useful and interesting information. The only book that didn’t speak to me, which I put down after a chapter and a half, was The Wedding Guide for the Grownup Bride. The author was primarily describing her personal experience of marrying for the first time at age 46, and the book did not seem to offer practical suggestions for wedding planning.
The funniest to read were the Anti-Bride Etiquette Guide and the Gay and Lesbian Weddings. Chock-full of interesting anecdotes, wedding ideas, and historical facts, I thoroughly enjoyed both of them. The Eco-Chic Weddings book also gave me a lot to think about. I have been concerned about the environment since long before it was trendy, I guess I was born “green”. She offers a ton of suggestions on how to make sure your wedding isn’t wasteful or harmful to the environment, and that you aren’t unwittingly supporting unethical industries (such as dirty gold or conflict diamonds in your jewelry, sweatshops or child labour for your clothing, and South American flower farms for those pretty bouquets).
How to Have a Big Wedding on a Small Budget was entertaining to read, albeit quaint and old fashioned. I was pleased to find that many of her suggestions to cut costs were options my partner and I had already considered. For a historical look at the customs surrounding marriage, I learned a lot from A Bride’s Book of Wedding Traditions. It is fascinating to look at how marriage has evolved over the ages, and how different cultures celebrate the occasion.
So, to my fellow brides-to-be, I recommend a trip to your library to see what you discover for yourself!