Today I’m covering my all-time favorite, and dare I say best, resources for both designing and planning your wedding (or special event!) These are all books and websites that I personally used throughout my own wedding planning process and now still check out frequently for inspiration, etiquette, and general reference! Don’t worry, I promise to dedicate an entire post just to wedding planning binders soon!!
These are the best of the best and it’s nearly impossible to plan a wedding without these (well, maybe more like it’s kind of impossible to be on Pinterest and not have seen most of these). Anyway, they’re my tried-and-true favorites, so enjoy!
The Knot – this is maybe the original wedding resource website. They’ve got a number of books too (see below for some!) but this site remains a great tool for so many reasons. You can create a wedding website easily here and they’ve teamed up with a few different invitation companies so you can coordinate it exactly. They also have a budgeting tool, vendor guide, real wedding inspiration, and so much more.
Wedding Wire – this is the best website for vendor reviews. I’m not just saying that, either. Wedding Wire collects the most reviews and has excellent algorithms to help you find exactly the vendor that will fit you perfectly. There’s more than just vendors on their site, but vendor reviews are the main reason I recommend this site.
Wedding Planning for Dummies – This book is definitely NOT just for dummies. People often get into the meat of wedding planning and realize they’ve gotten in over their heads. Or they were completely caught off guard by certain aspects of planning. So don’t get stuck in that situation. Do a little reading up front and save yourself from a headache (or worse, heartache) later.
Style Me Pretty – this website is CHOCK FULL of gorgeous events, mostly weddings, but a lot of other ones too like showers, engagements and engagement parties, etc. I could spend days on end drooling over the inspiration. Be sure to visit the DIY section and the great vendor guide too. Bonus, they’ve got a section devoted to all things home! And their book is nothing short of stunning with all the lovely full page photos.
Southern Weddings – the South is home of sweetness, charm, and class, so it’s obvious why this is on the essentials list. They’ve got a great vendor guide, real wedding features, and tons of other resources!
Not everyone has a Type-A personality, but it’s crucial that you stay (relatively) organized while planning a wedding or detailed affair. Here are some resources to help.
The Knot Book of Lists – prepare for list overload! Any thing you could possibly think of to write a list about, The Knot has you covered. Prepare for a meeting? No need! Bring this book and go through that vendor section and tick your way through that list.
A Practical Wedding – an overall guide to planning the wedding of your dreams on your budget and keeping it truly meaningful for you and your love!
Stuff Every Bride Should Know – the perfect pocket-sized guide that is packed cover-to-cover with helpful information. And with its tiny size, keep it in your bag and refer to it anytime!
Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette – I guess etiquette isn’t quite organization, but I’m including it here anyway. Emily Post is the QUEEN of etiquette. Any type. But when planning a wedding, you’re not going to get better etiquette advice than this book! It’s been updated by Emily’s heirs to fit modern norms. I always recommend using this as a guideline but ultimately doing what you’re comfortable with!
The Wedding Blue Book – another etiquette book, but this one is just for your stationery. Any question you could possibly have about your paper suite, look no further!
Everyone needs inspiration. And visual is best!
Martha Stewart Weddings – Martha is my home girl. Yeah, I know she went to prison, but that doesn’t take away from her brilliance in home decor, event design, and practical organization. This book has timeless weddings that you’ll fall in love with! Martha also has a wedding magazine that you can pick up at a local store and a website too.
Cottage Hill Magazine – they’ve got a website overflowing with gorgeous inspiration from other real weddings, and if you prefer a hard copy, then pick up one of their chic magazines! Very elegant with all fine art photographs.
Inspired Weddings – this gem of a book is meant for those who want to incorporate special objects, treasures, or family heirlooms into their big day. Or those who want firm design direction based on a few objects they adore.
Offbeat Bride – for those who don’t fit the cookie-cutter bridezilla role, this book may be just for you! Their tagline is perfect “Creative Alternatives for an Independent Bride.” Check out their website too.
Grooms – a professional stylist has compiled everything you’d ever need to know to dress your guys perfectly on the big day. Meant for every type of budget.