What to Look For in a Wedding Planner Book
Planning a wedding can be a complicated affair. Dates, bookings, flowers, guest lists, food, and more – the sheer amount of tasks that need to be completed before the big day can be demoralizing and exhausting. Some opt to hire a wedding planner to direct the organization and complete these major tasks, but many can’t afford that luxury. Those who have to plan their own wedding need some way of keeping track of all their tasks, leads, and options as well as a central source for tips and hints on how to plan a wedding effectively. One great way to do this is to purchase a wedding planner book. But what should a bride or groom look for in wedding planner books? Read on to find out!
The Book Itself – Binding and Writing
First, you need to figure out what kind of book you want. There are many different types of bindings for your book which will have different consequences for your planning process. A regular bound book will be the cheapest, but it may not hold up, especially if the book is heavy and if it is used a lot. A spiral book is a better option, as it usually will hold together better. Another option is a binder – this is especially useful because new pages can be added to the book as you see fit. The only problem is that pages can be accidently ripped out. Some books also come with inserted folders to help you organize your materials. Whatever your choice, make sure that there are places for you to write and work in the book yourself.
Look for a Wedding Planning Book with Relevant Information
Some books contain more information than others on how to plan a wedding – timelines, how-tos, etiquette, and other guidelines that will be helpful when sorting through your tasks (even if you’re not a first-timer!). Look for books that don’t just contain places to input your information, but contain guides that will help you during the planning process. You may consider buying one combined book – information and filing/organization – if you want to focus more on the latter or if you have someone who knows a lot about weddings. If you want more wedding planning information in itself, consider buying a second, separate book for this purpose.
Some books will be more detailed than others. Some will give general guidelines, while others may go so far as to give specific examples for things like music, photos, food, dancing, and so on. You will need to decide how much help and detail your desire – if you really want to (and enjoy) micromanaging every detail, a more involved book might be for you. If you just need a wedding book planner for the basics, there will be simpler books available for you as well.
Look for books that cover everything you need to know – from the beginning of the engagement all the way to the honeymoon and thank you notes. At a minimum your book should discuss the following areas: the engagement, dates and calendars, the ceremony, budgets, invitations, and the reception. More specific categories could include: the wedding party, the gown, flowers, music, photos, video, food, gifts, the honeymoon, thank you cards, and more.
Look for a Book to Organize and Generate Ideas
Getting advice and information from a book on weddings is certainly helpful, but when you begin the process, you will have a lot of your own ideas swirling in your head. You will also receive a lot of “helpful” advice from friends and family. You will need a place to keep track of all the ideas under relevant categories, like food, music, guests, etc. When looking for wedding planners books, the best ones usually contain sections divided into these and many other categories. They may even contain places for you to write in your own, custom categories, if your wedding planning has some unique qualities that don’t fit the traditional scheme. Keeping track of your budget, vendors, and other specifics about your wedding will be important as the volume of information increases and as the span of time to the day decreases.
Again, as with the information section, some books will be more detailed than others.
Look for Books That Give You Specific Steps
Some books will be more general than others. If you want to fill in the details yourself, or if you have a friend or family member that has done this before, this might be OK for you. But if you need more details, some wedding planning books will be better than others. For instance, some books will not only contain places for you to record the vendors and businesses you’ve talked to, but also will give you questions to ask and worksheets to give each vendor. Some books will also give you thorough lists of all the steps you need to do for each particular category. If you need this kind of guidance, this could be something to keep an eye out for.
Look For Books That Give You Tools
Some books contain more than just pages of information and places to write. Some will come with printable tools that will help you in the process. For example, some wedding planner books come with checklists, worksheets, and information sheets that you can copy and write on or pass around as you see fit. Others will contain calendars that you can write in and distribute as necessary. The most detailed ones may even come with daily to do lists and calendars for those who like to micromanage. These tools aren’t just limited to paper – some books come with supplies to help you in the process, such as bags (to carry the book) or hole punchers (to add papers to your binder)! Some books are even getting technologically savvy, as they may come with CDs, DVDs, online components, or other computer software that can bring your wedding planning to the digital world.
Price is obviously an important thought for many, especially for those on a tight budget. Books can range in price from under $20 to $100 or more - the more expensive, the more in depth. While you may skimp on the details and size of the book, don’t skimp on the quality of the book itself, specifically the binding and page quality. You will be getting a lot of use out of this book, so it needs to stand up to some abuse over a year or more! It may be possible to get free wedding planner books, but you usually get what you pay for. It’s often worth it to shell out some money up front in order to save a lot of hassle down the line.
Another option is to create your own wedding planner book. You obviously won’t have the guidance of a book to start, but it’s quite possible to create your own binder or spiral book yourself, with the relevant, tabbed sections and other information you’ve gathered, perhaps from the internet or other sources.
Whatever option you select, stay organized, plan ahead, and most of all have fun! This is your special day, so enjoy everything about it.