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Book Review- Green Bride Guide

As any current, former, or future bride might know, when planning a wedding it is helpful to have some sort of “guidebook” to reference. There are many out there to consult- but I’d like to highlight one that is very unique, helpful, and GREEN.

The book (and accompanying website) is called The Green Bride Guide by Kate L. Harrison. This book boasts the ability to help you “create an earth-friendly wedding on any budget” – and it delivers! I think a lot of people tend to consider green options expensive. The suggestions this book offers cover the gamut of price ranges. There really is something for everyone in here.

The major pluses of this book are its organization, its resource list, its worksheets, and the comprehensive coverage of topics. The information you need is easy to find and references for more information are well cited. The book covers everything you can think of – jewelry, dresses, transportation, wedding registries, invitations, flowers, honeymoon travel, decor, make-up, catering…etc. It’s a grand accumulation of all things wedding and how to make them more “green”. This was a phenomenal discovery for me because when initially browsing for “green wedding tips” I was disappointed to find most resources focused their attention on the invitation aspect and recycled paper products- along with other cliche ideas. Not that recycled paper invites aren’t a good idea- it’s just a little obvious and over publicized. Not to mention, that’s only ONE aspect of the whole wedding process!

The Green Bride Guide starts off by discussing general topics like supporting local businesses, watching out for “greenwashing”, and communicating your “green” vision to vendors. As specific topics are covered in well-organized chapters specific suggestions are given a rating of $, $$, or $$$ based on price. For example, in the location section, a rating of $ is given to “Natural Surroundings” (among others), whereas a rating of $$$ is given to “Green Resorts” (among others).

To give you a taste of what you can find in this book, I will share some of the topics I’ve found most helpful and/or informative.

  • Section about the risks associated with bottled water and the importance of offering guests water from glass pitchers rather than plastic bottles.
  • The registry section with suggestions of how/where to register for more eco-conscious mainstream items (appliances etc) as well as unique green lifestyle items.
  • Clean-up and Waste information. Helpful reminders on using decoration that is reusable or creates little/no waste. Including an excellent idea for a Co-Op of commonly used wedding event items.

In addition to itself providing excellent factual information, tips, and unique ideas, the book provides an abundance of external resources to consider – both within the text and as a handy list in the back (sorted of course by topic). Invaluable.

This book does NOT contain glossy pages full of photographed weddings. For that you must seek Martha Stewart et al. This book – true to its mission- is printed on recycled paper and doesn’t waste space with photos. However, if it’s photographs you desire, visit the Green Bride Guide website as a colorful supplement to the book!

If you (or someone you know) has a role in an upcoming wedding, consult this book or give it as a gift (perfect for an engagement gift!)! Also, feel free to share some of your own tips here! In future posts I hope to share some of the “green” ideas I’ve come up with for our wedding- I’d love to hear from others as well!

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