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Offbeat Bride: Creative Alternatives for Independent Brides Paperback – February 23, 2010
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While I do not identify with the specific style of the author, she does wonders in terms of bringing the reader down from the clouds filled with escort cards, aisle runners, and rose-filled bouquets and uses examples from her own, unusual wedding to help the reader choose her own adventure. She encourages and empowers the reader to think critically about what is and is not important to her and to plan her wedding accordingly. Her writing style is conversational and highly amusing- the perfect cocktail for soothing the bridal beast stirring inside. Stallings also offers a myriad of helpful hints about conflict mediation, effective communication, and how to handle the rollercoaster of emotions that accompany getting married. This book is really the comprehensive guide to not losing your sanity over a wedding and promotes an overall mental and emotional approach to getting married that will (hopefully!) maximize your and your fiance's enjoyment of your day (and isn't that really what it's all about?!).
Having showered the author with praise, I think it is important to note here that this book is absolutely not for the bride-to-be who has it all figured out, the bride-to-be who won't be deviating from the predetermined wedding path, or the bride-to-be who already has an impartial cheerleader in her life shouting encouraging mantras from the periphery of her everyday life (if such a woman exists). Every other bride should read this book before she even begins serious planning.
As a side note, Stallings also operates a website with the same name as the book, which is phenomenal. It complements her book nicely in that it offers real examples of how brides made their weddings their own. It also hosts a web community for support and sharing ideas and inspiration. I hate to plug addition "products," but I was so impressed that I couldn't help myself.
In short, if you're feeling lost in the proverbial sauce, buy this book and read it over a nice, soothing cup of whatever. You'll feel right as rain and ready to plan!
Once I had this book in my hands I devoured it. I loved every word in it and while what I wanted wasn't too offbeat, it gave me a source of support and inspiration. I loved the part on name changing since that's something I struggled with alot and ultimately decided not to do. It felt good to know there were others out there who didn't just want to go with the status quo. Additionally, finding this book opened up the channels to the wonderful blogs that the author has spun off from Offbeat Bride. Now there's an Offbeat blog for every phase of your Offbeat life! I love it and I cannot express how much Offbeat Bride helped at one of the most important time of my life.
If you don't want the cookie cutter or if you find people are giving you strange looks while planning your wedding, get this book. It'll help. I promise.