Bride's Head Visited: Grading The Wide World Of Wedding Mags


Since becoming a bride-to-be, I’ve been plunged into the wild, woolly, odd and anxiety-producing world of the Wedding Magazine. This past week, I’ve “read” and digested the latest offerings… so you don’t have to.

InStyle Weddings “Smart and Chic Ways to Save.” “Which Big Screen Bride are You?” A quiz allows you to find out which Bride Wars character you are. “Are you the first of your friends to rock gutsy statement necklaces or ruffled blouses? Are you willing to drop big bucks on the latest fashions? You are…the individualist.” A bunch of bridal shoes are covered in rhinestones. Are various splurges “worth it?” Apparently this whale cake is (Fig 1) because it doubles as décor! Never skimp on photography or catering: “the food is the heart of the event,” says some wedding planner. “Season’s Eatings: Take a cue from the calendar for a wedding cake as delicious on the inside as it is gorgeous on the outside.” The summer cake is paisley. (Fig 2) And: “the citrus in the yuzu brightens up the richness of the ganache, making it a perfect flavor for spring.” A bunch of really expensive rings (Fig 3). Colors “beyond pink and brown.” Black Eyed Pea Jaime “Taboo” Gomez marries his fashionista bride Jaymie Dizon. (Fig 4)”The newlyweds cruised in a Rolls-Royce Phantom to the Biltmore Hotel in Santa Clara. As a nod to Taboo’s Mexican heritage. A mariachi band sang to the 200 guests during cocktail hour; a Filipino folk dance honored Dizon’s birthplace. Later, singer and friend Frankie J performed Extreme’s power ballad “More Than Words” as the couple led their mothers onto the dance floor.” Timbaland and Monique Idlett had a “Heaven-and-Earth” themed wedding on some private island. Comedian Arden Myrin and her husband had the guests in “peals of laughter” with their “cheeky vows.” Later, they “amused guests with a choreographed dance routine to Scissor Sisters ‘I Don’t Feel Like Dancin.'” Grade: C – Miller Hi-Life, “the Champagne of Beers.”

Brides “396 Ideas to Love.” “Best Bridal Shower Games: Once the presents are opened and the quiche is gone, how you gonna keep them entertained?” Why, with “Vow Mad Libs,” “Wedding-Movie Charades” and “Paper Bride.” (?) Later, “two brides sound off” on whether destination weddings are selfish. Yes! “A destination wedding robs your guests of two precious commodities: money and time.” No! “Seventy-five made the trip, and 75 left with memories that were about more than just us. We consider it our gift to them.” Later, “brides tell all” about wedding waterworks. “Sniffling, ministers, sobbing grooms – here’s who’s crying at wedding.” Among others? “My tough-boy teen brother was sobbing as my dad got choked up during his toast. Afterward, a friend came over and said, ‘You better go hug your brother – he just learned real men do cry.'” Gown in “tactile fabrics” apparently mean a selection of Dune costumes (Fig. 5) “The Four Seasons” of table décor involve plaid tablecloths (Spring), crystal-studded chair covers. Grade: C+ (Cook’s Champagne)

Martha Stewart Weddings “In Love With Color.” “To Her, With Love” asks what kind of expensive gift your bridesmaids deserve. Is she the “luxe girl?” (cashmere underpants), the “hopeless romantic?” (soap), “the gourmand?” (salt) or “the technophile?” (python gadget cases.) “Bows Arts: Is there anything more apropos than bows – in all shapes and sizes – for the day you TIE THE KNOT?” Very complicated bow diagrams follow. “A Taste for Color” involves some very unappetizing – but colorful! – cakes, which “wear their colors and flavors beautifully.” This green guy ( Fig 6) involves “fondant molding cast from architectural reliefs…inspired by the interiors of neo-classical architect Robert Adam.” Next: “A New York City bride heads south to marry her country-music groom in an eco-friendly wedding that mixes downtown chic with down-home charm.” Guests receive tree saplings and chocolate banjos. (Fig 7) In “Sew in Love,” “a fabric-store owner and a musician meet, bond, and FALL IN LOVE. Before they know it, they’ve woven a life together.” Get it?! The wedding has a craftsy theme and involves much fabric. Designing “on a dime?” Why not make everything at the wedding yourself out of “scrapbooking paper?” Yes, the story’s called “to have and to fold.” Grade: B (Korbel)

Modern Bride 620 Truly Unique Ideas “Shop for Your Wedding at the Supermarket” with pre-fab cupcakes, a stuffed animal ring pillow (Fig 7), and “welcome bags” containing seeds, Altoids and lottery tickets. In a flower pot. Brides ask, “How can I save without looking like I’m skimping?” (Hint: avoid giving your guests Altoids.) Experts say: don’t buy enough cake, create a “candlescape” on a mirror instead of flowers. A “Balance the Budget” worksheet allots 4% for stationery, 10% for attire. Too much fun for ya? How’s about the guide to “Bridal Bartering?” Basically, you exchange your “professional skills” for DJing and flowers. “Bartering for a wedding was once considered declasse, but wedding experts say there’s no longer much of a stigma associated with it.” Says one bride, We didn’t want to go into any debt, so bartering allowed us to get extras we couldn’t have afforded.” The “A to Z Shopping Guide.” P is for powder puff. X is for “x-quisite.” The “Good Health Guide for the Modern Bride” helps make the “transition to marriage that much easier” with Vitamins and exercise. Also includes insurance stuff and “What You Must Know About Domestic Violence.” Finally, in “Regrets Only,” “an embarrassed bride comes clean on her guest-list goof-ups.” Oh noes!!! Grade: B+ (Freixenet Carta Nevada Brut)

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