Newest Review: ... at the back and lots of adverts in between. One thing I noticed that did vary considerably, was the target audience, as one magazin... more
Here comes the bride
Wedding Ideas Magazine
Member Name: loulabelle17
Wedding Ideas Magazine
Advantages: A more budget friendly bridal magazine, covers ideas for a wide range of budgets
Disadvantages: Too many adverts and too much repetition
In the wedding world, I'm a bit of a disappointment really. I don't long for a big princess dress or a horse and carriage (no offence intended to anybody that does). As clichéd and soppy as this may sound I just want to become the wife of my very own Prince Charming. Of course, if I can do this in a pretty dress then all the better. Because Prince Charming and I are on a tight budget (I think I'm called a budget bride) we've decided to try and do quite a few things ourselves. This includes making our invites, baking and decorating our cake, heck we'll probably end up arranging our flowers too. Whilst we are looking forward to doing these things and making them personal to us, it's also a bit daunting as we don't really have much of a clue when it comes to these kind of things.
So where do I turn to for inspiration? Well, as it's free I've mostly made do with looking on the net (if you have a few minutes and fancy looking at some pretty pictures check out www.projectwedding.com and www.etsy.com). In general, my opinion of wedding magazines isn't that great. There are lots available but they mostly seem to follow the same theme. Endless adverts of dresses, bridal boutiques and venues. For what they are I think the magazines are vastly over priced. I feel they also can often make people feel inadequate if they have less to spend. This coupled with the fact that there seems to be so much expectation placed on weddings these days. This isn't really fair as big budget or small budget you can still have the day of your dreams. After all, once the ice sculpture of swans has melted :) and the fireworks whooshed it's the marriage that remains.
So how can a bride on a budget fill her wedding scrapbook (apparently it's essential to have one). Step in Wedding Ideas Magazine, a more budget friendly wedding magazine. Which has been around for four years and is the UK's second highest selling wedding magazine. It also has a website by the same name (www.weddingideasmag.com) which is good to have a look at, as you can see and read quite a lot of similar stuff to what's in the magazine but for free. The website also has a forum, if that's your kind of thing, where you can ask advice or swap ideas with other brides/grooms to be. It can often get a bit too bridezilla on there for my liking though.
The magazine itself is a compact A5 size and is very girly looking (somebody's favourite colour is obviously bright pink as it seems to feature heavily). It's issued every 4 weeks (13 issues per year) and costs £2.99, which in comparison to big name bridal magazines like Brides and You and Your Wedding is almost half the price. Ok, as my fiancé has pointed out it would be a far lot cheaper to not buy the magazine in the first place. I am weak though and just can't seem to help myself even though I know I really shouldn't. I'm not the only one with this 'problem' if the listings of bundles of wedding magazines on eBay are anything to go by.
As to be expected, the cover always features a model wearing a bridal dress, having bridal type hair and make up and holding a bouquet. Handily, there is a small bit on the contents page, which lists how this look is put together, for example who did the flowers and who designed the dress.
As with any bridal magazine there are countless adverts which are predominantly for dresses. In the issue I am currently flicking through there are 9 pages of dress adverts before getting to the contents page. I think this is enough to test even the most fashion conscious of brides.
The magazine has an ok layout which follows the same format with each issue. There is quite a lot crammed into the different sections and it can all come across as too busy looking for my liking. I really find it's a case of sifting through the endless adverts to be able to see what's useful and what's not. There is not an awful lot to read as it mostly seems to be pictures to look at with the addition of small bits of text. This means it doesn't really take a long time to get through an issue, I find it's more of a 'flicking magazine' as opposed to making a good read.
The five main sections covered in the magazine are:
Fashion: includes items such as must try dresses, how to get the look where lots of items are put together to achieve a whole look, new styles of dresses for bridesmaids and bridal shoe ideas.
Beauty: this covers beauty news, how to get fit for your wedding with simple to do exercises, wedding hair which gives lots of ideas for different styles including short hair and long hair.
Planning: information on how to stretch your budget with tips for making your budget work harder, entertainment ideas, honeymoon ideas which include lots of romantic getaways.
Details: includes ideas for favours and tempting table treats for guests, up to the minute trends for invites, place cards, idea for themes from vintage to garden party, flowers and jewellery.
Regulars: several competitions and offers which include prizes of honeymoons and dresses, real life weddings, horoscopes, reader's letters which also includes lots of offers and discounts on bridal products and listings of nationwide retailers and classifieds.
The regular feature I enjoy the most is the 'real life weddings' it's around 38 pages of couples sharing aspects of their big day with you. This generally includes a bit about how they met, the proposal, the bride's outfit, the accessories, the groom, the bridesmaids, the flowers, the ceremony, the reception, the details, the entertainment, the first dance and the honeymoon. This feature is good as you can get a lot of ideas and tips.
There are some things I like about the magazine. For example, features like step by step instructions with pictures on how to make your own pearl hair comb. I also like that you don't have to have a huge budget to be able to afford some of the product suggestions. For example, in the jewellery feature items start at £5.00 and in the shoe feature items start at £25.00.
For me though, the plus points of this magazine are not enough to outweigh the negative points. Although I enjoyed the first issue I bought, having bought a couple more issues since I have found myself getting annoyed by the constant repetition that occurs with each issue. I would therefore not recommend it as a regular buy but would suggest it as a one off purchase for both small and big budget brides.
Wedding Ideas is a nationwide magazine and fairly widely available, it can be bought in supermarkets (I've seen it in Tesco and Morrisons) and Whsmith as well as some newsagents.
Thanks for reading.
Summary: Good for providing you with initial inspiration and ideas but not good for a regular read.