Ask Abby...A Literary Bride
January 14, 2009

Question 2: My fiance and I are English graduate students. We met working as writing tutors at our university, then we traveled to London to study British literature as undergraduates. Obviously we're a bookish couple - and literature makes up a large part of our own romantic narrative.

I want to incorporate the literature we've read into our wedding. We love all the British classics - poetry and novels. I've thought that perhaps an old British library look would be a good stylistic fit: leather-bound books, heavy brass-studded armchairs, tweed, exotic artifacts from the East Indies. Problem is, I also want to give my wedding a lot of color. I don't know exactly how to accomplish both at once.

Are there colorful directions I could take a literary theme? I'm thinking either deep jewel tones (royal blue, deep purple, olive green, magenta) or a more fiery combination (red, fuchsia, orange, yellow). Will these work with Old English, or will I have to sacrifice my more exotic color palette? I'd really appreciate your stylistic expertise here.

Any tips for this cute literary bride??

Answer: I think that designing a wedding based on a mutual loves is, well, brilliant. It's the perfect way to celebrate something that you love while allowing guests to get a glimpse inside your personalities. For me, there are really different ways to approach a library styled wedding. One, like my dear friend Laurie, you could have your reception in an old, absolutely elegant library. With gorgeous white flowers, timeless china and stemware, cream or taupe colored would be a study in unabashed luxury.

Or, you can add a touch of whimsy. Here is the board that I came up with based on a more mid-century library part vintage, one part total elegance...

literary theme

Images, Right Row: Flowers by Bastian + Skoog and Artfool / Left Row: books by Penguin Classics on Design*Sponge, library image from google search on Style Forum

Now, take this same color palette and change out the library image to one that is a bit more classic...

literary theme

Library image on The Steampunk Home

You get a gorgeous, spirit filled look that captures the essence of what this bride is going for!