Was it always like this?

Between my recent post on bridal party expenses, which you can read here,  and some conversations I’ve shared with others, I’ve been thinking a lot about the state of the wedding world these days (bear with me, this might get a little all over the place).  How did it get so trendy?!?! 

It’s common to hear brides say that “they have been planning their weddings since they were little girls.”  This may have consisted of ripping a few pictures from magazines or dreaming up a vision of the big white princess gown in their head, but I’d say, arguably, that for the most part little girls’ plans were mostly that, a vision. Typically, if you wanted to immerse yourself in wedding details you had to seek it out, buying magazines from the bookstore, visiting vendors, etc. The wedding industry was very much a tight niche that only the betrothed could access.

Fast forward to 2011 and the world of social media, and what do you have? In your face weddings.  Suddenly, we see weddings everywhere: on TV, in mainstream magazines, on every blog imaginable. We’re watching couples get a complete dream wedding makeover a week before they say I do, flipping channels to the screaming bridezilla having a meltdown like that’s standard and not even batting an eyelash while parents drop thousands of dollars in a swanky bridal salon for a dress their daughter will wear once. Some could even argue it’s become the trendy way to throw a party what with the Kardashian debacle, but that’s another story (check out this interesting graphic). My point is, it’s not just a life milestone anymore, its a social milestone and an outlet for entertainment from the media. Brides (and sometimes grooms) now have every detail of their wedding figured out before they even find their significant other. Thank you Pinterest.

More shockingly, I think this wedding boom is evident in the everyday bride planning her own personal wedding. Couples are willing to spend extravagant amounts on this single party because that’s how wedding’s work. I see clients all the time who have what we affectionately refer to as “champagne tastes on a beer budget.” They want it all, lighting, crystals, big floral arrangements, fancy lounge furniture, designer gowns, letterpress invites you name it. Often times they don’t even realize how much money these things actually cost.

It seems like with the wedding world in everybody’s face it’s not uncommon to see couples who are simply trying to “one-up” their friends and relatives all to prove that they can have the most over the top wedding of the year. It’s become a competition to see who can throw the best party of them all. Maybe this is the way it always has been, or maybe it’s just a testament to my upbringing, but I feel like weddings just used to be simpler. The wedding has always been referred to as the most important day of your life, so naturally brides wanted to make it special and go all out, but I think this remained on a very personal level between the bride, the groom, and the family. Maybe it was always over the top and I was just sheltered, or maybe it really has become trendy on a whole new level.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a fabulous industry to be in. I love what I do. I love the clients I work with (even the crazies). I love doing whatever it takes to make that day as spectacular as it can be for my couples.  I too love staring at the pretty pictures of lace and tulle and flowers on my pin boards and gawking at the ridiculous shows. I might not have had visions when I was younger but I sure have inspiration tucked away now. At the end of the day though, I just have to chuckle. When did weddings become mainstream and how did that happen? Who decided that this would be the next industry boom? Man were they right!

And for their sake I hope they are making a lot of money!

Thoughts?

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Died and gone to heaven…

My company has been working with photographer KT Merry a lot lately (check her out beautiful work!) and she recently posted about Bridal Market New York. While scanning through the photos I fell in love with a dress from a designer in Minnesota.  Hello gorgeous….

It is a very unconventional dress – and that is why I love it. Very soft and flowy but still with an edgy vibe. Tara LaTour – well done! Though the site is a bit difficult to navigate she has some gems for sure. Oh how I wish I could have gone to bridal market ….. maybe next year.

Behold…pretty

I have been anxiously awaiting the release of the new bridal line from Anthropologie (one of my favorite stores for random home things 🙂 and beautiful clothes of course) and finally – on Valentines no less – it is here! The new line BHLDN, pronounced beholden, is the epitome of what you would expect from a brand like Anthro. A little bit whimsy, a little bit classic, a little be boho chic, it’s beautiful. There is no other word for it. Excect pretty, because I feel prettier just looking at other models in the dresses. Weird I know.

BHLDN also offers bridesmaids dresses, hair fascinators, lingerie, shoes, jewelery – you name it.

I love the detailing and the softness of all the gowns. I also really like they aren’t all your typical white dress. They add a bit of dimension and variety to what is typically available. Want some more eye candy….

I really could go on all day. There isn’t anything about this line that disappoints. Check it out here. Try not to ruin your v-day makeup with the drool. 🙂

They even have a quiz to find out what kind of bride you are and pick one of their dress styles to fit your style best. Just for fun I tested myself. Who am I… neo-sophisticate according to their experts: “something that suits you but not necessarily the ‘typical gown.’ Your dress will be unexpected with structural lines and interesting shape. You’re passionate about entertaining and your wedding will be a reflection of your sensibility, refined and elegant with an acknowledged informality.” I like where this is headed!

I think i’ll make an inspiration board for a wedding designed around one of these lovely gowns … check back tomorrow!

Party in a Box

No, not the JT skit sorry. Party decor in a box. That’s right. There is no longer a need to spend hundreds of dollars to throw a small get together, shower, or seasonal party. Behold ACME Party Box Company. My new best friend. A lot of their products are vintage chic and kind of bohemian – which I totally love juxtaposed with an uber modern backdrop. Anyone? How about country chic? Maybe?

Anyway, you can purchase pre set boxes, or search by party themes and choose sets of items individually. They have everything from favor bags and place card items, to table runners and even mason jar drinking glasses. That’s right. You can even get all of your plates and utensils in your box. Some of them have premade invitations to match. SO EASY RIGHT?!?! The decor is just so cute as well.  Check it out:

LOVE IT! LOVE IT ALL! The holiday and kids party boxes are adorable as well. Yay for ACME saving the party day.  I’m so glad I happend to surf through this site today. It just made my day for sure.

Swallowed up in Satin

This week has been one of those filled with the “man I wish…” thoughts. Why? Because it is the close of Bridal Market 2010. What is that? Only the New York Fashion Week of the wedding world! Bridal Market is when all of next seasons designs from some of the largest bridal designers are released/showcased. Each designer hosts a fashion show in NY, and the who’s who of the wedding market (salon buyers, bloggers, magazine editors, etc) are invited.

Since I will not be attending anywhere in the distant future, I have been blog-stocking to see some of the designs of 2011. Warning there are  LOT of photos to follow! My current faves include:

Adele Wechsler

 

love the bottom of this dress!

the criss-cross ribbon on the bodice is beautiful - not to mention the subtle pattern!

love the color. love the pockets. love the straps. love

Alisa Benay

a searsucker wedding dress!!!!

Amsale

(I had to hold myself back – I am legitimately obsessed)

simple straps and a subtle pattern

feminine but not too much

apparently I’m into the subtle patterns this year. Just realizing that! ha!

Anne Bowen

reception dress with a hood - heyo!

a little bit of pop

Chaviano

tulle just makes me smile

again the pockets. I love the one shoulder. Still undecided on the hem.

Christos

polka dots. even if everyone else is a hater

Dessy

(some love for the bridesmaids)

 

swooning over the ombre!!!

don't usually like long - but I'm feeling this print

Ines De Santo

 

reminds me slightly of fireworks

bling. but not BLING!

Monique Lhuillier

 

I can't get over this neckline

or these sleeves

Pnina Tornai

(usually not a fan but she stole my heart this season)

 

Feeling the feathers on the shoulder

beautiful silhouette!

reminiscent of napkins but in a weird way I like it

Priscilla of Boston

 

ceremony to reception like it ain't no thing!

Ramona Keveza

 

I don't have the balls to wear this color - but I like how different it is

it's like she's floating

Reem Akra

 

ignoring the headpiece, I melt

Watters

 

movement without moving
LOVING the two-toned bridesmaids dress. Can’t. get. enough.
a little something something for a snazzy mama
a little bit of spunk and totally party ready

whew!!! now that the slide show is over! 🙂 For serious though, I am a little dress obsessed, but rightfully so. Your wedding dress is one of the few things you will take with you from your event forever. I don’t mean the literal – it will sit in your closet and rot way – I mean that this is what you will be staring at in photographs for your entire life. You want to make sure you look banging!

Not to mention, I whole heartedly believe that your dress makes the event. That’s right I said it. I think the dress should be the first purchase, because it totally sets the entire tone and theme of the wedding. Huge ballgown on the beach in summer? You’re not only going to need a TON of deoderant – you’re probably going to look out of place. Same goes for a tiny sheath dress in a huge cathedral or castle. Just doesn’t work. So yes – the dress is the (next) to main event – after the getting hitched part that is.

It needs to be done right. Bridal Market 2010 did no wrong.

Goodies, Goodies, Lots of Goodies

Ok so it’s been quite some time since the last post, so to makeup for it, i’m going to share lots of fun things with whoever it is that is reading my blog! 🙂

I had this week off and spent this past weekend visiting my sister. Basically this means tanning, lots of food, and shopping. All of the items linked below relate back to this weekend in some way or another – inspiration perhaps.

I took the opportunity of nice weather and a day to myself to tan. I love the beach so naturally I fell in love instantly with the below engagement shoot showcased on Junebug Weddings.

The next day consisted of lots of shopping. I was looking for new shoes. I am a sucker for flats – how cute are these custom made flats from etsy seller extraseed? Bride or Bridesmaid – you can definitely dance all night!

Barnes & Noble was also an important addition to the day. I love books and love to see them incorporated into events like centerpieces on style me pretty

and these DIY hardback books for pretty much anything from Elizabeth Anne Designs

And naturally, a shopping trip isn’t complete without some fashion purchases. Fashion, specifically Louis Vuitton, was a source of inspiration for this engagement shoot on 100 Layer Cake. How fun!

A final stop for the weekend was a hunt for Vera Bradley. I think with her latest lines Vera is on the way back in. You can’t help but love her for all things gift related, but I have specifically fallen in love with the below bag which will be arriving on my doorstep before long. The Ditty Bag is the perfect catch all for bridesmaids gifts, no?

And last but not least, not particularly related to the weekend, but my heart strings can’t help but pull from these adorable scratch off invitations from etsy seller unlesssomeonelikesyou.

Lots of things to drool over, at least I did. On another note, I start my new job tomorrow, so expect a lot from the world of events this week. Happy Monday!

It’s Like It Was Made for Me…Today I Love…

To feed my addiction

In case you weren’t aware – I have a serious soda addiction. Coca- Cola to be specific. Today I love, no I am crushing on… this Urban Outfitters glass.

Other current crushes from Urban… awesome owl umbrella stand, lace inspired acid etched letters, and so cute puzzle pillowcases (naturally). Although I will say, the umbrella stand has a hot competitor in this – but zGallerie is another can of worms altogether.

You can tell I was bored at work today, but hey Christmas is (almost) right around the corner.

Ok. I’m done now.

A Little Bit of Whimsy, A Little Bit of Fun

Truth: I am obsessed with puzzles! Especially crosswords and jigsaw puzzles. (There’s even a book of crosswords in my bathroom. Yes I said it.) I would take a gander that with the rampant spread of “Words with Friends” iPhone app most of America is probably obsessed with puzzles as well (of the Scrabble variety).

So – with all this puzzle love, why not add some to your wedding. That’s right – a wedding. Confused – take in some of these lovelies:

“Random tiles?” you say to yourself… wait there’s more…

The RSVP card also splits into jigsaw pieces – one you return with your RSVP, and one you keep so you know all the important information. LOVE!!

And there’s more from this fun wedding.. jigsaw puzzle seating cards

Each guest has their own piece – directing them to their seating location.

Together, the pieces at the table form a funky picture of the couple (I’ve also seen them form the menus, or a story about the couple – the engagement for instance).

But wait, these fun puzzle pieces also serve one more function…

The puzzle photos are then matted and signed by guests to make a wonderful art piece for their home. Who needs a guestbook when you have this?!

Not a jigsaw fan? How about some scrabble:

Table letters and place cards. Simple – but still a statement.

Obviously – I love this. It’s such a unique way to showcase some personality. Now that I have sufficiently given away one of my personal wedding must haves (note to all those whose weddings I might attend – you’ve been warned 😉 ha) Anyone else ever seen quirky little details such as this?

*all jigsaw puzzle pics courtesy of Elizabeth Anne Designs. Scrabble from Project Wedding

I think I have found my new obsession…

It all started with this…

don't you love them?

 

Obviously I had to have a closer look. I bring you French Bull. I admit – some of the products may be a little obnoxious for most folks, but personally I. LOVE. IT. Table Runner? ooooh. Duvet Cover? ahhhhh. Wall Art? YES PLEASE!!! I’ve found my new gift giving depot, and maybe some personal shopping as well. Not to mention – how cute are some of these items for small children (back to school notebooks anyone?)

Today – this made my day.