SOUTHERN DIY WEDDING | Sweet Southern Affair + A Handmade Wedding Gown! At Ashland Berry Farm, Virginia | By Kristin Partin Photography. Also, Bambino :)

Hello and happy Monday afternoon, my loves!  Ok here’s wussup.  I’ve been going back and forth on a certain little issue in my own little world, and I can just never decide which way to go.  It’s got to do veth zee dressenhagens.

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WEDDING CAKE OBSESSION | You will die when you see this…

Ok, first, two things, then we’ll get back to the amazecakes:

I feel like I never get to plop down in front of the ol’ tele and veg out anymore – I try to catch a few useless time-wasters, aka, The Hills and The Bachelorette, when I can, but I feel like it’s a chore to wade through the fluff, mainly because it is all fluff.  Well, that’s a lie about The Hills.  Not the all fluff part, the chore part.  I know some of you caught a late night tweet last week that spoke to a certain last-minute rental car, a certain rushed ride home, and a certain half-hour reality show that airs Tuesdays at 10PM EST (true story).  Anyway, this week we were smart enough to tape that little fake-tanned indulgence of ours, and when I was about to turn it off, I saw the beginning of a commercial for a new MTV show (what?  No, I don’t watch MTV, pshhh).  Actually, it was after watching that crappity crap crap Downtown Girls (don’t judge me).  Anyway, the new show that totally caught my eye and piqued my curiosity is called “If You Really Knew Me,” and it premieres July 20 I believe.  And OMIGOD it is the experiment I’ve always dreamed of conducting.  Always.  DREAMED.

MTV describes it as “a documentary series that breaks down the walls of cliques in high school and brings kids together.”  I honestly don’t see how this could go wrong.  This is perfect… I mean, from the previews it’s almost unreal the kind of heart-wrenching material they actually address.  I’m just hoping it doesn’t turn into something useless and dumb.  Oh wait, I seem to be a fan of that.  So it looks like I’ll watch either way.

In other news, I’m shooting guns tonight.  Yup!  No, I’m not kidding.  I’m shooting guns tonight.  Over on the West Side, ya heard?  I dare you to show up.  (Please don’t; you may die.  I have never held a gun before in my life.)  Don’t worry, I have not suddenly jumped aboard the Palin train, and I am not a card-carrying member of the NRA.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  But the Fancy thought this would be fun, and I am going to admit that I was pensive for a hot second, and then psyched for all the days leading up to this afternoon’s approaching experience.  Oh how I cannot wait to share with you how it goes.  Is it weird that I’m disappointed that I won’t be able to hold a glock?  First timers are allowed to use only rifles.  Do they think they’re saving lives by limiting the firearm selection of newbies?  THIS IS A SHOOTING RANGE.  Depending on how you look at it, these places are breeding grounds for widespread, swift killing.  But, ok, I’ll take my rifle and shut my picky mouth.  (By the way, I cannot believe I’m doing this.  So scared… so, so scared…)

* * *

Ok now.  First, check out this painting, by Wayne Thiebaud.

Now… Check. Out. This. Cake spread.

I bet they’re starin’ at those cakes; I would be…

I know, RAD.  I’ve had these beauties in a folder on my comp for like EVER.  I pretty much thought about featuring them every other day – I honestly have no idea what took me so long.  You wouldn’t believe how much eye candy I have stored away in folders… you seriously wouldn’t believe it.

Seriously.

I have so many images in folders and so many tabs open in my browsers (yup, plural) that it’s not even funny anymore.  ANYWHO, back to cakes: The set-up, which is the work of the fantastic Ana’s Creative Bakery, was inspired by the iconic Wayne Thiebaud painting.  Isn’t it magnificent?  In the famous words of bluegrass singer Alison Krauss, the bride who thought this up is “My New Favorite.”

And just because I’m feeling a little light on the eye candy today, here are a few more delightful details from that wedding:

A few words from Kate Harrison:

Lisa & Drew live life to the fullest: adventure, zest, laughter, love…you name it. They are such a delight to be around and their wedding rocked my world. A Thiebaud inspired cake table?? The best ever. (Giddy!) Outdoor adventure themes everywhere?? Amazing. I was totally in love. It was a coupling of my dreams: the adorable Lisa & Drew & my hippie/bright-little-cake-loving heart. (And check out those science cookies!)

Sorry, science cookies, coming right up:

Lisa + Drew wedding / Photography: Kate Harrison / Venue: Nestldown / Caterer (paella!): PSRT / Cake: Ana’s Creative Bakery / Flowers: La Lavande / Hair & Makeup: Mary Moorehouse

Ok, my friends… what are your thoughts on these masterpieces?

By the way – just WAIT… WAIT until you see what I’ve got in store for you in tomorrow’s Fab Finds.  Just wait.

xoxo!  -Alison

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS! | June 4 | perfect gowns, hippie chicness, sparkle-town, DIY desserts + the coolest favors EVER

Hello and happy Friday, everybody!  How we doin’ today, eh?  Doin’ well?  I sure hope so.  The weekend is upon us, so that means fun in the sun if all goes according to plan.  Anyone have any interesting plans for the ol’ Sat-to-Sun?  Me, I kinda feel like hiking again.  You discover really cool things when you hike, like wedding venues.  Yeah, totally serious.  The boy and I plan to re-scope out this random beautiful joint upon which we stumbled while on a hike just north of the city a couple of weekends ago.  I shall report back once the verdict on its quality is in.  (:

Anywho, while we continue working out our server switcheroonie, as some of you have coined it (which I love and have now adopted), I thought I’d be remiss if I didn’t bring some seriously fabulous finds I managed to scoop up this week.  So, here we go!

First up, a few killer details from one seriously UN.BE.LIEV.ABLE wedding, as photographed by – who else – Max Wanger, and featured on 100 Layer Cake.  Le sigh.  I shall dream about this beach wedding forever and always.  Its colors, textures and characters (of the human sort) are the stuff of inspiration shoots, not real-life weddings.  So this rocks it to the fullest.  And by the way, PERSONALIZED BEACH TOWEL FAVORS ALERT!

Bridesmaids gowns: Rachel Pally

You wanna know where they got those rad beach towels, right?  Well, their Dutch artist friend Parra designed them; the invites, too.  And here’s where they got the towels made.  You’re welcome.

-♡-

Ok, this wedding featured on Style Me Pretty straight-up-now-tell-me blew me away.  But most weddings involving horses (not pictured here) tend to blow me away, because, I mean, how did they get horses involved in their wedding?  You know?  It seems so involved.  Do these people own horses?  Do they find a horse – I dunno, farm, and shoot there so that it looks like horses attended their wedding?  Does the New York Times write, “the wedding was well-attended; also, they had horses” because you can’t ignore the horse-factor.  It’s a huge factor.  It’s the elephant at the wedding, essentially.  (Can you tell that I’m up way past my bedtime right now?  It gets crazier and crazier.)

By the way, obsessed with the bouquet.  Obsessed.  It’s sort of EXACTLY RIGHT.

Not to mention zee shoes:

Photography: Aaron Delesie

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My good friend Melissa, of The Loveliest Day, made quite a stir in her new role blogging for Ruffled with one seriously sparkle-rific wedding dress… and not to mention super hunky groom.  Super.  Hunky.  (Massive congrats, Melissa!  Sooo freaking awesome.)  Here’s a lil taste of the fabulosity that awaits you.

Credits, courtesy of Ruffled:

Ceremony Venue: University of Western Australia / Reception Venue: Table 78 Restaurant / Photographer: Anna Rose Photography / Bride’s Dress: Rachel Gilbert / Bridesmaids Dresses: Gown Gallery / Flowers: Code Bloom / Cake: Choux Cafe / Celebrant: Jenny Carkeek / Rentals: Perth Outdoor Ceremonies

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Coveting the incredibly laid-back but terrifically chic style of this bang-sporting bride.  And just LOOK at that sassy feather statement necklace she’s got on!!  Does it NOT fit perfectly with that gown?  J’adore.  Plus, you guys know how much I love a good bang!  Hair, we’re talking hair.  (… But I like the other kind, too, obvs.)

Photography: Laura Heffington / Oregon Beach Wedding featured on OnceWed, who discovered it on Frolic

-♡-

DIY dessert time!  Comin’ atcha face: How ’bout a cupcake in a jar?

The steps involved make me so want to do this project.

I don’t know about you, but for me, a red velvet cupcake + a mason jar = the cutest, tastiest thing possible.  I am loving this as wedding favors, especially with the spoons tied to the jars with – my favorite – baker’s twine!  Most of you know I have a love affair with the stuff.  (Yes, it’s under control now.)  I found this awesomeness over on With This Ring, and she found it, plus instructions on cakies blog!

Here’s the supplies list, courtesy of cakies, if you’re interested in trying your hand at these babies:

- round stickers (I did have to cut them down a bit to make it fit the top)

Pay a visit to cakies for the red velvet recipe!

Ooh, one more thing… you see the chic young lady at the tippy top of this post?  Well, her name’s Andi, and she has a blog.  On that blog, she posted the musical stylings of the fabulous Diane Birch, and I just seriously have to share this with all of you, if you haven’t already heard of her.  Because she’s a whole lotta wonderful.


Ok, I get that these are some pretty REDONK finds I’ve got here today.  They may in fact be so fabulous that deciding on a favorite is super way hard.  But whatev who cares – I really wanna know so I’m still asking.  (:

So, do tell: which of these is/are most inspiring to YOU?  Lemme know.  I can’t wait to hear!!!

(Hope you have a terrific weekend!)

xoxo!  -Alison

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J.CREW IN THE CITY | What? I no longer have to order J.Crew gowns online, sight unseen? This is FABULOUS.

Happy Monday, everyone!  I hope you all had fantastic weekends.  We went hiking, which = awesomeness.  And afterward we stumbled upon the cutest little wedding location… more on that, later.  Now, on to more important things… like THIS:

Esmé satin platform sandals

-♡-

Have you heard?  I’m sure you’ve seen chatter about this, but do you know the unbelievable news, in full?  First this happened, and now this is happening ↘

That’s right; J.Crew is opening its very own Bridal Boutique, right in the heart of New York City.  This is kind of a big deal.  And here’s why: I love a lot of what J.Crew offers in its wedding line.  Like, overall, love it.  Love a handful of wedding gowns, looooove a lot of their bridesmaids dresses, and adoooore their bitty baby frocks (aka flower girl looks).  What do I hate?  That I CAN’T TRY ANY OF THEM ON.

I’m really looking forward to just plain loving everything about J.Crew’s bridal line, now that they’re opening a store at 769 Madison Avenue, right down the block from where I live – just kidding, I so don’t live on Madison Avenue.  But it’s a nice little ride on the train from where I’m located, and I will be taking that ride as soon as this boutique opens.  Hallelujah, J.Crew.  You finally opened a freaking bridal shop.  Jeez.  Took you long enough.  (Awww, you know I’m hard on you because I love you.)

* * *

Now, while I enjoy their bridal gowns immensely, I have a little news for you… it’s really their bridesmaids’ gowns that rock my socks off.  In fact, I think I’d even consider wearing one of them on my wedding day.  Whoa!  Yes, I know, weird.  (Well, really only if I did the City Hall thing.)  But seriously, if you take a look at them… well, they’re just gorgeous.  So I HIIIGHLY recommend handing each of your maids a swatch and sending them on their merry way to find the perfect dress for your big day.  Ooh, and some jewelry and shoes to match.  :D

(I feel compelled to note here that it’s a real shame they don’t put their magazine images online – pretty much none of these pics do the dresses justice.  Like, at allPlease order the catalog; so much better – so much more eye candy to eat up.  Believe me.)

* * *

Silk taffeta Clementine dress

Silk chiffon Taryn dress

Silk taffeta Lorelei dress


Cotton cady Madeleine dress

Jewelry!!!

Pearl and silk wrapped necklace – natural

More jewelry…

MORE jewelry!!!

Another shoe (!!!)…

This one’s the Nicolette strappy heel

* * *

So, are you interested in having a consultation (aka try-on-fest!) with one of their bridal consultants?  Great news: even though they’re not set to open until early this Summer, they’re already taking appointments.  Which is interesting to me.  Anyway, want one?  Just email Kate@j.crew.com!

* * *

xoxo!  -Alison

Ooh, I almost forgot! Two things:

1) For everyone who was subjected to my teaser about a certain “PERFECT GOWN” the other day on Twitter, fear not; I will be revealing this incredible find (not J.Crew, by the way) in the near future.  Quick hint: it’s got it all.

2) I found the CUTEST LITTLE SHORT WHITE DRESS the other day.  I’m seriously going to post about it this week, I think tomorrow.  It’s sooooo cute.  Just wait ’til you see it!!!!!

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DOILIES: The Greatest Gift for the Bride on a Budget…

People, LOOK what you can do with doilies!  I mean, flimsy freaking doilies!  It’s seriously a thrill and a half sometimes, to see what my fellow bloggers have come up with.  Two Brunettes teamed up with Cyd from The Sweestest Occasion and Ami of Elizabeth Anne Designs and came out of the whole thing with all the delicate loveliness you see below.

I’m really feeling everything about this table design.  But there’s a special place in my heart for those lovely wide cyan ribbons they’ve added as accents to the dessert jars...

Two Brunettes created the place cards and gift tags, and Ami was responsible for an inspiration board that brought this little shoot to life!

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS | chock full of treats | Couture Gown Love, DIY Table Numbers, Chocolate and Ice Cream Sandwiches!

Happy Friday, everybody!  I’m so excited about the Finds today, you have NO IDEA.  I’m gonna start with the most beautiful gown I’ve seen all week, bar none…

It’s called Bianca, by Alisa Benay; go check out Perfect Bound where I discovered this stunner, or pay a visit to Alisa’s website to see her line!

* * *

Next up, the most enchanting DIY project I’ve seen in weeks… embroidered table numbers by Maddy of Inspired Bride!  It’s so simple, so lovely.  I’m utterly impressed, and your guests will be, too.

* * *

This next great idea comes from Amy, the amazing force behind one of my favorite blogs, Eat Drink Chic.  I think each of your bridesmaids would absolutely adore receiving their own, personalized version of these thank you cards, designed by Leslie Lewis Sigler of Lilly & Louise!  Each is a watercolor wash paper silhouette of a dress!  Too cute.

* * *

This next find makes my mouth water and eyes light up.  We’re all familiar with the fabulous Elizabeth Messina; well, CHECK OUT THE CHOCOLATE BARS SHE HAD AT HER OWN WEDDING…

Yeah.  To die.  Steal this idea, PLEASE.  And send me a photo.  :)

* * *

And now, for the ultimate decadence… brought to you by none other than my beloved Tartelette

Vanilla Bean Chocolate Ice Cream Sandwiches!!!  Don’t you want to stuff those in your mouth immediately?  I do.  All three.

Now, the amazing thing about these tasty beauties is that their GLUTEN FREE, and I’ve never seen anything made without flour look so incredibly delicious.  Except, maybe these.

Aright, kiddies, that’s it for the Finds!  Which of these is your favorite?  I’m dying to know.  I have this sneaking suspicion it’s going to be the ice cream sandwiches, hands down.  But I could be wrong.  Let me know.  ;)

Have a delightful weekend, everyone!  Can’t wait to show you what’s in store next week.  Cannot.  Wait.

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REAL E-SESSION + DIY WEDDING LOVE ❦ Stacey + Chris ❦ Anthro Inspired by Simply Bloom Photography

I dropped by Anthropologie two nights in a row last week, and while my wallet is pissed off, my hypothalamus is giving me a head massage.  It was exhilarating, like shopping so often is – especially since I never go shopping anymore (NO TIME).  I was like a squirrel but with clothes, storing up for the long, warm summer.  Pretty much everything that caught my eye went into my dressing room.  While in there, I happened to overhear a salesgirl kvetching to her coworker; “I can’t STAND IT when these people come IN HERE and pick up EVERYTHING IN THE STORE LIKE ANIMALS.  UGGGGHHH!”  For reasons not worth explaining, I know she wasn’t talking about me, but I also know she didn’t know I was in there, hence the uncensored and highly inappropriate discourse.  (I’m really stealth when I try on clothes.  You can hardly hear me.  Which means I’ve overheard a lot of conversations over time.  Let me tell you, what girls discuss in dressing rooms when they think no one is listening… it’s everything you ever thought it would be.)

Anywho – I bought way too much, but it’s all FABULOUS so I’m pouring over my finds to see if I can part with any of them.  So far, no dice.  I love them all very much.  So much, in fact, that I’m bringing you a wedding from the brilliant duo over at SimplyBloom that has Anthro touches in it!  Because I’m obsessed, you see.  Because I’m obsessed.

* * *

Ok, first, I HAVE to share with you a handful of gumballiscious engagement shots – same couple, different day of course.  I am dying over these.  How much better is eye candy when it’s actual candy?

Click here to go to SimplyBloom‘s blog for the rest of this amazing e-session!

* * *

And now, ladies and germs… feast your eyes on this.  It is one of the most lovely, romantic and smartly decorated affairs I have seen in my lifetime.  As I like to say starting today: delightful little details and a simple, calm color palette make for the dreamiest weddings around. :)

Ok, you know how much I love twine.  And cupcake wrappers are never, ever a bad thing.  Well, twine mated with cupcake wrappers at the hand of Stacey, the bride, to make what you see above and below.  THAT’S THEIR CEREMONY ARCH!  Be still my heart.

Check out the Anthro touches; charming rustic frames and candles, all part of the ceremony decor!

Here’s the bride on the arm of her brother!  This shot is a favorite of mine; how I love precious family moments. :)

Now, look at these reception details, people.  I hope you’re sitting down.  Make sure your boss is either cool or isn’t around, because you might want to stare like an idiot at these shots for a while:

See that darling cake?  It was baked by Chris’ sister.  Now THAT is what I call a sibling.  Chris’ sister, you are the coolest.  You’re also a cake-baking maven; that thing looks phenomenal!

* * *

Want to stare at every last image from this fine day?  Click here to see the rest of “Stacey & Chris’s Anthropologie Inspired Wedding” on SimplyBloom‘s blog!

Photography: SimplyBloom
Found via Bridal Snob

* * *

I’d love to hear what you think of this DIY wedding!  Any details in particular that you’re coveting?  That cake has got me hook, line and sinker.  So cute!

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS ❦ stylish wedding looks ❦ A Perfectly Altered Dress + A Timeless ‘Do

When I saw the wedding of Shannon and Pratap, shot by Sara of OneLove Photography, I got really excited.

I just LOVE this wedding; the details make me so incredibly happy.  The little Ferrero Rocher gold-foil wrapped chocolates (a childhood fave of mine) marking each guest’s seat at the table, the bride’s big, magnificent jewelry, the simplicity and skillful use of color… and, most of all… HER DRESS.  This, ladies and gentlemen, is how a dress should fit.  You know and I know that it really does all come down to that.  (Well, aside from all the love and happiness stuff, but you follow me.)

The thing is, if your dress fits properly, you own the day.  Simple as that.  No worries about photos marred by your constant need to lift a falling strapless gown – which happens waaaaay too often.  No unsightly gathering or bulging at the waste when you sit down to eat (that is, if you sit down to eat).  Proper fit is important, and I advise you to go out and get it.  But don’t fret; it’s not a requirement that you spend copious amounts of your earnings on alterations.  You may need to do a little sleuthing, but I’m confident that someone you know, somewhere, has the 411 on a stellar seamstress who’s well-versed in making dress dreams come true.

Doesn’t she look phenomenal?!!  A perfect fit will leave you looking stylish and sexy, but still completely appropriate.  Which is pretty much my definition of the ideal wedding day look.

Now, check out a bride with what I consider a fab, simple ‘do, also shot by Sara.  Her name’s Julie, and while she’s stunning head to toe, I especially admired what she did up top on her wedding day.  So basic; half-up, half-down.  But the classic, timeless beauty of the look she has accomplished makes me swoon!

And she’s single-handedly made me a believer in cascading bouquets.

Photos: OneLove Photography {Weddings 1 & 2}

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Aaaand one last thing.  Kat of Rock ‘n Roll Bride tweeted this find, which was discovered by her husband.  It is just too funny not to share with you guys.  Enjoy!

xoxo

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BRIDAL HEADPIECE LOVE ♡ I want all of these. I’m not kidding.

Lo Boheme

The love I have for these bridal accessories is comparable to that which I hold for my unborn child.  (Don’t have one of those yet so I probably don’t know the true meaning of a statement like that, but I’m still confident that I’ve drawn an appropriate parallel.)

This is not only a grouping of some of the most lovely accessories EVER, but also some truly incredible wedding day hairstyle inspiration.  Heck yes, a twofer!

* * *

First up is Lo Boheme‘s Spring/Summer 2010 collection, shot by the fabulous Marisa Holmes in her historic 1888 studio.  … These make my mouth water.  I need to have about seven of them in my life.  Not to mention those DRESSES.  I wish they were selling those dresses!!!

Check out their etsy shop if you’d like to have one of these beautiful things in your life.

* * *

This next headpiece blows my mind.  I found it over on my darling friend Melissa’s blog, The Loveliest Day.  Check. Out. This. Shot.

Yeah.  That stunning young woman’s name is Dana, and she’s got herself an Etsy shop called Retr0lux, where she sells fabo headpieces just like the one you see on her beautiful head.  And I WANT IT.  I also want to look like this on my wedding day.  Thought I hated huge, ruffled statement mini jackets.  HAH!  I WAS SO WRONG.  Dana defines style for me today.  Can the two of us please go shopping on Melrose sometime?  I didn’t realize I needed some pointers until I met you and your unique, brilliant fashion sense.

* * *

I caught a glimpse of Ban.do‘s new line, the “Black Label,” on Mixed Plate, and it made the happiness area of my brain go insane.  I had never appreciated head decoration all that much until the very first time I discovered Jen and Jamie’s hyper-feminine designs long ago, and this, their newest line, is doing its part to hold my interest.  You guys are gonna eat these things up.  Eat. Them. Up.

Yeah, I told you!  By the way, I kind of can’t take how ridiculously beautiful this model is.  For those of you who don’t know, it’s Alison Sudol, of A Fine Frenzy!  Gotta love it.

* * *

Photos of Lo Boheme pieces taken by Marisa Holmes.
Photos of Retr0lux items taken by Jason Q. Tran.

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VINTAGE INSPIRATION ❦ e-session props + details I love ❦ Simply Bloom Photography

I am SO EXCITED about these pictures.

I think it’s no secret around here how positively OBSESSED I am with the ladies of Simply Bloom.  But here‘s some proof.  Here, too.

And here‘s a more recent post featuring one of their yummiest engagement sessions EVUH.  If you decide to click on it, you’ll see that I included a teaser in anticipation of this exact shoot that I am so freakin’ excited to share with you now.  I am, like, bursting at the seams right now over this shoot!!!

The biggest thing I take away from these photos – aside from their outRAGEOUS beauty and color – is the impact that just a few thoughtfully chosen details can have on your very own e-session.  If you’re looking to ramp up the cute factor of your upcoming shoot, I suggest taking some pointers from Vania and Christine’s direction with this shoot (they’re the dynamic duo behind Simply Bloom).  This means a trip to the antique store is a MUST.  You never know what you’ll find and that makes it SOOOOO FUUUUN.  In this shoot, the ladies employed a brilliantly colored french cookbook, a tea set, a honey bear, eggs, an apron, mini paper lanterns, some desserts… ok they went crazy with props.  And I love them all the more for it – just look at the results!!!  BUT you don’t need ALL of this to make your e-session stand out, I promise.  Even just one or two props, if carefully chosen, can a perfectly pretty e-session make.  No antique stores nearby?  I’d advise checking out your local Anthropologie.  A bit more pricey, but hey, it’s your engagement… which means it’s worth it, OBVIOUSLY.  Plus, they almost always have a nice gathering of odds and ends in their sale section.  For example, last time I went they had this huge wicker basket of totally random and totally rad door knobs.  An inspiration shoot stylist’s dream.

Final thought on the matter: it certainly doesn’t hurt to have the ladies of Simply Bloom taking your pictures.  ;)

Want to see the rest?  That’s a stupid question.  Click here to go straight to the Simply Bloom blog for more!

Photos: Simply Bloom Photography

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS | I ♡ Intimate Weddings, Flowers in Bottles, Kissing & Telling, Carving Names in Trees and Cute Overload!

This whole week has been a whirlwind.  It went by in two shakes of a puppy’s butt.  Then on Thursday, this happened:

BARF!

Just kidding – that image makes my heart sing the way that little boy talked about on Oprah that one time.  So do these:

So, you know what those are?  They’re just a few of the images from my most recent guest post on Style Me Pretty!  Arranging the inspiration boards for this wedding brought tears to my eyes; Danah and Ahmad just look so right for one another… there’s this calm contentedness about them.  Sometimes you can just feel that two people are going to make it for the long run.  And it’s not just in their faces, it’s in the kind of affair they threw.  One commentor, named Carrie, said it best: “Just love this wedding… This is just such a wonderful example of a truly sophisticated, classic and elegant wedding!  Best of all, the photos aren’t stuffy making for such a beautiful balance!” {Photos by Amelia Lyon}

* * *

Ok, back to my week: it started out as any fine week does, with what turned out to be a spectacular event put on by the Wedding Salon at the Roosevelt Hotel on Monday (Grazia, I LOVED it.  Fabulous job, missy!), and is rounding itself out with huge loads (sexually inappropriate comment for the day? CHECK) of blog world love and affection that I never, ever… in my wildest dreams… could have imagined would come my way.  For the most part regarding Wednesday’s announcement.  And I’ve got to say, though it may sound a little ridiculous, I feel like the friendships I’ve begun to cultivate since my entry into the bliggity blogosphere actually rival those that have naturally evolved over the span of my lifetime.  Which either makes me a complete tool, or really lucky.  Going with lucky.

This is gonna sound boastful, but I couldn’t possibly thank everybody here, so I just want to send out a massive THANK YOU to everyone who has been so magically delicious in my general direction this week, and always.  I love you with the same intensity that I love this:

* * *

Ok, here’s some proof that it has totally made sense for me to save up all those empty wine bottles all these years. Oh, and say hello again to those Anthro knobs that just keep popping up!  (Sexual reference much?)  KNOTTY TIP: there are almost always a crapload of knobs on sale at Anthro, so they’re totally not hard to get your hands on if you’re looking to recreate a shoot like this one.

{Photos by Paige Newton Photography via Love and Lavender}

By the way, this was Paige’s first ever wedding faux-tography session, as she calls it.  Umm… for serious?  Because this rocks the casbah (cashbar? cazbuh? cahssbuuhh?)

* * *

I. LOVE. THIS.

The Kissing Tree

Here’s why… No. 1: it’s interactive online artwork, which is just one of those fun things that make Friday at work a little bit more tolerable, and No. 2: it reminds me of the book, “The Giving Tree,” a treasure of a read that made my little brother cry when he was young.  Yes, my little (currently 24-year-old) brother is one of those rare types… you know, the type with feelings.  Looks like a football player, but capable of a heart-to-heart.  Perfect guy.

… whose long-term girlfriend lives in Holland.

{Kiss the Groom, a blog by fab photog, Elizabeth Messina.}

Oh, and speaking of Elizabeth… this, this right here, makes me happy:

Click here to check out the rest of Jillian and Rick’s little intimate photo sesh.  But more importantly to read the “kiss & tell” – and go ahead, try to hold back the happy tears.

* * *

Let them eat button cake.


{via Love and Lavender}

* * *

Aaaaaand finally, a totally off-topic find from Cute Overload that beats all of this.  I am quoting the author, “Meg,” here:

OMG. I seriously cannot stop laughing at this poor dog. I think I’ve been laughing for a solid five minutes. Look at that haircut. He must be absolutely furious. LOOK at the fro with the trapezoid that is cut out to allow his beady eyes some room! OMG, ROTFL. And the poor other dog in the background is getting his hair cut the SAME WAY and will have the SAME FATE. Oh, man, this is too much. I haven’t laughed this hard since, well, the last post.

Happy Friday, people!  That’s a wrap for the Fab Finds – hope you liked!!!  And I hope everyone’s got some great plans in the works for the weekend.  I hear the weather’s not going to be so great where I am, so maybe we’ll go dancing.

Did you hear that, honey?  WE SHOULD GO DANCING.

xoxo

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS ♡ bunny love ♡ Vintage Labels, Delectable Treats, a Bunny Cozy, Easter Projects and Free Printables for Easter Weekend!

First up, here’s a cute bunny.

He’s just an adorable little reminder that Easter fast approaches!  It’s THIS Sunday, April 4, as if you didn’t know.  I love Easter, for myriad reasons… the main one is coming up in the next post, today.  But a huge reason I love it is because, every year, we celebrate by heading out to my Aunt and Uncle’s house, and eating ham and turkey and sweet potatoes and carrot cake (or pudding, maybe?) and all that other fare synonymous with Easter… as well as with Christmas and Thanksgiving.  (It’s interesting how all those holidays sort of share the same meal.  Why change up a good thing, I guess.  Though it’s not that good.  Though I’ve never had a food dream – which seems odd now that I’m writing it out – I feel confident that it wouldn’t involve turkey and ham.)

Next find is from yvestown: an Easter bunny cozy!  I have much love for this.

Country Living has got me spinning over these precious little pictures and projects.  Behold!

I am adoring the heck out of these vintage Easter labels from Suzee Que.  She’s constantly uploading such fun and lovely labels.  It’s always a thrill to check in and see what she’s got.  In fact, I’ve got a post involving her labels coming up in the very near future that I KNOW, absolutely KNOW, you’re gonna go apes*** over.

Check out these super cute free printable egg wrappers and Easter egg hunt cards, from Two Brunettes!!!

And, finally, Mowielicious brings us home with some of the most delicious looking things I think I’ve ever seen.  Though, I should disclose that Cadbury Mini Eggs and macarons are kind of my favorite things going in this world, edible wise.

Credits:

I’m a little post-happy, today.  More coming your way, in a bit.  It’s the one I referenced in this morning’s post.  Talk to you soon!  Hope you guys are having a fabulous Friday!

xoxo, Alison

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PARTY PALETTE LOVE | apples, milk cartons and composition books | Guess the shower theme? *Duh*

Breaking the hell away from Easter for a second, here.  (I didn’t think it was possible to be on pastel overload.  But here we are.)

***

I discovered this totally not too cool for school baby shower over on Amy Atlas‘ blog, Sweet Designs.  The photographs are by Whitney Smith Photography.  This is so awesome, I can’t even tell you.  It was created by friends of the mother-to-be, one Mrs. Emily Moulton, and it is TOO PRECIOUS.  I’ve gotta say, I love the color scheme most of all.  And it’s the first (and last) time I’m gonna say that I am loving me some Diet Coke cans right now!

In Amy’s words:

“The shower included lots of cute details including a chalkboard menu, lunch-sack sandwiches, cafeteria lunch trays, a composition guest book, milk and cookies, and pb&j bars. Whitney and Britney even arranged for Mrs. Moulton’s students to write advice for the mom-to-be {such a cute idea!}”


Those look exactly like the Mrs. Fields cookies I used to love in high school.  Brings me back.  To eating too many Mrs. Fields cookies at lunchtime.

Just a couple more good reasons why it’s smart to stock up on cute ceramic cake stands.

Little brown paper lunch bags are my FAVORITE thing.

Ok, coming up next, a post about my childhood, complete with pictures.  And that pastel thing I worked to avoid here will return IN FULL FORCE.  I just needed to detox for a little bit.  Alright, talk to you soon!

xoxo, Alison

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DESSERT + PRINTABLES LOVE! ♡ Nonpareil Mag, Issue #2 ♡ Let Me Count the Ways…

After experiencing Issue #1, I was itching to see what the gals of Nonpareil Magazine had in store for us with Issue #2.  What’s the complete opposite of being disappointed?  I am that.

Totally inspiring.  Like, the definition of inspiring.  A color palette so powerful it actually makes me feel good when I linger on it.  Prop and set styling that make me go gaga and – icing on the cake, people – downloadable printable templates… for free.

Here, check out some more eye candy.  Don’t you just want to eat up the pictures?

Yummo.

This is some good stuff, m’friends.  It’s entire minutes of fun over there!  (That may not seem like a compliment, but trust me, it is – and it’s a huge one at that.  I normally spend seconds on all of my daily reads and the countless new discoveries I make throughout the day.  So, finding something that can hold my attention for whole minutes – and many of them – is, for me, kind of a big deal.)

{ Creators of Nonpareil Magazine: Maddy Hague of Inspired Bride and Kristen Magee of Papercrave }

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS! ❧ Urban Wed Edition ❧ Part I ~ Wedding Cakes and Cuppies!!!

I had a blast at Brooklyn Bride‘s Urban Wed Event this past Wednesday.  Thank you, Vané!  Brilliant job!  But seriously, it was off the chain.  OFF of it.  The vendors, the brides, the cakes and desserts, the food, the photos, the music, the overall vibe in general was so dang positive, fresh, exciting.  If you made it to one of the two days it was held, well then you know what I’m talking about.

A lot of us in this industry speak with each other on an almost daily basis and, of course, it’s always a pleasure to converse online and over the phone.  We’re constantly working together to inspire and help each other make the world of weddings that much more amazing for each and every bride and groom out there planning a wedding.  However, rarely do we get the chance to meet up in person, and, in some cases, finally put a face to a name.  That’s the sucky part.  And that’s precisely why I always look forward to and have such a crapload of fun at these things!  Being afforded the opportunity to chat it up and make plans in person with these “friends” and colleagues with whom I’ve had the distinct pleasure of developing relationships truly makes the whole experience that much more wonderful and exponentially more rewarding.

Ok, so I took copious pictures from Wednesday’s festivities, and I wouldn’t force them on you if I didn’t KNOW you’re gonna love ‘em.  First up today, we’ve got some real beautes from Betsy of Nine Cakes, who’s based in Brooklyn.  To die for, are they not?  I’ll tell you the same thing I told her on Wednesday: “Betsy, these are the best wedding cakes I’ve seen in I can’t even remember how long. You are amazing!!!” I didn’t tell her I loved her for her talent, but I was thinking it.  It’s important to know the line of awkwardness, and know what constitutes crossing it.  Word to the wise.

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There’s Betsy, of Nine Cakes, in between the young woman in baby blue and that dude’s head and fingers.  It sort of looks like he’s picking her nose. He isn’t. But it does sort of look like that.
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Just LOOK at those darling little pink cupcakes.  You can just pop ‘em whole, one by one, right into your mouth.  I didn’t, but I watched others who did, and it looked a lot like what I imagine heaven would.  Edible heaven.

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{ HUMAN LOVE } Apparently, I’m hotter than one Miss Penélope Cruz.

In a weak moment, while laying across the bed one night as the fiancé washed up, I said, passively: “Sometimes I wish I was as beautiful as Penélope Cruz.”  And you know what fiancé said?  He said:

“Are you kidding?  You’re WAY better looking than Penélope Cruz.”

My heart a-flutter, I lay silent for about ten seconds.  Then, in a soft, hopeful voice, I said: “Baby, do you really think I’m prettier than Penélope Cruz?” 

“Definitely.”

He really meant it.  I know because he’s terrible at lying.

It was one of those moments you remember always.  I’ve stored that one safely inside the treasure box of my memory.

… Along with this:

Photo: Belathee // Source: Style Me Pretty

By the way, WHOA…

I had no idea… I mean, I… I never knew they were that… that she had such big… I mean – wow.

Ok, she is smoking hot.  I am not as pretty as Penélope Cruz.

But I do believe you think I am, honey.  Which makes it mean just as much.

xoxo

***

Stay tuned, friends, because later on today I’ll have your Fab Finds – Urban Wed edition!  Cakes and cuppies that’ll plum knock your socks off.  I kid you not; these desserts are the prettiest and most skillfully made I’ve seen in quite some time.  And a little wedding stationery action is coming your way, too.  It’s gonna be delicious, cross my heart.  Plus, I think I’m gonna throw in a printable freebie I love – you know, for good measure.  See you in a bit!

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{ E-SESSION LOVE } Jenna + Steven ❥ Candy-Coated Enchantment | Kim Le Photography

People.  I just about died when I saw this e-session by Kim Le that Abby recently posted over on Style Me Pretty.  It’s major.  It’s what e-sessions are meant to look like.  For serious.

One of my simple pleasures in life is the way a group of photos can completely make my day.  I never know where they’ll be, or what they’ll depict, but when the moment hits me, it’s not unlike the feeling that comes over me when I find out Bumble Bee Solid White Albacore Tuna is on sale for 69 cents per can.  That was probably the least climactic thing you’ve read all day.  But they really were on sale last week at Food Emporium for 69 cents, and that’s unheard of around here.  And no, I don’t have kids.  I have a fiancé who loves his tunafish.

Anyway… here, check out a few more of my favorite shots from Jenna & Steven’s e-session:

Isn’t it just the most darling thing ever?  This couple is so photogenic, it’s ridiculous.  I mean, how much do you love them?

If you liked this – and I’m extremely confident that you did – then I strongly suggest taking a more comprehensive look at this enchanting little e-session by clicking right here!  Now, for one more taste…

By the way, canned tuna and candied e-sessions aren’t the only things that make my world go round.  But they definitely do their part to keep it spinning.

Credits: Style Me Pretty // Kim Le Photography

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{ DESSERT + FAVOR LOVE } Vintage Design Cake Boxes, Cupcake Wrappers and Cones!

Morning, everyone!  Just yesterday, I received in the mail my beloved Cox & Cox catalog.  As per usual, it’s filled to the brim with the most delightful details one could ask for in a wedding and, as per usual, it’s got me all hot and bothered.  Peculiar how pretty little tchotchkes can do that to a girl.  Anyway, gotta share some of the new swag to be had (plus a few oldies for good measure):

Vintage Design Cake Boxes – NEW!

Rose Cupcake Wrappers – NEW!

Vintage Design Cones – NEW!

Cupcake Stand – NOT NEW, BUT STILL!

Organza Favor Bags – NOT NEW AS WELL!

(Like these?  Well, using StazOn ink and other materials similar to those in this post on DIY Wedding Eye Candy, I created the CUTEST stamped bags to house some chocolate lollipops I made for Christmas last year.  I wish I had a picture of them to show you!  They were too cute, if I do say so myself.  It’s really so easy – I highly recommend making them yourself!)

Seed Favors Set – ALSO NOT NEW, BUT YES, PLEASE!

Credit: Cox & Cox

Here’s a fun little aside: when I right-clicked on the word “tchotchkes” (top of post) just to check if I spelled it correctly, the dictionary offered up these suggestions:

  1. latchkeys
  2. hopscotches
  3. crotchless and
  4. hotcakes

Weird to the max.  My dictionary is advising me to write crotchless.  Anyway.

***

If you liked this, you’ll probably love DIY Edible Escort Table Numbers, and you may get a sugar high out of this.

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{ DRESS LOVE } Little Gowns for Flower Girls, Plus the Perfect Shoes and Accessories!

When I saw a few of these precious little frocks featured on Utterly Engaged, I fell head over heels in love with J.Crew’s flower girl line.  I’m pretty sure you will, too.  Now, I may have gone a little overboard in this post – I’ve included what seems to be nearly every gown they offer, from silk taffeta to dupioni to tousled tulle.  But you know what?  I post what I love, and I love pretty much all of them, so why stop at five when I love 15?  You get me.

Just wait until you scroll down.  It’s not only the dresses that have me swooning; their little girl shoes are absolutely adorable, and the jewelry + embellishments they have available are simply too charming for words.  Honestly, everything is so darling, it almost makes me sick.

Twinkle ballet flats!  Oh, how delightful.

Patent-leather Mary Janes:

Satin ballet flats with rosettes:

Yup, they come in white, too.

Keeping it casual?  Here’s a simple satin ballet flat for the little munchkin.

The only thing I love more than these silk organza flower pins, is the fact that they’re 30% off when you buy two or more of them.  That’s kinda nice.  Sadly, I don’t have a use for them, but I hope you do!

Aaaand finally, a few pearls to round out the look and add that oh so fine finishing touch.

There’s kind of a HUGE price disparity between the necklace and the bracelet, by the way.  I don’t really understand it (aside from the obvious fact that we’re dealing with real and fake).  Still, that bracelet is WAY less expensive than you probably think it is.  Like, shockingly so.  So, as my fiancé likes to kid – here’s today’s lesson in Economics 101 with Alison: why buy a little girl freshwater pearls when they make perfectly good fake ones?  This way, when she misplaces or fully loses it sometime between when you give it to her and your ceremony, it won’t be that big of a deal.  Because she probably will lose it.  And you will get upset, if they were freshwater pearls.  No, not normal you – the crazy, getting married version of you who’s capable of losing her temper in front of little girls.

Images: J.Crew & Utterly Engaged

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{ CUPCAKE LOVE } FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS ♡ Part II: Chocolate Ganache Cupcakes, with Violet Decorations!

My Mom loves Ina Garten.  She doesn’t just enjoy her, she doesn’t just get a kick out of her, she LOOOOOOOVES her show.  And when her show is on the tele, guess who gets a call?  That’s right.  But you know what?  I love itI look forward to it.

And that’s because she clues me into delightful desserts like this one here:

Credit: Food Network

I didn’t appoint my Mom “Dessert & Tablescape Inspiration Finder” for nothing.  I didn’t think, “ooohhh she’s a woman, so she likes baking, and other womanly things that women do… she’s perfect.”  NO.  I did it because she’s THE REAL DEAL.  She’s tapped into the minds of the collective.  She’s got cupcake game, if I may coin a term.  She’s knows what looks yummy.  Which all translates to: she’s very mainstream with her likes and dislikes.  ;)

Like I’ve said recently, I have full confidence in her abilities.

So, I’d love to hear it – what do you think of her talent?

Be honest, however she’s definitely reading this so be kind in your honesty… if that is even a possible thing.

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS ♡ Part I { CAKE LOVE } Wedding Cake Inspiration Tool!

I found this tool on Brides.com and it entertained me so much, that I just had to share it with you guys.  {Let me know what YOU think of it!}

If you’ve been struggling to figure out the perfect color combination and design for your wedding cake, here’s a nifty little solution.  It’s not unlike those sites that let you upload your face to test haircuts – which, by the way, are woefully unhelpful and really serve only to make you think you have an oddly-shaped head… unless you totally don’t know what I’m talking about, which would render me someone who has an oddly-shaped head.  Oh dear.

Anyway, the tool, aptly named “Create-a-Cake,” allows you to whip up a cake prototype (that’s probably a bit too technical-sounding for wedding cakes, but I can’t think of anything else so whatever), and you can even print it out to show your baker!  It’s real handy, and I like it.  Heck, even if you’re not planning a wedding, it’s kind of a lot of fun to play around with the colors and decorations.

As you can see here, I was (unwittingly at the time) craving a pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream.  Or wedding cake.

Notice how I spelled out T-K-B?  Yeah, I took a little longer than I should have on that.  Oh the life of a detail-oriented person.  What am I saying, I LOVE BEING THAT WAY. :)

Click the Create-A-Cake image below to start creating!

Credit: Brides.com

Ooh, and stay tuned for more Fab Finds, silly goose!  That’s what my niece and nephew call me.  If we all insulted each other the way very young children do, I think the world would be a slightly better place.  Slightly better.

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WEDDING GOWN + ACCESSORY LOVE | Jenny Packham | That Hot Oscars Gown + How You Can Make it Sparkle…

Miley Cyrus wore this sparkling beauty of a gown at the Oscars, and I had mixed feelings about it.  First, check it out on one of Packham’s (especially angry looking) models.  A lovely gown, it is.  I’m a fan of the yellow backdrop, as well.  It’s bright and uplifting, but, most of all, seems to be doing its part to summon a long overdue Brady Bunch musical reunion special.

… Pretty dress, right?  Pretty unique, pretty sparkly, pretty corsetty without being too corsetty… overall, quite pretty, indeed.  However, on such a young starlet like Miley (she wore it to the 82nd Annual Academy Awards on March 7), I have to admit, I felt more than a little uncomfortable looking at her.   Because when I look at her, I believe I’m looking at a 28 year old woman.

But, like Dr. Oz says, “it’s time for her real age…”

Here it comes…

… She was born November 23, 1992, and that makes her 17 years old.

17.

Okay, don’t get me wrong; she looks fabulous.  It’s just that it seems a little early in life to be dressing that adult.  And by adult, I mean letting it all hang out.  Which isn’t necessarily adult, per se.  But you catch my drift.

What really grosses me out is that my google search of “miley cyrus age” yielded, as its first result, a site entitled “Miley Cyrus Age Countdown,” the sole purpose of which is to count down the days until Miley turns 18 (in other words, becomes legal).  Gross.

So, while I am all about linking back and giving credit where credit is due, I will NOT be linking to that site.  I hope you understand.

Moving right along.

For the sake of discussion, let’s all agree to forget Miley’s so young.  Jenny Packham makes a ridiculously ravishing gown.  And Miley’s hair and makeup are marvelous.  Marvelous.  I mean, those are some EYELASHES, girl.  You clearly aren’t kidding around.  All in all, we’ve got some truly great inspiration for a bridal look worthy of an awards show.

Now for a little bling inspiration…

Okay, so that’s what Miley wore.  However, I’d like to offer up to you some of my own glitzy suggestions, all from Packham’s Spring 2010 line:

Jenny’s got some fabulous bling going on for Spring, I do not lie.  It’s beyond hot and I’m a little obsessed.  (Stay tuned if you want to see the rest; I’m planning to feature lots more of her bright, flashy line in an upcoming post!)

One last thing.  Here’s the lad with whom she spent significant chunks of time that night.  Cutie, right?  They’re starring in a movie together that I will likely not go to see.  But best of luck to them both.

His name is Liam Hemsworth, and he was by Miley’s side as they attended the 18th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Award Party in West Hollywood, California.  Good golly, Miss Miley.  Nicely done.

Credits:

So, let me know, what did you think of Miley’s look?  Was she super chic in Packham?  Also, would you consider wearing this gown for your wedding?  Weigh in; I’m dying to hear your thoughts!

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