PORTUGAL WEDDING WITH SUCCULENTS | … so it’s awesome. Plus: The Day I Realized Everyone Has Seen Me Naked. | By Brancoprata

Honey let me know something moderately horrifying the other day.

“The most interesting thing happened on my way home from the Cleaners just now” he said, gleefully hopping into the bathroom like a child on Christmas morning.   “I could see you while you were showering.”

“See me? my naked body??”

“Well.. {Continue reading…}

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DIY VINTAGE BICYCLE WEDDING | Cameron Leung Photography | Sometimes, weddings just rule. And then, a giveaway sneak peek happens! + Some Bambino face :)

As I sit here in the gorgeous afternoon sun, protected of course by window panes because I’m WORKING INDOORS, and tolerating the puffs of wind escaping Bambino’s behind as he slumbers on his day-pillow beneath my desk – puffs which, mind you, are as pungent as they are endless… I have this one thought floating around in my head, and it’s been there since Friday.  And, because I care about all of you so, so much, I feel the need to warn you guys about it. {Continue reading…}

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RUSTIC DIY MILL WEDDING | Where simplicity meets succulents meets pies meets amazeballs meets Kim Kardashian… wait what?

So, first off, let me show you what it feels like in the city right now when you’re the kind of person who resists turning on the a/c until it’s ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY because what the heck is up with these electricity bills these days AMIRITE: {Continue reading…}

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS™ | July 16 | A free printable, DIY place cards, DIY pastel glass floral arrangements, honeyed tea spoons, ice cream photo shoot, and my favorite bride of the week!

↑ Love that?  Yeah, me too.  A LOT.  Read on for details...

{Continue reading…}

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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


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


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


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!

{Continue reading…}

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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}

* * *

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!


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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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INSPIRATION BOARD | Pastel Color Palette: Pink + Green + Blue + Beige

Not only do I love Paris, too, but I think this board displays a heavenly mix of pink, green, blue and beige pastels, perfect for a Spring or Summer wedding.  If you’re daring enough to go THAT girlie, that is.  ;)

1. Untitled, 2. Daisy Dance, 3. gravity release me …, 4. “Nature never repeats herself, and the possibilities of one human soul will never be found in another.”, 5. Spring Cleaning ♥, 6. Pastel Roses, 7. Thinking of England, 8. Untitled, 9. Untitled, 10. ruffles, 11. Untitled, 12. “Love of beauty is Taste…, 13. Untitled

Board created by: Niki :D

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INSPIRATION SESSION LOVE ♥ from the moment they met to their wedding day… | Open Air Photography by Katie Stoops

This has got to be one of the most beautiful, painstakingly arranged inspiration sessions I’ve ever seen.  Just look at the attention to detail, the creative touches in the photography (the shot of the young miss applying red lipstick)… and just look at that black lace hat of hers!  Oh, how I would love to own that hat.  Is it called a hat, by the way?  Anybody?

My favorite shots of their first date…

{ More from Their First Date! }

Here’s a taste of the proposal segment (“She Said Yes”).  I especially adore this part of the shoot, because I recently went ice skating with my beau and it was way more fun than I expected.  Way. I hugely recommend it to you guys if you haven’t yet gone this season.  Hurry, before it’s too late!!!  Note: it may be too late.  ):

{ See more of She Said Yes! }

And here’s the wedding shoot…

Ahh.  Just lovely.

{ Check out the rest of The Wedding Day! }

Photo credit: Open Air Photography

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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!)


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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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.


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.


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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ENGAGEMENT SESSION LOVE | simply bloom photography | Hipsters Make the Best Engagement Session Subjects…

I realize Valentine’s Day has come and gone already, and that it’s March 2.  Fully aware.  I also understand that, once a holiday has passed, most don’t dwell on it beyond its final hour.  But let me ask you this: do we deny to those of us who were born on a leap year the right to celebrate their birthdays each and every single year, even though it’s a total farce and we’re all laughing at them behind their backs?  No, we do not deny them that right.  Because we love them?  No.  Because it’s fair.

So, in the spirit of fairness, and for leap year babies everywhere, if they exist (I mean, do they?  I’ve heard stories, but they seem as rare as pandas.  Comment if you’re out there – I’d love to do lunch and learn about your people.  How does it go; kind of like dog years?)… here’s an engagement session in the key of love.

Vania and Christine of SimplyBloom Photography seem to churn out swoonworthy sessions each and every time.  It’s a gift.

That’s a headboard.

I want this girl to throw my future children their birthday parties.  I’ve never seen someone so committed to a theme.  I bet money she has a blog – this kind of creativity doesn’t just sit idle.  If you read this, let me know, ok?  You’ve displayed some pretty amazing skills, here, and if you’re not in prop & set styling, you may have missed your calling.

Umm.  Love.

Check out the shot below.  This sneak peak of an upcoming shoot is what started today’s SimplyBloom frenzy.  I cannot wait to see more shots involving those pastel threads (LOVING his plaid shirt) and soft, embroidered drapery.

By the way – and tell me if you’ve noticed this, too – one thing that has always stood out to me about really fashiontastic engagement shoots… like, the really beautiful, colorful ones that always yield the best pics… is the fact that none of those outfits would ever find their way onto the body of my fiancé.  He’d just never wear something that plaid, or with suspenders, or generally anything especially hipster.  Not that I’d necessarily ask him to do so.  But I just know it in my heart that, if he did dawn a fedora, or wear a doorknob boutonniere, it would be because he loves me.  And for no other reason.

Photo credit: SimplyBloom Photography

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Welcome back, friends!  (If you’re new here, you might want to check out the previous installments from this multi-part series on the Wedding Library’s Wedding Party.)

Alright, once again, do you remember this teaser?

Well, here’s the rest of it…

You may have noticed that this girl is smokin’ hot.  So it doesn’t matter that the bottom half of the gown is TO DIE, but the top looks a bit like a bedazzled flesh-toned leotard.  Smokin’ hot makes that okay.  Net verdict: LOVE.

Anyone on the search for a black wedding gown?  Vera’s all over that…

By the way, if you’re seriously in the market for a black wedding dress, I salute you, pioneer woman.  Vera’s is definitely one to consider, but bright and early tomorrow morning I’ll be showing you another black gown that’ll likely blow ya mind.  It’s so beautiful, I’m threatened by it.

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♡ WEDDING PARTY! ♡ First Installment… Inspiration + Fashion + Wedding Pro Tips from This Weekend’s Wedding Library Event in NYC

As most of you already know, this past Saturday I attended one of the most FABULOUS wedding events around.  It was, of course, the “Wedding Party,” and it was bananas.  I’ll be presenting new photos and inspiration from the event every single day this week.  Let’s begin, shall we?

Commencing with our star players: the event was hosted by Claudia Hanlin and Jennifer Zabinski, the two lovely, remarkable women behind the Wedding Library, a chic wedding research boutique located on NYC’s upper east side.

Before I go on, I’d first like to extend my sincerest gratitude to Claudia and Jennifer for having me – the event was INTOXICATING (more on why I chose that word, in a later post) and I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed the experience, from start to finish.  (Truly, it was the best way I could have imagined spending my birthday!)

The Party, which began at 10:00 in the morning and lasted well into the afternoon, felt like it whipped by, due in large part to its uber-jam-packedness (yes, a made up word) with delicious goodies, jaw-dropping style, incredible people and breathtaking inspiration.  If you weren’t there, well, you’re probably going to regret it once you see the myriad photos I took of everything the event had to offer.

After Claudia and Jennifer welcomed everyone, they handed things over to the one… the only… Darcy Miller, editorial director of Martha Stewart Weddings.

Darcy has quite a presence.  She’s all sorts of charming, a bit self-deprecating and, most of all, brilliantly in touch with the wedding industry’s freshest trends and the bride collective’s deepest decorating desires.  I eat, sleep and breathe Martha Stewart Weddings, both print and net, yet still found myself hypnotized by the engaging musings and dazzling imagery delivered by this maven of matrimony.

Here, she shares with us the unexpected beauty afforded by an ice sculpture:

Here, a lovely tablescape:

Here, she speaks about the wedding of stationer Cheree Berry:

(Click here and here for loads of Cheree Berry wedding inspiration.)


You’re going to LOVE what’s in store this week… and I kinda can’t wait to share it all with you.  Here’s a sneak peek…

And another…

It’s gotta be in doses, however, because I’ve got a LOT to post.  I put my camera battery in a sleeper hold and didn’t let up over the course of nearly five hours.  Thank bejeezus my friend brought along her own, or I might have been that blonde girl openly crying in the second row during the Vera Wang runway show.

Fortunately, it didn’t go quite like that.  Instead, I snapped a bazillion photos, all beginning with this one:

Just wait until you see the rest.

Oh, and it’s not just gowns I’ll be posting… though the rush one experiences at a Vera Wang runway show is likely comparable to that achieved in summiting Mount Everest (I wouldn’t know firsthand, but it’s probably accurate).

I’ve got dessert tables that tantalize, wedding cakes coated in buttercream, colorful crafts for the creatives out there, and so much more.

So I’ll see you back here, soon, for the next installment!


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No, I Love YOU Much.

Have you ever felt like you’ve found your long lost twin – a separated at birth, or maybe from-another-mother kinda deal – just upon reading a couple of posts on a blog that’s new to you?  It’s a funny feeling, a new level of awesomeness, because it’s like finding an old friend without ever having met her.

Well, when I read “I am a bad bride with too many STDs,” by Lauren of I Love You Much, I found mine.  For more reasons than what I’m bringing to the table today, but I think the inspiring eye candy that follows will be most satisfying.

By the way, if you haven’t already deduced that STDs stands for Save-the-Dates, well then you’re probably not planning a wedding at the moment.  I must say that I have struggled with that unfortunate acronym for quite some time.  I don’t care if that other thing it used to stand for is now officially known as “STI” – no matter, because it will ALWAYS denote an angry nether region to me, and I’m not really into sounding like I’m trying to put a freshly acquired infection on blast when all I’m doing is sharing some pretty wedding paper.

If these were my save-the-dates, I’d have a HECK of a time deciding on just one to send out.  So I’m not shocked that she’s been facing the same issue.

Lauren, I wish you barrels of luck making a decision.  You have your work cut out for you.  And by the way, it’s never too late for a save-the-date as beautiful as any of these.  I’d be plum delighted to receive one in the mail… even if it followed the invitation.  The prettiness you’ve created here is beyond compare.


{ Photos taken by Matt Miller }

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TOP FIVE TIPS FOR GREAT WEDDING HAIR | What You Must Know to Look Your Best on Your Big Day… No, SERIOUSLY.

All the time, as I walk the streets of New York, Westchester and the Island of Long, I see girls who look absolutely stunning in their everyday lives.  Many sport low ponies, others rock side-swept bangs.  They look great; their chosen styles suit them.  And, as a people watcher, I love good style.  It’s a treat for me.

But, come the wedding day, something changes for some brides.  It happens to so many of these normally stylishly coiffed contessas, something that I can describe only as a tragic disconnect between their naturally on point senses of style, and what they believe looks even better in the context of their wedding day.  Curls when they normally rock it straight, or a tight updo when they typically let if flow free.  Too often, my internal dialogue sounds something like this: “Shoot, you looked so good yesterday in your go-to high pony, why did you think pin curls were the right style for your big day?”  I just don’t get it!  This phenomenon I can’t fully explain.  It baffles me – though I do have some ideas.

I understand the desire for change, for something fresh, different, new… and, thus, presumptively more beautiful.  But it’s not every time that the latter follows the former.  And when I see it happen, a few signals go off in my head that lead me to some probable assumptions about what precipitated the mess up top.

I don’t want this to happen to any more brides.  I can’t in good conscience allow it.  I’ve spoken to too many brides who have expressed regret over their ‘day-of-do’ to let it go on any longer.

… So, I’ve created a quick reference list of the best advice I can offer when it comes to your wedding day locks.  SERIOUSLY, pay attention, I do this out of love…

5 Top Tips for Great Wedding Day Hair:

~ Consider how you wear your hair normally.  Is this somewhat chic, and would you consider it appropriate for a formal event?  Then maybe it’s the perfect look and you shouldn’t mess with a good thing.

~ Ask trusted friends and family.  Some- no, many people will lie to you because they don’t want to hurt your feelings.  Which can lead to hair fails.  And this is not the time for a hair fail.

~ Don’t be led by your stylist.  It doesn’t matter if the person doing your hair likes it; it matters if YOU like it.  Ok?  So be true to yourself.

~ It’s easier to be true to yourself when you plan ahead, as in arrange for a consultation/trial so you can actually take a mental (and actual) picture of what you can expect to look like.  This will also let you know if you and your chosen stylist are on the same page when it comes to the definition of looking good.

~ Always keep this in mind: he’s already proposed to you, which means he wants to spend the rest of his life with you, and you’ve looked the way you look now, all along.  You must look at least half-way decent already.


For inspiration, I have included within this post a veritable Smörgåsbord of hair styles I consider to be wedding-appropriate.  (Save for that very first one; that’s just for laughs… OF COURSE.)  Please hover over the images for their details and credits, which have been assigned where available.  Images without detailed information are courtesy of Polyvore.

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