Monday I'm in Love: Bridal Fashion Week - Fall 2014

Monday, October 14, 2013

I love just about everything about this time of year- pumpkin spice lattes, being cold enough to wear scarves and boots (hey, this is a big deal for us living in Southern California)! The only thing I dread is when my kids get sick and it hit our family over the past few days. Needless to say we've been stuck at home. While the little ones are watching cartoons on NetFlix, I've been swooning over some of the brilliance at Bridal Fashion Week in NYC. I put together a re-cap of some of my fave gowns, thanks to everyone who hash tagged #bridalfashionweek on Instagram- i'm living vicariously through you and crossing my fingers to see it live next year! 

So many beauties graced the runways, it was nice to see how established designers evolved their collections and refreshing to see newcomers hitting home runs; taking what's normally a traditional dress and adding their personal flair to make it contemporary, different and memorable.

I was excited to see one of my favorite bridal fashion houses- JLM Couture launch an affordable collection- Lovelle by Lazaro. I know not everyone can afford a $6K dream wedding dress so it will be exciting to see what comes out of this line!

 Hayley Paige // Claire Pettibone // Badgley Mischka // Hayley Paige

Anne Barge // Lazaro // Austin Scarlett // Naeem Khan

ps- Sorry for the pixelated quality of the images, all photos were taken straight from Instagram. If any of these pictures were taken by you, please let me know so I can give you credit :)

Tell All About it Thursday: Styled Wedding ShootOut!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Hi Friends! I've been so pumped about my latest endeavor but I had to make sure all the pieces were in place before making any announcements. Putting together styled wedding inspiration shoots is something I absolutely LOVE doing! I find joy working with a team of talented friends and artists who come together and lend their crafts to create and execute a gorgeous photo shoot. This time, instead of keeping what would be a 'private project' within my small circle, I've decided to open it up to the first 15 photographers who are interested in experiencing our special creation. If you are a Los Angeles based photographer looking to add variety to your portfolio or know someone who is and will be in the LA area during this time, then please pass this info on. We've got an amazing team in place, an awesome theme, spectacular venue, insane details ready to unfold, now all we need is YOU to capture it! AND, since we're exactly 1 month away and today is the 1st day of our launch, you have the opportunity of a huge discount! For more details, please see our event page:

Wedding Planning Advice Wednesday: Choosing Your Vendors

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Lovelies! It's been way too long. Balancing life with two under three has consumed me lately and with both kids asleep, finally, I have nothing else to take care of at the moment :) It's been a delightfully busy wedding season and I also started a lifestyle change- working out regularly and eating paleo. The results have been good to me so far. The last time i was this committed to my fitness was almost four years ago, the "i'm about to get married and i better look damn good in this dress" diet- maybe you can relate!?

While I could discuss the latest wedding trends and share pretty pictures, i'll save that for another time. It just wouldn't feel right coming back without handling some biz... hope you don't mind. Today is gonna be some "real talk." I have enough weddings  under my belt to distinguish how some weddings are sooo much fun; almost flawless, while others seem like they can be falling apart. I'm not talking about the bridal party or the guests, i'm talking about the vendors involved, who are such an integral part of a wedding day coming together. Yes, weddings are ultimately a celebration of unity and unless it's a spontaneous elopement, whether a big or small party, there are many pieces to the puzzle which indeed make it a production of sorts. There is no such thing as a perfect wedding; things can and do come up but having a solid team of professional vendors who can work together to get through the kinks you may never know about, is priceless. I may have touched on this once before but it's worth a re-visit.

I know many couples want to cut corners with saving money, i totally get that. But free or a bargain isn't always the best option when the saying rings true more often than not- "you get what you pay for." Here are some practical tips to remember when you're vendor shopping-

Do your homework and please don't skimp out on this. Sometimes good vendors aren't listed, they are successful via word of mouth but reputable vendors have high ratings for a reason. They deliver successfully, consistently and have some sort of a track record to prove it! So Yelp 'em, search for them on The Knot and Wedding Wire and see what past brides have to say. You'll be glad you did!

Does your vendor have wedding-specific experience? They could be a re-known club DJ that offered to play at your wedding for free but if they have zero personality on the mic or can't mix up songs to please the crowd, it WILL kill the vibe. One time I was standing by the DJ to tell him what was next on the timeline and not only did his mic not work after he supposedly tested it, he forgot to mention there would be a 20 second delay in the dvd player that would be running the slideshow for the first dance so I couldn't give the bride a heads up. I knew she couldn't stand being in the spotlight so this must have been the longest 20 seconds of her life-- awkward!

As much as I love coordinating weddings at non-traditional venues, I recently did a wedding at a very cool studio and although weddings weren't really their niche, I was shocked to arrive and find out that the ceremony/reception space floors weren't even mopped! You would think that was a basic element that would be taken care of but there was no mention of it in the contract. Luckily the florist and I were able to transform the area with the limited time we had to set up. Vendors *should* be able to think fast on their feet and that comes with experience! It wouldn't hurt to ask the vendors you interview of some examples where they had to go above and beyond their normal call of duty to make something subpar- extraordinary!

Back-up Plan
Summer in California doesn't usually involve rain but on a particular day in the end of July, all of a sudden rain had a 40% chance of making an appearance in one of my outdoor weddings. Luckily it was a passing drizzle but can you imagine it pouring? On another occasion, a couple insisted on having their ipod play for a portion of their reception. Without getting into details, a malfunction occurred and had there been a CD burned with a back-up playlist, guests would be able to continue dancing without any major interruptions. Anticipating needs can only help- it never hurts to have a Plan B! 

With so many details to think about as a couple, there are moments i'm sure that can be overwhelming. The point of me sharing these scenarios is not to scare anyone but to equip you with wisdom to set up an enjoyable wedding day experience. Wonderful weddings are a direct result of carefully thought out details and vendors who are amazing at what they do. It definitely makes day of coordination that much smoother and results in a celebration focused on joy that you and your guests will appreciate and fondly look back upon!

Alrighty, i'm done with my 411 and I promise next time to share some pretty pictures to continue inspiring you on your journey down the aisle! 

Photo credit: 100 Layer Cake

Fabulous Friday: Floral Inspiration

Friday, June 7, 2013

It's been a busy TGIF I almost forgot to post this prettiness! Beyond the usual roses, lilies, orchids and succulents seen in many bridal bouquets, I've been swooning over these magnificent florals! I'm blessed to witness tons of beautiful weddings yet don't ever tire of seeing a gorgeous flower arrangement and i'm not even a 'flower' person!

Peonies pack such a pretty punch!
via ModernlyWed

Not as vibrant but this eclectic loveliness is anything but a dull bunch 
(anything with blue thistle is usually a winner for me ;)
via Style Me Pretty

 LOVING the spiky pincushion protea!
by: Hana Floral Design

 These shades of pink and orange are sooo lovely together!
as featured on Style Me Pretty

 A single coral anemone- AMAZING!!!
by: Love & Splendor

 Yellow floral crown awesomeness :)
Image by: Jessica Claire

and if you're "ify" about committing to the full out hair wreath, go for a partial fresh flower headband as a memorable accessory!
Image by: Love Life Studios

Fabulous Friday: Frame-worthy Backdrops

Friday, May 10, 2013

My Friday's looking pretty fly, hope yours is too! 

Looking through many inspiring wedding photos and talking to my clients about their planning got me to thinking... if there was one decoration detail I wouldn't leave out on a wedding (of any budget), it would be to include an amazing wedding backdrop. Preferably one that could be accessible even after the ceremony. I know photo booths were such a huge hit because it gave guests something to  do during cocktail hour but if you can't afford one and you're not a bride who's particularly into flowers, why not have a stand out backdrop that serves as a background for your guests to go photo crazy over? A stylish, creative, insanely memorable backdrop that represents YOU! There's absolutely no reason your wedding shouldn't be trending on instagram, twitter or re-pinned 462158 times ;)

Colorful origami cranes from this Brazilian wedding featured on RocknRoll Bride

Pretty parasols by Cheese Photography

Chalkboard Wedding Backdrop by Erika Delgado

Vibrant ribbons & paper poms featured on Wed Over Heels

3 Wooden Re-purposed Doors for a rustic/vintage vibe via Thrifted Sister Vintage 

Mis-matchy colors/patterns wedding flag backdrop featured on Girly Wedding

Paper wheels at Love Me Sailor's awesome wedding!

More colored paperie goodness at Elsie of A Beautiful Mess' Wedding

Big fringe tutorial from O Happy Day

Make it Yourself Monday: String Art

Monday, April 29, 2013

Oh Monday, you came too soon.. again! Hope y'all had a lovely weekend :) I finally got a minute to post and I have a fun DIY project to kick off this week. It's been a while since I posted some DIY inspiration, so here you go! String Art of the 70s has made a come back over the last year. Create your own "home is where the heart is" artwork (in your wedding colors) to highlight the country, state or city you met or tied the knot. This piece would be an amazing addition to decorate your wedding as a back drop or sign-in for guests to write their wishes on and then display your customized artwork over the mantle in your new love nest! 

Heart in Ohio via The Harpster Home
For a full "how to" tutorial click, here.

Found love in the lone star state via Nidification (Etsy)

Our hearts united in Ghana, Africa via Kimberly Greer (Etsy)

Left my heart in San Francisco via Shades of Glitter (Etsy)

Tips + Tools Thursday: OPP

Thursday, April 11, 2013

You down with OPP? It was an early 90's jam, but in this case, I mean, other people's photos! Came across this nifty template featured on Offbeat Bride that I thought was brilliant! It's basically a game of "I Spy" to encourage your guests to participate and help you capture certain moments that would have otherwise been missed. Your photographer may already have a long shot list to fulfill or perhaps you had to cut down on costs and aren't able to hire the photographer to cover the entire day. This way guests can contribute and have fun doing it! Feel free to customize as you wish :)

What to Wear Wednesday: BHLDN

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Have you meandered over to BHLDN lately? Absolute loveliness I tell ya! BHLDN does a gorgeous interpretation of some of Spring's 2013 trends (sheer overlays, high necks, low backs, lace appliques, beading/sequins, peplums, cascading ruffles, illusion necklines, convertible dresses, corset bodices, off shoulder, sleeves and the "it" color- gold). Be sure to visit where you'll find an amazing array of party dresses and accessories to liven up any special occasion! Here are some of my faves :)

Ortensia - fabulous beading!

Omelia - that neckline!

Arabella - love the cut and lace details!

Charm School - have a whirl in this sleeved, gold number!

Kensington - a sweet engagement dinner or reception dress!

Trendspotter Tuesday: Sorbet for a Spring Wedding

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Pretty periwinkle, luscious tangerine... Spring exhales a burst of youthful energy! Somewhere between neon and pastel is a cheerfully inviting color spectrum i'd like to refer to as sorbet. It's perfect for a Spring wedding and when combined with other like hues, presents a fresh twist on last year's beloved ombre trend. Now go on and serve up your bridal party a scoop of some of that marry mint ;)

Lazaro Fall 2012 via Belle the Magazine

Rachel Roy Gemma 4 via Piperlime

Peonies, Ranunculus mixed bouquet via Weddbook

Mint seersucker bowie via OneWed

Fabric Strip Garland via Vitalic Photo

Macarons Tower via OneLove Photography 

Tips + Tools Thursday: Concealer- a Bride's BF!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hello lovelies! 

I'm back :) If you were wondering why i've been MIA, I gave birth to my third child on Valentine's Day! It really has been quite an adjustment trying to balance life with a newborn and a toddler. I'm sure some of you can relate- the days and nights have been one continuous haze and at this point, i'm lucky if I can sneak a shower in, much less a blog post LOL. I'm cherishing my few minutes of quiet time since the kids are both asleep and the one thing that popped into my mind to share with you is any mom or bride's secret weapon to appear bright eyed and rested- concealer! I can't remember the last time I had more than four consecutive hours of sleep and if you're fast approaching your wedding day, with all the excitement and anticipation, I bet you haven't gotten much sleep either. That's why not just any concealer will do! For me, a good concealer is long lasting, has full coverage and blends well without looking cakey, drying or oily. There are so many concealers on the market, I thought i'd comment on a few that i've had personal experience with.

Stila Perfecting Concealer $23
It went on smoothly but only lasted 4 hours max, after that, it seemed to just fade away. I have normal/dry skin so i'd imagine that on others with oily skin, the lasting power would be even more of a disappointment. I've had the tube for over a year and even with frequent use, still has much product left.

Makeup Forever HD Invisible Cover Concealer $29
Great, buildable coverage. I felt the color matched my skin tone and brightened my under eye circles well. It lasted 8 hours, however unlike Stila, with frequent use, this product lasted only 3 months.

Sephora Collection Perfecting Cover Concealer $16
Thick, not so buildable coverage but if you blend well, a little goes a long way. It covers my dark under eye circles/blemishes like a dream and stays put ALL day. This was a nice surprise as it is by far my fave of the 3 and comes in a bigger tube than Stila so even with frequent use should last a long time. Biggest pro- it's only $16!

I know many celebrities praise Cle de Peau and while i'd like to try out all the hype, I just don't have $70 laying around to spend on concealer! Reviews are definitely helpful, yet they can also be confusing. Looking through the Sephora website, it seems many of the concealers they sell are rated with 4 to 5 stars. I encourage you to take the time to walk in and try on different brands. A couple of the sales reps had recommended other brands I didn't mention, but ultimately it's what works best for you! I feel like concealer is an essential and isn't one of those things you can skimp on. A great concealer can take years off your face and is the foundation to giving you your young, beautiful self back. Kate Middleton did her own make up on her wedding day because she wanted her husband to be to recognize her as she walked down the aisle. I bet she had an amazing concealer on hand! Can you imagine looking at your wedding photos later down the line and saying wow, you can see all dark shadows of stress and sleepless nights on my face- I really wish I invested in some good concealer... don't let that bride be you!

I am by no means a make up expert and i'm sure my makeup artist friends have their own personal faves so if you have one that you love, please let us know about it! 

ps- this is my latest blessing and reason I haven't been getting much sleep- my son, Xavier Enzo Rhys. Staying up late taking care of him definitely wears on my face but nothing a lil' dab of awesome concealer can't fix  :)

Image: Infiniti Foto

Festive Friday: A Valentine's Day Inspired Wedding

Friday, February 1, 2013

Welcome to the 1st day of February! For me, that means 17 more days (or less) till I meet my lil' him or her! Yes, yes y'all, I will be a mama of three very, very soon! With V-day around the corner, I thought it'd be fitting to do a red and pink post. It's funny how our mind attaches colors to certain months: red, white and blue for July, red and green for December, orange for October etc. I didn't intend to make Fridays color themed days but it's just the way it worked out this time, hope you're still with me :) I'm not sure how it's been for you, but i've found it to be a little disheartening when googling images with words like: red and pink wedding and getting all these pop ups of cheesy, super-matchy collages. Oftentimes simplicity is where it's at; a pop of color here and there, rather than looking like you raided party city or the dollar store LOL. I gathered a few images to share with you that inspired me and hope it brightens up your day too!

A sun kissed bride wearing Vera Wang. Other pink wedding gown celebs include: Jessica Biel, Reese Witherspoon and Portia de Rossi (image via Urban Flip Flops).

 A lovely pink ombre ceremony aisle and backdrop via Belle The Magazine
Pink and red ombre dessert set up by Sweet & Saucy

 Pretty florals by Flowerwild, image via Jose Villa, featured on Once Wed.

Beautiful bold red or fuchsia lips makes for a classic bridal look

The perfect Valentine's Day Signature Cocktail ~ French Kiss

3/4 oz Chambord
3/4 oz peach schnapps
3/4 oz vodka
splash orange juice
splash pineapple juice
splash cranberry juice

Most of these images and tons of other inspiration can be found via my Pinterest page. If you aren't already following me, you can do so here!

Fabulous Friday Color Crush: Emerald Green

Friday, January 25, 2013

Goodbye tangerine tango, hello emerald green! If you have no clue what i'm talking about, the lovely folks of Pantone, Inc. the global authority on color, inspires artists, designers and stylists to color the world. A specific color is chosen each year to represent the trends of the seasons to follow. So if you're wondering why all of a sudden the burst of green everywhere, well now you know!

I never quite considered this shade of green for a wedding but it sure is stunning! Here are a few ideas of how to incorporate it. What do you think?

Green watercolor invitation by Wedding Paper Divas

This English bride changed into a green sequins dress for the reception. Featured on 100 Layer Cake

Beyonce's dazzling emerald green earrings worn at Obama's recent inauguration

Dessy Bridesmaid Dress 2885, Antique Emerald Halo Ring, Christian Louboutin "Volpi 150" Heels