Archive for October, 2005

Thoroughly Modern Matrimony

Monday, October 24th, 2005

Plastic!

For the highly modern (or as us hip kids like to say, mod) bride, artist and designer Alissia Melka-Teichroew has created a line of acrylic, um, diamonds.

Highly hip!

Here’s how they look on the finger of the bride, post ceremony. In this case, the future husband has chosen the clear acrylic “diamond” engagement ring and the couple has decided to go for the non-traditional acrylic “ruby” wedding band with “diamond” accent.

I don’t know how I feel about this particular look, but I’m sure when we all have flying cars and robots doing our housework, anyone who isn’t sporting high quality acrylic matrimonial bling is going to feel pretty darn silly.

Mao and wife

Saturday, October 22nd, 2005

Mao!

According to The Star, this year’s must have wedding accessory – at least in Changchun, capital of north-east China’s Jilin Province – is a Chairman Mao Zedong look-alike. Apparently, no wedding is complete without a visit from the communist revolutionary himself.

With his theme tune East is Red, which has always been associated with the late leader, Li Shouxin makes his entrance at wedding banquets dressed in a blue Mao suit.

In his 50’s, Li has been a typecast actor for 25 years with the provincial drama troupe.

His exceptional resemblance to the late leader made him famous with locals.

At weddings, Li begins with a typical Mao-style wave before greeting people in the strong Hunan accent of the late leader’s home province. He then invites the happy couples’ parents to speak and tells anecdotes about the newlyweds.

With this ring

Friday, October 21st, 2005

I’m a simple broad with classical tastes, so when it comes to engagement rings – not that I’ve ever had the chance to try any on – I like a single diamond in a simple six-pronged setting.

The Oh Baby Ring

Sure, The Beard knows my preference, but the rest is up to him and I’ll cherish whatever ring he may choose. Such an archaic willingness to be surprised is not for everyone, however.

A future bride and groom I can easily conceive of, whom I will call the RibbonFingers, were engaged for months before said future groom ever put a ring on said future bride’s finger. The progression of their engagement went something like this:

1. The proposal

2. The announcement and the tying of a symbolic red ribbon around the future bride’s ring finger

3. The 30 days of shopping required in order for the future bride to pick out an engagement ring she really, really liked

4. The returning of the first ring so the future bride could choose a ring she really, really, really liked

This is not as uncommon as you might think. Color me old fashioned, but the idea of a nervous young man studying up on jewelry before timidly purchasing a bauble just appeals to me. The engagement ring is a gift and I’ve always believed that the nature of gifts should be left up to the giver.

I do understand that in these modern times perhaps every woman has the right to choose her engagement ring but according to Everything to Do About Weddings, the RibbonFingers still made one mistake.

Today’s brides and grooms often choose rings together; after the proposal (from either party) has been accepted privately. When the engagement ring is on the finger, then the announcement is made public.

Now if only The Beard would hurry up a little.

It’s your bag, baby

Thursday, October 20th, 2005

The Shantung

I’ll admit it. I am absolutely obsessed with handbags. I love them. Nurture them. Collect them and carry them.

Which is why it pains me so that I am still so utterly perplexed by the bridal purse like the one above from Wedding Accessories. I am aware that quite often these mini drawstringed bags come with lotion, a nail file, polish, mints, a sewing kit, bobby pins, packed of ibuprofen and acetaminophen, an ammonia inhalant, bandages, acid relief, tissues and towelettes. Some, known as money bags, are larger and meant to hold the money-laden envelopes procured by the bride during the reception.

Search Your Love tell me that,

The modern bride has quite a few bridal purses to choose from for their wedding day. Designs run from the very ornate to simple purses made of plain white silk or satin. The costs of the purses range from under ten dollars to a thousand or more. Details that make a purse more expensive include the use of pearls, Swarovski crystals, gems, embroidery and hand sewing. The most popular styles of the purse include clutch, handbag, strap, mini, drawstring pouch and envelope.

That’s all well and good. Future brides and happily wedded wives do occasionally need a hairpin or a Tums. What I want to know is when exactly these things are carried. I can’t imagine any girl walking down the aisle with a satin and crystal evening bag on their arm. Nor can I see it being carried during the couple’s first dance. Can you imagine the new bride maneuvering the knife to cut the cake with a handbag in the crook of her elbow?

All I see it doing is laying forgotten on the reception table throughout the entire evening. And that is no way to treat a handbag.

No, no, thank you!

Wednesday, October 19th, 2005

I was happy to receive an absolutely gorgeous thank you note in the mail yesterday from an old friend of mine who also happens to be a future bride. The note included a few very specific words about how often the future bride and groom plan to use my gift – some sort of waffle thing – in the future and how they were sorry I couldn’t make the engagement party. There were also a few personal words from my friend to me.

The traditional thank you note, it seems, is almost a lost art. But the nearly extinct hand-written, personal wedding thank you note serves two distinct purposes. In writing it, the couple acknowledges their receipt of the gift. In receiving it, the giver feels they have not wasted their $49.95 and also has confirmation that said waffle…thing did not get lost in the post.

Mannersmith Monthly tells us that when writing such a note, sincerity is key.

If someone has gone to enough effort to give you a gift, you should properly thank him or her with a personal note…Unless your handwriting is horrific, I recommend handwritten notes for both personal and business thank you notes. There are many advantages to handwritten notes…The old adage is that if someone took the time to give you a gift, you should take the time to write the person a note.

So true. And now, in case you found this lecture on etiquette tedious, here is a photo of a wedding gown that apparently doubles as an accordion:

Polka gown

Lovin’ Reem

Tuesday, October 18th, 2005

I’m totally in love with this year’s Reem Acra bridal collection, which includes this absolutely gorgeous strapless satin full-skirted gown with embroidered bow detailing on a multi seamed bodice. While some of the gowns contain slightly risqué elements – can you say plunging neckline? – they are, for the most part, extremely tasteful and highly detailed without resorting to tackiness.

The model, however, I could do without. She looks as if she just got off of a month-long bridal magazine binge and is about to announce to her bridal party that anyone who can’t follow her directions will be shot on sight.

Beam me up, hubby!

Monday, October 17th, 2005

Every little girl dreams of her perfect fantasy wedding, conjuring up details from the setting to the dress to the favors. But how many little girls dream of the Star Trek and Elvis themed wedding?

Elvis Trek!

And let us not forget the Star Wars wedding, which could, according to this site, include: “Han Solo sandwiches“, “Chewbacca Chili“, and naturally “Skywalker Salad Nicoise.”

Theme weddings, as Jeanette Hawkinson of UltimateWedding.com will tell you, are not everyone’s cup of tea. It takes a special kind of future bride to ask her best friends (not to mention the best friends of the future groom) to dress up as southern belles and dandies, biker babes and bikers, or cow girls and cowboys. But I’m fine with that. I am always an advocate of the right to make choices and the right to exercise creativity

As long as no one asks me to dress like a Klingon.