Archive - December, 2009

LOVE/HATE: The ‘SURPRISE!’ Edition

Imagine stepping off an airplane into the arrivals terminal of the closest airport. You scan the crowd of people waiting for their loved ones and business associates, waiting for your fiance or fiancee. Unexpectedly, you see a woman in a long white dress or a man in a tux, along with someone who looks like very much like a wedding officiant. You might smile, wonder who they’re waiting for. Then you realize they’re staring at you, waving like mad in your direction. Smiling. That nut in the tux or that crazy lady in a wedding dress is your spouse-to-be and they have a big surprise for you. Do you… run over with a huge grin on your face? Book it in the opposite direction, trying to pretend you didn’t see? Sidle over cautiously, hoping it’s all a joke?

If you’re William Acosta or U.S. Army Pvt. Cody Beckwith, you choose option A.

Robyn Moore and William Acosta exchanged their vows at Corpus Christi International Airport after he got off a plane arriving from Toledo, Ohio. She was waiting in her wedding dress, with a justice of the peace at her side. granted, they were planning on marrying in December anyway and hadn’t chosen a site. More importantly, they both travel frequently for business and spend a great deal of time in airports. Acosta told reporters that he was speechless, but thrilled when he said Moore.

surprise wedding 2

Shawna Hodge surprised her fiance U.S. Army Pvt. Cody Beckwith in much the same way, though their circumstances were very different. He was caught in all that winter weather that rolled over the U.S. slightly more than a week back and was stranded, missing his own wedding. Every flight he tried to book was delayed or canceled except for a midnight flight into Tampa International Airport. So that’s where Hodge and Beckwith said their “I dos” with their wedding party looking on.

My take? I love the second surprise wedding — the wedding hour came and went, and the couple made do. They’ll have a great story to tell people, maybe kids and grandkids. But the first surprise wedding? I don’t think Moore would have shown up in her wedding dress if she didn’t think Acosta would go for it, and they had picked up the license application the week before. While nothing was set in stone, however, I can’t help thinking that he might have had some idea of where they should say their vows. It worked for them, and that’s awesome, but I think I’d hate being put on the spot like that.

What say you?

A Different Kind of Proposal

Once upon a time, my dad told me that he’d give me and whoever I decided to marry $5,000 that we could spend as we liked, provided I eloped. When The Beard and I did decide to marry, that offer changed to $2,000 to put toward a “real” wedding, since my dad’s wife at the time wasn’t going to see me married without all the proper proceedings. Honestly, we probably would have put that original sum toward my wedding budget because I like weddings and The Beard is his mother’s only son, but the thought of having a few thousand more dollars in the bank to put toward a house might have been tempting!

asking parents for money for a wedding

According to a New York Times blog, the newest trend where parents and budgets are concerned is asking for money for big ticket items in lieu of a contribution to a wedding. A down payment on a home is one popular way to spend the spoils, though others might include a much-needed new car or a blowout six-month vacation.

if you’re thinking of asking your parents for cash instead of a wedding contribution, bringing up the subject if your parents haven’t offered first can be difficult. Ms. Martini Bratten [editor-in-chief of Brides] recommends that couples first find out if their parents plan to contribute to the wedding before broaching the subject and not to be shocked if parents are perplexed by the proposition. And if parents make the proposal themselves, choosing whether to take the money or not can be hard as well, though Ms. Martini Bratten said she expected many brides would probably still opt for their dream event.

Asking for money to put toward a wedding budget is difficult enough for many brides and grooms without having to find a way to tactfully say something like “On the assumption that you’re going to help us pay for our wedding, might we just have the cash instead?” I suppose it would get a little easier if your parents have already said they’ll give you such-and-such an amount, and slightly more easy if you want to spend that money on something responsible, like a graduate degree or a flat in the nice part of town.

It might be harder, on the other hand, to ask moms and dads for money when you are planning a biggish wedding and your spouse-to-be’s parents have already indicated that they’ll help pay for it. In that case, it might be awkward for both sets of parents, particularly if there is bad blood between the families and one thinks the other isn’t contributing enough to the happiness or survival of the kids. And I think that asking for cash would be especially difficult if you and your spouse-to-be are well-off enough to pay for a rather nice wedding on your own and plan to do just that, but would like some additional funds for big expenses.

In my case, The Beard and I approached all of our parents to ask (with no strings attached) if they were planning to help us pay for a wedding. At the time, it never occurred to us to use the money so graciously given to us for our wedding for something else, and the thought of asking whether it would be all right if money given for one purpose might be used for another makes me feel a little itchy. That’s why I’m wondering if any of our readers chose to use parent-gifted wedding budget funds for other purposes… if so, did you ask your moms and dads if they’d be willing to hand over cash instead of writing checks to vendors? Did proposing the idea feel weird?

Designer Profile: Stephanie Allin

I’d not heard of her until stumbling across one of her wedding dresses recently, but Stephanie Allin is one of the UK’s foremost award-winning bridal fashion designers. Her designs are British-made, though it’s not impossible to find a Stephanie Allin wedding dress in other countries, and they’re almost all 100% gorgeous. The details are what really draws you in, from heavy lace to sophisticated belts to artful gathers. Here’s a sampling, along with what I like about each.

belted wedding dress

What I like: The belt! Sashes are all right and bows are okay, but a wide belt with a big belt really tickles my fancy on the right wedding dress. This belted wedding dress is luxurious without being stuffy.

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Bridal Fabrics: From Batiste to Velvet

Wedding dresses are crafted in a variety of fabrics and fabric finishes, with everything from cotton to taffeta being fair game. Yet the last thing most brides-to-be are thinking about when they step into a bridal salon or log on to an online shop like House of Brides is fabric characteristics. Luckily, wedding dress designers and manufacturers make it easy for us all, pairing certain fabrics with certain styles to ensure that everything drapes and flows and rustles like it ought to.

bridal fabric glossary

Still, a little knowledge goes a long way when you’re searching for the perfect wedding dress! For example, knowing the difference between a fiber and a finish will ensure that you don’t unintentionally buy a wedding dress made of synthetic fabric when you have your heart set on natural fibers. The finish is what cloth looks and feels like once it’s woven – for example, taffeta can be made of silk or polyester, and it’s worth it to know which one you’re buying.

With that in mind, I’ve put together a short bridal fabric glossary that includes the fibers and finishes you’re most likely to encounter when shopping for your wedding dress and bridesmaids’ dresses.

Batiste
Made of cotton, wool, or polyester, this lightweight fabric is thin and opaque, but not nearly as transparent as organdy.

Charmeuse
A lightweight fabric with a satin weave that is softer and clingier than satin and less voluminous than silk finishes. Charmeuse, which is lustrous on one side and dull on the other, can be made with silk, polyester, or rayon. This is a slinky, slippery fabric.

Chiffon
This lightweight and slightly rough fabric is translucent with a soft drape. Made with either cotton, silk, or synthetic fibers, it is quite delicate and is usually thought of as a summer weight fabric.

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Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness: The Galaxy Far, Far Away Edition

How do, caption fans! It’s time once again to play Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness. You all know how this works. I post a picture that desperately needs a caption. You provide said captions via the comments function. Next week I declare a winner and we all celebrate.

This week’s image was found and sent to me by our own Never teh Bride who has a talent for finding odd imagery:
sw-wedding-1 Ready…set…snark!

Good Thing They Had Their Love to Keep Them Warm

Imagine you live in Philadelphia. Imagine you’re getting married. Imagine you intend to marry out of doors. What time of year would you choose for your ceremony?

Well, if you’re Blair Kahora and Matt Cardinal, you choose December 19.

You read that correctly, they chose December 19 for their outdoor wedding at Headhouse Square open air market. They even went ahead with their plans despite the fact that more than twenty inches of snow fell that day.

The makeup artist decided to bow out of the proceedings, but Matt and his groomsmen jumped into the fray and called to confirm all the other vendors.

Guests were told that formal clothing was optional. Most of them chose to show up, though the dress code rapidly turned into sweatpants rather than party dresses. As for the bride and her bridesmaids, they gave a nod to the weather by wearing Uggs and pashmina wraps.

After the ceremony, the happy couple stayed outdoors to get some pictures.

Me? I wouldn’t do it. After all, part of the reason I live in California is that I don’t want to deal with snow. For them, however, it seemed to work. Best of luck, Blair and Matt. And keep warm if you can.
Kahora_Cardinal+Wedding+PHoto+snow+kiss+crop

Happy Christmas From Never teh Bride and Twistie!

christmas-wedding-inspiration-board

Warm Christmas wishes to you and yours,
and congratulations to all who wake today to find
an engagement ring in their stockings!

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