Archive for February, 2010

A Fascination With Fascinators

Sunday, February 21st, 2010

Once upon a time, every bride knew more or less what she would wear on her head at her wedding. Young first-time brides wore veils, older or previously married women wore hats. If you got married in a judge’s chambers or at City Hall, you wore a small hat, no matter what your age or previous marital status. Period. The only questions lay in the length of the veil or trim on the hat.

The good news is that all that went out the window nearly fifty years ago. The even better news is that there are huge numbers of options now, from cathedral length veils for third-time brides to glorious hats for formal first-time brides to bare heads to wreaths to…well, nearly anything you can imagine putting on your head.

One popular option right now is the fascinator. Once upon a time that word meant a wooly knitted or crocheted scarf that covered the head, but that was when Queen Victoria was still around. Nowadays a fascinator is a decorative bit of whimsey worn in the hair. It can be elegant like this:

What Will You Give Up? What Won’t You Give Up?

Saturday, February 20th, 2010

We don’t talk a great deal around here about what comes after the wedding. Heck, we don’t even discuss honeymoons very often! It’s not that we don’t care or don’t think about it. We’re just usually more focused on the actual wedding, what with being a wedding planning blog.

But the fact is that while it’s fun and easy to talk about flowers and dresses and menus and jewelry, there’s an entire marriage after the wedding, and we do think it’s important to consider that marriage.

If you’re old enough to even be thinking about getting married, chances are you’ve learned somewhere along the line that compromise is important. If you haven’t learned it by the time you start planning, chances are you’ll have a better understanding of the concept at the end of the process. No matter what your budget or how mellow all the players involved happen to be, a wedding will entail some compromises in some area.

But what about your happily ever after?

Marriage entails a lot of compromise on a daily basis. What to eat and who cooks it, which movie to see, whether to save first for his big priority or yours, who takes out the garbage vs who scrubs the bathroom…you’re going to wind up making deals about a lot of things.

Some of these choices are easy. I do the cooking, because Mr. Twistie only knows two settings on the burners: high and off. Also, I’m home when it’s time to start cooking far more consistently and I love to cook. I also do the dishes because I actually like that part. Call me freaky, but I do. Mr. Twistie may think that bit was a compromise, but really it was a matter of personal preference as much as self-preservation.

Some are harder. I moved to a new city. I’d lived in my hometown literally as long as I could remember. I’d lived in the same house since I was two years old, and I got married at thirty. Yeah, I tend to stay where I’m put. By contrast, Mr. Twistie had only lived in his hometown since he was nine, and could remember living in two other cities. So why was I the one to move?

Imperfection? What Imperfection?

Friday, February 19th, 2010

bride on crutches 3

I am loving *LOVING!* this bride photographed by Marie Labbancz of Art of Love Photography. She could have let circumstances get her down, but she didn’t. Sure, having your foot in a cast on your wedding day is going to suck a little, but what’s a little plaster compared with the awesomeness of saying yes to forever with the person you love?

bride on crutches

Maybe you spent your girlhood and even your adulthood of being that perfect princess of a bride the bridal magazines slyly suggest you can be, but fate may just have something to say about that. Could be a broken ankle or a black eye, or worse, a round of chemo that makes your hair fall out or a life-saving operation that leaves you with a big ol’ scar. These things happen, but they don’t mean you’re not going to be eye-poppingly beautiful in your wedding dress, dig?

bride on crutches 2

To the brides-to-be worrying about some minor or major physical imperfection, I want to say that no one worth their wedding invitation ever thinks the bride looks anything other than amazing. It’s your wedding day; you’re going to have that glow. How could you not be gorgeous? So quit worrying about how you’ll look and start worrying about the reception menu and the floral arrangements. Kidding! Don’t worry about anything, just enjoy planning your wedding!

LOVE/HATE: The ‘You Gonna Eat That?’ Edition

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

We’re all for creative wedding cakes at Manolo For the Brides, especially those that are a reflection of the personalities of the bride and groom! But how, pray tell, do you cut and serve something like this?

weird wedding cakes

Created by Cakes By Lynette (who makes beautiful cookies, cupcakes, and cakes), this wedding cake features the bride and groom, their attendants, and various beasties. Is it a creative way to present a dessert? Most definitely! Is it exactly the wedding cake the bride and groom wanted? I should hope so! And is it just a little wacky? I’d say yes, though I’d stress that there’s nothing wrong with that!

That said, creative wedding cakes like this one aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. I’ve seen many more classic tiered wedding cakes than I’ve seen weird wedding cakes, and I’ve been to a lot of weddings in my day. I’m wondering where you, the readership, stand on the subject. I’m not asking you to rate this cake in particular, but rather cakes of its ilk. Me? I think I prefer something in the middle — I like colorful tiered cakes, oddly-shaped ones for sure, but your basic easy-to-identify wedding cake.

What say you?

Be A Deer, Would You?

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

How freakin’ cute are these retro deer wedding cake toppers from Dear Girlface? Oh em gee, if The Beard and I hadn’t topped our cake with statues of our kittehs, these are what I would have wanted. And I usually hate wedding cake toppers!

deer wedding cake toppers

Made lovingly by hand, as it says in the description, these adorable deer are crafted from high quality felt, ribbons, fabric flowers, and vintage buttons. Each deer is unique, but if what’s on offer doesn’t ring your bell, you can have yours custom made with your choices of colors, genders, and details like eye patches!

deer wedding cake toppers 2

At six inches tall, no one will overlook your totally sweet choice of wedding cake topper. I usually scoff at wedding products that boast heirloom potential, but I could definitely see these standing the test of time — especially if they can be removed from the base and displayed individually (or played with!).

The Bouquet Toss: Relic or Relevant

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

A friend sent me a link to a doubleX feature entitled The Humiliation of the Bouquet Toss. Clicking it, I found myself hoping for a deep discussion about the implications inherent in lining up the single women so they can lunge at a tossed flower arrangement in the hopes of being the next to marry. Instead I found myself reading a debate about weddings and the pull of traditions.

bouquet toss

Ah, well. The bouquet toss remains something I’m curious about. At most of the weddings I’ve attended in the past few years, no bouquet was tossed. At the weddings where the bouquet toss did happen, it felt like most of the participants were on the parquet reluctantly and retreaded when the bride let fly, though I did go to one wedding where the bouquet toss was greeted enthusiastically *and* the groom removed the garter with his teeth! When I was kid, however, all of the weddings I attended included a bouquet toss and a garter toss.

Now, a quick search tells me that there’s no shortage of toss garters out there, which means that someone, somewhere is tossing bouquets and garters at their wedding receptions. But they’re sure not doing it in my social circle. I made a toss bouquet, just in case, but never really intended to use it. What I’m curious about is whether the bouquet toss has just become a relic among today’s brides or whether my not encountering them has more to do with my location (the northeastern U.S.), my culture (recent European descent on mom’s side, daughters of the Revolution on my dad’s side) or my age group (late 20s to early 30s). Maybe Hispanic gals in their early 20s in the Midwest are flinging bouquets with impunity?

I’m not suggesting you have the answer — though if you do, spill! — but I would like it if you’d be so kind as to participate in a little poll and then explain yourself, if you wish, in the comments!

Nothing But Flowers!

Monday, February 15th, 2010

Many, if not most, brides- and grooms-to-be choose their wedding colors before they ever choose their wedding flowers. But what if your wedding flowers were your wedding colors? You could pick a blossom, perhaps one that comes in many colors, and then base your wedding colors on the hues you found in its petals and greenery. Not floral enough for you? How about using your wedding flowers to choose your wedding colors, then taking it a step further by making your wedding flowers your wedding theme? Carnations? Lily of the valley? Daisies? Flowers on food? Flowers on the wall? Why stop there?

floral wedding

There are so many ways you can integrate your favorite flower into your wedding theme! Decorate your wedding cake with blossoms… stylized petals can make an appearance on your wedding invitations… your fave can furthermore sit on your reception tables (au natural or in the form of table numbers), decorate your favor boxes, and serve as an organic aisle runner… you can even dress your bridesmaids in flower-print frocks and wear a bloom in your hair. I’ve even found wedding dresses with the flowers built right in, but to that I have to say ‘meh.’ Better to use them elsewhere and leave your gown flower free.

(Images – table; bridesmaids; gown; table number; headband; cake; favor box)