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Brides | Manolo for the Brides - Part 30
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It’s not all plunges and slits in promtown

For a long time, I was an advocate of looking for wedding-ish gowns amid the prom dresses. Then I noticed that today’s prom styles have more cut-outs than a paper snowflake. I’m talking about frocks so risqué I can’t help but say things like “Back in my day, we wore dresses that covered our belly buttons! And we walked ten miles to and from the prom in the driving snow in peep toe pumps! You don’t know how good you have it!” I’m only twenty-eight…I shouldn’t be talking like that, right?

Consequently, I’m not so quick to suggest that brides-to-be poke around the prom gowns anymore. That’s not to say that one can’t save a buck or two in the teen section, but the selection of wedding-appropriate frocks simply isn’t as large as it used to be. The best prom/wedding hybrids I’ve found thus far come from designer Sherri Hill. I like her dresses so much that I’m currently constructing a time machine so I can go back and wear one at my own wedding. I’ll let you know how that goes.

There isn’t a lot of white in Sherri’s collection, but who cares? Color is in!


These two chiffon styles would work equally well on the bride or on her bridesmaids. I’ve never hidden the fact that I’m a sucker for pink, but I think I like these dresses in particular because they remind me so much of this one.


The bride wore Botox? Bleah.

Following on the heels of those ubiquitous bridal checklists, you’ll find the slightly less common bridal beauty timelines. Sometimes they’re squished into one perfect package so you’re reminded to have yet another facial right around the time you ought to be breaking in your bridal shoes…TIP: wear tube socks over your heels to keep them whitey white white white.

Getting your spa on can be fun, but please don’t obsess

In other instances the beauty timelines stand alone, like one I found at Chopstick Bride, which advises brides-to-be to start treating acne one year before the wedding, schedule four to six acid peels six months before the wedding, and begin drinking a gallon of water per day at a month before the wedding. Sadly, they offer no advice at all with regard to explaining those frequent bathroom breaks to coworkers and friends.


I like it when the models are standing straight up and down — it means I can actually see the dresses

You know what is truly fantastic? Ill tell you: When I come across a designer’s web page that doesn’t use all manner of Flash, so I can actually pull some images without having to resort to PrtScn–>Paint–>The Gimp. Jesus Peiro, I thank you for your use of plain old jpegs!


Damn, that is just gorgeous — perfect for those looking for a little shoulder and décolletage coverage. I usually like a little more flare in the hips, but if you’ve got kind of a flat tummy (or some super foundation garments) why ruin a good straight line? I think the classic simplicity is what I love best.


Don’t Tase Me, Bro: The nuptial edition

Not one, but TWO (!!!) instances of nuptial tasing were recently brought to my attention. The first involves a Californian groom who was tased by police after adopting a “fighting stance” when police were called in to investigate a too-loud reception. The second…well, see for yourself.

Better at least than tar and feathers. Oil is easier to clean up!

Last I heard, bachelor parties involved great quantities of booze with slightly smaller quantities of boobs. A group of men in Knox County, Maine apparently thought the usual pre-wedding rituals were simply too ho-hum, and decided to switch things up a bit. Lucky for us, they videotaped the entire extravaganza!

Unfortunately there’s no way to embed the vid here, so you’ll have to follow the link. I can, however, sum up the party for you: The groom-to-be was tased, handcuffed, tied him up with duct tape, oiled and feathered, and paraded through downtown strapped to a lawn chair.

I cringed watching the antics of what are supposedly grown men–though I have my doubts–and hope you cringe, too. Getting tased is no laughing matter, and yet the entirety of the video is full of the yuck-yuck-yucking of the groom-to-be’s buddies. It’s hard to tell whether the feathered fella is perhaps a Jackass fan and thus into it, but he does seem pretty unsteady on his feet after getting zapped. I vote that he find a new group of friends, stat, and I frankly pity the poor bride-to-be.

(Looking for the Manolo for the Brides Sweepstakes? Here it is!)

Have your cake and mail it, too

I love anything one can buy without having to schlep one’s tush to the store. In fact, while planning my wedding, I looked for any and every opportunity to shop from the confines of my office…then I wrote a book about it! I do understand that there are some folks who get a real kick out of going to the mall or exchanging pleasant banter with shopkeeps, but I’m guessing that for every one of them there’s someone like me who’d rather not spend their Saturdays braving the retail gauntlet.

Some things are just designed for online shopping–faux flowers, dresses, paper goods, and favors come to mind. Other things don’t fare so well when squeezed into a cramped mail truck. Thus far, all of my efforts to find fancy iced wedding and shower appropriate cake were for naught. Sure, you can buy cheesecakes and petit fours and rum cake, but the rigors of shipping heretofore demanded some degree of cakey stability, ruling out varieties commonly associated with nuptials.

Until now, that is…

Why’d I see this first thing in the morning? I’m going to be jonesing for cake all dang day now!

Fat Daddy Bake Shop takes cupcakes to the next level, packaging them in little canning jars for easy delivery via airmail. At $65 for ten 1/2 pint cupcakes–or should I call them jarcakes–it’s unlikely you’ll be sending your wedding guests home with sweets ensconced in glass. That price point does, however, lend itself to serving them to bridal shower and bachelorette party attendees or giving them to attendants as part of gift baskets.

And, happily, the flavor selection lends itself to NOM NOM NOMing. Were I to choose five, I’d pick the butter cake filled with coconut and layered with cream cheese frosting; banana cake with butterscotch chips and golden butterscotch frosting; brown sugar butter cake blended with toffee bits and topped with chocolate buttercream; vanilla cake with coffee, chocolate chips and layered with vanilla buttercream, and dark chocolate cake filled with chocolate ganache, caramel and walnuts, topped with caramel buttercream and nuts. Then I’d lapse straight into a sugar-induced coma because I have absolutely no willpower to speak of.

Is there nothing makeup can’t do?

After checking out my shortlist of ways to put some pep into wedding pics, reader Ky suggested I check out Taaz. Can I just say I love synchronicity? It just so happens that I was planning on posting about Taaz, which describes itself as a “fun, easy-to-use website that gives women the opportunity to ‘try on’ the hottest makeup and hairstyle looks from the convenience of their homes.”

I’m interested in anything I can try on without having to battle my way through throngs of fellow shoppers, so I gave it a go. My original wedding day look is on the left, and my plasticized look is on the right.

I had a stylist following me with lip gloss…apparently I needed an airbrush expert

But while I love makeovers as much as the next femmey-femme, I had no intentions of discussing how one might use Taaz to try on different makeup colors and hairstyles. Nor was I planning to wax poetic about the site’s product recommendations — circumstances dictate I be a Bare Minerals girl as much as I might want to worship at the altar of Chanel.

No, I want to talk to all frazzled and fried brides-to-be about Taaz’s potential as a stress reliever. Seriously…I just spent a hilarious forty-five minutes uploading snapshots of friends, family, and pets so I could make them look like geishas, freaks, and cross dressers. No one was spared the cruelties of my dastardly broad makeup brush.


Take your wedding pics to the next level

If you’re going to spend ages and ages between the ceremony and the reception posing for the camera, why not make it interesting? It’s bad enough that everyone else is off getting their pre-meal drink on at the open bar and chatting about poor Carol, the bridesmaid who just got divorced. Don’t make it worse by slapping on a frozen smile and lazily staring down your photographer. Your wedding album will be much enhanced by your decision to jazz things up a bit when it’s time to say “Cheese,” so try one of these cool poses on for size:

The jump:

The daddy-mack will make you do this

From Beth Beljon — and can I just say I LOVE the bridesmaid attire?