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Bridesmaids Dresses | Manolo for the Brides - Part 5
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A Mature, Elegant Palette

Much like the gray and yellow wedding palette, the red and gray wedding palette is sophisticated and elegant. But the red (unlike the yellow) adds something of a maturity. I’d choose gray and yellow for an afternoon wedding, especially one taking place out of doors, while I’d choose red and gray for an evening wedding, one that might be a little more upscale.

I like this color combo more than I like red and black, because red and black can be a little jarring if too much is used alongside white. The gray tones the whole thing down a bit without sacrificing any of the visual interest or drama. Particularly if you’ve chosen a deeper shade of gray.

red and gray wedding invitations

These beautiful red and gray wedding invitations from Peculiar Pair Press were inspired by the copper facade of the new DeYoung museum in San Francisco, which is where (I think) the reception might have been taking place. It’s a creative idea — if you’re having custom invitations designed, why not incorporate some element of your wedding venue into the final product?


A Little Bit of Happy, A Little Bit of Drama

My favorite wedding color scheme pairings are those that are just a tad unexpected, usually because the two or three or more colors chosen are not typically seen together. Other color combos are surprising because of the extreme visual contrast between the hues, while some are a little shocking because the chosen colors are seldom combined in decor or fashion or art or weddings.

One unexpected wedding color combination I’ve been loving lately is yellow and gray, where the yellow is bright and/or cheerful and the gray is either quite muted or so in-your-face as to be practically silver. Both work brilliantly, though for different reasons. Plus, yellow and silver were big late last year and early this year, so there’s no shortage of wedding accessories for the bride and groom who want to rock this combo. If you like it or think you may love it, here are some images that may inspire you.

yellow and gray bridesmaids

Sometimes bridesmaids wear yellow and wear gray accessories, and sometimes bridesmaids wear gray or silver and carry yellow bridesmaids’ bouquets. These bridesmaids photographed by Stephanie Williams wore a soft gray AND yellow! (via)


Orange: It’s Not Just for Halloween Anymore

My mother always said orange was her favorite neutral. If there’s one thing I learned at her knee, it was that her eye for color was impeccable. These days, orange is my favorite neutral, too.

Oh I know it’s a bright, aggressive color. I know a little can go a long way. I also know it goes with and brings out the best in a wide variety of colors. I also know it’s a wonderful color for a happy celebration like a wedding.

Not convinced? Take a look under the cut at the cheery gallery of orange wedding details I’ve put together. Please note that there is not a single one that looks like Halloween.


LOVE/HATE: The “Twins Have Escaped” Edition

I have been so incredibly lucky in my experiences as a bridesmaid in that I either was too young to have anything down in front that required the use of a bra or I was given complete freedom to choose my own dress. For real, I have never had a bride friend tell me what she wanted me to wear other than “something purple” or “any one of the dresses from this company.” Being that I went from having nothing in my sweaters to filling them out some completely that I can’t help but size up and alter down, this has been a blessing.

I don’t know what I’d do, for example, if a bride friend asked me to be in her wedding party and then told me we were all going to wear bridesmaids dresses like these.


That’s not to say that Karen of Blush Photography has not captured what is essentially a lovely dress. While I’m not a huge fan of the color as it comes off on my monitor — I see a sort of peachy coral — I like the belt effect and the apparent structure of the lower part of the skirt. What I don’t like… and HATE, really, as a busty gal, is the back. How exactly does one put a bra under there? The dip is too low for a standard racerback. The only option, as I see it, is those stick-on cups that really don’t do anything for us double Ds.

Brides, please take note. As the lovely Julie reminded us in this post, do take a moment to think of your bridesmaids’ physiques before finalizing your bridesmaids dress choice. Busty bridesmaids, for the most part, HATE going braless.

Is Using the Regular Search Function Really That Hard?

As you probably already know, I’m a huge fan of Bluefly for bridesmaids’ dresses and even wedding gowns. Shopping there makes so much sense to me — for what you pay, you get a beautiful dress with a good name attached and oftentimes pay less than you would at the bridal salon. Yay!


At some point in the not-too-distant past, Bluefly opened the Wedding 2.0 section of its web site. While I hate the whole ‘2.0’ thing, I like the way you navigate it. First, you indicate whether you’re attending the wedding or in the wedding party, then you either choose what sort of wedding it is or your role in the wedding party. Finally, Wedding 2.0 presents you with a number of options. It’s not perfect, natch. I pretended to be a size 12 bridesmaid looking for a yellow dress and got two results. Slimming down didn’t help, either. And if you’re larger than a size 14, you’re out of luck all over the map, apparently.

All the same, it makes it a teeny bit easier to shop on Bluefly for wedding-wear. Not enough to get excited about, but that’s not going to stop me from featuring some lovely wedding-ready dresses and gowns later this week. Of course, I’d also love to hear about your favorite online shops that carry wedding appropriate gear for guests and members of the wedding party. Have at it in the comments!

Gather Ye Skirts While Ye May

It’s no secret that I love gathered ruched skirts on wedding gowns. Twistie, on the other hand, longs to grab the nearest iron! But my love does come with a few caveats… the gathers have to look sort of natural, rather like one has been enjoying an impromtu picnic in one’s wedding gown on the morning of the ceremony. And the skirt itself must be full enough to facilitate that aesthetic.

There is another sort of gathered ruched skirt (usually found on the bridesmaid) that I’ve come to hate, if only because it does not fulfill my requirements for a messy-but-not-too-messy full skirt. Take a gander at these bridesmaids’ dresses from Raylia Designs:


Now is it just me, or do these skirts look like someone put a tube sock on a ferret and let it roll around for a while*? You know what I mean — the ferret does a little breakdance and the sock gets all skootched up around its midsection. It’s not very attractive on the ferret or on the bridesmaid!

*Dear PETA: Don’t hurt me. I swear the ferret was having fun.

What Cost a Wedding Gown?

No matter what the economic situation, one thing is for certain: people will still get married, and most of them still want at least some of the trimmings. Chief among these trimmings for many brides is the wedding gown.

It’s no mystery why this should be. The wedding gown is an iconic piece of clothing filled with emotional meaning.

The fact also remains that it’s one extremely expensive piece of clothing.


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