Archive for August, 2007

The Dressmaker: A review

Friday, August 31st, 2007

I picked up The Dressmaker by Elizabeth Birkelund Oberbeck hoping for lighthearted story with a happy ending, but ended up drowning in a cautionary tale of the true cost of creative genius. Or something like that anyway. I will not tease you into reading this novel by saying that it had a happy ending because when it comes down to it, there is very little happiness to be had in the whole of the book. The characters that populate its pages are living dream lives they cannot appreciate. Deep in their hearts they know they want something else, but they are at a loss to understand just what that something else is.

The Dressmaker

Middle-aged tailor Claude Reynaud is a man wholly unable to derive any pleasure from his successes. Women who move in the most influential circles flock to his Reynaud for the privilege of serving as his living canvases at upper crust soirées, weddings, and other grand events. (more…)

Wyoming, PA’s Card Lady

Thursday, August 30th, 2007


Designing and printing your own nuptial paper goods is only really fun when you are artistically inclined. Sure, there are invitation kits and stationary sets and special paper made just for programs, but it takes a creative hand to make what basically amounts to a glorified greeting card truly shine. Me, I prefer to leave such things to the pros… Pros like Kristy Rice of Momental, who created all of the stationary for her own wedding. Impressed, friends and family asked for the same service. Then — and here happy non-artistic brides everywhere rejoiced — Kristy started offering her beautifully designed, hand-detailed paper goods to the world.

Now, I don’t know Kristy, but as far as I can tell, she’s friendly (have a look at her blog), accommodating (she takes requests), and fun (just look at her dog). Wouldn’t it be nice to know that your invitations were crafted by someone who really loves what they do? Someone who cares enough about the quality of your invitations to sit for hours applying paint by hand? Someone who can actually paint?

There is a lot to see on the Momental web site, so go check it out. It looks like Kristy is going to be offering custom paintings soon, and I hope she doesn’t wait too long. Something like that could be just what we need to make the new house a home!

This just proves that not everyone in a suit is a guest

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007


In the Wedding Crashers, Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn are motivated by the promise of a little action (not to mention free food and booze). It seems real life wedding crashers are motivated by money. While stomping along on the treadmill at the gym this morning, I happened to catch a news segment about Anthony and Jennifer Smith, newlyweds who, after saying their vows, discovered that many of the envelopes on their gift table had mysteriously disappeared.

The dastardly man in the surveillance shot above pretended to leave a little something for the couple in question before scooping numerous envelopes into his jacket and departing hastily from the premises.

“You never think it’s going to happen, you know, to you,” Anthony Smith said Tuesday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” “You’re celebrating, having a good time, and then you go on your honeymoon and you find out some guy just decides he needs to take everything.”

As it turns out, this isn’t the first time that brides and grooms at the Garden Grove, California chapel where the Smiths wed have been robbed. I think The Beard put it best when he said, “You have to be pretty darn low to do something like that.”

Herbs, wheat, and the evolution of the flower girl

Tuesday, August 28th, 2007

From the e-mail archives comes a question about flower girls from my lovely friend S. Consider this post a shout out to raincoaster and Glinda, editors of our blogging family’s new addition, Teeny Manolo!

I was thinking about Manolo for the Brides the other day when I was with my sister and my daughter looking for flower girl dresses. Katie is in my sister’s wedding and we are all slogging through dress hell. Mine is ordered and thankfully NOT orange. In fact, it’s wine and, if hemmed, could actually be worn for other occasions, which is good as it cost almost $200.

Katie was kind of freaked about the dresses, which were all puffy and dainty. She was getting worried she might end up looking like a cupcake. At eight years old, she seemed almost too old for the dresses we found, until she picked this totally sophisticated coffee colored dress. It seems so odd to me that flower girls are made to look like wee brides (ew) or cupcakes. Though I had a flower girl at my own wedding, I did not delve too deeply into just what the heck this traditions means. Can you offer some clarification?


So, flower girls. Gosh, aren’t they just so cute when they are creeping down the aisle? When they aren’t absolutely petrified of walking alone through a sea of extremely tall staring strangers, that is. The Beard and I made sure that our flower girl — his niece — was walking toward someone she knew and had a reserved seat so she could sit down after releasing her load of dried rose petals. She wore this embroidered taffeta dress:

Now where did I put that spare $8K…

Monday, August 27th, 2007

If you’ve created your nuptial budget, and you happen to have something around the order to $7,500 earmarked for your wedding day duds, have a gander at this gown by Soucy for Lara Hélène Bridal Atelier. Me, I had a gander and thoroughly enjoyed it, all the while keeping in mind that my dress budget was substantially smaller than the number above. Substantially substantially.


Is that not a gorgeous dress? Even if your budget is as limited as mine was, do have a look at all the gowns featured on the Lara Hélène Bridal Atelier web site because they are — for the most part — utterly divine. This particular dress is crafted from taupe-embroidered tulle in a beautiful scrolled design on a silk satin, and its sweep train adds a little softness to an overall structured look.

And speaking about $8,000 dresses and $15,000 canapés and all the rest of it, check out Ramit Sethi’s post, “The $28,000 question: Why are we all hypocrites about weddings?” (via) After reading it, I’m thanking my lucky stars that The Beard and I didn’t have to go into debt to have the wedding we wanted.

Is it cold in here, or is it just you?

Friday, August 24th, 2007

At some point in history, nipples ceased to exist. All right, we all still have nipples, but it’s apparently de rigueur nowadays to use all sorts of devices to feign niplessness. Wearing something slinky and sleek on your wedding day? Better hope it’s warm where you’re headed. If not, brace yourself for comments about leaving the headlights on and Tic Tacs. Or buy yourself some Nippies


Nippies for brides are lacy, sparkly, or satiny fabric appliqués that stick right to your nips so you can wear barely there fashions without letting people know that you are secretly in possession of (gasp) nipples. Safe medical adhesives ensure six to eight hours of sticktoitiveness, whether you’re walking down the aisle or getting your freak on on the dance floor.

It beats having to bust out the band aids, I guess.

The Penny? Really?

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

Did *you* know that JCPenny carries a selection of wedding dresses and frocks for bridesmaids? Because I sure didn’t.


The choices aren’t utterly spectacular, but the dresses are priced from $70 to $150, and you really can’t beat that if you’re on a budget.