Archive for November, 2008

Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness: The Retro Edition

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

You all know how this works. I pick a picture and post it here. You send in your best captions via the comments section. Next week I pick a winner and we all laud said winner with songs of the great Tribble hunt…er…well, maybe not Tribble hunting songs, but a couple woos and hoos to celebrate, anyway.

Are you seated comfortably? Then we’ll begin. Take a gander at this and hit me with your best shots:


Weddings Exposed

Saturday, November 29th, 2008

We sometimes speak (okay, write) here at Manolo for the Brides about wedding professionals. We discuss what to look for, how to know this is or isn’t the professional for you, and how to negotiate getting what you really want. We almost never cover the question from the other side. What is it like to work weddings professionally? How do vendors help steer the clueless and those with unrealistic expectations toward a plan that makes better sense? What do they do when their best efforts in that regard don’t work? And what makes doing what they do worth all the hassle?

It is the tension between expectation and reality that keeps the work interesting. It is also what occasionally – when I come home very late from a particularly horrible event – makes me want to bury my head under my pillow and wake up in a world where weddings no longer exist. But by the next weekend I’m out there again. The truth is I like what I do. And maybe twenty years from now my clients will look at the photographs I took and remember how they felt, not just what things looked like. They might even know by then that the feelings were what mattered. Or maybe they will see where it all went wrong later was foreshadowed in those moments caught on film, when no one was trying to keep up appearances. I’m not a glamor photographer. I’m not a fashion photographer. I’m a storyteller, and the story I tell is the one I see.

Thus ends the introduction of Claire Lewis’ book Exposed: Confessions of a Wedding photographer.

Lewis is – in case you couldn’t tell from that snippet or the title of her book – a professional wedding photographer. She also happens to live and work in my neck of the woods, the San Francisco Bay Area. We’ve never met. I doubt that I’ve been to a wedding she shot. On the other hand, by the end of the book I wanted to invite her over for scones and wedding gossip.


A Wedding Gown All Over the Map

Friday, November 28th, 2008

Photographer Tatiana Morozova snapped this photo of a gown with some serious identity issues.


Putting aside for the moment the fact that only brides born without nipples can reasonably wear this wedding dress, what is up with the belt? And that skirt… I could take it if the ruffles went all the way around or the entirety of it was lace. Overall, the combo of the belt, the ruffles, the lace, and yes, the see-through top leave me wondering just where I ought to look.

The Cornucopia of Harvest Wedding Inspiration

Thursday, November 27th, 2008



(via Martha and Country Home)

14 Sentences On Goodwill Wedding Dresses

Wednesday, November 26th, 2008

second hand wedding gown

A woman I know loosely through another web site — one Diana Heideman — recently contributed a poem to that web site, and I was so enamored with it that I asked her if I could post it here in its entirety. She said yes, and I thought that the day before Thanksgiving would be the perfect time to take a break from all the wedding invitations and ceremony accessories and bridal bouquets.

Here is her poem, entitled “14 Sentences On Goodwill Wedding Dresses”:

Strapless, vanity size 0, from David’s Bridal, never worn with original tags.
She never lost the 50 pounds she swore she would, and bought the proper size the week before the wedding, and looked beautiful.

Eggshell sheath with sash, tags removed, altered, never worn.
Two months before the wedding, after the final fitting, her pregnancy test came back positive, and while she still fit in the dress, he did not want to be a father, and one morning he was gone.

Princess dress, beaded, some beads missing, carefully mended tears, light soiling on the hem.
Years after their mother’s wedding, three sisters each in turn played bride, or princess, dancing around in mama’s dress, but all three girls are grown now.

Vintage dress with intricate beading, carefully hand sewn from a pattern, worn once, musty but clean.
Her children and their children were too busy fighting over jewelry and furniture to notice her real treasures, and got rid of anything they couldn’t put a price on.

Tasteful silk tea-length dress, clearly worn, some wrinkles and snags in the fabric.
The dress was stuffed in the back of her closet after six years, two children, and one misplaced phone call that revealed his cheating, since she couldn’t bear the reminder of better times.

White satin dress with train, worn once, pristine condition.
The wedding and the marriage have been perfect, but she feels it criminal to put the dress away where it will never be worn again, so she offers someone else a sliver of the joy she has.

Traditional off-the-shelf classic gown, worn once, cared for well.
Always pragmatic and less than sentimental, after her only child–a son–was in college and she hit menopause, she saw no reason to keep a dress her family would never use again.

It’s rather bittersweet, no? But the overwhelming theme that runs throughout — that memories can and should be passed on, for better or for worse — is fascinating. Not many brides opt for second hand wedding dresses, but those who do are inadvertently sharing a rich history with someone they will likely never meet.

I gave my wedding gown to my paternal grandmother’s church so she or someone else from that institution could make sure it was passed on to a bride-to-be who both needed it and would enjoy it. I’ll probably never find out what happened to my dress, but I hope it went to someone whose marriage has been as happy as my own.

(photo via)

Nipple No Shows

Tuesday, November 25th, 2008

Nipples. We all have them (I think). Those who have the smaller, less functional sort are typically very interested in seeing the equipment of those who have the potentially nourishing kind. The latest nipple-related contact I’ve received in my inbox — does that sound bad? — is from, where brides-to-be can buy everything from disposable nipple covers to silicon nipple covers to “bra disks.”


Putting aside for the moment the fact that it looks like the headlights in the bottom row are covered in wadded up chewing gum and the fact that most of the nipple covers seem to come in a convenient flesh tone that is only convenient for a certain brand of caucasians, I have to ask: How big of a problem is this?

Is it a problem that warrants an entire web site selling multiple sizes and brands and types of nipple coverage to brides and non-brides alike? Is it a problem that warrants PR firms reaching out to wedding bloggers like me to let me know that there are new and improved forms of gumdrop shields out there on the market?

As for me, I think Nippies are the cuter option, but I’d probably just use band-aids.

A Manly Arrangement

Monday, November 24th, 2008

(To those wondering where this post went…well, I have no idea. It was on the blog when I left the house, and when I got home, it was gone. It’s back now and hopefully here to stay!)

Flowers for grooms have typically been limited to boutonni√®res, but with gay marriage once again hitting the news, I’m actually hoping for a surge in nicely arranged wedding flowers designed specifically for men. I’m not suggesting, of course, that all gay grooms will opt to carry a bouquet, but I’ve seen enough videos of happy flower-friendly men tossing their bouquets to know that some do. Nor am I suggesting that straight grooms can’t carry wedding bouquets if they want to — the standard ‘to each their own’ disclaimer always applies at Manolo for the Brides.

Bouquets for men…what would they look like…


I’m envisioning plenty of greenery and maybe even some grains, like these bouquets from Petals With Love. Darker colors, with more bronzes and deep purples come to mind, though there’s no reason why a groom marrying a groom couldn’t carry pink or yellow wedding flowers if he wanted to. Finally, I imagine the groom’s bouquet would be rather smallish, or at least not as big as some of the larger bridal bouquets.

How do you envision the groom’s bouquet?