Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Silk Taffeta Trial

Well, hive. After getting my 'lil heart set on J. Crew's barely peach fall color, I ordered in a couple of their silk taffeta styles to try them on. My favorites were the Lorelei and the strapless Sangle, so I just picked whichever colors weren't back-ordered and went for it. If I loved these dresses, I realized I'd be even more confused than I was before I posted about my three final bridesmaid dress options. If I hated them, well, then at least I could nix number one.

Here were the results.

The Sangle dress was adorable from the front. This champagne color would actually make a good, short wedding dress option. The pockets made it really comfortable and the detail on the neckline was cute too.

Can we say mushroom butt? I mean, the high waist makes it look like your arse starts really high and bulges out. Hmmm....

I feel like I'm wearing a modern version of a big, 19th century French dress with the bum that sticks up and out really high.

Then onto the Lorelei. Again, cute from the front. Although, it doesn't have a layer of netting under the silk taffeta like the Sangle so it lies a little flatter (less mushroom butt!). But, I'm not really a fan of how shiny the silk taffeta photographs.

If you have your hands in your pockets, you get this little bubble above your bum where the pleats are.

See? Even my dog Rio thinks my butt looks weird!

I guess that means silk taffeta is nixed. Which, is already the case if I decide to go with the different dress option since the fabric is so different from my other options. Thanks for listening to my J. Crew woes.

Were you disappointed about the fit of a bridesmaid dress you liked on the internet?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Oh, how quickly it flies by. I can't believe one year ago, on April 28th, 2008, we were lallygagging around Capri, Italy, soaking up life and (duhn, Duhn, DUHN) getting engaged. In honor of that fine date, I felt like I should share something with you.

Ms. D'orsay inspired me to try to take pro pics of my engagement ring. That said, Ms. D'orsay also taught me that I am nowhere as talented as her at taking photos, nor as talented as some of the readers who have tried this!

Here goes (Note: I only have two. As I said, I wasn't as talented and most of them came out blurry...):

Have you tried taking close-ups of your ring? Any tips?

We're Kindred Spirits!

Yes, Mr. Cowboy Boot and I are kindred spirits, but I was actually referring to J. Crew. It seems they've embraced my color scheme in their summer collection. Or...maybe I subconsciously started seeing these colors around, gravitating towards them, and selecting them. You're right, J. Crew's summer colors were probably just a coincidence. Either way (hehe), head to their home page and you'll see elements of peach, dusty rose, gold, cream, and pinks.

It got me thinking...Maybe I should look beyond their traditional bridesmaids dresses and take it down a notch? Would a gander through their more casual, seasonal collection hurt?

Score! I found numerous dresses in coordinating colors. Albeit, a few of them were too casual, but at least four could work well together. I'm seeing this as a collaboration of numero uno, numero dos, and numero tres! It's not too stringent and also allows me to not let go of the reins completely. The girls could pick from these dresses and, if they found one similar elsewhere, they could run it by me. Or, if they were still stuck on Sarah Seven, they could order a custom dress through her in a coordinating color.

Pique V-Neck Ruffle Dress ($78), cotton pique, in Tea Rose

My only worries with this one: 1) Is it too casual? I'd need to see it in person although it looks like it could get dressed up. 2) The Tea Rose looks so bright on the bridesmaid dresses. Is it the fabric or the internet that's making it more palletable here?

Embossed Cotton Printed Lorelei Dress ($170), textured cotton, in Papaya

This is my favorite of the bunch. I liked the printed Whitney when I tried it. This just happens to be more in my color scheme.

Silk Chiffon Twist Tank Dress ($170), silk chiffon, in Light Shell

This is one of their bridesmaid dresses, yes, but I think it's a nice, lighter color for girls who don't want something so salmon-y and bright. Plus, there are three styles to choose from.

Metallic Linen Strapless Dress ($148), metallic linen, in Rhubarb

Linen, like the pique cotton, might be too casual. This is another must-see-in-person dress. Looks like I'll be making a trip to J. Crew tomorrow which means there's something in store for you too! Pictures of these dresses in person. Sort of.

Hopefully, this idea pans out. It's getting a little overwhelming not finding something I'm psyched about. I would be psyched, however, to have the girls find a dress they really like. Oh, and I would've included the silk taffeta dresses here (the new papaya is cute and the barely peach would be perfect) but those dresses didn't quite fit right (more on that to come) and the fabric felt like the odd one out in this line-up.

Did you let your girls choose but put certain criteria on their choices? What were those criterion?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

All Made Up

I've been looking at a lot of make-up inspiration lately. I have a trial with Katelyn Simkins in Denver in about a month to see if I want to hire her for the big day and I want to come armed with photos. 

Project Wedding's make-up gallery has been a great source, not only to sift through, but to clip pictures to when I come across looks I like via Googling "red-carpet looks" and "celebrity make-up." While in the grocery store last week, I was completely mesmerized by Vogue's May 2009 cover. The girls were glowing from the page thanks to their dewy, warm, almost natural make-up. Take a look for yourself. 

This is the closest I've seen to what I'm aiming for (sans Photoshop, of course). I also love that there are so many variations on the looks for different skin/hair/eye colors. Now, if only they could have included a redhead...

Where did you find your make-up inspiration? Please share. I'd love so more resources!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Oh, The Places We'd of Gone

Dreaming. Romanticizing. Those are two things I am darn skilled at. Put me in charge of whipping up a swoon-worthy wedding with no budget attached and I'd be off and running in no time. But, with family on two sides of the country to consider and a bank account that's nowhere near out of this world, we had to be a wee bit more realistic.

That said, a girl can dream, can't she? Somewhere in between searching for venues back east and booking Devil's Thumb Ranch in Colorado, a few venues popped up that could be appropriately filed under "gasp," "sigh," "swoon," and, well, "unrealistic."

Let's rewind and run through my short-list of dream venues, shall we?

1. Mankas Inverness Lodge one hour north of San Francisco. It's a fishing and hunting lodge from 1910 tucked between Tomales Bay and Tomales State Park near Point Reyes. Surrounded by woods and nature, this arts-and-crafts rustic style camp (with nine rooms and two cabins) is intimate (read: probably 50 guests max), but so special. I mean check out this gorgeous wedding there. All pictures below by Mel Barlow.


2. Sea Ranch Lodge on the Sonoma-Mendocino coast in Northern California. Rolling grass and redwood bluffs surround this 1970s eco-community. Honestly, it was the barn over the ocean that had me from the start. All photos below by Ann Hamilton.

3. The final place I seriously yearned for (and actually considered with a guest list of about 20) was Hanalei, Kauai. The way the giant, lush cliffs hug the bay, the perfect surf that rolls in, the turquoise water and the gentle, warm breeze.

Out of anywhere in the world, this is where I'd have my ceremony. Too bad, weddings are not allowed on the pier.

We'd rent a beach house overlooking the ocean with a big lawn like the Faye Estate. A bunch of us would stay there. Our guests would rent houses walking distance. And we'd have an outdoor reception on the lawn.

Oh, wouldn't it be nice?

Where did you dream of getting married that was outside of reality?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Flower Girl or Flower Child?

We are planning on having lots of little ones scurrying around the wedding. Not only do two of our friends have buns in the oven, but Mr. Cowboy Boot has two young nieces and I have one young cousin. When I say "young," I'm talking around four. Beyond that, there are others with wee little ones all the way up to twelve year olds. We love kids and couldn't imagine our wedding without them. I mean, if we considered dogs, how could we nix kids?

Ms. Cowboy Boot Cousin

These three lovely, little ladies (CB's nieces and my cousin) will make up our flower-girl trio. And they couldn't be more excited. My four-year-old cousin, for instance, came along to a dress trial in Los Angeles one day. Somehow, she managed to slip into a dressing room with one of those dresses where the rose petals hang loose in the fabric and high heels that were twelve sizes to large for her. She didn't want to take any of it off.

No matter her love for $100 flower-girl dresses, I've been very adamant about finding dresses that won't break the bank. Nothing over $50. And, I'm not worried about formal. There's nothing sweeter than a little girl in a simple white cotton dress with bare feet running in the grass. Okay, they'll probably be wearing shoes, but you get the idea.

While I don't have pics of Mr. CB's lovely nieces, I can only introduce you to my little cousin. We'll call her the beautiful Cowboy Boot Cuz. Here she is, doing her best flower-girl impression in a couple of dresses she already owns.

While I adore the dresses she already owns, I came across this eyelet number on AngelWear will make them custom for the girls...for only $28 each! I really want a fun, vintage-y eyelet and she's agreed to make them out of whatever fabric I find.


I love their hippie, love child feel. And, with a flower in their hair, they couldn't look more adorable.

Where did you find your flower girl dresses?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Daily Candy: Wedding Edition

That's right, folks. My beautiful bridesmaid AC just sent me a link to Daily Candy's Wedding Edition. It doesn't look like you can get daily inspiration sent to your inbox like normal Daily Candy, but their site has some great tools and out-of-the-box inspiration. Mainly, they're covering: Attire, Food & Drink, Decor, Entertainment, Planning, and a few Real Weddings.

Within each of those categories, though, they have sub-categories: everything from funky, non-traditional bridal gowns to sexy lingerie, menus and cake alternatives, favor ideas and reception spaces, a planning checklist and off-the-beaten-path places to register, and first dance songs and playlists that don't include "Wind Beneath My Wings."

Here are my faves of their selections:

Sculptural Tablescape by Holly Flora in Los Angeles

Vintage Charm by Cherries in San Francisco

Bess and Ollie Cake Toppers by Ann Wood Handmade

What are your favorite online tools for practicality or for pure inspiration?