Attire

Bridesmaid Robes As Pretty As Your Girls Are

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I had the most delightful package arrive this week – our friends at Plum Pretty Sugar sent a sample of their beautiful new robes!

They have all sorts of gorgeous options that would be great gifts for your bridesmaids. Most popular are the knee-length kimono style robes, and there are lots of great prints to chose from.

But don’t stop there! They also have tank/lounge pant/robe sets, cover ups, and all sorts of other loveliness in their shop.

Stop by their Flickr page for a glimpse at real live brides and bridesmaids showing off their Plum Pretty Sugar attire.

2013 Wedding Trend: The Great Gatsby

I remember reading The Great Gatsby for the first time in high school. I was in love. The imagery is still so vivid in my mind, and I re-read the novel at least once a year. So it’s safe to say that the day the new movie staring Leonardo DiCaprio, Toby Maguire, and Carey Mulligan opens on May 10th, I’ll be there. But I’m also loving the 20’s inspiration we are seeing in fashion, decor, and yes, weddings.

It’s easy to take a theme too far in a wedding, and the wedding ends up looking like a costume party. But there are ways to incorporate touches of a theme without making it too “theme-y.” Here are some examples:

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A classic lace dress, embellished with a vintage (or vintage-inspired) belt, flower or other accessory.

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And speaking of accessories, how about some beautiful chandelier earrings? And these feature Emerald, the 2013 Pantone Color of the Year.

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Touches of gold, silver, crystal, diamonds and pearls – playing up the decadence of the era.

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This cake could be very modern, but the gold accents play up the Jazz Age feel.

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These gorgeous linens, lit underneath the table, add texture that is reminiscent of 20’s fashions. And the dangling crystals… need I say more?

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This ceremony area is definitely a statement! Without the chandeliers, this could take on a number of styles. But the gold and crystals really add opulence.

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Adding feathers and rhinestones to your bouquets is another nod to the Jazz Age influence, but these additions look beautiful in many styles of bouquets.

For more inspirational photos, and for the sources of the photos featured in this post, check out our Great Gatsby/Jazz Age/Roaring 20s Inspiration board on Pinterest. And if you haven’t read the book, get thee to a library or pick up a copy for your Kindle on Amazon!

Custom-Tailored Shirts and Ties For Your Groom and Groomsmen

The rented tux is pretty standard for weddings. On occasion, it might be a suit instead. But men’s attire doesn’t vary that much from wedding to wedding. Have you considered having the dress shirts custom-tailored to go with the rental?

For the grooms, this is a great way to have a special memento of the wedding day. And did you know that a special fabric can be sewn to the under-side of the cuffs, so that we you’re out there dancing and rolling up your sleeves, you have a stylish surprise! Or check out the groom in the photo – he and his groomsmen all wore these great Gator shirts under their Air Force uniforms.

As a special touch, have his monogram embroidered on the cuff.

If you can’t afford to buy custom shirts for all the groomsmen, think about having ties custom-made. Not only is that a great way to get the exact color or print you are looking for, but it’s a great groomsman gift.

Whether buying shirts for all the groomsmen or just the groom, you’ll need accurate measurements. There are also a variety of fits and collar types, and your tailor should be able to help you make selections based on body type. There are also fabric choices – not only in color but also thread count. Similar to buying sheets, higher thread counts tend to be softer.

A top-notch tailor will help you through all these decisions. If you are in Jacksonville, we recommend that you visit The Tailor Shop for expert guidance.

Pearls For Your Wedding – Or Everyday

Even though Florida isn’t always considered “The South,” I have always felt like a Southern girl. And as such, I know that a strand of pearls goes with everything, from a business suit to a pretty sundress to jeans and a sweater at a football game. Pearls are timeless, classic, and versatile.

There are three key pieces that should be in every girl’s jewelry box:

  • A classic single strand necklace (16″ to 18″ flatters most women.)
  • Pearl stud earrings (7mm is a good size for everyday use.)
  • A strand of colored pearls  (my faves are pink! Other popular options include gold, black, and gray.)

Then add in some little extras:

  • A super-long strand that can be knotted, layered, or even wrapped into a bracelet (Coco Chanel loved  the 60″ rope of pearls, and was quoted as saying “Every woman should have ropes  and ropes  of pearls!”)
  • A pretty pearl pendant, hung from a sterling silver chain
  • A multi-strand bracelet embellished with some sparkly jewels

On your wedding day, you may want something simple that can become a family heirloom, or you may want something extravagant. We were recently introduced to Pearl & Clasp, a jewelry company located in New York’s Diamond District that specializes in – you guessed it – pearls and clasps. Here are some pretty options beyond the basic strand of pearls, although they do those too!

Another service they offer is pearl restringing. Imagine taking a family heirloom necklace that is a bit dated, and having it restrung into a new piece for your wedding! Or, they could add a beautiful new clasp to your necklace to make it unique.

As a special bonus for our readers, Pearl & Clasp has offered a special discount of 20% off any item on their website (use promo code Heather20). They also offer free restringing with the purchase of a clasp, and shipping for orders over $175 is free as well.

What kind of pearls will you wear on your wedding day?

Why Are Diamonds So Expensive?

The other day I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Stuff You Should Know, when a topic caught my attention. Diamonds. I love these sparkly beauties as much as the next person – in fact, since my birthday is in April, the diamond is my birthstone. Lucky girl!

The podcast talked about lots of cool stuff about diamonds, beyond the 4C’s and two-month-salary hype we hear about constantly in the wedding industry. If you’re in the market to buy a diamond, or just want to know more about the rock sitting on your left hand, check out this episode/article!

Prior to the 1930’s, diamonds were rarely given as engagement rings. The N.W. Ayer advertising agency created the De Beers “A Diamond is Forever” ad campaign in 1947, and transformed the diamond market into the giant it is today.

According to the article, “The only reason why we pay so much more for diamonds today than for other precious gems is because the diamond market is controlled almost entirely by a single diamond cartel, called De Beers Consolidated Mines, Ltd., which is based in South Africa.”

So guys, you can thank De Beers for creating the expensive rings that your girlfriends drool over!

Be sure to check out the article on HowStuffWorks.com for more cool information, including stories of the supposedly-cursed Hope diamond, shown here. (photo from SmithsonianScience.com)