And the winner is ... / Happy Thanksgiving!

Nov 26, 2008

Thanks to all who entered the Hilton giveaway - you all had such sweet stories and it was so hard knowing there would only be one winner!

But without further ado, congratulations to MeliCove - I hope you, your groom and your guests enjoy this special treat! Please e-mail me to claim your prize!

And to everyone, I hope you enjoy a wonderful Thanksgiving - I'm taking off to Orlando and St. Pete tomorrow with my honey to visit his parents so posting will be a bit sparse the next few days.

Last chance ...

Nov 24, 2008

... to win a complimentary room block from Hilton for your wedding! Leave a comment here to enter and make sure to do so before midnight (CST) on Tuesday! Good luck!

Reader tip

I had a sweet surprise awaiting me today in my e-mail inbox from Molly, of The Girl's Girl: I found a lovely slideshow on the Easy Living site that I was going to post, but the more I thought about it, the more it reminded me of your aesthetic ... The set (gorgeous older home) & styling reminded me of Classic Bride, so I thought I'd forward it to you.

Molly, thank you so much for the pointer to these oh-so-classically styled photos -- which, btw, I definitely think could set the tone for an emerging bridal trend ...

A pre-rehearsal dinner shoot could easily pass for a modern and casual take on bridal portraits (minus the gown and veil). And these stunning examples offer such a fresh take on the often stale portraits that are typically taken months before the actual event. Imagine the intensified energy and excitement you'd have the day before!

If your photographers are around for the whole weekend, documenting the rehearsal dinner &/or Sunday get-together, why not take advantage of their presence and churn out an extra shoot or two? Slip into your swanky attire and arrive at your rehearsal dinner venue a little early ... and yes, it would help if you were having dinner at a fabulous old home like the one shown -- which, I'd like to emphasize, is not a stretch of the imagination. Just think about it before you make your reservations. Choose a place that not only tantalizes your tastebuds but is also dripping with ambience and charm. There is almost always a beautiful-old-home-turned-restaurant in Everytown, USA, so just look around. I know lots of brides are super busy the day before the wedding but if it's possible to sneak in a few photos, I think it would be a wonderful reminder of all the excitement.

View the entire slideshow for extra inspiration.

Record the day

Nov 23, 2008

I found out about these cool little collages while reading one of my favorite blogger's oh-so-glamorous guest posts on Design*Sponge.
Lobster and Swan is the genius behind the hand-made inspiration boards, posting the little lovelies daily over at Record The Day. I love the date stamp detail, the torn edges, the staples and the hand-written notes scattered throughout. They're like the grown-up, sophisticated versions of the collages I used to make in middle school from old Bazaars and Ws. Please tell me I'm not the only one!
While they're mostly a reflection on lifestyle (a very glam and interesting lifestyle!) rather than wedding-specific, inspiration abounds for events of all sorts. I scrolled through and found a few of my favorites that lend themselves well to brides - whether in color palette, fashion, theme or idea, I hope these inspire you as much as they did me!

!!!!! p.s. Don't forget to enter Hilton's amazing contest for a complimentary room block! Only 2 days left! Get your entries in now!

Wonderful weekend

Nov 21, 2008

{found here}

Shot in picturesque Martha's Vineyard - I'm in love with the picket fence, the sun flare, the shadows, the flag, the hedges - okay, everything!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

p.s. Does anyone have a fab recipe for some pumpkin-y cupcakes with cream-cheese frosting??? I need to make a dessert next week + need a little help! ;o) THANKS!

p.s.s. Also wanted to let you all know about a Thanksgiving sale I just heard about over at MagnetStreet Weddings - 15% discount on EVERYTHING for the week of November 24th – 30th, 2008. Just order online and enter promotional code WBLG15 at checkout. Offer is valid through Sunday, November 30, 2008. Enjoy!

Drumroll, please ...

And the winner for the Julianne Smith garter giveaway is:

CraigandSarah, who said, We don't have a huge bridal party, so we're opening the floor for speeches - anyone who wants to speak, can! (up to 2 mins:)Also, since we're not having a DJ, we're getting friends to suggest dance tracks including their "first dance" songs from their own weddings.

CraigandSarah, please e-mail me to claim your prize! Congratulations! And thanks to Julianne for hosting this giveaway!

For the well-heeled bride

Nov 20, 2008

It's been for-ev-er since I've talked about shoes and I'm not sure why as I'm a complete shoe hound - ask my husband {ahh, it feels weird + wonderful to say that}! I was inspired by this 2007 Kate Spade advertisement {above} today - wouldn't it be fun to {carefully} perch atop a black-lacquered baby grand in all your wedding splendor for a shoe shot??? I love the idea that the photo-op would conjure up the phrase, 'tickling the ivory keys.' Yet it would be your well-heeled feet rather than your perfectly-manicured fingers.

Which got me thinking ... what type of shoe would be complimentary to this shot? I went to our old standby in the hopes of finding a few scrummy options. My finds:

Jane crackle-metallic ballet flats, $150: Love how the shimmer and crackle would play against the high-gloss shine of the baby grand.

Gabrielle crystal starburst peep-toe heels + ballet flats, $328 and $298, respectively: So fitting for a black-tie winter wedding. The twinkly crystals that make up the intricate snowflake would be the perfect companions to a set of worn, wavy and opalescent mother-of-pearl keys.

Babette jeweled-feather peep-toe flats, $315: Imagine the sound + sight of these crashing down upon the keys. I love the imagined drama - the fluttering feathers and the echoes in the stillness. And I think I'd love any bride who would choose these sassy divas as her wedding shoes.

p.s. Don't forget about your chance to win a Julianne Smith garter! Today is the last day - you have until midnight (CST) to enter!

Hilton room block giveaway!

Nov 19, 2008

This is such a wonderful (and BIG!) giveaway and I am so excited to share it with you today!

The Hilton Family is offering a complimentary room block (meaning rooms for not only the bride and groom but their guests as well!) to one lucky Classic Bride reader! If you are planning a spring or fall 2009 wedding, please read the details below and leave a comment telling us why you, your honey and your guests are the best candidates to receive this fabulous prize. You have until next Tuesday at midnight (CST) to enter! The winner will be announced on Wednesday. Good luck!

Here are the details:

A room block consists of five to 25 reserved rooms a bride can block off for her wedding guests. Normally, guests use their own credit card to pay for their specific room. However, one lucky bride and her guests will receive a complimentary room block, courtesy of Hilton e-Events.

To qualify the bride must:

  • Book her guest room through e-Events online planning tool.
  • Book her guest rooms in a Hilton market at a participating Hilton family property
  • Hilton will compensate the bride for a guest room block up to and including $3,000 in value (average price of a room block).

What is Hilton Family e-Events?

Hilton Family e-Events is an online group booking tool that allows customers to book between 5 – 25 guest rooms for their events along with meeting space, food and beverage and audio visual equipment. Hilton Family e-Events is the fastest and easiest way to plan and book small meetings and events.

It offers:

  • 24/7 online access, no negotiation, no RFP, no waiting, immediate confirmation
  • Online contract
  • Access to over 2,500 Hilton Family hotels (variety of brands, price points and amenities)

How does Hilton Family e-Events help brides?

With resources available online at your fingertips — including accessing wedding checklists, reserving hotel event space and guest rooms, managing your own out-of-town hotel guest list and yes, designing your own personalized Web page for guest reservations all on one site — you can take control of your own planning, creatively and instantaneously.

---Please note---
This offer is only valid for brides who are planning a spring or fall 2009 wedding and is only applicable in domestic locations (US and Hawaii). In order to qualify for the promotion, brides must book their guest room blocks through e-Events, which may be used at participating hotels including Hilton, Conrad, Doubletree, Embassy Suites Hotels, Hampton Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hilton Grand Vacations, and Homewood Suites by Hilton.

Quick note ...

to Amanda, the winner of the betsywhite love logo, who said ... My favorite is Love Logo #1. I'm from New Orleans and we're getting married in New Orleans. That logo reminds me of all the wrought iron gates around the city ... love it!:

Please make sure to e-mail me before Friday to claim your prize or I will be naming a new winner for the contest! Thanks!

p.s. Make sure to stop back later today for another BIG giveaway announcement!!!

Unfussy morning wedding

If you're a regular reader, you know there isn't a wedding venue I hold more dear than a well-kept home. And this is a prime example of the kind of house I'm talking about.

Pristinely manicured and abounding with charm, I'd love to see a simple Saturday morning ceremony in the {imaginary} back veranda followed with signature Mimosas while guests mingle and the happy couple take a few relaxed portraits with family and friends. Lunch could later be served using antique silver serving pieces and porcelain white dishes that were conveniently at hand in the family kitchen.

Color palette:
Go with the flow. The house and hedges naturally recommend a crisp white and green.

Decor Detail:
The front door could be outfitted with swags of greenery and a simple moss wreath:

And this is exactly how I imagine the blissfully married couple:

Relaxed, casual, and uber-romantic. (+ a fun take on the getaway transportation!)

{Photos: 1 + 2: Martha Stewart; 3: This is Glamorous}

Bon Voyage!

Nov 18, 2008

A creative homage to the pony express, Kate Spade introduced this envelope clutch (+ this cute tote), claiming they were inspired by classic French and American stationery.

{from Kate Spade site}

{Thank You found here}

While I have a soft spot for anything indicative of travel, the whole par avion-stationary trend is just too much fun! I was in Michaels about a month ago and I remember seeing some airmail-inspired stickers + embellishments in the Martha Stewart section and I started thinking they'd be a perfect addition to a Save-The-Date for a destination wedding. And the theme lends itself well to a Thank You design, as shown above.

I also think it would be a super sweet idea to send your guests a postcard or note in the same style while on your honeymoon (so long as you had an extremely intimate guest list!).

Julianne Smith garter giveaway

Nov 17, 2008

Julianne Smith has a lovely line of garters - just check out her site to see! While I didn't wear a garter for my own wedding, I definitely would have considered it if I had seen these fun and flirty styles. I love that Julianne's garters remain reflective of tradition yet her style is so modern and fun.

For your chance to win one of Julianne's garters, just leave a comment below answering this question:
Are you planning on taking any other bridal traditions and putting your own spin on them for your wedding?

Make sure to get your entry in before Thursday at midnight (CST). The lucky winner will be announced on Friday! Good luck!

J.Crew + a little me!

{Spread found here via J.Crew}

Loving this dress J.Crew recently debuted (not to mention the super-refined styling shown above, especially the non-matchy bridesmaids!). Also intrigued with this style (and this one)!

If you're hungry for another snippet from my wedding, check out Kathryn's sweet board today! I'm the girl in the mirror (2nd row, 3rd from the left). Was such a fun surprise to come across as I was catching up on my favorite reads today! :o)

p.s. Recognize the mirror?

Sweet simplicity

Nov 16, 2008

{Image found here}

The simple touches are always the best.
What are your favorite simple {wedding} touches?


{found here via this flickr stream}

Can you imagine slipping into this little number on your big day?
One lucky lady did just that back on September 12, 1953 ... (and we all know and love her as Jackie O.)

So gorge.

A modern classic

Nov 15, 2008

{click to enlarge}

In the midst of doing research for my book (!!!) , I couldn't help getting lost in all the captivating images of the most stunning couple. I will forever be mesmerized by their combined beauty and commanding style.

Forever beautiful.

... And I couldn't not share this irresistable comparison between Carolyn and Jackie:

{click to enlarge - all images found here}

Dress up

Nov 13, 2008

{1: Oscar de la Renta 2: Romona Keveza both found here}

If I were planning another wedding and was in the dress-shopping phase, I would definitely try on both of these. Pretty and not overdone.

The Oscar dress could be perfect for city hall vows or a simple garden party. And I can easily imagine the Romona gliding down the aisle of a historic cathedral followed by a reception hosted at an abandoned opera house.

p.s. has added a new feature, a Dressing Room where brides can save their favorite gowns, as well as share them with friends and family.

New blog finds

Nov 11, 2008

With a scratchy throat and sniffly nose, I decided to cozy up under the covers tonight and half-heartedly scour the Web for some new blog obsessions. I didn't have to look very long to come across a few new loves. First up: audrey & martha. How could I not immediately like a blog that pays homage to two of my favorite icons?! Wasn't let down:

{Go here for outfit/shopping details}

I'd wear this combo on any given weekday but it would also be a sweet and understated outfit for a casual rehearsal dinner.

Next up: Martha Moments, where I found a mention of these:

{images from Martha Moments via MS Living}

While intended as a holiday treat, the packaging is so clever and cute, it's obvious they could easily double as fun favors, for a festive party or a holiday wedding.

Daydream: Darling venue

{Mark Staff Photography}

The much-missed Faye & Greer posted long ago about the adorable Inn at Palmetto Bluff in South Carolina and from the moment I laid eyes on photos of this sweet setting, I was in love. I came across the venue again today and thought I'd share its sweetness (once again).

The last photo was taken during a holiday wedding (if you squint, you might be able to make out the garland along the second-story porch). I love the idea of a cheerful Christmas wedding. Anyone planning/planned such an event?

Drumroll, please ...

Congratulations to ...

Rag & Bone accordion book winner, NaomiT, who said ...
"i'd like to give it to my mom on the morning of my wedding...i'd make it a mini scrapbook of photos of us together as i grew up with a letter to her at the end. it might make her cry, but i think she would love it!"

& betsywhite love logo winner, Amanda, who said ...
"My favorite is Love Logo #1. I'm from New Orleans and we're getting married in New Orleans. That logo reminds me of all the wrought iron gates around the city ... love it!"

NaomiT and Amanda, please e-mail me to claim your respective prizes! Congrats again! And thank you to everyone who entered!

And for all Classic Bride readers, from now
until November 30th, enter coupon code CLASSIC25
to receive 25% off any betsywhite wedding logo!

Don't forget ...

Nov 10, 2008

... to enter for your chance to win a custom betsywhite logo or an accordion book from Rag & Bone Bindery! You have until midnight (CST) tonight. The winners will be announced tomorrow!

And be on the lookout for a few more exciting giveaways!

A winning element

Nov 9, 2008

{board via Snippet & Ink}

When I saw this board that Kathryn made awhile ago, I was immediately enthralled with the clever idea of a baseball-themed wedding. What I found most alluring was the sparkle of the perfectly polished trophies that could double most fantastically as table centerpieces.

As of late, I've come across a design element that instantly reminded me of this lovely idea. These gorgeous trophy lamps:

{Lamp on left from Vintage Scout Interiors; Lamp on right from Arteriors}

I immediately fell in love and hope to eventually call one my own. They are such commanding and confident pieces. Yum.

I think I'd prefer to custom-make mine ... either with one of J's old trophies or perhaps one I come across on a flea market/antiquing trip. Anyone else loving the trophy lamp trend?

At-home wedding

{Charmer found here}

I can't even imagine how wondrous a fall wedding would be on the grounds of this beauty. If you've had a wedding at home, e-mail me the details! I'd love to share a completely home-made affair. Can't think of anything better.

Milk glass centerpieces for sale, Part Two

Nov 8, 2008

{Image by Look Photography}

As promised, here are a few more milk glass vases from our wedding that I've decided to sell:

If you're interested, please send me an e-mail for pricing and shipping information. First come, first serve.


Decision 2008, my style

Nov 7, 2008

{image found here}

My dear readers,

I started this blog over a year ago with the hopes of fine-tuning my personal wedding style. When I first began blogging, I couldn't tell you the difference between peonies and dahlias. (No, seriously.) And if you had mentioned chiavari, I probably would have thought you were speaking French.

A lot has changed since then. And I owe you, my readers, a much overdue and heartfelt thank you! I turned to you with so many of my wedding-induced dilemmas and questions and you never failed in giving me great advice, encouragement and inspiration. I so sincerely appreciate your support. Thank you. :o)

I turn to you once again, with another question that I hope you'll answer with your consistent enthusiasm and interest. Now that my wedding has come and gone, I feel like I'm overflowing with a wealth of wedding-planning knowledge that I've accumulated over the past year. Obviously, this doesn't make me a leading authority on weddings and certainly doesn't mean I can be a fabulous wedding planner just because I enjoyed planning my own. But I do feel like I could help other brides by sharing what I've learned.

So I've been thinking about writing a book ... a sort of guide to finding your own classic wedding style. A guide that steers you away from fleeting trends and instead brings you back to basics that will help to create a refined and tailored event, all without breaking the bank. Brimming with tricks of the trade, tips, suggestions and insider perspectives.

I haven't looked into the logistics very thoroughly yet and wouldn't know the first step in getting published but I thought before I picked up the pen and started outlining, I'd see what you thought.

Would you be interested in reading such a guide or would I be wasting my time? Please be honest! As always, I strongly value your input.


p.s. This in no way indicates the end of blogging for me ... Just a possible new avenue.

A Thanksgiving wedding

Nov 6, 2008

{MS image}

As we're getting ready for the holidays and making our plans for Thanksgiving, I started thinking how appropriate the upcoming holiday is for a wedding. What better time to bring your close family and friends together than a day officially designated for giving thanks? You could even incorporate some traditional holiday spirit by following the formal toasts by having everyone say something for which they're thankful.

Here's what I'm envisioning ...

The Written:
Luckily, the bride's parents own a charming colonial-style farmhouse (in Massachusetts, of course!) with an old rustic barn out back for some after-party mingling and dancing. Cranberry and gold color palette. Mulled cider. Pumpkins galore. One long table for guests to dine (No separate table for children, I hate that!). Lots of cranberry wreaths. Groom ceremonially carves the turkey. Caramel apple favors and apple bobbing for the children in the barn. Pumpkin spice cake with buttercream frosting. And ... most importantly, absolutely no cornucopias in sight. ;o)

The Visual:

& the details:
Row 1: Joseph Webb house; Pottery Barn dining room; cranberry wreath; Row 2: MS pumpkin dip; Caramel pumpkin pie; turkey; Row 3: Bouquet; cones; and spiced cider all by Michelle Rago

For some reason, I don't think I've *ever* known or heard of an actual Thanksgiving wedding. Have you had one? Are you planning one? Know of someone who has?

Milk glass centerpieces for sale

Nov 5, 2008

{Image by Look Photography}

Here's a little peek at how our long dining table was decorated at the wedding. I stayed true to my white-on-white vision and we went with white linens, white folding chairs and white milkglass containers holding white hydrangeas with a few magnolia leaves.

I had so much fun collecting all of the milkglass pieces ... going antiquing with my Mom and friends was my absolute favorite part of wedding planning and I've acquired some pieces with which I'll never part. They're a wonderful reminder of our special day and the fun times I had with family and friends.

That said, I simply don't have room for all of the little lovelies so I'm planning on parting with a few by selling them. I thought I'd give my readers first dibs:

I can't recommend these vases and compotes enough. I loved them at my wedding and I'd love to see them go on to be featured in someone else's special day. If you're interested in any of the pieces, just send me an e-mail for pricing and shipping information!

Due to the overwhelming amount of interest I received about the milk glass, I've decided to sell a few more pieces! Stay tuned for details!


We bought loads of vintage-themed bottles of Coca-Cola, root beer, apple juice, Dr. Pepper and lots of other cute bottled drinks like Oranginas, Pellegrinos and Perriers for our Sunday brunch ... luckily, for us, we had lots left over and have been busy enjoying them.

But now, we're left with lined-up rows of the empty bottles and it's too hard to just part with them. I've thought about keeping just a few for occasional bud vases but I thought I'd ask my readers if they had any better ideas? Floor is yours. :o)

Rag & Bone Bindery giveaway

I'm so excited to share another great giveaway with you today! Jason Thompson, of Rag & Bone Bindery is graciously offering an accordion book to one lucky Classic Bride reader!

Just leave a comment below telling us how you would plan on using the accordion book. Feel free to get as creative as you like! You have until Monday, November 10th at midnight CST to enter. The winner will be announced on Tuesday. Good luck!

Kelly, could you re-think your career?

Nov 4, 2008

I've long been a fan of Kelly Wearstler's clean, polished and impeccable design style. And the first time I saw photos of a wedding hosted at the Viceroy Palm Springs, I was speechless.

Am I the only one that wishes Kelly would cross over and become an event planner ... who focuses solely on weddings?

{all photos from the Viceroy Santa Monica}