A Style Blogger's Classically Preppy Coastal North Carolina Wedding

Jul 31, 2012

Have you ever discovered a blog you just had to devour back to the very first post like a really good book you just couldn't put down? That's exactly what happened when I found Summer's adorable blog, Life is REEDiculous. This Southern belle has got mad style - from her traditional yet eclectic interior design to her insanely-inspiring wardrobe. She shops/wears the greatest mix of high/low from DVF and Louboutins to TJMaxx and Goodwill - love it! Oh, and did I mention she's hilarious? Because she is. :) Summer also inspired me to dig out my old paintbrushes and try my hand at watercolors again. Yes, this multi-talented lady is also a pretty amazing artist. Anyhooooo, mid-way through my REEDiculous reading-coma, I came across Summer's picture-perfect wedding and immediately clicked on her 'about' page to find her e-mail and ask her if I could share her fabulous wedding on CB. She ever so kindly obliged so yay for us! I just know you'll be enamored with her timeless aesthetic like I was! Enjoy:

From the fab + gorgeous bride, Summer:
"I always knew I wanted to get married outdoors, that I wanted a classic navy and white wedding, and I hoped it would be intimate and personal. I believe we accomplished just that on October 4, 2008, in Edenton, NC, both mine and my groom’s hometown. We wanted to incorporate our love of the water, we wanted it to be relaxed yet elegant, and we wanted our friends and family to have fun.

Every time I thought of my wedding in my head even before we were ever engaged, the same image repeated itself over and over. I wanted to bring that image to life. As I look back on these photos, I realize my dream came true in every way. In my head, I didn’t see any number of tables, or shades of linens, or the types of chairs…I just saw Mike and I smiling together {impeccably dressed of course} and as husband and wife!


The ceremony was held in the backyard of my parents’ gorgeous waterfront home. My dad handcrafted our aisle and the altar out of old pilings and rope. Having the beautiful Albemarle Sound as our backdrop, not much extra décor was needed. It was the perfect day. 

Summer looking gorgeous with her hubby, Tuna, as she affectionately calls him on her blog. :)

One of the most exciting parts for us and our bridal party was arriving to the reception venue, the town marina, in a 41’ Albemarle sportfishing boat. This boat also happened to be the very boat on which Mike proposed. It was certainly a site to see everyone standing on the waters edge awaiting our arrival. I do enjoy a grand entrance!

I know this sounds strange, but one of my favorite parts of my wedding day was forgetting all the details. I’m no planner, so there were quite a few details I forgot. Oops! But it all rolled off my back because once you are there in the moment, none of it matters. As the band played into the night, I loved just watching everyone on the dance floor. I loved watching my parents, and seeing them so happy to celebrate my big day. I loved dancing with my husband to our favorite songs, and just taking it all in.

So my biggest advice is to know what is really important to you and your groom. For me, I wanted perfect dresses {yes, that includes both mine and my bridesmaids…finding their dress was much harder than mine!} I knew what I wanted and it was just staying patient until I found it. And I did. For my groom, he was most concerned with a good band. Once those objectives were completed, nothing else really mattered that much. I wasn’t working with a huge budget, and I just wasn’t going to get weighed down by all the extra things I couldn’t afford. So have some perspective, and also listen to each other rather than everyone else."

Thanks so much to Summer for sharing her beautiful day with us! Aside from all the gorgeous details, I'm really loving the grand entrance via boat! How fun!

Fun mini facts: Summer and I were married only three weeks apart and had 
near-identical hydrangea bouquets! ;) Just saying - we're basically kindred spirits. :)

Photographer: Julie Mixon Photography // http://www.juliemixon.com
Dress: Vineyard Collection
Bridesmaid dresses: JCrew

Parisian Inspiration Shoot: High Bun Styling Tutorials

Jul 27, 2012

October is only like 8 weeks away which means our Parisian Shoot will be here in no time, too. :O :D
I mentioned wanting to try a top knot for the 1960s-inspired portion of the shoot so I figured I better start practicing if I want to pull that off - Enter YouTube-tutorial-marathon-night! After watching what felt like every single bun tutorial known to man, I will share with you my favorite three for achieving a highly-sleek and polished high bun - which would be puuuuuurfect for say ... a rehearsal dinner or brunch?

So after watching so many of these tutorials and trying all the techniques, I can definitely say I prefer the sock bun technique of placing the hair neatly around the sock and pinning it in place. This whole rolling-the-sock down thing does not work for me. It's so messy! {Does it work for you? Please weigh in on this crazy controversy!} I think it's kind of funny how strongly some YouTubers feel about the "left-over" hair but I love how this cute chick neatly pins the left-over strands or does a braid with them around the bun! Totally polished and totally adorbs!

Doesn't she look like a brunette LC in that still to the left?! 

This last video is via an awesome post on Tartan & Sequins all about perfect party hair + makeup. The music in the video makes me giggle ... alot. It brings bad cop dramas from the 1980s to mind and I kinda keep expecting a Vice City-ish dude to run by, mid-chase and out of breath, in the background. Perhaps they should consider adding that in:

But the bun is pretty fabulous and certainly nothing to laugh at. More like marvel. Here's hoping mine looks that good in October! I'm off to practice some more. ;)

What are your thoughts on the high bun? Is it classic? Overdone? A waning trend? 
Personally? I think it's tres Parisian!

ps. I'll be sharing the most ridiculously amazing "cocktail hour" bridal shower on Monday. Venue? A coastal Connecticut home. Theme: MERMAID. I know. Sorry for being cruel and making you wait the whole weekend to enjoy but trust me, it will be worth the painful wait! :) See you bright and early Monday morning!

Q+A w/London Milliner Jane Taylor

Jul 25, 2012

I recently had the chance for a little Q+A with London Milliner Jane Taylor. Even though Jane was/is super busy dressing members of the Royal Family {!!!} for unspeakably fab summer events, she took a little time out of her day to chit chat! Enjoy the chat {and a peek at some of her amaze looks} below:

What sparked an interest for you in millinery? While [pursuing] my Embroidery degree, I worked with surface texture and embellishment but also loved sculpture, so millinery was the obvious pairing of these two passions of mine.

What is your favorite look on a bride? It really depends on the bride and their personality as to what will work best on them. I really love a 50s cocktail hat with a shorter dress and a soft feather headband or crystal piece for a classic look. 

Can you tell us about your most exciting client or job? I love working closely with each client to create the perfect piece for them and the occasion. It is very exciting working with the royal family, such an honour. Creating hats for beautiful couture dresses is so fun.

As an American living in Germany, it seems like formal hats are much more of a European fashion - do you think the strong appeal will ever cross over to America? I have had quite a few hats ordered from the US so maybe the trend will start [to cross over] very soon. Smaller cocktail hats for a mother of the bride/mother of the groom [are] very special. 

What do you think? Would you rock the British hat look for your wedding? Or more of the headband look? You can view Jane's full collection here.

This is not a sponsored post. 

Designer Crush: Erin Fetherston {again}

Jul 24, 2012

Ever since the dawn of this tulip skirt, I happily hopped on the Erin Fetherston fan-wagon and when I received an e-mail telling me about the special Wedding Shop tab on the newly relaunched Erin Fetherston site, I was like a kid in a candy shop. Above are some of my favorite looks - I think they'd be crazy chic for an engagement party or rehearsal dinner. You can check out the full collection in Erin's Wedding Shop. :)

This is not a sponsored post.

Mikasa 8-Place Settings Giveaway! {Sponsored Post}

Jul 23, 2012

Today I'm thrilled to team up with Mikasa and offer ONE lucky CB reader 8 gorgeous place settings! I know, pretty incredible! The winner will be able to choose from the following three patterns {shown below}: GownLove Story, or French Countryside, available at all fine retailers:

I grew up with these beauties so they'll always have a sweet spot with me!
Above: Gown
Seriously loving the elegant simplicity of this pattern!
Above: Love Story
Pretty sweet for those newlyweds!

Beautiful, right?! Ready to enter the giveaway?! Here are all the details:

What's being given away:
{One} CB reader will win 8-place settings {a 40-piece set} from Mikasa. The winner will be able to choose between the three patterns shown above - French Countryside, Gown or Love Story.

How to enter:
Simply leave a comment telling us which pattern you would choose if you win! Please make sure to include a valid e-mail address so we have a way of contacting you in case you win. Comments not including an e-mail address will sadly not be counted.

How to achieve an extra entry:
- Like Mikasa on Facebook -or-
- Follow Classic Bride with Google Friend Connect {just scroll to the very bottom of this page} -or-
- Share this giveaway on your blog/site
... Just make sure to mention what you did in your comment so you will receive the extra entry/entries. :)

Deadline to enter:
August 12, 2012, at midnight Central European Time.
A randomly selected winner will be announced on August 13! Bonne chance!

This post is sponsored by Mikasa.

CB's Parisian Shoot: The Visual Roadmap // Locales + Ideas

Jul 20, 2012

As I've shared before, I am planning a two-part photo shoot in Paris. {!!!} Today, I am incredibly thrilled to announce that we have chosen a photographer and a date for the shoot! J&I will be working with the seriously talented photographer, Juliane Berry, {whose amazing work I shared here} in early October! Saying I'm excited for this would be the understatement of the year. I am so taken with the way Juliane frames her subjects and captures Paris - everything about her style just feels classic to the core and I truly think we will be a perfect fit! :)

Juliane and I will be working together to create a timeline for the shoot and I thought a great way to get started would be to create a visual roadmap for the day:

Credits, clockwise from top left: Elizabeth Messina; Camera via Ink on my Fingers; Absinthe bottle;
Anemone bouquet found on Google images; Cafe Du Marche.


We've talked about starting the day around 8a and beginning with the 1960s-inspired portion of the shoot {outfits, props & accessories were shared here}. J&I are still researching hotels but we stayed at Hotel Belfast about two years ago and its location was insanely superb, a stone's throw from the Arc de Triumph. It also had the cutest rooms and most exquisite lobby furnished with gorgeous Parisian antiques. If we do end up staying here, it would be amazing if we could snag a few photos in the lobby {with the vintage suitcase I shared in the props post and maybe a stack of books similar to the shot in the inspiration board}. We are also considering staying in the Latin Quarter, about a block away from Notre Dame but I'm starting to lean more towards Hotel Belfast. There were some lovely side streets near the Belfast, as well, which could serve as great backdrops ... and, of course, the Arc de Triumph, which is prominently visible from the entrance. It's also very near the lovely Champs-Élysées, so I was thinking it could be fun sneak a few shots in by the Laduree along the famed avenue:

Since the pâtisserie probably won't be open in the early morning when we'll be there, maybe J&I could visit the day before and pick up a box of macarons to enjoy during the shoot. ;) I'd love to then make our way toward the Eifel Tower for a few shots and maybe grab a few shots along the way similar to those below. I think they have the perfect feel for the 1960s portion of the shoot:

After making our way back to hotel to change outfits, I was thinking about starting out near the Louvre for some images like these:

I also just adore the look and feel of these photos for this modern portion of the shoot:

I'd also love, love, love to bring along a lock to add to the love-lock bridge {Pont des Arts} - We're planning on bringing along this awesome vintage lock. :) If you're unfamiliar with this tradition, you can catch up here. ;)

While we're near the Seine, I'd love to walk along the water for some images like these:

If time permits, I'd love to hit up an old-school photobooth, kind of Amelie-style ... maybe in one of the metro stations?

... and then grab a cafe au lait at a cute little bistro. Love the idea of coffee with a rolled-up copy of Le Monde along with our photobooth strip ...

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4 + 5: En Route Photography; 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 + 11: Juliane Berry; 12, 13, 14, 15 + 16: Jose Villa via SMP; 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 + 23: Juliane Berry; 24, 25 + 26: Marianne Taylor; 27: Juliane Berry; 28: One and Only Paris Photography; 29: Juliane Berry.

So my one question for my Parisian-expert-readers out there:
Do you know of any cool old-school photobooths in Paris???? I know there are usually some in the metro stations but I'd really like a black and white old-school strip rather than the passport-style square version in most of the stations. Let me in if you know of a place! ;)

NEXT UP // I'll be sharing our outfits for the modern portion of the shoot. I'm still editing things but I really love the idea of getting dressy:
For me: A dark cocktail dress paired with dark heels + sheer black tights .... with either a black dress coat or my black vintage cape, gloves + vintage fur scarf.
For J: A Brooks Brothers white button-up with a dark blazer + dark scarf with dark jeans.