Saturday, March 31, 2007

Bridal Underpinnings

Bridal underpinnings (or undies for the rest of us) are so important in how a bride looks in her wedding dress. Do your research well, and don't wait until the last minute to find the right undergarments to make your dress fit and look the best! From are some great suggestions: (Bravissimo is not an American company however the advice is universal)

  • Be well supported when you walk down the aisle! If you’re planning on tying the knot, we’ve got some really important advice for you – don’t leave your bridal lingerie to the last minute! What you wear underneath your dress plays a vital role in making you look and feel fabulous on your big day. The last thing you’ll want to have to worry about is whether or not everything will stay in place! So, plan ahead and make sure your bridal lingerie is as supportable and dependable as your husband-to-be!

  • Try before you buy The most important thing is to make sure that you try your lingerie under your wedding dress from the start, so that you don’t have a last minute panic looking for something suitable. Think about what’s best for you and your dress Strapless solutions If you like the idea of a strapless dress, make sure that you find a strapless bra or basque before you commit yourself as, unfortunately, these styles have more limited size ranges than conventional styles (unless you are prepared to go bra-less of course!).

  • Basques are great for creating a smooth line under dresses and, because they are boned, you can wear them without the straps and still feel really secure. Put it this way – if you wear a basque – it should only be you, and not your boobs, bouncing down the aisle!

  • Just bear in mind that while lacy bras and knickers are a must for the honeymoon, they might not work so well if you have a very fitted dress. In this situation, it’s probably best to opt for something smoother.

  • Seam-free styles Seam-free styles may not look as pretty, but they will stay invisible under your dress, and guarantee that neither you, nor your guests, will be aware of your underwear.

  • Plan ahead Different bras not only give you a different shape, but can also position your boobs quite differently. For this reason, and because most wedding dresses are very fitted around the bust, it’s ideal if you can decide on your bra before you even start to have your dress designed. This way, your designer can actually design and fit your dress so that it works perfectly with your bra and you won’t have any last minute panics trying to find the right style.

We made a few phone calls and discovered that most retailers have no problem with a bride purchasing undies to try on with their wedding gown at one of their fittings. You can then return the styles that don't work.

There are a million choices out there, one right for you and your gown! Good Luck!!!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Dance This Way???

Quite a few of our brides told us that under no circumstances absolutely not, uh uh would they be doing the "Thriller Dance" with their wedding party. Personally, I think that is sort of mean to Danielle who is rather desperate to see this performed at one of our weddings----- but okay! Now the dance above? That seems very doable! :)

Start your wedding choreography! We'll be waiting!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Engagement Sessions

Oh Daddio!!!!!! We had such a blast with Matt and Kate during their engagement session! They came to us from our very favorite Wedding Coordinator--- Christy at All Dressed In White, what a treat on both counts! Kate has this amazing mane of gorgeous red hair, and Matt is quietly handsome in that James Dean way. We can't wait to photograph their wedding! Spring was out in force in the park, it was almost hot actually--- and Matt and Kate were dressed to the nines in outfits that totally captured their personality, they looked SO great!
Of course, that brings to mind the often heard question, "What do we wear for our engagement session?" The best answer, and one that Matt and Kate followed to the letter is BE YOURSELF! Although Kate did purchase a fabulous new dress, and socks and shoes to complete her look, that is not essential. Your engagement photos will look best if the two of you follow a few rules:
  • Coordinate Dress. No need to match exactly, but color coordination and style coordination is great! For example, Matt and Kate dressed in the Daddio/Rockabilly theme. It expresses them. They coordinated in style and in color.
  • No holes or rips, please! Sometimes (and yes, it is usually the guys) we have an issue with shorts or pants that are ripped--- and I don't mean in that planned or chic way! Leave the super casual rips and tears at home in the closet!
  • Black and khaki or jeans are always in style but don't be afraid to coordinate color. Lets say for example the bride to be wears robin's egg blue and the groom to be wears navy. See what I mean? You don't need to match exactly, but you should 'go together'.
  • wear your hair and makeup as you normally do for a nice evening out. (and that is just for the groom, ha!)
  • Be relaxed, and look like YOU----- don't be afraid to wear jeans if that is your style.
  • Tattoos? We are asked often whether it is best to cover them or let them show. Again, this is your personal style. If you have them............ you may want to let them show, it usually doesn't look great to try and cover them up.
  • Normally, we discourage shorts. They are just 'too casual' and won't make for the best photographs.
  • The very best thing you can wear is a great attitude and a genuine smile. Your inner glow will come through and shine in your engagement photos!

The idea is to have a great time and have photographs that capture you in your before wedding glory! Enjoy!

Monday, March 26, 2007


Spring has indeed SPRUNG! If the daffodils, crocus and about to pop tulips are any indication, spring has arrived in St. Louis and it is gorgeous! The engagement sessions have been beautiful with Mother Nature as such a glorious background.

However, I'm exhausted----- just exhausted! Raising children may indeed take a village, but I'm here to tell you, sprucing a lawn takes a universe of help........... that is, if you are lucky enough to find it! From raking the remnants of leaves, to giving a coat of white paint to tired wicker furniture, welcoming spring is a ton of work! Regardless, pansies are planted, pots are filled with the 'foundation' plantings, and it will soon be time to take the herbs off the windowsill and tuck them into the herb garden. And all of that done with only one medium sized child helping for a short period of time in order to buy Yu-Gi-Oh cards!

Happy Monday!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Grand Opening Fun

What is not to love about a Grand Opening? Lots of happy people, enthusiastic entrepreneurial spirit abounding, and a product at the center of it all. If you are a blog reader, you know that LUSH is one of the things we love! While Lush has been open at the Galleria in St. Louis for awhile, today is the big grand opening! The details from Lush follow:

LUSH Grand Opening Party! Saturday, March 24, 2007 , 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Swing by LUSH’s first store in St. Louis for an all-day Grand Opening Celebration!
Join the party!Free FacialsProduct DemosGreat PrizesTasty Treats& Much More…
All guests will get a very special Grand Opening LUSH Bath Bomb* It might have a $100 Gift Card hidden inside! Just pop it into your next bath to see if you’re a winner.
Receive a Grand Opening LUSH Goodie Bag* with purchase.
*Limited quantities of Grand Opening Bath Bombs and Goodie Bags. Available only while supplies last, so come early!
Store Info: St. Louis Galleria 1155 St. Louis Galleria, St. Louis, MO 314.725.6333

Tell them we sent you when you stop by, and have a great time! Don't say no to a facial, their fresh facial products will make a (sighing) believer out of you! If you tell them that you are getting ready to glow on your wedding day they can create a special selection of great skincare, planning stress can melt away with the use of a bath bomb or other bath product. Ahhhhhh!

Maybe I'll see you there! :)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Shoes for the Wedding Day

The Best Shoes For Brides And Bridesmaids
It has been said that planning a wedding is a series of endless details that cause both frustration and elation. To be sure, there is one detail your feet don't want you to overlook -- your shoes. Though some say it is more important to think function over fashion when picking your wedding shoes, we recommend you find a happy middle ground. With the myriad of wedding shoe options, that should be easier to execute than your rehearsal dinner seating chart.For The BrideThe first thing to think about is comfort. Remember that you will be standing on your feet most of the affair. The last thing you want to have to deal with is pain that limits your mobility and enjoyment.Some experts recommend that all brides have two pairs of shoes -- one formal pair for the ceremony, receiving line, pictures, and arrival at the reception, then another comfortable and more casual pair for the rest of the night. Ballet slipper-type shoes are a popular reception choice for a reception night that will be heavy on dancing and your feet.Be sure to pick a shoe that complements your dress and your own style. After all, you'll be seeing them in pictures and maybe even video for the rest of your life.Consider the fabric of your dress. Some say to match silk and satin gowns to satin shoes. Sandals, slippers, pumps, and strap heels are all appropriate footwear on your big day.Very important -- take your shoes to your fitting so the hem is accurate. Trying the shoe with your actual dress is the only real way to be sure you'll love them. Elaborate dresses do not require elaborate shoes, while more simple dresses are greatly enhanced by ornate shoes.For The AttendantsMany questions arise when considering shoe options for the attendants. Should their shoes be the same style or just the same color? Should there be different heel heights to even out the bridesmaids? Can each woman pick the type and color of shoe that most suits her taste and style?All of these questions are for the bride to decide. Take into account where members of your bridal party live. If you can all get together and order shoes on one fun trip, do it. This is more difficult to execute if the attendants are from various corners of the globe. Enough said.Bridal Shoe OptionsOn our site, you can view a wide variety of shoes. You will need to decide the following information.
Designer -- Choose from a wide variety; mostly based on your budget.
Price Range -- We segment it into three groups: less than $50, $50 to $100, and more than $100. If you are having a beach ceremony, barefoot is free.
Fabric -- Options include crepe, lace, leather, metallic, ribbed, satin, silk, and velvet. Fabric shoes usually provide a more delicate appearance than leather.
Colors -- The most popular colors, according to our informal survey of local bridal shops, are white, neutral, yellow, violet, purple, gray, and black. Remember that white and off-white colors can vary dramatically and be difficult to match. Satin and silk shoes are available in many colors. Don't forget that shoes can also be dyed to match just the right color, and even embellished to get just the right surface texture.
Heel Size -- Ranges from 1/4" to 3 1/2". Brides should wear a heel that meets all comfort requirements while maximizing or minimizing their height to complement the groom.
Heel Type -- Include Louis, low, Sabrina, stacked, stiletto, and wedge. Again, consider comfort, as well as the style that you are accustomed to walking on.
Toe Type -- Choose from open, pointed, rounded, sandal, and square. For The Groom And GroomsmenWe all know there aren't as many options available for men. According to tux shops polled, over eighty percent of customers chose the basic black lace-up. The challenge is to steer clear of the paper thin, super slippery shoes that some rental stores will push off on you.If possible, try on the shoes you are renting. Be sure to check out their options and select a comfortable pair so you don't show up two days before the wedding to pick everything up only to find ballet slipper-like tux shoes that don't fit.Some men will opt to wear their own formal black shoes to avoid the usual $10 rental fee. Just don't show up with a ratty, unpolished pair.If the wedding party attire strays from the traditional black tux, footwear options increase. A summer wedding with khaki pants and a blazer is a perfect opportunity for white bucks. A 1920s-themed flapper affair allows for a pair of new spats on your feet.Break Them InDancers have a motto, "You break your shoes in, never let your shoe break your feet in." Both the bride and groom should stretch their shoes to insure that a nasty blister doesn't pop up 10 minutes into the ceremony. That should prevent you having to suffer through dancing at the reception, and then using the honeymoon tub for feet soaking rather than… other activities. If you are taking dance lessons, don't be afraid to wear your wedding day shoes. Scuffmarks or other damage can easily be fixed prior to the wedding.You will certainly appreciate all of these details when you review the proof sheet from your photographer. Happy shoe hunting!


Notes from BBP: We add that shoes make the bride happy, and as the old adage goes, if the bride ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! :) We suggest that you break in your shoes first, don't wait until the day before your wedding. Further, two pairs of shoes are an excellent idea if you are getting married in those uber fashionable strappy sandals or ultra high heels. Any heel at all can actually be uncomfortable by the time you get to your reception, you will be very tired and have been on your feet quite a bit. As far as shoes showing dirt of scuffs, we bring along a few things in our bag of tricks in case your shoes aren't picture perfect. The fashionistas are wearing flat ballet slippers this season for all modes of dress so the selection for brides will be really excellent this year---- yay! Much better than having to use 'real' ballet slippers and foof them up somehow. Or you could be like our bride Tovah, who's shoes are pictured above! Tovah wore these fun, customized shoes all day long. She had a spark of fun and personality and was comfy throughout her special day. For those of you who want to wear bridal tennies a la "Father Of The Bride", please check out this site------ their wedding tennis shoes are worth a look see!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

We're very excited to have recently joined, a "consortium of the top wedding professionals"! ( If you haven't visited their site, please do! They feature a select number of extraordinary vendors not only here in St. Louis but around the country and have some excellent information. Below is the interview conducted for Wedding-Club, their "Coffee Talk" interview.

1. How did you get started in photography?

It isn't much of a stretch to say that I have always had a camera in my hand. My first camera was an old Polaroid-- the kind that you opened accordion style. There are family pictures of me holding this camera to my face. Like many other photographers I was never in family photos as I was the one documenting these milestones. Actually, come to think of it, that remains true today! I've come a long way from that first Polaroid but have always had the passion to create "Images from the Heart..."

2. What inspired you to get into the field of wedding photography?

I love being able to capture a memory and tell a story with images, and wedding photography was a natural evolution in my now 26 year career. My diverse client base started referring me from the beginning of my career and that hasn't changed. I photographed my first wedding when I was 16 years old and recently photographed their daughters wedding! It is an extraordinary privilege and honor to be capturing images for another generation.

3. What kind of photographic style are you known for?

Emotional Candids. People often comment that there is so much ‘emotion and life’ in my photographs. One of the first questions we get from brides is if we shoot in photojournalistic style. I think the term 'photojournalistic' is overused in our profession. Being chosen to capture one of the most important days in anyone’s life should include storytelling images (candid) as they unfold, along with the proper mix of traditional family photos. The entire wedding experience is full of many emotions. I feel that it is our job to capture all aspects and emotions without falling into a category. It’s not uncommon for me to joke with my couples and tell them that if someone slips and takes a fall, I’m going to shoot that photo! Last year we had a string of weddings where the wedding party was dropping like flies at the altar. You can imagine how these images worked in designing wedding albums that told the story with passion and humor. By the way--- no one was hurt in the photographing of these events!

4. Do you photograph in black-and-white, color, or both? Out of the two, which one is your favorite?

We shoot in both. While black and white is one of my true loves, there are certain times of the year and locations where color is extraordinary and should predominate in wedding photos. Theoretically, a wedding really is a black and white event. Most brides wear white and grooms wear black. The only hint of color comes from flowers or bridesmaids dresses, etc. There is definitely a place for both black and white and color in almost every wedding. When it complements a wedding, we also use sepia and hand coloring.

5. What advice do you offer to couples searching for a wedding photographer?

PERSONALITY! Find a photographer that you get along with, and can enjoy spending the balance of your wedding day with. Take a look at a photographer’s portfolio/website and when you find one whose work moves you, MEET THEM. If you can’t spent ten minutes in a room with that individual, your images will definitely be affected. We always say that when you look at images on a website, on that cold computer screen, that those images that jump out and stir your heart---- that reaction should be ‘that’s my photographer’. When you look at the photographs from someone else’s wedding and they move you, then you should be extremely happy in knowing that this particular photographer will do an exceptional job capturing your wedding day. My other advice would be not to let money be a decisive fact in ruling out a photographer. When you meet with photographers, carefully weigh personality, style, and experience along with cost. Many of us who have been around for a long time can offer you a wealth of knowledge and often money saving tips as we work with the best vendors. Keep an open dialog as you discuss your wedding photography.

6. In your opinion, while planning their wedding, what can the couple do to help maximize the value of the photographer at the wedding?

Time Management! Be specific with your vision! A professional photographer should be able to actively listen to your ideas about your wedding day and help formulate a plan for photography that captures your day with respect to value. For example, all day coverage sounds absolutely great--- but, do you really need 3 hours of hair salon photos and photography until the last person leaves your reception? Honest discussion with your photographer will help you determine the appropriate amount of time needed for your wedding photography. Those of us who do this every weekend can offer you many ways to make your day less stressful.

7. Do you photograph weddings outside of St. Louis?

Yes! We are extremely lucky that many of our wonderful local brides have bridesmaids and even groomsmen from around the country. We have been blessed to photograph many of their weddings outside St. Louis. We especially love our winter weddings in Florida! Who wouldn’t love to trade in the cold weather for sunny warmth and barefoot photos on the beach?

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Michelle and Kevin

Snowflakes in Spring! We had a great day at the park yesterday shooting engagement sessions! One of our favorite shots is featured today, Michelle and Kevin. They were playful and giddy--- perhaps because Kevin had just returned from out of town. During the day those giant fat snowflakes fell, drifting down lazily into the daffodils, it was a day of wonderful contrasts!

Tower Grove Park in particular is getting ready to burst into bloom. The daffodils are already popping everywhere and a few of the star magnolias can be seen. The redbuds and yellow trees are going to pop any day---------- I can't wait, it is going to be an outstanding display of spring color!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy St. Pat's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day! This holiday is one of the most lighthearted to me, it is about fun and parades, welcoming the spring season and corned beef and cabbage of course. St. Pat's Day is never the same temperature-wise, say as the 4th of July or Christmas. You just never know what you are going to get. I spent my high-school years in a suburb of Chicago and I can remember several things about St. Patrick's Day. The Chicago River being dyed a brilliant green, the most fun St. Pat's Day parade EVER, smiling that green teeth beer smile, and never going to school on that day. Never. Some years the weather was Chicago chilly and that meant bundling up. And on some years you didn't have to fess up to your folks that you ditched school for the parade and fun downtown because the sunburn spoke volumes! St. Patrick's Day always makes me feel 'young'!

This year in St. Louis is one of those cold, gray icky days that make you wonder if last weeks spring tease was just a cruel joke! Today the temperature might not get much higher than the mid forties and there are (of all things) snow flakes falling. MUCH worse weather looms for the eastern seaboard so I guess we can't complain.

Have a great St. Patrick's Day! If you aren't making corned beef and cabbage it is easy to find it around town. One of our favorite haunts for this Irish Delicacy is John Goodman's place, O'Leary's, in Sunset Hills, gotta' start with the best fried pickles in town! And you can't go wrong with Seamus's in Dogtown and right off the parade route. Sadly, we won't be eating outside there this year!

We're in the midst of engagement photos today, blustery in the park for sure! Whatever you are doing, enjoy your day and Erin Go Bragh!!!!!!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Lulu's Groove

One of our incredible brides, Lindsey, has the coolest website for vintage, retro kitsch collectibles! Because we are huge fans of this genre of goodies, we pass along her website to YOU...... check it out! Lindsey owns the business, created the website, and does all of the behind the scenes work to make Lulu's Groove happen. "Lulu's Groove was to brought to life to make shopping a little easier for folks who just want to get their hands on fun and affordable retro items. My mission is to create a site that offers quality products, to you, my customers at a reasonable price. While I may not always offer the exact item that brings you here to begin with, I will always have something you will be thrilled to leave with." And because we believe 100% in being a blessing and passing it on, Lindsey donates 10% of her sales to Stray Rescue of St. Louis. We're especially taken with the Vintage Christmas items featured on Lulu's Groove, and the linens are really great too. The site is evolving, never static so when you pop in on any given day the offerings might be quite different. Please check out this fun resource, the "home of the kitsch revolution"!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


"Let your mind start a journey thru a strange new world. Leave all thoughts of the world you knew before. Let your soul take you where you long to be...Close your eyes let your spirit start to soar, and you'll live as you've never lived before."

- Erich Fromm

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Another Love..........

What a great Monday it was! My daughter has been in town visiting for a couple of weeks and she decided to do the most wonderful thing! Her hair had been growing out for several years and it was time to update her look so we headed to Great Clips. As a participating salon with Locks of Love, Jessica could donate her hair to those in need. "Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children under age 18 suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis. We meet a unique need for children by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prosthetics. Most of the children helped by Locks of Love have lost their hair due to a medical condition called alopecia areata, which has no known cause or cure. The prostheses we provide help to restore their self-esteem and their confidence, enabling them to face the world and their peers. " for more information, to donate, volunteer or organize your own event for charity. What a GREAT opportunity. Jessica donated about 14 inches of hair---- and has a cute new 'do' to boot.

To donate hair Locks of Love has the following guidelines:

We accept 10" minimum hair length (tip to tip). We cannot accept wigs, falls, or synthetic hair.
Please bundle hair in ponytail or braid.
Hair needs to be clean, dry, placed in a plastic bag, then padded envelope.
We need hair from men and women, young and old, all colors and races.
Hair may be colored or permed, but not bleached or chemically damaged (if unsure, ask your stylist).
Hair swept off the floor is not usable.
Hair cut years ago is usable if it has been stored in a ponytail or braid.
Hair that is short, gray, or unsuitable for children will be separated from the ponytails and sold at fair market value to offset the cost of manufacturing.
You may pull curly hair straight to measure the minimum 10".
The majority of all hair donated comes from children who wish to help other children.
Layered hair may be divided into multiple ponytails for donation.
Please note: Anyone can cut your hair as long as the above guidelines are followed

You know how we feel, in any way--- be a blessing and pass it on!

Monday, March 12, 2007

Tradition and Lore

As I'm sure you know, weddings are full of significance from old traditions to new ideas, from superstitions passed down through the ages to old wives tales. Presented below are a few things you might not know the origins of some interesting tradition and lore:

Generations ago, that very loooooooooooooooooooong walk down the aisle was meant to show transfer of ownership--- from the father to the husband. This walk transferred the ownership of his daughter and dowry. The bridal walk 'sealed the deal' between families.

Before the best man and maid of honor sign a legally binding document that upholds a wedding, witnesses were the only way that the married couple had to show that they were indeed wed.

Families sit today on the 'brides side' or the 'grooms side'. This tradition comes from needful separation of the two families and any fights that might come about. Think the Hatfields and McCoys!

Traditionally the bride stands on the left of the groom during the ceremony. This tradition developed during medieval times when men carried swords. If the bride stood on the right side she would have blocked his sword making it impossible for him to protect her, so the bride stands to the left and has ever since. During this time the term best man was also created. Typically the best man at the wedding was the best swordsman also.

Why are there bridesmaids? Today many people choose to have bridesmaids because of tradition, and for fun. Since the middle ages bridesmaids have been responsible for helping with the preparation of the wedding. In the beginning bridesmaids were simply hired or slave help, and they did not walk the aisle.

During the formation of our country bridesmaids used to dress exactly like the bride because of spiritual superstition. People believed if they all dressed exactly like the bride evil spirits wouldn't know which girl was being married and couldn't harm her. Today bridesmaid dresses vary in style from the bride's gown.

There are many spiritual superstitions surrounding weddings. The bridal bouquet was at first a satchel of herbs meant to protect the bride from evil spirits. Only later did the satchel become a bouquet of flowers.

Toasts at the reception? Long ago, the clinking of glasses during the reception was also believed to keep evil spirits from harming the new marriage; it was believed the spirits didn't like boisterous noise. Rather like todays tradition in many Asian cultures when firecrackers are set off after a wedding---- the noise is believed to run off evil spirits.

Apart from evil superstition people also believed that weddings were symbols of good luck. This is how the tradition of the garter toss and bridal bouquet toss were developed. People believed to take something of the brides would bring good luck.

Hopes of fertility also surrounded weddings for a very long time. The guests at a wedding believed the bride would become pregnant soon after the wedding if she were the first to eat the cake. Throwing rice after the ceremony was also meant to signify fertility in the hopes the new couple would have many children. For those career couples---- don't eat the cake or have rice thrown! :)

Contrary to popular thought, brides today wear white because of fashion. Prior to 1840 when Queen Victoria wore white lace to her wedding, brides wore their best dress. Wedding dresses at this time were many colors.

The veil, meant to symbolize purity came from a tradition where the groom kidnapped the bride. If a man could get a girl away from her family long enough they were basically married. When the brides were kidnapped their faces were covered with a white cloth which has now become a veil.

The kiss at the end of the ceremony symbolizes the binding union that the husband and wife have to each other. Some people believed when the bride and groom kissed for the first time they shared a part of their soul.

The ring, meant to symbolize the bond of marriage is worn on the fourth finger of the left hand because it was believed there was a vein that in that finger that ran to the heart. The first wedding bands were made of grass and hay. Today traditional wedding bands are made of gold. (Or platinum if you are very lucky!) During World War II men in the United States began to wear wedding bands because they wanted a way to remember their wives while at war. Today both the husband and wife wear wedding bands.

Over the years the beginnings of most of these wedding traditions have been forgotten. Today weddings are about love and family. Although the traditions hold different meanings today they are still as important as they were hundreds of years ago.
-Rachel Pickett

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Handmade Veils

  • In the past 4 years we have not seen a single wedding gown made by the bride (or anyone else for that matter)! When dinosaurs roamed the earth, I made my own gown. It was from a Vogue pattern and I cut it out on the floor of the commons room in my college dorm. It was an empire waist, square neck gown with 4 tiers with a wide lace trim and a moderate train. The fabric was ivory peau de soie and I hand pearled the lace in every spare moment as well as over Thanksgiving break. Yes, we celebrated Thanksgiving in the Stone Age! :) That gown was absolutely stunning! It has long since been used for other projects, the fabric salvaged for Christening Gowns, or other bridal accessories over the years, but the memory of creating it, and wearing it remains. But for whatever reason, making wedding gowns has fallen out of favor, at least for our brides. We have seen a few handmade veils, and for the most part, they have been lovely. Below are some tips if you have ever given it any thought! While veils are not terribly expensive, a really great one with some customized touches can run high. Let us know if you give it a try! It really isn't difficult!

    Vogue, Burda, Butterick, McCalls, and Simplicity all produce good basic bridal veil patterns, many of which also include directions for some sort of headpiece. They generally cost $8-$15 (Wal-Mart and most large fabric chains sell patterns at half price), contain all the instructions, list exactly what's needed and how much of it, and the tissue provides a foolproof cutting guide.
    However, if you feel adventurous, or have some sewing experience and just need a few specific pointers, here are some basic instructions for making two types of veils. Recommended tools and supplies are:
    scissors (sharp dressmaking shears are best) or a rotary cutter and cutting mat

    • small weights for laying out the tulle (canned goods or smooth stones work)
    • a tape measure and/or yardstick
    • pins and needle
    • thread to match the tulle
    • An iron is useful but not necessary.
    • Depending on the style of veil you want, you may also need:
      comb, Velcro, or bridal loops (sold by the yard at fabric stores) satin rattail cord, soutache, pearl cotton, or other edging small pearls, sequins, crystals, or other decoration fabric glue, tweezers, and toothpicks for attaching decoration
    • The amount of tulle you need will vary according to style and height. The traditional lengths (adjust for your individual height and taste) are:
      Shoulder or blusher, 18"-24"
    • Waist, 30"
    • Fingertip, 40"
    • Chapel or floor, 60"-72"
    • Cathedral, 108" or longer

    I recommend buying 108" width tulle for fingertip and longer veils. Most fabric and craft stores carry it. 72" width works well for the shorter lengths unless you want a very full look.

Tulle, or bridal illusion, is sold in white, diamond white, and ivory shades. Dye lots vary, so be sure to buy all you need at one time, from the same bolt. If one store doesn't have the right color, another shop may have a bolt that matches nicely. White is best for synthetic gowns. Diamond white looks best with silk or off-white gowns. An ivory gown may look good with either diamond white or ivory tulle, so buy a foot or so to try out. You may also be able to find candlelight tulle, which has a warmer, pinker cast. A range of colors is available at most fabric stores but the wider widths may be limited to a few basic shades.
Organza and chiffon make pretty veils as well. However, unlike tulle, the raw edges of these fabrics must be finished or they will ravel and fray. A narrow rolled edge works well, and an edge bound with a wide bias strip of satin or self fabric is streamlined and elegant. Organza and chiffon are commonly sold in 45" and 60" widths. 72" width is sometimes available in a limited range of colors.

Veil Edge Finishes: You can leave the edge raw for a wispy look or you can finish it off. A pencil edge, a corded edge, ribbon, lace...there are many possibilities. A serger is not necessary for a fine pencil edge; in fact I personally find the serged edge tends to look cheap and unprofessional. Here are two methods for a narrow edging using a regular sewing machine.
A rolled edge can be made by folding over the edge about 1/2" and zigzagging over the fold. Use a fine thread, like a serger thread or size 80 to 120 cotton thread, and a closely spaced, narrow zigzag. Trim away the excess tulle very close to the stitches, being careful not to nick them. Applique scissors are good for this.
For a ruffled 'lettuce edge' effect, stretch the tulle slightly while stitching; experiment with scraps to see how much you need to stretch it, then keep that tension constant for the best look.

Special Edges:
A corded edge can be made by zigzagging over a length of pearl cotton, bourdon gimp, or satin rattail or mousetail cord. Lay the cord about 1/2" from the edge and set the stitch just wide enough to enclose it. After stitching, trim as close to the stitches as possible.
Soutache braid or ribbon can be sewn on in a manner similar to the cord, using a straight stitch rather than a zigzag. It is usually easier to sew an edging 1/2" or so from the edge and trim the excess tulle than to try to align it perfectly with the cut edge.

art & instructions credit: Jennifer Haley

Friday, March 09, 2007

Final Twelve and Idol Thoughts

We go out of our way not to discuss those really tricky things----- politics, religion, etc. But a subject we can't avoid is being spoken of on the Internet, at the water cooler, and in offices (and studios) all over America---- the Final Twelve on American Idol! Personally, I don't know why America is allowed to vote in the first place, they always get it wrong as Randy says, and this week was not an exception. Having watched (and suffered) through this season to date, there are very notably contestants who have no business being on the stage with the talents of the others! Yet, inexplicably, they stay! Case in point is Sanjaya Malakar------ sorry but this guy is baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad! Sent home was Sundance Head when it really needed to be Sanjaya. Granted, Sundance might have made an odd song choice with "Jeremy" but he was an outstanding performer--- far better than the lackluster, off key, just plain bad Sanjaya. Other standout votes of the evening were sending Antonella Barba home--- good call America, she overstayed her welcome by several weeks, when indeed I never understood how she made the cut at all! Then when her nudies started showing up, well---- others before her have gone home, I don't know why she was allowed to stay. Sabrina Sloan was another Idol wannabe that was cut lose from the herd last night----- and why? She was very different, and very good. Haley Scarnato? You have got to be kidding! You know that the top 12 is the 'buzz' when the poll on asks "The Top 12 is: a. right on the money, b. a little surprising, c. almost perfect, d. totally shocking." We know what our vote is! Next week we start the competition 'for real' as the top twelve begin singing the weekly themes and continue to try to charm America with their skill and style. Our vote for the top of the pile? As it has been since week one, we have to go with Melinda Doolittle hands down. Lakisha Jones is also very good but in the name of marketability and versatility, we will stick with Melinda. Now for pete's sake get rid of Sanjaya America!!!!
That is Friday in the Studio! Idol discussion, a full schedule, and busy-busy-busy! The new wedding newsletter went out last night, if you aren't on the mailing list and would like one, just let us know at info@BobbiBrinkmanPhotography and we'll get one right out to you!
Have a fabulous day!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Happy Groom

All of our grooms are handsome, sometimes nervous, and always so happy to be getting married/married to their lovely brides. We have never seen a groom do anything other than maybe laugh a little bit at the altar, or joke around with the rings or the vows. You can imagine our laughter when watching this YouTube--- now THAT is a groom having a MOMENT! Sorry grooms but this man makes the rest of you look fuddy duddy!

Have a fabulous Thursday, we've almost arrived at the weekend!

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Christina and Christopher

Christina and Christopher are the latest additions to the rapidly growing wedding family at Bobbi Brinkman Photography and we are so happy to welcome them into the fold! What nice people they are---- we're genuinely lucky to be able to be a part of their wedding and we look forward to having them in our lives for a long time!

For those of you who know Danielle, the second shooter at our weddings--- and for those of you who will meet her at your upcoming wedding, we saw her last night at dinner. Nell continues to be absolutely amazing and she keeps on taking my breath away with her activities! She is in the classroom full time now teaching--- and she will graduate this May. In addition to keeping the schedule of a teacher she plays volleyball several evenings a week (last night her game was at 11 p.m., making me feel old indeed!) and keep up with friends and family. Her birthday was last Saturday night so please join me in wishing her a happy birthday and that this will be a fantastic year for her. What a fabulous, talented, kind person----- student, teacher, photographer, creative soul, athlete, and family person---- Nell------ you're the best! It is quite fitting that in addition to all that you are, you are one of the prettiest girls in the world!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

It's a Dog's Life

It is no stretch of the imagination to wish that you could be Prince and Hana----- lazing in the sun on an early spring afternoon, having walks in the park and special treats---- ahhhhh that is a dog's life indeed. Prince and Hana received an e-mail from Bobbi's Mom Jeanetta that we thought we'd share with blog readers, dog philosophy! (I especially like the quote from Roger Caras and Joe Weinstein)

  • You can say any foolish thing to a dog, and the dog will give you a look that says, 'Wow, you're right! I never would've thought of that!' - Dave Barry
  • The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue. -Anonymous

  • Don't accept your dog's admiration as conclusive evidence that you are wonderful. -Ann Landers

  • There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face. -Ben Williams

  • A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself. -Josh Billings

  • The average dog is a nicer person than the average person. -Andy Rooney

  • We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made. -M. Acklam

  • Dogs love their friends and bite their enemies, quite unlike people, who are incapable of pure love and always have to mix love and hate. -Sigmund Freud

  • A dog teaches a boy fidelity, perseverance, and to turn around three times before lying down. -Robert Benchley

  • Anybody who doesn't know what soap tastes like never washed a dog. -Franklin P. Jones
  • If your dog is fat, you aren't getting enough exercise -Unknown

  • My dog is worried about the economy because Alpo is up to $3.00 a can. That's almost $21.00 in dog money. -Joe Weinstein

  • Ever consider what our dogs must think of us? I mean, here we come from a grocery with the most amazing haul, chicken, pork, half a cow. They must think we're the greatest hunters on earth! -Anne Tyler

  • Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea. -Robert A. Heinlein

  • If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you; that is the principal difference between a dog and a man. -Mark Twain

  • Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole -Roger Caras

  • If you think dogs can't count, try putting three dog biscuits in your pocket and then give him only two of them. -Phil Pastoret

Sunday, March 04, 2007

You're The One That I Want

Grease? Love it, always have and always will. So we all collectively tune in for NBC's Grease on Sunday nights (tonight)! The new show is not meant to be (I would hope) true to the original script or to broadway in general---- after all it IS a reality show! The premise of course if that American Idol style talented wannabe's tried out to come on the show and vie for the part of Sandy or Danny on broadway when Grease opens in a few months. We watched the interview process, the cuts, the final few going to "Grease Academy" and then the live shows. All very AI indeed. The difference is that the girls all sport the Sandy look and the guys have the ducktails and slicked back hair a la Danny. For the most part we all even MOSTLY agree who should stay and who should go----------- with a few minor skirmishes along the way. It will be interesting to see who actually does end up with the part--- or does America once again vore in someone less talented because they know them, like them, hail from the same state as..... whoever wins. We shall see. for the details.

Locally, New Line Theatre is producing this Broadway hit playing now! They say "because we don't think people usually see this show the way its creators intended, and we want to return it to its rowdy, dangerous, over-sexed, insightful roots." I guess right now, Grease is the word!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Dating Do's & Dont's

The majority of our blog readers are past the dating phase, they have landed their significant other and are planning to happily spend the rest of their lives together. On the other hand we DO have those that are still waiting---- and know that BBP will do their wedding photography when that day comes. We generally meet these brides to be when they were members of the bridal party or at a show or event we were at. For them, and for our collective enjoyment we present today's video clip---- the do's and dont's of dating. It is pretty funny I must admit. Sorry it is not embedded on the blog, to view-- click the link.

Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, March 02, 2007

Christina and Ron

Another bride and groom to welcome to the BBP wedding family! Thanks Christina and Ron, it is a blessing to be sure! This great bride and groom also met us at Windows and are incredible enterpreneurs. They are planning a winery while planning a wedding---- wow. For those of you planning a wedding you can have the ultimate respect for a couple that has an even bigger venture in the works in addition to planning a wedding. We have several brides (you know who you are) who find that just the wedding scenario is enough to take over your entire life! We will share winery info as we go along, who doesn't love a good winery after all?

Friday is here bright and sunny after the horrible storms that blew through, it may be sunny but it is definitely chilly! I know those of us in St. Louis are deeply grateful that we did not experience the horrible weather, the damage, or the casualties that occured in Alabama.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Ashley & Andy

Another fabulous bride and groom has joined the family----- warm welcome's to Ashley and Andy. We are not only thrilled to have Ashley and Andy in the wedding family at BBP but we are really pleased and honored to have their wonderful parents as well. We look forward to working with the whole family and capturing their wedding with "Images from the Heart..." will be a pleasure indeed!
On another (yet happy) note, did you see the Tonight Show last night? For those of you who were warned to Tivo the show, I hope you did! The segment on The Running of the Brides was absolutely hilarious. Now, I make no excuses for the man who did the segment---- he was very sexist and his off color remarks and behavior didn't enhance the piece. That said, watching the herd of brides tear through Filene's Basement for the annual wedding gown sale was amazing. Sobering. Awe inspiring. Those racks of gowns were stripped bare in a matter of moments, regardless of sizes---- and the brides were stripping down in front of everyone with not much regard as they tried on these dresses. It didn't even seem to matter if the gown you pulled off the rack was ugly! Wow. I got a kick out of the bride--- who on national tv mind you-- said that she thought she was a size 6 but after trying on dresses she now realizes she is a size 12! HA! Just a wee bit of a difference between a 6 and a 12, I think this bride is rather delusional! Now, I don't know about you, and may just be speaking for myself but I would rather do a lot of things before I engaged in this bridal sport. Maybe it is part of the fun for these women, or maybe they do it for other reasons I can't imagine--- but being part of that rude and pushy throng just isn't my idea of a good time. I was hoping that The Tonight Show would have the video on its website, but after scouring around I didn't find it, maybe they will have it up later for those of you that missed it.
Nasty storms are rolling through St. Louis today, stay safe and dry!