{Looking Back} Real Brides Q&A #3

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 Real Bride #3: Bree Basham

 Photographer: David Michael Photography

Where did you get married and when?

Firestone Winery, Santa Ynez Valley, CA 2007

What was the best moment of the day?

Being in one place with all my family and friends, and my husband’s family and friends. It means so much to be surrounded by the people you love, all in one place!

What was the most memorable moment of the day (different than the best- maybe something funny, someone fainting, bad toast, etc)?

My grandmother in the girl’s dance circle — my family is Greek but we didn’t have Greek dancing. When my grandmother heard a Black Eyed Peas song she swore it was a Greek song, and got up and danced with me and my girlfriends. She never sat down after that!

If you could do it over again, what would you do differently (if anything)?

Not a thing, except maybe make it not rain.

What was the most stressful part of the planning?

Budgeting and financial decisions!

What were you thinking while you were walking down the aisle?

Um, I’m walking down the aisle to get married!

Did you do anything special to get in tip top shape?

Those awful outdoor stairs down the bluffs in Santa Monica!

What is your advice for choosing bridesmaids?

Don’t pick someone just b/c they picked you, make sure it’s who you really want in your heart. This didn’t happen to me, but I’ve known others tormented by this decision.

What was your first dance song?

God Only Knows by the Beach Boys

What shoes did you wear and were they comfortable?

Impractical stilletos, and no, but they were cute!

Were you able to enjoy the reception or did you feel that you needed to “work the room?”

Definitely able to enjoy!

What is your best “day of wedding” advice?

Take it alllll in!

Did your relationship feel different after the wedding?

No different except there is a sense of commitment there of course that wasn’t there before.

 

{Weekend Inspiration} Print Inspirations

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I hope that everyone had a great Memorial Day Weekend! I was up in San Francisco visiting my boyfriend, my family, and some friends. Throughout the weekend I saw a lot of little things that inspired me. Although most of the Doie Lounge prints are designed by very experienced textile designers, I have tried my hand at a few—like the “mums” print on the Eloise robe and the Sadie robe. I am always on the lookout for cool color combinations and eye catching motifs. Below are four things that caught my eye this past weekend. I am often inspired by nature, animals, and everything Asian. What inspires you?

 

{Cheers My Dears}

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Photographer: Eileen Kobida

“Getting ready for the wedding festivities with my closest friends and family was one of my favorite parts of the day!  My bridesmaids loved their robes and they added to the excitement of our morning of hair and make-up.  Now, we all have our robes as a memory of the time we got to spend together!”

~ Erin W., Married November 10th, 2012

{Saturday’s Song} Anyone Else But You

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Anyone Else But You

You’re a part-time lover and a full-time friend,
The monkey on your back is the latest trend.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

I kiss you on the brain in the shadow of the train,
Kiss you all starry-eyed, my body swingin’ from side to side.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

Here is the church and here is the steeple,
We sure are cute for two ugly people.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

Pebbles forgive me, the trees forgive me,
So, why can’t you forgive me?
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

I will find my nitch in your car,
With my MP3, DVD, rumple-packed guitar.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, BA start.
Just because we use cheats doesn’t mean we’re not smart.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

You are always tryin’ to keep it real,
I’m in love with how you feel.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

We both have shiny, happy fits of rage,
You want more fans, I want more stage.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

Don Quixote was a steel-driving man,
My name is Adam, I’m your biggest fan!
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

Scrunched up your face and did a dance,
Shook a little turd out of the bottom of your pants.
I don’t see what anyone can see in anyone else, but you.

~ The Moldy Peaches

{Looking Back} Real Brides Q&A #2

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Same questions, new answers.

Real Bride #2: Robyn Paloian

Photographer: Erin Johnson

Where did you get married and when?

We got married in Minneapolis, MN on August 7, 2010. The ceremony was at Temple Israel and the reception at the Metropolitan

What was the best moment of the day?

For me, the best moment of the day was the “reveal,” when Neil and I saw each other for the first time. Near the front entrance of the synagogue, I descended the steps behind him. I tapped him on the shoulder, and we just stared at each other and hugged (but not kissed – didn’t want to ruin my makeup before pictures!). At that moment I remember feeling what this whole big production was about: our love for and commitment to each other.

What was the most memorable moment of the day (different than the best- maybe something funny, someone fainting, bad toast, etc)?

The most memorable moment of the day for me was being introduced as husband and wife and having our first dance. We had arrived privately to the reception and were whisked away from the rest of the guests during cocktail hour. We had hors d’oeuvres and champagne alone while taking in the beautiful decor in the main ballroom. We watched from above as our guests trickled in for dinner after cocktails in the separate bar area. Our amazing band got the party fired up and we watched the scene unfold from the balcony. After a few peppy numbers, the band announced Neil and Robyn Paloian, dancing together for the first time as husband and wife. We made our grand entrance and danced to a song that so simply captured our feelings: “you and me together, we can do anything…” our friends and family clapped and cheered from the edge of the dance floor, and Neil nailed the routine I had made him practice incessantly. It was an unforgettable feeling, and the best segue into a fabulous party.

If you could do it over again, what would you do differently (if anything)?

If I could do it over again, I would have made sure to get more sleep the night before!

What was the most stressful part of the planning?

The most stressful part of planning – for me, nothing. I lived out of town at the time of planning, and I was so fortunate to have parents that were willing to do so much, and fantastic wedding planners who could execute my vision.

What were you thinking while you were walking down the aisle?

While I was walking down the aisle, I felt so much love of family and friends in the room, and I remember thinking that Neil and I were truly blessed.

Did you do anything special to get in tip top shape?

Since our engagement a year before the wedding, I purposely avoided diets and crazy exercise regimes. Women might hate me for saying this, but I actually lost weight just listening to my body and enjoying the happiness of living with my fiancé. We drank beer and ate carbs, but we cooked with a lot of natural, healthy products. It also helps that I’m a vegetarian. I’d exercise to feel good instead of calculating how much dessert a run would buy me.

What is your advice for choosing bridesmaids?

When I chose bridesmaids, I wanted to prioritize family. I don’t have any siblings, so I had my two first cousins and my future sister-in-law. I also had my two best friends from college. I didn’t want a huge wedding party, so those 5 fun, sweet girls were the perfect support to surround myself with on the big day.

What was your first dance song?

You and Me” by Dave Matthews Band

What shoes did you wear and were they comfortable?

I wore Tahari nude patent and matte leather peep-toe pumps. They were comfortable for the first 5 hours…but nobody talks about how much you’re on your feet on your wedding day! We were dressed since about 2pm that day. Luckily the ibuprofen, champagne and sheer joy helped me forget about my feet

Were you able to enjoy the reception or did you feel that you needed to “work the room?”

At my wedding reception I did feel some obligation to “work the room,” but it did not impact my enjoyment at all. The guests were my family and friends who came out to support and celebrate with me! I made sure to say hi to everyone, but I danced, ate and drank when I wanted, and I think it balanced perfectly.

What is your best “day of wedding” advice?

I am happy to share the best day-of wedding advice that I received: from the ceremony and going forward, stick with your husband. Not only do you want to share the whole experience with him, but when you look back on the day you’ll want to have the same memories. Well-meaning photographers, planners, and out-of-town guests may be obstacles that can come between you and your man, and it’s easy to lose each other in a sea of people who all want your attention. So we made a pact to hold onto each other the whole night, and if we got separated we’d quickly find our ways back. It felt very romantic.

Did your relationship feel different after the wedding?

Our relationship didn’t feel different the next day, week, and probably month. But as I got used to saying “my husband…,” and as we experienced more real life situations as a married couple, it really sank in. Our relationship continues to feel different as we grow together. And a newly engaged or newly married couple might not believe it’s possible, but I love my husband more every day. And I make sure to tell him.

 

 

 

 

{Rehearsal Dinner Dress Round Up}

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My friend Eva was in town this past weekend. She has been my “shopping partner” since junior high. We have the same shopping stamina- we once pulled a 12- hour straight shopping stint, on a post-Thanksgiving trip in San Francisco. I completely trust her opinion; she always tells me if something is unflattering, and her style is impeccable. Eva always looks completely put together and appropriate for whatever event she is attending…even if it is just going to the movies. So I was lucky that Eva was in town to help me with today’s post— finding the perfect rehearsal dinner dress!

Eva and I spent hours shopping (all in the name of research of course), and poured over hundreds of dresses online to find some great rehearsal dresses for the upcoming wedding season. Finding a dress to wear to the night before is often harder than figuring out what to wear to the actual wedding. We narrowed it down to 3 per category— this was no easy feat.

Paycheck to Paycheck

  1. BB Dakota Harmony Dress in Green, $90 (www.bbdakota.com)
  2. Tinley Road Strapless Brooklyn Dress, $79 (www.piperlime.com)
  3. Collective Concepts V-Neck Ruffle Dress, $74 (www.piperlime.com)

 

A Little Splurge

  1. J.Crew Abstract Floral Dress, $298 (www.jcrew.com)
  2. Madison Marcus Lace Dress, $305 (www.madisonlosangeles.com)
  3. Club Monaco Karolina Dress, $179.50 (www.clubmonaco.com) This dress is way cuter in person

 

Money To Burn

  1. Marc by Marc Jacobs, Night Bird Taffeta Dress, $628 (www.bloomingdales.com)
  2. Nanette Lapore Tallent Show Silk Dress, $448 (www.piperlime.com)
  3. Diane Von Furstenberg Edena Dress, $375 (www.dvf.com)

 

Our mission was to find stylish, flattering, not too fancy, appropriate, dresses. “Appropriate” meaning no chance of a “wardrobe malfunction,” or hemlines too short. Nothing looks worse than a guest tugging and fixing her dress all night.

In my younger years I was known to struggle a bit with “appropriateness.” I cried and begged my way into convincing my mom to buy me a knock-off of the dress that Demi Moore wore in the movie, “Indecent Proposal,” for my junior prom! Nothing was hanging out, but it was not very age appropriate. Trust me, no one wants to see 16 going on 30 or the reverse. Keep it classy ladies!

{Saturday’s Song} First Day Of My Life

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First Day Of My Life

This is the first day of my life
I swear I was born right in the doorway
I went out in the rain suddenly everything changed
They’re spreading blankets on the beach

Yours is the first face that I saw
I think I was blind before I met you
Now I don’t know where I am
I don’t know where I’ve been
But I know where I want to go

And so I thought I’d let you know
That these things take forever
I especially am slow
But I realize that I need you
And I wondered if I could come home

Remember the time you drove all night
Just to meet me in the morning
And I thought it was strange you said everything changed
You felt as if you’d just woke up
And you said “this is the first day of my life
I’m glad I didn’t die before I met you
But now I don’t care I could go anywhere with you
And I’d probably be happy”

So if you want to be with me
With these things there’s no telling
We just have to wait and see
But I’d rather be working for a paycheck
Than waiting to win the lottery
Besides maybe this time is different
I mean I really think you like me

~ Bright Eyes

{Looking Back} Real Brides Q & A

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This is a section that I like to call “Real Brides~ Q & A.” All of the gorgeous wedding blogs out there inform one about the vendors, the venue, and the planners- that is all well and good, but what about the nitty gritty details- like did the bride’s feet hurt? Which part was the most stressful? And what is her best advice to those about to “take the plunge?” Each week we will feature a different bride whose wedding day has passed, but her advice is well needed! As they say, “hindsight is 20/20.”

Real Bride #1: Abbie Rockwell

Photographer: Lena Kamber

When and where did you get married?

Winter Solstice~ December 21, 2010 Stinson Beach, CA

What was the best moment of the day?

The entire day was a string of blessed moments. Best day of my life. Can’t think of the best moment…oh perhaps the end of the night, after it was all over, when we were walking arm and arm with a light rain to our honeymoon suite.

What was the most memorable moment of the day (different than the best- maybe something funny, someone fainting, bad toast, etc)?

After our oyster, caviar and champagne reception when we walked from the beach house to the lagoon house- it was all lit with candles in the atrium.

If you could do it over again, what would you do differently?

Nothing!

What were you thinking while you were walking down the aisle?

I walked arm and arm with my father out to the ocean where there was a burning fire pit, Adam Burke our priest, Ricki looking fondly at me, and our immediate family all watching as well…. I was overjoyed with happiness.

Did you do anything special to get in tiptop shape?

Drank lots of water, took my vitamins, and followed a healthy skin care regimen two months before.

What is your advice for choosing bridesmaids?

Do what you want and don’t let anyone run your wedding but you.

What was your first dance song?

Harvest Moon.

What shoes did you wear and were they comfortable?

Charles David, nude paten leather heels. Comfortable YES and they were perfect!

Were you able to enjoy the reception or did you feel that you needed to “work the room?”

Enjoyed every minute of it and I was able to connect with everyone… all 22 of them.

What is your best “day of wedding” advice?

Stay calm; enjoy the moment- be at the location the one or two nights before and a few nights after. We spent a week out at Stinson Beach and didn’t go anywhere. Not only did we have memorable wedding we had a memorable wedding week on vacation with family. It was amazing.

Did your relationship feel different after the wedding?

No, just a little bit better.


{Spring Cleaning} ~ Aka How To Get Rid Of An Old Bridesmaid Dress

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Speaking of those bridesmaid dresses taking up space, I have decided that today is the day that I will try to get rid of them. I apologize to any friends who may see a photo of “their” dress here. I actually loved all of them, and some of them I could wear again… but I most likely won’t. They were all perfect for the day when I wore them but now they are taking up prime real estate in my closet.

I would love for them to be reused for another wedding, so I started to do some research into sites that re-sell old bridesmaid dresses. After some extensive googling, I found these to be the best options:

http://www.recycledbride.com/ -listing fee

http://woreitonce.com/ – listing fee

*  https://bridesmaidtrade.com/ -no listing fee

Next, I looked into bridesmaid dress donation sites. Not surprisingly, there doesn’t seem to be an urgent need for old bridesmaid dresses in the donation department, but my search results led me to several organizations that donate prom dresses to girls who are not able to afford them. Most sites were location specific, so if you are looking to donate your dresses, I would search for a reputable organization in your town. Here are two that I liked:

http://www.donatemydress.org/

http://laspromcloset.com/index.html

Looking to donate but also get something new in return? http://www.newlymaid.com/ will take your “gently worn” bridesmaid dress in exchange for a discount on a brand new little black dress. Once you set up an account with Newlymaid, they will send you a pre-paid mailer. Just send off that dress you know you will never wear again and Newlymaid will give you a special price on one of their many styles of new LBDs. They also donate or recycle your old dress! That doesn’t really help the closet space factor, but at least you will have something taking up space that you actually want to wear.

If all else fails, another interesting way to rid oneself of an old bridesmaid dress is to reincarnate it. Dye it {black usually works}, shorten it {find a great tailor}, or sew it into a pillow sham!

Do you have a good idea? Let us know!

{Lucky Thirteen}

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My name is Sara and I have been a bridesmaid 13 times. Yes, you read that correctly, thirteen times. A third of my closet space is filled with dresses I will never wear again, and if I made a pie chart of my expenses, a large piece would be wedding related. When most people hear this they often make a face that resembles a mix of pity and shock, but to be honest, I have loved (almost) every minute of it.

The inevitable bachelorette drama, being rained on for 45min because the bride didn’t have a rain plan, enduring a severely long ceremony in 100+ degree weather after a night of post-rehearsal dinner drinking, standing in a strapless dress outside with snow still on the ground…all worth it. I’ve gotten to be there for all of these friends (& family members) on the most special day of their lives. I love having a behind-the-scenes look at the entire process without having the stress of actually being the bride. It’s like being backstage at a show and the show is always beautiful, touching, and exciting. What can I say, I love a good wedding!

These experiences were the inspiration behind my line of robes for brides and bridesmaids, Doie Lounge. Although I have loved every gift that I have received as a bridesmaid: monogrammed totes, gorgeous handbags, timeless jewelry, personalized frames, Tory Burch flip flops… I wanted to create something that brought everyone together and would look cute in the photos that were taken while getting ready before the big event. As active as I am, I always love to lounge. And lounging with my best friends, looking glamorous, and feeling special— it’s the best.