Wedding: Bridesmaids, Guests, family, and Style: Tips on how to survive all of it!
I can’t count the amount of times my husband and I have said after our wedding “hindsight is 20/20”. You really do learn so so much after your wedding is over including about how people will act. There is nothing you can really do about certain guests or family you know. Expect them to act the way they always do. If you have a friend you feel like you can never count on or is flakey but you think, “Well it’s my wedding they will step up to the plate.” in my experience they won’t. People don’t change because it’s your wedding they are exactly who they always have been. This isn’t always a bad thing either because I’m sure you know lots of amazing people who will continue to be amazing on your wedding day! EMBRACE those people more at this time!
Guests: Don’t get pressured into inviting people you don’t want to unless that person is paying for your wedding. If you are paying for your wedding you get to make your guest list bottom line. That being said I did invite a lot of my in-laws friends even though my husband and I were paying for the wedding because they have been super amazing to us and well we love them! But personally I don’t believe in bullying or pressure of ANY kind and it usually makes me want to do the opposite.
That behind us lets talk style! Bridesmaid dresses and getting ready outfits! I went with the new idea and something I swore YEARS ago I would do when I got married! I picked one colour: Lilac and let my girls pick any dress they wanted including floral! I only had 3 bridesmaids and 1 Kuma (so 4 all together) and I sent a suggestion picture and 3 of the 4 girls chose that designer which was from a very popular bridesmaid site right now but also carries so much more! https://www.showmeyourmumu.com/
What I liked best about the dresses was that they were comfortable! So comfortable that one girl slept in hers that night and came into my room the next morning in it to get her clothes! (lol sorry Jenn!) I think my wedding night turned into a huge party after the lights went down and that’s exactly what my husband and I wanted! I think having the bridesmaids and myself in comfy attire didn’t hurt! No one had to run off and change! Again I also thought the flowy feel of the dresses went with the venue and I love that not all the dresses were the same! After all not all body shapes, skin tones, hair colours, and styles are the same!
Since it’s now 2 months after my wedding and I’ve had some time to process all the madness (good and bad) that is wedding season and I’m ready to share it with you!
First things first: The dress!!!
I did a previous blog post on this without posting the actual dress so now I can! This dress is so popular now and so is the designer: Grace Loves Lace https://graceloveslace.com.au/ (If you haven’t heard of them do yourself a favour and give the Australian designer a follow for some major daily inspiration!) I legit posted a picture of it on Instagram with the designer tagged and had a lovely bride to be offering to buy it off of me days later! I actually knew I wanted to sell it after because I’m what I would call an anti-hoarder! And it truly brings me joy to think of someone else enjoying it! After selling it to her I’ve had multiple other girls write me asking if I’m thinking of selling it (sorry ladies it’s long gone)! I think the reason for its popularity is girls are moving away from the standard ball gown look in favour of a dress that represent more of their personality. I also think this dress in particular was insanely comfortable compared to many of the more bulky dresses.
I also think girls want to match their venues more so and when barn, vineyard, and country themed weddings are on the rise I can see how your standard poof dress could be on the decline. However, if a ball gown suits you most! If that is YOU! And speak to who you are when it comes to style then it’s the right dress for you regardless of venue! Be True to yourself!
It’s May which means you probably have some weddings scheduled this month or next or every month this summer if you are me! It’s such a fun time to see friends, celebrate love, maybe get out of town, do some dancing, and get dressed up!
However, I think there are a few do’s and don’ts for attending weddings concerning attire. These are loose do’s and don’ts but we have all been to that wedding where a guest broke the cardinal rule: No girl shall wear white except the bride. So, to save you any troubles this season I’m going lay them right out there.
Dress up! Don’t go casual if it is not listed on the invite as casual. It’s actually disrespectful. It’s much better to be overdressed than underdressed.
Match the venue or theme. Vineyard think flowy and long (maybe floral!). Vegas think short and colourful with some sparkle. Black tie think something long and slinky: I like red or black for these occasions. Barn wedding? Maybe more casual and comfortable! An off the shoulder dress with wedges would work wonderfully!
Match your date. But don’t go overboard. Think subtle. Tie, bowtie or handkerchief. Personally, I think shirt is too much.
Stand out. Do your research. Be excited about your outfit! I love colour! I love pattern! There is no need to blend in and be a wallflower (please tell me you know the meaning of that lol). It’s not everyday you get to get this dressed up! Embraced it!
Be comfortable! This is literally my #1 style tip above all else! And to feel beautiful! You just have to manage it in style! Find something that can work for both! Find a dress/pantsuit/outfit that is true to who you are and that you can dance the night away in! If you are uncomfortable you won’t enjoy yourself! If your hemline keeps riding up, your heels are killing you, your bra is peaking out your mind is not going to be on enjoying yourself!
WEAR WHITE. WEAR BEIGE. WEAR OFF WHITE. It’s never okay and it makes it seem like you want to be the bride or the centre of attention!
Wear something you would wear to work, the club (It is a formal event so lets treat it that way), or date night (unless your date nights are significantly fancier than mine). This is the time to splurge on a new outfit that is gorgeous! Or I love the idea of borrowing one from a friend that you have been eyeing! Also vintage stores always have great finds for a more unique look!
Forget the details! Earnings, shoes, and bag are just as important and fun to shop for and to add to your ensemble as the main piece. In fact sometimes I work my way out! I start with statement earrings and find things that would go with them!
Maybe you are as surprised as I am to hear Cleveland has/had a fashion week! When one of my blogger friends asked me to join her at an event I jumped at the chance! Not only had I never been to a fashion show but it was a good opportunity to be around likeminded people in Cleveland!
There were somethings I absolutely loved about this event and somethings I would hope to see improved for years to come. It’s called GlamJam and more information can be found here:
The fashion show, band playing, apps going over well, drinks flowing, and social gathering all took place in the Cleveland Aquarium. This location has an upper level which would be GORGEOUS for a wedding or any social event. Rustic brick walls, great views of the river, open concept, and looking down into the aquarium tanks. Half way through people were ushered to the lower level where it was maze like and models walked through to the backdrop of aquatic life swimming.
Liked: Food and Drink
For $35 you had all you can drink and eat for the evening. The drinks were excellent, the bar staff were super nice, and there were hardly any lineups. The food was okay, I mean I think Gordon Ramsey might have a few negative things to say about it but for the most part the pizza sticks, stuffed mushrooms, and heaps of cheese were fine by me!
Not so fond of: The Band
It was listed as a music and fashion event but there was only one band and it was not the kind of band that got any one dancing. They had a lot of character and played more than amply loud. But fell short for me and I think many people there.
Tips for next year: It would have been great if there was a pamphlet/handout with a layout of the times and format of the evening. Perhaps even an M.C. would have been useful to announce when the models were going to walk because for the most part you were just chatting away and you would look up and some models would be walking around the room but you had missed half of that show already.
Overall, I would go back next year. A true testament of success!
To some this post may seem irrelevant. Sporting events and style? Style and sporting events? But if you found yourself remotely thinking about it then it must mean something to you! I mean if you’re going to such a huge event I see it as a fun place to dress up like yourself only sportier!
Wear a shirt/jersey to show your support to the team you are cheering for!
Wear comfy shoes! This does not mean boring! I spent my fair share of years sporting heels to sporting events and I saw a few people at last nights Cavs vs Raptors game doing the same! Power to you if you still love it and you find it comfy, over the years I have found certain running shoes/boots can be just at stylish and more appropriate to the venue. This makes running back and forth for drinks, food, and cheering that much easier!
Go with denim! Tried, tested and true! All shades and colours can be great for game day but the cut is what really matters. Go for a very fitter pair (jeans) since your top will most likely be loose. With shorts on the other hand I prefer a looser fit and the top slighty tucked in. Here you can get away with both being loose since you are showing leg and and arms!
Wear a fake pink jersey. I mean if you really really love it do it. But the classic colours are always your best pick. They are timeless, match everything, and make you seem like a more serious fan.
Wear a dress. And I must say if its your jam do it! At the playoffs basketball game last night there were 2 girls in great seats in dresses. Everyone knows you get free t-shirts when you get there (in the playoffs) so I always just wear jeans and throw it on when I get there. These girls opted to stay in there dresses even though the stadium was rather cold and 98% of the people had some sort of team attire on. Although, wearing a dress and not opting to put on a jersey may seem like caring about fashion more I think knowing your audience is super key. Dress for the environment you’re in. The point is: don’t always wear the same thing! Be adaptable to different styles and venues.
Be on your phone the WHOLE time. Okay so this isn’t so much to do with style but as a style blogger I love to do a post while I’m at the game of the game or what I am wearing. But then I put my phone away! Enjoy the moment! Take it in. Take your pictures before! Before you spill food and beer on yourself! While there are fun events outside! Before the live event starts!
Have you ever gone into your closet and said, “I have nothing to wear today!” But your closet is full! Soooo how can you (and by you I mean every girl since the beginning of time) have nothing to wear when your closet is full!? The answer is simple! We are bored of everything in there!
Here are a few tips to reinvent the pieces you most likely own!
#1 Something bright! Here I feature an old Zara necklace that I actually got at a garage sale (upcycling whoop whoop!) but this idea can apply to anything bright in your closet! Think a bright cardigan, shoes, or a skirt! What you would normally pair it with is something neutral like a white, beige or black. How lovely. Buuuut you are bored of that outfit! So, try it with something different…bright on bright! It totally revamps the look and is really fun for spring!
#2 Dresses with buttons down the front: They unbutton! I have a few of these and have been using them as coats, cardigans, sweaters lately! So often we get these gorgeous (expensive) dresses and often only get one wear out of them unless you share them with a friend like me! So, I love the idea of undoing all the buttons and throwing them over an outfit! Tip: Shorter dresses are more versatile and I find go with almost any outfit but I LOVE the longer ones too as a beach cover up over a bikini or bather!
#3 Yoga pants…I know most girls could live in them! I wear mine almost everyday! Again we spend so much money on them so why do they have to be restricted to yoga? The benefit of yoga pants is there quality. I find the Lululemon ones are so thick and hold everything in the right places! This is why I often wear yoga pants outside of the studio!
So, to be honest the first time I went wedding dress shopping was ONLINE! I had laid eyes on a Grace Loves Lace wedding dress before I was even engaged and it was everything I could ask for in a dress and more (https://graceloveslace.com.au/). I knew I didn’t want poof, frills, sparkles, or TYPICAL. I did know I wanted comfortable, classic, stylish, sexy, slightly boho, and for it to go with my venue which is a vineyard in Niagara on the Lake. Maybe this sounds like a tall order but when I saw MY GLL dress it was everything I had dreamed up in my wedding vision of what I would look like as a bride one day! Grace Loves Lace designs all their wedding dresses with French lace and is handmade in Australia (how amazing and unique for those of us in North America!) But I couldn’t exactly make it to their store (they recently opened one in L.A. too)!
This is why I opted to hit BUY on an online wedding dress instead of going into a tradition-wedding boutique. I actually got all the feels and even called my mom crying and gushing over how lucky I felt to have purchased my DREAM dress! I never once looked back or felt nervous! When you know, you just know! Grace Loves Lace was it for me!
However, just because I got the dream dress does not mean I felt like I got the dream girls day out! When I was home for a few days one of my amazing bridesmaids who loves wedding dress shopping enough to work at Kleinfeld’s suggested I get the real bridal experience of wedding dress shopping! So, my Mama, my besty, and I went to one of the biggest bridal stores in Canada! I have to say this was a nice amount of people to have, as it wasn’t too many opinions (We have all seen those episodes of ‘Say Yes to the Dress’)! Tip: Do your hair and makeup the day you go wedding dress shopping! You want to feel beautiful and to be able to picture the way you will look on your wedding day!
I did inform the girl I already had my dream dress but I was looking for something similar to see what it would look like on and that I also still truly needed a veil. We had an amazing day of trying on dresses, taking pictures, and me feeling spoiled with love and everything bridal! The BEST part was none of the dresses compared to what I feel for my Grace Loves Lace wedding dress, so I was still sure I had purchased the perfect one!
Hawaii was never a place that was on my bucket list. I always had this image of it as being all resorts and no adventure! I recently had the opportunity to go there with my fiancés business trip and found out the islands have so much to offer!
Adventure: The hiking is unreal. Whether you have chosen to do something super challenging like Koko Head in Oahu, Honolulu or something more leisurely like the circular trek around a mountain giving you a variety of climates all in one hike like Hau’ula Loop Trail located in the North Shore you will not regret doing a hike. Both of these are highly recommend for their views!
Food: One of my favourite things about Hawaii was the foooood! If you love sushi and fresh fish as much as I do, you will love it there! I had some of the best rolls of my life EVEN at the grocery store! So, do yourself a favour if you are on a budget, hit up the local g-store, get the premade sushi (I don’t usually like g-store sushi but I swear it’s amazing here) and take it with some other snacks to your favourite beach for the best. day. ever. If you make your way to Lahaina, Maui I HIGHLY recommend going to Lahaina Pizza Co. It was some of the best deep dish, thin crust pizza, live music, ocean breeze I have ever had!
Beaches: There are endless options! I recommend renting a car for Honolulu and getting out of the city centre ASAP! Head to the North Shore (don’t forget to stop for lunch at the food trucks!) and break when you see a beach you love! Pipeline has amazing waves and is good for bodyboarding early in the day but as the afternoon comes you have to stay on the beach and watch the glorious huge waves and surfers from a distance as it becomes too dangerous for the non-pros.
If you are in Maui this is a great chance to go snorkelling! Go to any rental shop and they will tell you a few options of safe places for that day, give you a map, and the gear you need. This is the cheapest, most adventurist way and when I did it I was able to see coral, millions of fish, an eel, and a HUGE turtle! I also heard the whales singing which was pretty magical!