Saturday, January 7, 2012

SuperBridesmaid becomes....SUPERBRIDE!

This post is a little bit delayed, but I figured that's it never too late to share good news! On Friday, November 25th- my boyfriend J popped question, and asked me to marry to him!

After a long day of shopping on Black Friday with my mom and sister, I walked in to my apartment ready to crash. J told me he got me a present, and to take a look at the coffee table. I saw a big unwrapped box, sat on the couch and began to open it. It was a snow globe! I collect them, so he knows I love receiving them. This one had a picture frame inside the globe, and while one side had a picture of us, the other side said, "Michelle, Will You Marry Me?" I was completely surprised, just the way he wanted it to be. I started crying, looked up and he was down on one knee, with the most beautiful ring that he picked out himself. He turned on the TV and there were pictures of us, our song was playing, and once again it said "Michelle, Will You Marry Me?" It may sound a bit cheesy to you, but everything was perfect and so "us".

Later that night we celebrated with our families with a champagne toast and dinner. The next night my sister organized a celebration with all of our friends for engagement drinks.

I hope you don't mind that if for the next year, some posts actually pertain to my own wedding planning. But I'll make sure to also include some of the great ideas that I know my superbridesmaids are sure to have. They started off my engagement year exceeding my expectations with fabulous OMG! You Just Got Engaged Gifts, and I wanted to share them with all of my readers here.

A magazine, ring dish & wedding cake notepad- all wrapped up in a gift that looked like a wedding cake!A scrapbook page to kickoff our wedding scrapbook
A 2012 calendar filled with pictures of us to document all of the momentous occasions in our wedding year. I personally love the picture on my birthday!

Quintessential planning magazines & personalized wedding organizers. Everything a girl needs to start planning!

Magazines & "Say Yes to The Dress" book from Mom & Dad, including a poem inside!

A customized LOVEOPOLY board with our pictures. All of the "properties" pertain to us and our cute! Can't decide if we want to play it or frame it!

Personalized M&Ms in our wedding colors with our names and picture!
Personalized Notebooks to keep all of my planning notes in. So handy to keep with me!

By the way, just wanted to share that as I approach double digits (this will be my tenth wedding that I'm in!), it's only appropriate that the wedding is my own!

Happy New Year, Happy Bridesmaiding, and Happy Brideing! (my new verb for wedding planning)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Make-Up Comes To You!

A few weeks ago, I was on my own to get primped for Wedding #9. I used Lifebooker to schedule a cheap and easy blowout, as my hair is relatively easy to style. I'm a little more particular about my make-up, and have had a few bad experiences at department store counters. Lucky for me, a colleague of mine is a freelance make-up artist and so I had her "put my face on." She even came directly to my apartment, so I was able to get ready in the comfort of my own home. As usual, I was running late, booking my appointments too close together, so this was an added bonus that I didn’t need to run all over the city to get ready.

Clara Isabella showed up at my apartment on time and was immediately ready to go. She had already asked the color of my dress and came prepared with a color palette designed just for me. Not only was she extremely knowledgeable about make-up applications, but we had fun talking about her experiences on fashion shoots. She has a variety of different products- finding the right shade and fit for all of her different clients. She was extremely meticulous, making sure every last detail (including my fun false lashes) was applied perfectly.
What makes her a little different from other make-up artists? Well, we all know that when you get your makeup done at noon for a 7:00 wedding, you’ll need a few touch ups. Clara actually helped me look through my own stash of lipsticks, and together we picked out the right shade (and a small enough container) to fit in my bag for the evening. I must admit, that for once it was nice not to be pressured to buy anything, and I loved that she used my own supplies to do my lips! It was a color I knew that I already liked, and looked good on me.

Clara’s eye and artistic talents were spot on, as I got compliments all night long. And as you can see, at the end of the night- my make-up was still looking great!

In addition to day of wedding make-up, Clara Isabella is available for all of your wedding related festivities and special events. (She even does hair too!). For more information, contact or 908.868.0612.

Happy Bridesmaiding!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Nailed It!

As many of you know, I’m a huge fan of bachelorette party games. Very often I ask the girls attending the bachelorette party to bring a little honeymoon gift for the bride and she has to guess who it’s from. It can be anything – from G rated sunscreen or an underwater camera to X rated condoms, edible underwear or something else fun from the back room at Ricky’s. Similarly, many of you have played the game where each attendee brings a pair of undies for the bride, and she has to guess who each one is from.

However, two of my friends recently went to a bachelorette party in Miami where they played a similar game- yet it was something I had never heard of before. The bride is obsessed with manicures and getting her nails done- so they all had to bring her a nail polish color, and she had to guess who it was from based on the name of the polish. I thought this was so creative and clever, especially for this bride. When I asked what happened if the color was something ugly and out there, they said, “No big deal- she loves different and unique colors!” Plus, nail polishes are only about $8, so not too much skin off anyone’s back. And lucky for us NYers, Essie and OPI are sold in many of our local drug stores.

Keep in mind that the colors to purchase for this activity are not a wedding related. If so, everyone would be buying BLUSHING BRIDE, BACHELORETTE BASH, HAPPILY EVER AFTER, MIMOSAS FOR MR. AND MRS. and you might even get one smart alec who buys STARTER WIFE or TROPHY WIFE.

Here are some examples of the types of BMs who may be in your wedding party, and the coordinating colors they may buy.

Party Girl BM: FIESTA
Jersey (or Texas) BM: BIG HAIR…BIG NAILS
Shopaholic BM: BIG SPENDER
Center of Attention BM: LET ME ENTERTAIN YOU
Opinionated BM: MY WAY
Desperate-to-be-the-next-Bride BM: SHOW ME THE RING
Sun Worshipping BM: BEACH BUM BLU
Argumentative BM: DEVIL'S ADVOCATE
Sexy Not Slutty BM: LACY NOT RACY

And if you want to throw her off, and have her fiancĂ© send in a color as well? Well, then there’s no question in my mind, it’s obviously SOLEMATE.

What do you think? Would your bride like this activity? What color would you get?
Happy Bridesmaiding!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Language Art Custom Wall Art

This past weekend, I took a road trip to Cleveland to visit Bride #1, her husband and 18 month old son. She recently redid her kitchen, and hanging up over the wall to her deck was an anniversary gift from her in-laws that I fell in love with. They ordered custom wall art that spelled out their last name from a company in Indiana (our old stomping grounds!) called Language Art.

Each letter of their last name was a black and white 4x6 photograph, all mounted together and easy to hang. According to the website, “Finding art and beauty in objects that are otherwise ignored, Greg and Dilynn Puckett, the team behind Language Art, travel the country photographing letters in signs, shapes and architectural elements. The letters are professionally printed in a 4" x 6" format, framed and using their artistic ability are arranged to create a singular word or custom name. In black and white, the pieces are bold, yet the combinations evoke comforting feelings.”

I played around a bit on the site, and was facilitated about the puzzle you can create. Not only can you create custom words, but you get to choose the actual photographs used for each letter. Plus, the website tells you where each photograph was taken. So for a New York City couple, you can use all city pictures, for a couple that's a little more outdoorsy, you can use pictures that are a little more natural, etc. You also get to see what types of pictures/letters look good next to each other.

I am obsessed with this gift, and thinks it makes a fantastic wedding gift by using the couples married name. That said, I always say, “know your bride” and encourage you to really think if your bride will like this, as it really has to be her taste, because she can’t exactly return it to Bloomingdale’s. I’m thinking Bride & Groom #9 will love it, esp. since Bride #9 is a bit of an amateur photographer. I’ll keep you posted if I end up giving it to them and what their thoughts are. What do you think?

Happy Bridesmaiding!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day Sale

Valentine's Day has come and gone. Wheather you spent the day/night with your signigificant others, or your BFFs, one thing is for certain today. All of the heart shaped goodies in your local grocery stores, drug stores and card stores will go on sale. And while it's a good time to stock your office candy drawer with some on sale sweets- don't forget you should ABB, Always Be Bridesmaiding. This is also the perfect time to stock up on heart-shaped shower & bachelorette supplies. Oriental Trading is one of my favorite (and inexpsinve) places to get my materials. I perused their site for Valentine's Day goodies that could easily translate to Bachelorette parties.
Heart shaped rings that make great favors for the gals to wear out at night.)
Rose shaped soap set can be a prize for a winner of a shower game
Heart shaped cake mold is a great G-rated alternative for the bachelorette pary
Feather boas make excellent props for Karaoke Bachelorette parties
Lip decoration cake toppers add a little pizzaz to your cupcakes
Happy Bridesmaiding!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Response Card Poems

Growing up, my mother was always writing poems. My sister and I got poems in our birthday cards, we got poems with clues as to where our Chanukah gifts were hidden (and then it was a race to find them) and most importantly- she would write a poem when responding to a good friend’s bar or bat-mitvah on the response card. She was well-known for them and everyone couldn’t wait to get a Linda Glastein poem.

Naturally, I am mother’s daughter, and I equate response card poems with special/close friends. So when I started bridesmaiding and had to RSVP to their weddings, what else did I do, but write a poem? I’ve written many poem rehearsal dinner speeches as well, but those are usually longer and more detailed. I like to keep the response cards short and sweet, but they still stand out when being opened, and bring a smile to everyone’s faces. Below is what I wrote for Bride #2.

Stef & Adam started dating back at IU,
And now it's time for them to say "I do."

On 7-7-07 these two will tie the knot,
It means so much to me to stand nearby in a special spot.

So of course I will be there on this special day,
Can't wait to celebrate and dance the night away!

How do you like to respond to the weddings you go to? Do you do anything different that stands out? Happy Bridesmaiding!

P.S. When I’m in a bind, I rely on to solve my rhyming needs!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Picture (Frame) is Worth A Thousand Words

When I had to get a wedding gift for Bride #1, I was really torn. Many of my friends were giving money or a gift from the registry, but I felt like I wanted to do something a little more special. I love Bride #1 to death, but she can be quite particular and I didn’t want to get anything she didn’t pick out herself.

I then came up with the perfect combination of the two. I picked out an expensive 8x10 picture frame that she registered for. It wasn’t quite as much as I wanted to spend, so I also ordered a smaller version in the same pattern. While at the wedding, I made sure to take a great vertical picture of the bride & groom. (As you can guess, I am quite the amateur photographer at the weddings I go to, and feel the need to capture every minute.) As soon as I returned to New York after the wedding, I ordered an 8x10 of the newlyweds in black and white and a 4x6 of the bridesmaids to put in the smaller frame.

I’ve given and iteration of this gift to many of my brides since, but nothing beats the way Bride #1 received her gift. You see, the couple lived together in New York, but their wedding was in Cleveland. They left for Ohio about a week before the big day, so they gave me a spare key to their apartment, just in case they forgot anything they needed (which they did- Groom #1 forgot his iPod and seriously needed it for the honeymoon!). So, while they were baking in the sun in Hawaii, I had the pictures printed, I put them in the frames, wrapped them, and delivered them right on to their coffee table.

As soon as they walked in to their apartment for the first time as husband and wife, they were so surprised to see a gift waiting for them. They were even more shocked to see their own wedding pictures in the frames. They were absolutely thrilled! I told them that they could be placeholders for the professional prints; I just wanted them to have some wedding pictures up until they were able to order the real ones. But Bride #1 loved the gift so much, she left the picture I put in, and last summer when I was at her house in Cleveland (they’ve since moved back to the Midwest) almost 3 years after her wedding, the picture I took still resided in the frame. She said she likes it that way, because it was more meaningful, since I took the picture. Awww….

That set the bar pretty high for my future brides. And while I wasn't able to get in to anyone else's apartments, I did always make sure that the frame was waiting either in their mailbox or with their doorman when they got home from their honeymoons. They all loved coming home to such a special gift.

If you like this idea, but can’t find a frame on their registry, just pick out something classic they might like, and if you can get it engraved with their wedding date on it, even better!

Do you have a favorite “go-to” wedding gift you like to give?
Happy Bridesmaiding!