Thursday, August 19, 2010
If the answer is yes- then you should definitely check out Animoto. Animoto takes your pictures (and video clips if you have them) and produces amazing quality videos set to music that look extremely professional, yet it's not difficult to use. To quote their website, it's "Fast, free, and shockingly easy." All you need to get started is your own pictures and an mp3 of the song you want to use. I made an Animoto video last year for Bride #8's bachelorette party, and set it to Lady Gaga's "Just Dance"- one of the songs we rocked out to all night long. (They have stock songs on the site, but you can also provide your own.) I would share that video, but Bride #8 would probably defriend me for life, so instead, I'm going to share the samples from Animoto's website. It's just a fun, different way to share your pictures with everyone, one that your bride is sure to love.
P.S. Thanks to H in Atlanta, one of my mom's best friends from growing up (and bridesmaid circa 1973) who introduced me to this site. H was always taking pictures of our family vacations growing up and made them into VHS videos accompanies by music. Now that we've entered the digital age, she's taught me about great sites like this!
Sunday, August 15, 2010
We went to Miette's Culinary Studio in the West Village. It was an adorable little kitchen and dining room. We split up in to groups and were all responsible for different courses. It's BYOB, so we were able to keep costs down by picking up a few bottles of Two Buck Chuck, and of course brought some festive bachelorette decorations (i.e. mardi gras beads, penis straws, etc). After we cooked, we were able to relax and enjoy our delicious meal and great company as we were served by Miette's staff, and then they took care of cleaning up. We all got copies of the menu and recipe to take home with us.
You can make this even more fun by making custom aprons for the group. Bride #3's father is in the premiums business, so he made all of us aprons that say "Not milk?" because Groom #3 has a severe lactose allergy. The bride had a special apron that said "Groom #3's Chef". We all had a great time at our custom dinner, enjoy some of the pictures from the night below!
In addition to the places listed in the article, I have also heard really great things about the DJ Chef who comes to you and plays awesome party music while cooking up a storm.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
When the MOH for Bride #2 suggested we do this at her shower, I was totally on board. This time it was a little different, as we all ordered the charms from the same company. The pro? They were all consistent and would fit on the bracelet perfectly. The con? We were limited to the charms at one website. We used the website http://www.mycharmedlife.com/ and were all really happy with the results.
At Bride #2’s shower, instead of doing a poem, or a top ten list, etc as our bridesmaid "presentation"- we got up in front of everyone and presented her with the charm bracelet and why we chose each individual charm. Bride #2 and I were roommates in New York City in our first apartment after college graduation. We lived on 34th Street , so to remember our time living together (and before she moved in with her now husband), I got a charm of the Empire State Building (an iconic New York building, also on 34th Street ). Other charms friends got were our sorority’s mascot, a phone from a long-distance friend, a shopping bag from one of her shopping buddies, an elementary school from her friend from growing up, etc. We even got the moms involved, and her mother-in-law got her both her and her husband’s first initials to include. Other great ideas I know that Bride #7 and her friends did were their college mascot and Big Ben (because they studied abroad in London together.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
So, I did a little research, and sure enough, this is now a permanent fixture and not a seasonal sample sale. They now offer by appointment only service for help with designer gowns. Retail prices range from $100 to $1,000. This is definitely worth checking out for any brides on a budget (or who don't believe in spending oodles on a gown). Check out the press release for details.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
While searching for an engagement gift for Bride #8, I recently stumbled across the Forever and Ever Do-It-Yourself platter. I thought this was a great thing to have at showers. All of the guests could sign it and write well wishes to the bride & groom, then they have a great serving platter to use "forever and ever". And for only $42, this won't break the bank either.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
This can get a little tricky with the name of the bride and groom, so you may have to be a little creative. The goal is for you to have the exact number of letters that you have people attending the bachelorette party (minus the bride of course). What do I mean by that? Well, if you have a lot of people attending you can add their last name? If their first names are really short, you can use the word “and” but if their names are long you can use “&” or “N”. See my example below for Elizabeth and Jeffrey Smith:
7 people: “Liz & Jeff”
10 people: “Liz and Jeff”
13 people: “Liz ‘n Jeff Smith”
16 people: “Elizabeth & Jeffrey”
If you are at an elegant brunch, you may want to keep the advice tasteful and write things like “Never go to bed angry” or “Happy Wife, Happy Life”...but when alcohol gets involved, it’s pretty fun to make it a little more X related.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Starting tomorrow, Saks Fifth Avenue in New York (50th & Fifth), will have 50% off brand new gorgeous wedding gowns. Ladies- this is not your run of the mill sample sale! So from Wednesday, July 28 through Saturday, July 31- RUN (don't walk) to Saks with your bride and help her get a fabulous dress. And hey, all that help may pay off and she won't make you walk down the aisle in a peach frouffy frock.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
This got me thinking about the fact that I have yet to blog on a such an important part of the BM process-- the dress! I wanted to share some information with everyone on the dresses of my bridesmaid past, and offer some advice on dress shopping.
Wedding #1: We all chose our own long black dresses
Wedding #2: Champagne long Vera Wang, all the same dress
Wedding #3: Chocolate Brown long Amsale, all the same dress
Wedding #4: Navy t-length Jenny Yoo, all the same dress
Wedding #5: Black long Bill Levcoff, all the same dress
Wedding #6: Royal Blue short Lela Rose, got to pick one of three styles
Wedding #7: Navy short Vera Wang, all the same dress
To see pictures of all my dresses, visit Pictures of My Bridesmaid Past, or visit my Facebook page.
I've gone shopping for the dress a few times to help the bride decide and have learned a few lessons- for both the bride and the bridesmaid. In honor of my 8th wedding, here are 8 tips for BM dress shopping:
1. Chances are this dress will never be worn again. Don't pretend it will. Brides- don't try to look for a dress that your BFFs will wear again, because everyone has different taste. Just look for something you'll like in your pictures and you think your friends will not hate you for wearing.
2. BMs- be honest with your opinion, but be open minded. Remember, the decision really comes down to the bride and she has a lot of cooks in the kitchen. Don't make this difficult for her.
4. When ordering, IGNORE the size. BM dress sizes are so different than normal dresses, so don't freak out if all of a sudden you are in double digits. Bigger is ALWAYS Better! (For bride #3, they accidentally ordered me a dress way too small, and it wouldn't zip! I freaked out, took it to the store and since it was their mistake, they had to alter it for me. It took some major reconstruction and a month full of fittings-- yes, fittings for a BM. Everything ended up ok in the end, but it's an easily avoidable situation.)
5. Remember it's only one night of your life, and the night is not about you-- it's about the bride.
6. If you don't love the dress, you can always make yourself feel better by going spray tanning (SuperB has fair sking and doesn't recommend ruining your skin with sun damage!), getting your hair & make up done, fabulous shoes, or gorgeous jewelry. (And if it's really really bad, check out http://www.uglydress.com/ to remind yourself it could be worse).
7. Make sure your dress fits correctly and it's properly altered. The only thing that's worse than an ugly dress is an ugly dress that doesn't fit right. Trust me, it will help you look your best that night.
8. After the wedding, if you know you'll never wear it again, avoid developing a closet like Jane in 27 Dresses. No one has space like that for dresses they'll never wear, especially not in New York City. Instead, consider donating your dress to a charity, there are many that collect prom dresses for girls who can't afford them. Check out local opportunities at inner-city high schools or donatemydress.org, the first national network to bring together local dress drive organizations across the U.S. They'll help you find one in your area. "One man's trash is another man's treasure."
What's your favorite dress that you've worn?
Friday, June 18, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
In October of 2007, I went to my friend (we’ll call him “D”)’s birthday party. I had known D for about 5 years, but never met his sister, I, until that night. We were in the minority that night, as the party was primarily male-dominated (not that I was complaining), so ended up spending a lot of time chatting. We totally hit it off. The next day, I happened to be talking to one of my best friends, S, and she was telling me a story about one of her closest guy friends, G. I knew G through S, and we both had share houses in Fire Island over the past summer, so we would sometimes hang out there together. Since I had spent some time with G at the bars in Fire Island, he had told me what he was looking for in a girl, and had described his type to me.
As S told me the story about G- an idea popped into my head. I asked her if G would trust me to set him up, because I had met a girl the night before I thought he would like. She asked me about her, and I told her everything I knew about I. S said it sounded like a good idea, and she would talk to G for me. In the mean time, I called D nd said “Is your sister dating anyone?” When he responded that she wasn’t- I said “Even though I only met her briefly, do you think she’d be interested in a a guy I want to set her up with?" D asked me a few questions about the guy in mind, and asked if he had my “seal of approval”. I assured him that he did. So even though I only met I briefly, she was open-minded and trusted her brother, who trusted me.
I gave I’s contact information to G and they immediately hit it off. I can’t explain what made me get the feeling that they would be a good pair. They were the same age, they had gone to the same business school, they were the same religion (important to both), and I just thought that their personalities would mesh. Apparently I was right! Some people even think they look alike, so maybe that was it too.
Whatever my “feeling” was, it worked, and now they are as happy as can be. So, congrats to I and G- and I hope you (and your BMs) will be reading SuperBridesmaid during the wedding planning process!
PS- D and S deserve some of the credit too! If I hadn’t been friends with both of them, and if they didn’t serve as my “messengers”, this wouldn’t have happened!
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Not a member of Gilt yet? No worries! There's still time to become a member before the "big day" on Friday. A special bonus for SuperBridesmaid fans! Below is a special preview of some of the great deals you can get this weekend.
Sale Starts 3/12
Original Retail: $5790, Gilt: $1999
Friday, February 19, 2010
What’s a ribbon bouquet? Well it’s an old shower tradition to take all of the ribbons used to wrap the bride’s gifts and compile them into either a hat or a bouquet. Personally, I prefer the bouquet because A) it can be used by the bride at her rehearsal to walk down the aisle, B) it’s more wedding appropriate! and C) the hat can look a little silly (but some people like embarrassing the bride).
At the second shower I ever attended (I wasn’t a BM) - the MOH asked for my help because the rest of the BMs were helping unwrap and repack the gifts- and she knew I was artistic and creative. Little did I know back then that this would become my job at almost every shower I attended! Personally, I love having the responsibility. As a BM you usually have to help with the gifts anyway, and I find assembling the ribbon bouquet a lot more fun than unwrapping, re-packing or being on trash patrol!
So how does one create such a masterpiece? Well here are SuperBridesmaid’s tips to make a ribbon bouquet your bride will love!
What to bring from home:
1. Paper Plate
2. Scotch Tape
3. Pair of scissors (it may be helpful to bring an extra pair so that the unwrapping team doesn’t keep stealing yours!)
1. Top of plate is back of bouquet, facing you
2. Poke holes in the paper plate
3. Tie ribbon in bows and bring strings through the back
4. If there is ribbon already curled or in a premade bow, you can staple on the plate or just find one string to pull through
5. Try to evenly distribute ribbon you have lots of colors of
6. Fake flowers are great to use- so try to make them prominent
7. Use extra (boring color) ribbon to tie the strings in the back together to make it easy for the bride to hold
8. If you have a lot of ribbons, you can have it trail from the bottom (and even tie together)
1. Since you want to finish the bouquet as the bride finishes opening the gifts, you need to work quickly- don’t get distracted by pretty gifts!
2. Grab two chairs- one for you to sit on (a little painful to do standing in stilettos!) and one to hold the pile of the ribbons and bows to use
3. Ask the BMs who are unwrapping the gifts to take the ribbons off first, so you have a big pile and your choice of ribbons
4. If you decide to make the hat, I like to use the tool on Bed, Bath & Beyond wrapping to make a little veil
Below are some pictures of hats and bouquets I have made. Which is your favorite? Do you prefer hats or bouquets?
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
I got this idea from my friend Katie's sister. Katie always signs her name "KT" in e-mails, and her MOH used it at her bachelorete party by serving everyone "K-Tinis." The first time I made a custom cocktail was this past summer at Bride #6's bachelorette prty. Her name is Stephanie, so I served "Stepha-tinis." We bought her a plastic martini glass with a veil, and plain ones for the rest of us. I got a recipe from Work Bride #2 and made a delicious beverage that consisted of Nuvo and champagne. The drink was festively pink and bubbly and got us all off to a good start for the night!
Sunday, January 31, 2010
All New Yorkers know that the back room of Ricky's NYC is a bachelorette party gold mine. As long as you can muster up the courage to venture past the door beads and the "Adults Only" sign- you can find all the ingredients you need to make a successful bachelorette party including name tags, goody bags, penis straws, veils, bachelorette t-shirts and napkins, etc. Ricky's is great, because almost every neighborhood has one, and it's a quick and easy stop. The only con is that Ricky's can be pretty pricey.
Enter Party City. There's only one in the city (14th street between 5th & 6th), but I used to live two blocks away, so that was quite convenient for me. Party City has a lot of the same things; they are just not as "X" rated as some of the things found at Ricky's. You can still find your name tags, veils, bachelorette napkins etc, as well as other necessary party supplies including glow sticks, boas, and Mardi Gras beads. If you need to set a table - Party City is great to pick up utensils, plates, napkins, balloons, crepe paper, table cloths etc in fun colors (which can also be a lot cheaper than the bachelorette napkins, or you can use them as accents). If you have time, you can even order from their website. If you sign up for their e-mail list, you can get coupons to help save you some extra dough. Here's a link to their bachelorette party merchandise, and below are a few of my favorites.
Bachelorette Party Balloons: An easy way to make the event space look festive!
Bride Martini Glass: Give her a special glass and make her a signature drink!
Another great resource for supplies (especially those not in NYC) is an oldie but goodie. Remember how growing up your mom ordered gifts for your birthday party goody bags from the Oriental Trading catalog? Well who knew it's now a great website to order your bachelorette party accessories from? SuperBridesmaid did! Just like Party Cirty, Oriental Trading is a great stop for items like plates, napkins, balloons etc- and is even cheaper. If you sign up for their e-mail list, they always have great offers going on including free shipping and other coupons. They always have great sales going on, and don't just look at the bachelorette items. Check out all areas on the site, I have ordered heart shaped lollypop rings before that were a big hit. Depending on the size of your party, this is a great place to order any candy for your girls' night out, as they have great deals on bulk quantities (since I know many of us don't want to schlep up to the new Costco at 116th st). Here are some of my favorites from Oriental Trading:
Mardi Gras beads: Make sure everyone knows you are part of the bachelorette party by giving everyone beads to wear!
What supplies and decorations are your favorites? Any good hiding spots in the city that you've found?
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
So if you were not blessed with my mother's ease in stilettos, like me- you always bring a change of shoes for the party. However, I am always plagued with what to do with my cumbersome flip flops? I've hidden them in the bridal suite, then gotten locked out. I've made mad dashes to the party room to hide them under the table before the ceremony even starts, or made my date carry them in a shopping bag. Not exactly the classiest of moves.
But that will all change for my next wedding, now that I've discovered Rolleez. Rolleez are the answer to a BM's achy feet prayers. They are adorable ballet flats, available in 7 different colors that you can roll up and easily stash in your clutch, since they don't take up a lot of room. No one even knows that you are "packin" an extra pair of shoes. They are absolutely adorable, comfortable and most of all - easy on your wallet! (Plus if it's winter- you don't necessarily want to wear flip flops. No pedicure is required!)
If you are a bride reading this, Rolleez also make an excellent bridesmaid's gift. They come packaged as a gift in a little box with a tote bag. This way you can make sure that all of your BFFs are comfortable and literally have their dancing shoes on. I highly recommend checking them out.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
The Spring issue comes out on March 23 (hint, hint--this will make a great thing to pick up as an "OMG! You just got engaged gift!" and their annual New York Weddings Event is taking place Wednesday, April 7 at the Metropolitan Pavilion from 5 PM - 8 PM. This is your chance to help your bride with so much of her wedding planning all in a one-stop-shop. They'll have tons of vendors on hand including photographers, florists, jewelers, bridal gown designers, etc.
Hurry up and buy your tickets ASAP! (There is an incentive for a bride to bring her BMs, as the ticket price is $35 for one, but $50 for two. Plus, they are including a one year subscrption to New York mag!) Have fun and let me know what you thought of the event...
Sunday, January 3, 2010
This was a perfect opportunity to buy her some gifts off the registry- but then add some fun items as well. So we bought her everything she needed to bake off her registry, including cookie sheets, measuring cups, rolling pins, etc. She really appreciated that because it was a lot of little things that people tend to neglect (it's much easier to buy a $40 serving piece then 8 $5 items). Then, we added in some fun cookie cutters (not something you typically buy yourself) and a cookbook dedicated purely to making cookies. Our main gift was a really fun taxi cab cookie jar to keep on her counter.
Why a taxi cab, you ask? Well, the five of us had always taken dance classes together- and always had these crazy outlandish recital costumes. One of our most famous was when the recital's theme was "New York City" and our costume was taxi cab drivers. This way, we knew the bride would always think of her dance class friends when she saw the cookie jar. Having trouble finding a cookie jar in the shape of something that reminds the bride of you? Just try these personalized cookie jars that you can customize with the bride's new name. They make the perfect gift for the bride who loves to bake!