Flower Girl Dresses

Image and Dress from Posh Little Tutus

In three words: too much fun! If you know me it isn’t a stretch to know why I had the most enjoyable time picking out the flower girls’ dresses. Frilly? Flowers? Count me in! Our flower girls are totally the perfect age to play dress up at five and two years old. They are the age when they are super adorable in whatever they wear!

One reason why it was so easy is because I knew their style: “flower princess butterfly” as the five year old expressed it. As long as it was puffy and some shade of pink I knew they’d love it. It was a minimal pressure purchase. I figured as long as it wasn’t uncomfortable in fit or of scratchy fabric it would be just fine. Dealing with young children there is always the risk that their mood will dictate if they like it or not the day of the event. Really, children are a wildcard! But if the girls were happy and excited to wear the dresses from the get-go, then we were on track to have a good day.

Another reason why it was low stress was because I was paying. It could be as expensive or cheap as I’d like. I gave myself the responsibility to pay for all my junior bridesmaid and flower girl dresses. The five girls in total–three juniors and two flower girls–all came from one family. It would be a lot to ask of their parents to buy them all, especially since their mom, the Sister of the Groom, was buying a bridesmaid dress for herself and they were all tracking across the United States to be part of the wedding! So if I could ease any pressure off of them so they could attend happily, I had to do it.

I got a lot of help from the older sisters identifying styles that they thought would be cute on their younger siblings. The 10 year old junior bridesmaid took it on as her project and would always be calling me over to the computer to look at the one that had to be the one because it was way too adorable. From here I learned of some of the brands she liked for the youngsters: Kate Mack, US Angels, Biscotti, Hannah Banana, Halabaloo, Isabella & Chloe, Ooh La La, Posh Little Tutus and Le Pink.

Shopping I did in person on my own time. Hands down my favorite department store–and my recommendation for girl’s special occasion dresses–is Nordstrom. They have a huge variety of fancy dresses and so many of them were exactly what I was looking for. My other top department store was Bloomindales followed by Lord and Taylor, but they had less variety and less price points than Nordstrom. My other favorite shops were the outlets Nordstrom’s Rack, Century 21, Filene’s, and Daffy’s, all of these were great to find good deals. Unfortunately I could never find dresses in the sizes I wanted–they were always just a size off. I liked a lot of summer dresses at J-Crew where I purchased the junior bridesmaid dresses. They were all of coordinating colors (coral and blush pink were everywhere) but most of J-Crew’s special occasion dresses were either in white or too expensive (over $150). Some of the other stores at the mall had great sale rack options, like at Jacadi.

Here are some pictures of my most favorite flower girl dresses from my outings:

Jacadi Paris

I ended up purchasing the girls’ outfits at Nordstrom. The two year old’s had a rosette on the bodice and the five year old’s had petals making up the the top. I just thought they were too cute and classic looking to pass up! Flowery? Check! Pink? Check? Flowy. Check!



Groomsmen Attire

Finding the perfect groomsmen outfit was harder than finding bridesmaid dresses! Much harder. After visiting Men’s Warehouse and trying on suits we realized we didn’t want a tuxedo. It was going to be too stiff, too heavy, and too much for a more casual outdoor wedding. The problem with was finding a suit that would work.

Rental stores are so good because they have different styles in stock, purchasing is less time sensitive–the three month turn over in mall stores becomes even more of a rush when trying for a hard to find size–and really, it requires minimal effort from the dudes. There is a clerk that knows what they need once they drop the wedding party’s name so they aren’t left to hunt for the right things all by themselves. Typically getting the guys to the rental store and on time is something that us brides go crazy trying to coordinate! And rightfully so!!

Our pick for the groomsmen

We tried to find a seersucker suit or a more casual tan suit at a rental store. But to no avail. We tried the main department stores but everything was too expensive to ask our groomsmen to purchase (we were already asking them to travel across the country so we wanted minimal cost). We looked at H&M, Zara, and UNIQLO trying to find low price items–and we did, but not in the range of sizes we needed (darn international slim sizes!).

We found our perfect outfit at a regular mall store called Express. It was exactly the style we wanted and it feel within the $150 or less budget we were hoping for. It was a seersucker vest and pants. I absolutely loved the seersucker vest look for the country club! It was perfect! We tried to take advantage of what the boys already had like white dress shirts and casual white shoes to save them money as well.

Image from Express

Below is a letter we sent to our groomsmen (originally with links but now outdated).


Hey Groomsmen,
Here is what you should do while stores are stocked this month:
1. Sign up for a “15% off your next purchase” coupon
2. Purchase the following groomsmen attire (in-store or online)

Basically the outfit is a vest, pants, and white shirt (picture of the outfit is attached–we are not wearing ties).





Image from Shoes.com


We sent this in April–you would think they wouldn’t wait until July to buy!! Well they did–well, two of them did and that screwed everything up! That left me in panic mode. Three groomsmen had the entire outfit. But one of them now couldn’t fit into his vest.  One person only bought the pants and (in July) couldn’t find a vest. The bestman didn’t buy a thing thinking that we would automatically buy his since he was the “best” man. So we were down three vests, one pant.

For one entire weekend I bought every single seersucker vest I could find–that I could afford. Thankfully a lot were on sale at Macy’s (Bones & Rags, DKNY, Nautica) but they were not the same fabric, color, style of our Express outfits. I figured as long as they were in seersucker vests we would be okay, but I wasn’t excited about it. Some vests had navy blue stripes, some tan, some thin, some wide, some wrinkly fabric. One word: Headache!!


Our variety of groomsmen attire

I ended up with 6 miscellaneous vests unsure what was going to fit, bought an extra jacket thinking the best man could wear that if the others didn’t work, I found the missing pants at Express after going to three different locations!

The other thing that happened: we planned on Mr. Pashmina wearing the matching jacket so he would be a dressier than the groomsmen, but still matching. He didn’t fit into it! We never tried it on when we first settled on it so we were left to find another suit. Thankfully this wasn’t in July. But still…

In the end everything worked out, but I didn’t know how it was going to look until I was at the aisle! I left it for my groom to figure out.

The Bohemian Braid

Sorry for the delays in my posts–I can’t believe it has been more than two months since my last! Well, back to hair!

Image from Hairdressers on Fire

My three junior bridesmaids are gorgeous! They have this heavy and thick wavy hair. We are always playing and experimenting with it. One of my favorite hairdos on them is a summer chic, half-up bohemian braid. Originally I was looking at braid hairdos for me, but I just love it for the junior BMs–who are 10, 13, 15. It is cute without being too cutesy, and it is totally up my ally with my wedding being more of a natural and relaxed one. Basically, this hairdo reminds me of home in California and how perfect is it for our outdoor courtyard wedding there!

I was trying to look up some pictures online because as a penny pincher we will be doing all the kids hair ourselves. While on my search I found something better: YouTube tutorials. Here are a few for you that helped us on the magical day.

Hair Trial

Just a week before our wedding I brought in a few of my inspiration photos to my hair trial. I was in between three hairdos so I wanted to try them all. Take a look at my thoughts going into the appointment. Then see how they turned out below!

1. The Half Up
It would be a good compromise between my longing for long wavy locks and an crisp updo. Perhaps I could look Grecian and whimsical like the character from Mamma Mia? Or perfectly in place like on Martha Stewart Weddings?

Martha Stewart Weddings

2. The Side Chignon
Love the ballerina bun, but the side chignon is even better because you can also see your bun from the front! And doesn’t that make it that much better!

Marth Stewart Weddings

3. The Side Pony Tail
Sassy, fun and young. I even feel different when I wear a low, side pony. Maybe a little country or rock ‘n roll. Or even back to that Grecian idea, I could do it with a loose braid.


That what I was thinking. This is how it turned out, translated by my stylist R.J. at Roger Joseph’s Salon.

Hairstyle 1: The Half Up

Hairstyle 2: The (Small) Side Chignon

Hairstyles 2 1/2: The (Large) Side Chignon

Hairstyle 3: The Side Pony

I told R.J. the night before the wedding which one I wanted to go with. It was hard to decide. Which one would have you chose?

Hairstyles: The Updo

Since I was getting married outside one of my fears was the wind. “Would it be gusty that day and would all my guests be distracted by me fumbling with my hair?” my inner bride would ask. The updo would be perfect! It could keep my hair in place and all I would have to focus on would be me getting married!!
When I saw the side chignon it seemed to have the right mix of everything I wanted: something young and fresh, relaxed enough for an outdoor venue, classic enough for the occasion.  After taking a look at some of the other updos  there are quite a few that captured the essence of what I wanted. Whether the hair is twisted, made into a bun, curled, pulled straight, side swept, or what have you there are so many beautiful ones to choose from.
So I’ve pasted a few of the updos that I love below for you. Many of them helped me decide what to ask for at my wedding hair trial at Roger Joseph’s Salon in New Jersey. Next post I’ll tell you what I chose and show you pictures of the day.

Which is your favorite updo?

Image by Tec Petaja
Image by Jose Villa
Image by Tec Petaja
Image by Tec Petaja
Image by Tec Petaja
Image from Martha Stewart
Image from Martha Stewart
Image from Instyle Weddings
Image from Instyle Weddings
Image from Instyle Weddings
Image from Instyle
Image from Instyle
Image from Glamour
Image from People

Hairstyles: Long Waves

The long, loose curl that is effortlessly cascading down a bride. I just adore it! Romantic and beautiful with just that perfect touch of natural. I am sifting through some of the pictures that I took to my wedding day hair trial. I, like so many brides, had to decide between three basic hairstyles for the big day: up, down or half-up. Which version for the wedding? Would there be time for two? I was instantly drawn to having my hair down. This is what I usually wear most days, so it feels like me. Very feminine, a little casual and made perfect with a white dress (and perhaps a flower too)! Here are a few inspiration pictures for long, bohemian waves.


Buying our Wedding Rings

My experience looking for wedding bands was very different than Mr. Pashmina’s. I knew what I wanted. In one word: Sparkles! My question was how to get it–with it being the most comfortable & at a good price. I never knew how girly and glamorous I could feel wearing a ring until Mr. Pashmina got me my engagement ring. Now I wanted more!

My engagement ring is beautiful, but it isn’t the most comfortable ring to wear because it is a little thick. I assume one reason is because they need to fit the diamonds in the band, but if I put all my fingers together you can feel the metal ring and it feels weird. I wanted a wedding ring that when worn would feel like wearing nothing at all. But this wasn’t going to be easy, I didn’t want a plain metal band like Mr. Pash. I wanted something that sparkled like my e-ring.

I could go a few different ways. I could try to find a matching a matching band, or look for a very thin ring that would “go”, or get an eternity band.

I did want sparkles, but maybe not all over. I quickly realized how expensive eternity rings were. Was it worth it? I hated twisting my e-ring so all the diamonds were perfectly symmetrical. But was it worth the extra bucks not to turn a ring? If I wore it with my e-ring with it then I would still be turning a ring on finger? So was the purpose behind getting an eternity band purposeless? To me, right now in my life, an eternity band wasn’t that necessary. A three-sided ring would be more than enough. Since I would most likely be wearing the two together–I imagine 90% of the time–I might as well have them both requiring a twist.

After looking at the collection I knew that I wanted one that was similar to my engagement ring. When I put on rings of different styles–which in theory I love–it just seemed to busy, too much going on, not quite right. I knew for something that I was going to wear everyday it needed to be–in my mind–clean, versatile, and something I felt went with everything. So that left me with trying to find a match.

To my surprise there were lots of “matches” to my e-ring. The jeweler showed me all the sizes of wedding bands that were the exact same one as my engagement ring without the center diamond. There were larger, thicker versions and smaller, thinner ones. I gravitated to the smaller one after trying it on, putting my fingers together and not feeling much metal-hand contact. But then jeweler showed me how when placed together there is a “step” between the rings, basically it would create a mini-pyramid effect. They were perfectly aligned, one wasn’t thicker than the other. Then the jeweler showed me the “perfect pair” to the engagement ring I love so much. It really did look good…but it was more expensive. As if reading my groom spoke up and said under your breath, “you might as well get the one that matches it perfectly.”

They had a three hundred dollar price difference, of course the one I wanted, my match was the more expensive one. Then I got schooled by Mr. P, “don’t be cheap on this, not this time.  It matches perfectly, you should get what you want.” I instantaneously heard his voice of reason. The perfect match really was the ring I really wanted. Might as well splurge this time, especially since it wasn’t a huge price difference…better than buying a totally new ring down the road.

In a matter of just 20 minutes I picked out my ring. It really wasn’t very difficult at all. Finally!

Check out a picture of mine and his! Cute, no?! His choice? A titanium comfort fit 8 mm ring with a brushed and satin finish. Mine? A channel set diamond set band with alternating round and rectangular stones.

Did you opt for a the match of your engagement ring? Do you wear your wedding ring solo or do you stack them? Did you “splurge” on the band you really wanted?

*all images personal photos


Anthropologie, Come On! Let’s See Some Dresses Already

Anthropologie. Image from anthropologiest.blogaroonie.com

After news of Anthropologie launching its own bridal line back last year, for some reason I keep on searching to see if anything has came out yet! I know I am married. I know that they said it was going to be Spring 2011. But for some reason I have searched “anthropologie wedding dresses” twice this month. Anxious or something? I guess I am just excited to see what they come up with. I have a feeling (I am hoping) that they will be a little unexpected and uber romantic. Anthropologie has a distinctive feminine, vintage feel, and at times a downtown/global vibe (it is the sister brand to Urban Outfitters–one of my other favorites). As a frugal-ista I love it when store brands come up with their own bridal lines because they are often more affordable than traditional dresses (think JCrew, Nicole Miller). So, for this sale rack searcher, I am eagerly awaiting their launch! Until they get their buns in gear, I have put together a few dresses as eye candy. Will something like these dresses be part of Anthro’s line? What clothing lines are you stalking?

Claire Pettibone. Image from blissweddingstudio.com.
Temperley London. Image from marieclaire.co.uk
Blumarine Sposa. Image from brides.com
Jenny Peckham. Image from perfectbound.blogspot.com.
Temperley London. Image from fashionbride.files.wordpress.com.
Blumarine Sposa. Image from oggisposi.tgcom.it.
Image from JCrew.
Anna Sui. Image from Net-a-Porter.
Roksanda. Image from Net-a-Porter.

What is Your Style?

There have been a handful of weddings that I have seen on the internet that have totally inspired me. They have proved to be immensely helpful, if even just for me to refer back to. But I’ve sent them to my vendors when trying to describe what I want. Showed them to friends and family members when asking them their opinion on something similar. I loved collecting images that captured a style that I liked. Even if I didn’t know why I liked the wedding, it was totally worthwhile to keep it and often times later on it came in handy.

The wedding between Jill Stonerock & Jason Schwartz was one of my most influential (check out my blog post What Wedding Has Inspired You the Most for more of my favorite nuptials). Rustic but not country. Relaxed but not casual. Beachy but not near the ocean. (?) I don’t know exactly how to describe it. It as if Malibu met Napa and had a baby that they named Austin. Perhaps I just should call it simply what it is…naturally beautiful.

Their wedding is set in one of my favorite wedding venues–The Figueroa Mountain Farmhouse. This location made it into our top five when we were narrowing down where to hold our own wedding. The Farmhouse is actually an old Appalachian home transported to the hills of Los Olivos, which is the most spectacular small town in Central California. Just two hours from Los Angeles and thirty minutes from Santa Barbara. The Farmhouse also could double as accommodations which is pretty nifty. But ultimately we would need to bring in a lot of rentals so it got crossed off our list. But ooh its location adds to this wedding’s rustic beauty!  The view, the rolling hills, it is just majestic.

Besides setting it is also the styling really struck me. Everything looks like it was plucked from mother Earth moments before the wedding! That is the main thing that I ultimately love. Rustic and raw–it so pretty! The greens from the herbs and the purples from the lavender, it is so scrumptious and sensuous. Early on I loved the ideas so using herbs for our wedding and seeing this sealed the deal.

Also, I love having a range of colors for the bridesmaid and MOH dresses. Its a great way to have your most honored girls stand out by having them wear the same dress in a different hue. Everything flows in the wind and with their loose curls all the ladies look so fresh, bohemian and free. Very relaxed and chic! And their organically arranged bouquets and the mini bouquets on the table are so underworked it really seems so new to me.

Was there a wedding that encapsulated your style? Did you collect images for visual reference like me?