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Showing posts from August, 2008

Rules to BlackBerry By

(me reading emails on my BlackBerry while waiting to have my car inspected)
A year ago, you could have never convinced me that I'd be so attached to my CrackBerry...but yes, I too have fallen victim. As a business-woman, I feel it crucial to have access to the Internet and email at all times. Moreover, it's critical that I respond to my clients at all times as soon as possible. Thankfully though, I'm not too far gone. I have it set to cut off at a certain time at night and to cut on at a certain time in the morning. Also, I don't wear it on my person and don't look at it during meals. Sometimes you might even find it at the very bottom of my purse mingling with a few lone bobby-pins. But for those for whom your BlackBerry has become "an extension of your hand," let the following excerpts from this Forbes article serve as intervention:
Are You Addicted To Your BlackBerry? staff, April 2008
Its nickname, CrackBerry, says it all. There is no recreati…

A Lot Can Change in 50 Years

(photo courtesy of Flickr)
Last night, while reading my Dialogue (the Association of Bridal Consultants' newsletter), I came across some really interesting statistics taken from the June bulletin of The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP).  Their story on comparing weddings from 50 years ago to today reported eye-opening figures which not only supported the well-known facts that weddings cost a lot more now and divorce rates are higher, but also showed that brides and grooms are about 30% older, couples are having 42% fewer children and the life expectancy of men (while still lower than women) has grown an exciting 14%! 

Take a look:

Nuptials in Newark: The Wedding of Malinda Williams & Derrick "D-Nice" Jones

We posted about actress Malinda Williams' wedding blog on a little over a month ago and this passed Saturday they finally sealed the my hometown of Newark, New Jersey! The wedding was held at The Mezzanine and Malinda was absolutely radiant in a gorgeous strapless gown with tiers of pleated cascading tulle ("Evita" by Maggie Sottero).

Here are photos and Essence's account of their special day:
On Saturday, August 23, actress Malinda Williams and former rapper and present celebrity deejay Derrick "D-Nice" Jones wed in a quaint ceremony at The Mezzanine in Newark, New Jersey. As Barbra Streisand's "Evergreen" played softly, Malinda made her grand entrance, wearing an ivory, strapless, beaded, ruffled-tiered gown by Maggie Sottero, champagne Christian Louboutin satin pumps, and a veil and hair adornment compliments of Lori London, while carrying an eggplant calla lily. The couple's vintage-mod wedding theme was captured b…

"Bonjour," "Hallo," "Ciao," "餵," "Hello" to our distant Blog Readers!

In reviewing our blog stats, as I do quite often, I was pleasantly surprised to see our national and global reach is growing!  It's official...people are truly reading and sharing After "YES," Before "I DO" & Everything In Between!  Over the last 30 days, our top 10 cities have been Newark-NJ, Oklahoma City-OK, New York-NY, Sacramento-CA, Houston-TX, Seattle-WA, Dallas-TX, Chapel Hill-NC, Chicago-IL and Atlanta-GA.  Also, some of our international readers reside in Bangkok, Sydney, Montreal and London.  Many are reading our blog entries in other languages too, such as Turkish, Italian, Thai, German, Chinese, French and Dutch.

Well, "HELLO!" to you all and thank you so much for paying us a visit!

St. Pucchi: Extravagant, Ostentatious Magnificence

(St. Pucchi Spring 2009, not yet available for sale)
Nowadays, it seems quite common for brides-to-be to proclaim their wish of being "simple, yet elegant" on their wedding day. Actually, I've come to expect to hear this. But the celebutante in me maintains hope that there are still a few out there openly seeking nothing short of opulence. This idea brings St. Pucchi to mind. As far as I'm concerned, St. Pucchi's designs are extravagant, ostentatious magnificence ... eye candy at its best! Feast your eyes on a few of my favorites, below.

If you're a bride-to-be looking for a truly extraordinary gown, definitely don't forget St. Pucchi. And even if you're not shopping or don't have the courage it would take to pull one of these beauties off, feel free to imagine and live vicariously through these photos.

This Week In History: Bride or Groom's Name First?, The Wedding Date Planner

Your After "Yes," Before "I Do" & Everything In Between blog archive reminder has arrived! Take a look back at what we were discussing this week one year ago. Who's First? (does the bride's name go first on favors and programs?)The Wedding DATE Planner (help picking a rain-less wedding date) (wedding cake by Confetti Cakes)

Choosing The Proper Neckline

Picking the perfect dress takes a lot of time and effort. And while brides consider beading, fullness, embroidery and bustles, they should also pay very close attention to shapes and necklines. After all, all styles are not always flattering on every body type (hence the photo above).

Here are a few guidelines to remember when choosing a neckline:

Spaghetti Straps
Ideal for women with small breasts and petite framesStrap size: The smaller the woman, the smaller you can go with the strapOff the Shoulder

Good for full breast sizes and pear shaped figuresBad for full armsHighlights shoulders and collar boneStrapless

Best suited for women with smaller breastsWorks well with broad shouldersBateau
Bad for women with large breastsJewel
De-emphasizes the bust area, usually perfect for the more conservative brideGood for women with small breasts (will allow them to appear bustier)Scoop (Round)
Usually good for all figuresSweetheart
Ideal for large bustsV-Neck
Good for women with medium-sized breasts in…

Pop the Question in ESSENCE

Grooms-to-be, this one's for you ... It's time for the Essence “Will You Marry Me?” Contest!

For two years, Essence has helped men create surprise marriage proposals within their pages. Millions log on to to view the proposals and vote for their favorite couple—*awarding the duo with a once-in-a-lifetime experience a fabulous all-expenses-paid wedding and honeymoon.  Now you and your beloved could be among their next set of winners.
In an email, tell Essence what makes your gal extra special and why you'd like to surprise her with a proposal in the magazine. Send your submission to no later than October 31, 2008, along with your full name, address, daytime and evening phone numbers and a photo of you and your lady.
Good Luck!
*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. The Essence “Will You Marry Me?” Contest ends on October 31, 2008 at 11:59 PM. Open to legal male residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia who are 19 years or older at the tim…

FlAVOR of the Month: August '08

Our FlAVOR of the Month for August 2008 is ...

The Woven Set of Maracas from Plum Party (Throwing a highly charged party/reception centered around music? Building a fiesta theme? Just wanna honor your Puerto Rican heritage? These might be for you!) Description: Maracas were created and first used by the native Indians of Puerto Rico: the Tainos, as a percussion musical instrument. A pair of these are used to create the unique sound so common in Latin American and Puerto Rican music.  For use during special events, these colorfully woven little maracas look great at each place setting or as a party favor. They really get a party going because no one can resist shakin' their maraca!  Comes in sets of 4.
(photo courtesy of

A Name After My Own Heart

If it weren't for just 1 too many "r's," I might have had to declare the name of this gown, which is Rasharna, to be extraordinarily PERFECT! (wink)

But aside from that, this Maggie Sottero is really a funky little number. After initially seeing it on the Polka Dot Bride blog, I just had to post about it here. If any brides-to-be out there are polka-dot lovers, you might want to try this gown on for size. It comes in white, diamond white, champagne with ivory lace/topaz accents and blush with ivory lace/blush accents. The gown also features Swarovski crystals, glass beads, bugle beads, seed beads, and sequins on an A-line empire waist with a soft organza pleated skirt with a chapel length train.

Here are a few photos, courtesy of Maloman Photographers, of a recent bride wearing Rasharna. It's always a plus to see fashion in action. Happy Planning!

NEW from The Bridal Party!

We are pleased to announce the newest addition to all service packages of The Bridal Party ... the SWEETS SIDEBOARD!
(also affectionately known as a candy buffet)

The Bridal Party will design and construct each Sweets Sideboard specifically for each of its clients, to incoporate their favorite candies, sweet treats and event color palette. All candy jars, cake stands, serving platters, utensils/scoopers and favor bags will be delivered and set up for the client. Their only job will be deciding and providing the sweets! Caramel apples, truffles, personalized M&Ms, macaroons and jelly beans are our favorites, but the options are surely endless and we'll help every step of the way to make the best choices for a gorgeous display. Guests are sure to be pleased as they hand-pick (or scoop) and prepare their own take-home confections.

Edible Centerpieces

Pink Cake Box (one of my favorite bakeries in Northern New Jersey) recently created edible present centerpieces" for a Tiffany & Co. themed bridal shower. What I great idea!
Each cake surprised its guest table with a different flavor too ... some almond cake with amaretto filling, a few others lemon cake with fresh strawberries and vanilla custard, a couple chocolate cake with oreos and cream, and finally red velvet cake with lemon cream cheese filling. As usual, job well done!

27 Dresses?

... well, just in case you're still deciding, here are a few more to consider for the maids. Happy Shopping!

JORDAN Tea length princess line gown with contrasting trim and separate sash.
NICOLE MILLER Silk dupioni bubble hem bridesmaid dress. Also available in brown, blue, black and white.
Left: Shirred strapless dress with sweetheart neckline. Features skirt with detachable train. Right: Strapless gown with tea length skirt. Features ruffle detail on bodice and princess seams on skirt.
Left: Slate-gray silk shantung A-line bubble dress accented with gathered Cummerbund at waist, ruffled hem. Right: Raisin chiffon sheath with gathered bodice, ribbon trim at empire waist.

JIM HJELM OCCASIONS Left: Scarlet silk shantung A-line tea-length gown, halter neckline, natural waist, cascade drape in front. Right: Satin A-line gown, square neckline, pleated drop waist and tie at back.
IMPRESSION BRIDAL Left: Sweetheart neckline dress with asymmetrical pleated bodice, fit and flare ski…

Cham"painless" Flutes

I was lucky enough to have received a set of gorgeous Swarovski Crystalline toasting flutes for my wedding from co-workers. And, my August 3rd bride had a pair of engraved "Park Avenue" beauties, drenched in Austrian crystals, from Things Remembered (pictured above). But not everyone is willing to sacrifice such a pretty penny on this sort of keepsake.

So ... here are a few very affordable options, courtesy of Target!

"Vina" - set of 6 for $19.99"Magnifico" - set of 4 for $24.99Jean M. "Flared" - set of 2 for $30.99"Esperienze" - set of 4 for $29.99"Atelier" - set of 4 for $29.99