Flashback Fridays: The Civil War era bride

Portrait painted by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, 1847, as an anniversary present for Prince Albert

Queen Victoria by Franz Xaver Winterhalter

Although not the first royal bride to marry in white, Queen Victoria was responsible for beginning the white wedding dress trend, now tradition, when she married Prince Albert in 1840. Because photography didn’t exist in 1840, or possibly existed but not fully-developed, Queen Victoria commissioned artist Franz Xaver Winterhalter to paint her wedding portrait in 1847, as a gift to her husband. Note the details the artist captured of the Honiton lace in her gown.


Above you see a tintype photo of a bride from the 1860s, my guess would be 1862/65 due to the skirt. Orange flower blossoms, a symbol of fertility, also trimmed the ruffle flounced dress and became part of her veil. This photograph is quite the collector’s item. Although we cannot see as much detail in the photo as we can in the painting of Queen Victoria, this … [read more]

May 16 2014 Labels: | | | | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Flashback Fridays: The Civil War era bride | Share this

Moonstones & Diamonds

moonstone braceletThere’s just something about the combination of moonstones and diamonds in this bracelet that makes the day a little brighter. Everything sort of just fades away next to the sparkle of the diamonds and the soft blue glow of the moonstones. And when they hit the light just right? Wow.

Set in 18k white gold, this mesmerizing bracelet bends with you, which I always find to be important. There’s nothing like wearing something that feels clunky and weird when you’re trying to simply do things in life like type, write- you know, functionality.

This beautiful bracelet was created by Joyce Groussman Estate & Fine Jewelry out of Scottsdale, AZ, a contemporary piece with no price listed. Interested? Contact them before we do. It’s perfect for your wedding day!

Warmly, Julia  Wedding Story Writer[read more]

May 13 2014 Labels: | | | | | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Moonstones & Diamonds | Share this

Olia Zavozina Couture Designs

Courtesy Olia Zavozina Couture

Courtesy Olia Zavozina Couture

Today we’re featuring a fantastic Russian designer based out of Nashville- Olia Zavozina. We noticed her line last fall during Bridal Market, and were eager to meet her this spring.

Zavozina has been designing dresses since childhood and has a great love for fabrics. When designing a gown, she literally plays with the fabric, placing it on a dress form to see how the fabric lays and flows. Once satisfied, only then does she begin her design process, drawing a picture of the future dress, stating to me that her designs are all about the fabric. It’s also about the color. If a dyed batch of fabric doesn’t meet her color requirements, she will not use it for the intended design. She is particular and meticulous and does not sway from her vision. The beautiful ball gown pictured above was love at first sight for us. … [read more]

Jimmy Choo Bridal 2014 is Here!

Courtesy Jimmy Choo & Paris Vogue

Courtesy Jimmy Choo & Paris Vogue

Listen up, Jimmy Choo fans! The label released its Spring 2014 collection recently, and dare I say they’ve outdone themselves.

Accessories can often be the hardest to pull together after finding the perfect dress, but Jimmy Choo has always made the process easy with chic, detailed shoes and bags decorated with plenty of lace and sparkle. The new collection features stunning new shoe designs to please any bride, from highly opulent to elegantly simply. And of course, there are great new bags as well. Get one to match your new pair of shoes (because you can’t just buy shoes and NOT get a bag!), and bring it along to your bridal shower or use it to hold the essentials on your wedding day.
Jimmy Choo knows not to leave out the bridesmaids and guests, so there are new designs for them as well to … [read more]

April 22 2014 Labels: | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Jimmy Choo Bridal 2014 is Here! | Share this

Flashback Friday: Wartime 1940 Weddings

2013-08-06 20.39.24


In the early 1940s, many brides had very little time or money to plan a wedding. Many couples were concerned only with the legality of marriage, and the bond it produces, not with the traditions involved with planning a wedding. There were uncertainties of time–many soldiers had only 2 days to tie the knot and head back out to sea, or hop the next plane. In my vintage wedding photo collection, I have many of these old photos of brides wearing their best dresses for their special day. They are very meaningful to me, although they lack the white ruffles, lace, veils, and flower bouquets. I see a couple in love, with very little time, making the best use of it–marrying the one they love.

All of my best[read more]

April 18 2014 Labels: | | | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Flashback Friday: Wartime 1940 Weddings | Share this

Behind the Scenes: Jenny Lee Runway Show October 2013

Courtesy Masato Onoda & Jenny Lee

Courtesy Masato Onoda & Jenny Lee

I’m often asked how it feels to attend so many beautiful runway shows. The short answer is “fabulous.” A longer, more detailed answer is as follows: Peeking into the world of any designer is magical, no matter if they design wedding gowns, veils, prom dresses, or jewelry, artwork, or books. I think we all are equally inspired by one another, whether we all want to admit it or not. I admit it. I am inspired by everything during bridal market. I enter the worlds of so many talented people, getting to know them as human beings sometimes, which is inspiration by itself. There are parties where one doesn’t speak of the wedding industry, instead going to actually relax, have a glass of wine, and talk about the weather, favorite restaurants, or normal life experiences. I work hard and play hard. My feet hurt … [read more]

April 10 2014 Labels: | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Behind the Scenes: Jenny Lee Runway Show October 2013 | Share this

Claire La Faye

Courtesy Claire La Faye

Courtesy Claire La Faye

We first got a glimpse of designer Claire La Faye’s bridal gowns back in October at the fall Bridal Market. It didn’t take long for us to realize we were seeing something special. We’re thrilled to be able to share some dresses from her most recent collection so you can all see just what we’re talking about.

Courtesy Claire La Faye

Courtesy Claire La Faye

La Faye’s style is characterized by gown featuring soft, flowing fabrics and romantic silhouettes, all complete with divine details. The collection is aptly titled A Love Less Ordinary, as these are no ordinary, run-of-the mill gowns. As La Faye describes it, it is “luxury with an edge”. Her other collections are well worth a peek as well. . Each dress is crafted with the same attention to detail in a variety of styles and colors to please any bride looking for a classic, glamorous gown … [read more]

April 8 2014 Labels: | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Claire La Faye | Share this

Vintage Wedding Photo


From Michelle’s collection

My interpretation:

The bride sat by the window on her wedding day, face turned toward the camera, eyes focused, jaw determined. She seems ready, doesn’t she?

Her bare arms clutch her lily bouquet closely, veil loosely hugging her slender body, falling to the floor in waves of fine tulle. New satin slippers sit upon eager feet, shining in the reflection of the light, shoulders bare of the satin dress that otherwise falls modestly to her ankles.

Perhaps she enjoyed a bit of peace a few moments longer, as she heard her guests noisily arriving on the other side of the door. I imagine that her mother shed a few happy tears as they embraced. I envision her father extending his arm, offering her stability as the bridal march sounded and the next chapter of her life begun.

What do you see when you look at this beautiful … [read more]

April 2 2014 Labels: | | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Vintage Wedding Photo | Share this

Forget-me-not Vintage Gloves

Gone are the days when all women covered their hands in gloves. Prior to circa 1960 (and a bit beyond), most women in the U.S. didn’t leave their homes without covered hands and head. I love finding old photos of family members, noting the fashion changes throughout the years. I adore finding vintage photos at flea markets, treasure troves for the fashion inclined.

I found these delicate forget-me-not and rose vintage gloves at Helpers House of Couture, San Francisco, tags still intact, and thought how lovely they would be on the hands of a modern bride with traditional ideals. I once had a huge collection of vintage gloves, keeping only a few favorites, selling the rest many years ago. Although I don’t own the gloves above, I can’t help but imagine them being used in a real wedding. 

All of my best[read more]

March 27 2014 Labels: | | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Forget-me-not Vintage Gloves | Share this

Vintage Lace Wedding Suit Circa 1930s

Courtesy Patina Vintage

Courtesy Patina Vintage

As promised last week, we continued to look through our virtual closet, and are excited to feature another excellent vintage find in great condition. Today we bring you this ivory lace wedding dress and jacket ensemble from the 1930s. The dress features a v-neck and empire bodice, with a deep cutout in the back. The jacket has a pleated collar and pointed sleeves, a common trend for the decade. What’s great about jacket/dress combinations is that  they make it easy to transition into the reception. Just take the jacket off and get ready to party the night away!

Many Depression Era dresses were made out of cheaper materials, so this lacy ensemble is quite a decadent and rare find. Complete the look with a hat (more common than veils at this time) or fascinator, and you have yourself a classy, elegant 1930s bride.

Warmly, Julia  Wedding Story Writer[read more]

March 25 2014 Labels: | | Leave a comment | Comments Off on Vintage Lace Wedding Suit Circa 1930s | Share this