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What's Under There?

Thursday April 07, 2016

Okay, if you blush easy... be prepared! We’re going to dish about your “unmentionables.” More specifically, what you should know about what to wear under your wedding gown.

In our opinion, one of the BEST parts about being a bride is getting to wear a big white dress! It’s a magical feeling…. slipping on the most perfect ball gown, all eyes on you, with your Prince Charming by your side. Dress shopping is one of the first things you do after you say “yes” but it is also one of the last things that many new brides-to-be are prepared for. Why? Well, when trying on wedding gowns, it’s best to come prepared with what you may be wearing UNDER your dress. If you’re not used to strapless bras or Spanx (and this is JUST the surface of recommended wear) then now is the time to break them in. If you have the right underwear under there to start, you’ll have a better idea of what dresses may or may not work.

While you may think that you should wear that little lacy number under your gown, save it for the wedding night. The undergarments you DO wear under your dress are there SOLELY support, smooth and keep you in place. But where to start? Read on for tips that “cover” all of your bases.

IT’S ALL ABOUT FIT

Not for your dress… that will come later, but your bra. We’ve all heard the statistics, between 75-80% of women are wearing the wrong bra size. Whether you fall into this category or not, before you start your gown shopping, stop in to your local Victoria's Secret, Nordstrom, or Macy’s and get accurately fitted. If you’re planning on losing a few pounds before your big day, make sure that your undergarments change with you. This is the perfect time to assess your assets and ensure you're wearing the best undergarments for your gown.

Best tips (and your bridal salon will be able to also guide you on this) ::

If you're going to go with a strapless dress, wear a strapless bra.Try a few options to make sure your bra doesn't peek out of the top of your dress. Take particular notice if you have a sweetheart neckline because they dip down in front. Make sure the back of your bra fits comfortably below the backline of your gown. The strapless bra is also good for halter, off the shoulder and spaghetti-strap styles.

If you’re going with a low back dress, try an adhesive bra or have cups sewn into your gown.Adhesive bras offer great support and smoothness in front without a back. The medical-grade adhesives on the sides are miracle-workers, they really stay put. These bras are a celeb red-carpet mainstay. You can also try a convertible bra, if an adhesive one won't work for you. This is a strapless bra with a variety of strap options for necklines. It has multiple hooks so that you can wear it halter, crisscross or one-shoulder style. Or, once you’ve selected “the” dress, you can have cups and/or boning (if needed) sewn into your gown.

If you’re looking for “extra” support, then try a bustier or corset.These undergarments are traditional long-line bras that not only give your bust support and shape, but also mold your middle with boning and stretch fabric. While they can give you a great hourglass shape, be careful that they don't create a muffin-top illusion. They should be long enough to smooth you completely out. They can also add a vintage feel to your look, which can be quite lovely. Most bustiers and corsets are strapless, but come with detachable shoulder and garter straps.

PANTY VS. THONG

While your bra is one of the most important things you’ll need for your gown, let’s not forget your underwear. For the most part, you’ll want to wear something comfortable, whether panty or thong, you’ll want something that doesn’t ride up or roll down. Seamless panties and thongs work great because they won’t create any lines or bulges under your dress. But what type of panty you wear (or if you’re brave... don’t wear) will depend on the type of gown you’ll be wearing. For your fittings, bring or wear one that is the least visible so you’ll have a better idea what the lines of your dress will look like no matter what type of silhouettes you’ll be trying on. Remember, for your underwear, it’s all a matter of comfort and visibility.

SHAPE-WHERE?

One of the largest categories in lingerie today is shapewear. There are so many to choose from, from 'Spanx' to 'Sassybax' and 'Yummie Tummie,’ why we love them, is that these (not so easy to get into) undergarments suck, tuck and slim where you need it the most and have made many brides feel more confident, sexy and of course, happy. Shapewear bottoms promise everything from boosting your butt, eliminating muffin-top, trimming your thighs and deterring back fat. It sounds impressive, and it actually is because these pieces really work.

If you’re going to be wearing an A-line or ball gown, you probably won’t need any shapewear, but if you’re wearing a sheath or a style with a low hipline, like a mermaid, or trumpet style of gown, then bring on the Spanx!

Best tips ::

One of the BEST items out there is the hi-rise shaping brief or thong that comes up higher than a regular panty.It compresses the tummy and whittles the waist and hips. This miracle garment provides comfort, shaping and smoothing. Most shapewear pieces are seamless and come in a variety of nude shades. If you haven't worn shapewear before your wedding, it's best to try them out for a day to see which type of garment will work best for you.

One of the best options for brides are seamless undergarments.We highly recommend them. These pieces are usually made from hi-tech micro-fibers and offer completely seamless coverage and prevent any VBL (visible bra lines) or VPL (visible panty lines). In addition, they are extremely comfortable and feel weightless on the skin.

While white is the color of the day, try going nude with your lingerie.Opt for a flesh-toned color that is one shade darker than your skin shade. Nude lingerie disappears under white and light colors and is preferable to white lingerie under white garments. However, if you are wearing a heavy satin ball gown that is totally opaque, it's fine to go with white. Once you find the right under-pieces, you may want to consider purchasing two bras and two panties. You can never be too prepared!

Whatever your final choices for undergarments may be, don't forget that you'll want to bring all of your lingerie with you to your fittings.This is crucial to getting the best fit, particularly the bodice, on your gown. For more tips on finding the “right” underthings for your wedding gown, check out The Gown Guide: Find Your Perfect Match - from Bare Necessities.

Love Is In The Details :: Ceremony Logistics

Thursday April 07, 2016

Shh… we’re giving you exclusive access to Fred+Kate Events’ top secret ceremony timeline tips. From timing to cute OMG ideas, we’ve got it all right here for you.

COULD YOU CLARIFY SOMETHING, PLEASE?

Before diving into the details, you’ll want to clarify a few details with your vendors. This will allow you to be realistic with the timing that you’re working with on your big day.

First person? Your Catering Manager.Your venue’s timing will directly impact the amount of time your vendors have to set-up.

Be sure to ask your Catering Manager the following questions:

1) How much time is guaranteed for vendor set-up at the ceremony site?

Most venues will guarantee two hours of set-up for vendors, but there are a few that will only extend one hour. This is an important detail to confirm and communicate with your vendors.

2) Is there a prior event in my ceremony and/or reception venue?

Usually if a hotel doesn’t have a prior event in the space {a detail they’ll most likely be able to confirm one week to three days out}, then the ballroom or ceremony space can be set-up and ready for vendors by early morning, giving them ample time to put together a stunning display for your ceremony.

And now... your Florists, DJs and Live Entertainers!You’ll always want to keep them in the loop. Ask your vendors what the minimum amount of time is that they’ll need to set-up. Remember, they’re professionals, they’re trying to help you and they know better than anyone else how long they’ll need to set-up.

Be sure to ask your vendors the following questions:

1) What is the minimum amount of time you will need to comfortably set-up all items at the ceremony site?

Once you find out how much time your vendors will need to set-up at the ceremony site, you can work backwards. Stay tuned for more on that!

2) What is the minimum amount of time you need to break down, transfer & re-set items from the ceremony site to the reception site?

A huge and often overlooked detail is the time needed for relocation from the ceremony site to reception site. You should always factor in the time needed for transfer and reset of vendors before your guests enter. If it’s 20 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour, arrange your timeline so that your guests will be served cocktails in the foyer (or at the ceremony site) to avoid any run ins with vendors. You definitely want to preserve the magic and WOW factor of your amazing set-up {that you’ve spent so much time and money planning on} so for this reason, your vendors should never be seen in action by guests.

READY, SET… TIMELINE!

OK, details are finally in place. Right? Right! Now let’s create a timeline, shall we?

To be safe, you should always assume that your earliest guests {hello Aunty, Uncle and Grandma!} will arrive 30 minutes before the ceremony actually begins. READ: If you noted on your invitation that the ceremony will begin at 4:30p, you should assume that guests will arrive closer to 4p. This is important to note so you can notify your vendors that the end time for set-up will be 3:45p, 15 minutes prior. The start time of each vendor will be determined by the vendors’ specific set-up needs and your venue’s preference.

During this time, the bride and groom will be… can you guess it? Takin’ photos! That is, if you have a first sighting. If you elect NOT to have a first sighting, don’t worry! You can always work with your photographer and strategize photo taking with your wedding party during this time. The photos before the ceremony should always end at least half an hour before the ceremony begins.

Why so early? Simple!

  1. This will allow the bride a chance to freshen up and collect herself and avoid any ‘sneak peeks’ by guests.
  2. The groom’s party will have time to greet guests, mingle and debrief with the Officiant.
  3. The flower girl and ring bearer will have time to meet at the ceremony site and take their places.
  4. The guests will all have a chance to find a comfortable seat/spot at the ceremony,
  5. And of course, we want to give everyone ample time to get ready and troubleshoot if necessary.

NOTE: Be sure to have some jams {err… we mean ceremony music!} playing at this time. You can maximize the time that you have the musician for the ceremony by having them start playing 15 minutes prior to the ceremony.

ARE WE THERE YET? ALMOST!

As we approach showtime, there’s a few little details to take care of…

Double check that your bridal party is staged {depending on the entrance of the aisle} and the groom’s party is gathered and ready to make their way in from the side of the altar. Are they in place? GREAT! It’s time...

CEREMONY? CHECK!

Now that everyone’s in place, your ceremony will officially begin as scheduled. A ceremony with no particular religious or cultural custom will on average last about 15 minutes. However, when creating your ‘timeline’ you want to ensure that you allow enough time for ‘additional activities’ such as the lighting of the unity candles, lei exchanges, sand ceremonies, etc. You can even get creative and do unique activities such as ceremony painting, tree planting or even an adorable balloon release!

SAY I DO AND LET’S BE MARRIED!

15 minutes later, you’ve said “I Do” and you’re officially Mr & Mrs… it’s time for a recessional! Hand in hand, you’ll stroll down the aisle as your bridal party follows. Your MOH {maid-of-honor} and BM {best man} will lead the way followed by the rest of the wedding party, then traditionally, the bride’s parents followed by the groom’s parents.

NOW WHAT? SIGN HERE ON THE DOTTED LINE...

Once you’re presented for the first time as Mr. & Mrs. you’ll make your way over to sign an “official” marriage certificate. Typically, a small table will be set-up to the side of your ceremony site for the signing. Be sure to confirm this detail with your venue. In the State of Hawaii, it is no longer required for you to “sign” the marriage certificate so this step is not necessary but makes for great photos.

PS: If you are NOT signing a marriage certificate you can continue down the aisle and make your way to a staging area to meet guests and take photos.

AND NOW, WE’RE SIPPIN’ PRETTY!

Once the ceremony commences, it’s time for some cocktails… whew! Take a sip, take a breather, you’ve made it to the reception.

TIMELINE RECAP

In a nutshell, there’s just a few details to remember when it comes to your ceremony timeline. Here’s a little recap to ensure that it’s nothing but smooth sailing.

Photo Credit :: Christina Heaston Photography

  1. Confirm the details with your vendors and ask the necessary questions to find an appropriate ceremony start time.
  2. Got your ceremony “start time”? Good! Now work backwards. Remember, you should always assume that your earliest guests will arrive 30 minutes prior to the written time. Your vendors should be complete with set-up at least 15 minutes prior to that.
  3. Music cued? Grooms party staged? Bridal party ready? OK, we’re on in 3-2-1… a ceremony should never start without these details in place.
  4. A typical ceremony will run for 15 minutes, however, allow yourself the necessary time to include any activities that you’d like.
  5. To sign or not to sign? That’s a good question! Be sure to communicate this decision with your venue, vendors and most importantly, each other.
  6. Cocktail hour… YES PLEASE! Remember that cocktail hour not only gives your guests a chance to ‘cool down’ but also allows your vendors to relocate. Be sure to allocate enough time between your ceremony end and reception start times for all the shifts to happen out of sight of your guests.

And just like that, you’ve created an easy, breezy and well thought out ceremony! For more information on Fred+Kate Events click HERE.

Custom Wedding Rings 101

Tuesday April 05, 2016

Your wedding ring is something you've dreamed about since you were five-years-old. You always knew you wanted something custom and unique, but what exactly does that entail? Designing something from scratch? How long does the entire process take? Can you use your Grandma's heirloom diamond? We talked to wedding ring expert, Raquel Haydu, from The Little Diamond Store in Honolulu to get the inside scoops on customizing the perfect bling you'll be ready to show off til death do you part.

Photo Credit :: Tie the Knot Images

Q: I inherited my Grandma's wedding ring and want to use it in my setting. Is that possible?

Definitely! Grandma wanted to pass her ring on to you, and now it's your turn to rock-that-rock and always carry a memory of your loved one. Raquel advises, “The precious metal can be used towards casting a new ring perfect for you and her center diamond will look fabulous in it's new contemporary setting.” We LOVE that. Something old and something new, check!

Photo Credit :: The Little Diamond Store

Q: What if my engagement ring doesn't have a matching band?

No problem-o! Specialized jewelry stores are able to design a wedding band to match your specific engagement ring. The Little Diamond Store in Honolulu can create a band with linear lines or one that follows the contours of your engagement ring. This guarantees a perfect match for your ring... and a perfect match with your husband, of course! Molds are created especially to fit your engagement ring and voila! An inseparable pair.

Photo Credit :: The Little Diamond Store

Q: What is the most creative groom's band you've designed?

We were smitten by this heart-inspired wedding band. To forever match his bride's bling, a groom wanted a heart shaped diamond as the focal point of his wedding band, too. With heart shaped diamonds, love is in the air! Raquel states that “the overall design was very masculine but sweet, just like the groom.” Awwww... check out the bling!

Photo Credit :: The Little Diamond Store

Q: Are you able to create my ring design from a picture?

Yes! A picture is the perfect starting point for a custom design. Pictures speak a thousand words, especially when they help showcase your ring vision. Bring photos, magazine clippings or visual ideas when you meet with your designer to help him/her get the overall style and design concept for the ring. We love to gawk over celebrity bling, but you can pull visual inspiration from anywhere! From there, the final design and details are created using computer imaging.

TWC TIP - Start a ring inspiration board on pinterest.com to gather your favorite bands, diamonds, styles and designs! Pinning has never been more fabulous!

Q: How long does it normally take to have a ring designed and made?

Good question! Raquel says that once the concept has been discussed and the design is laid out, it takes about a week or so to create a set of computer images. These images are used to guarantee your satisfaction and alter any changes if needed. Once approved, your custom ring will take about 3-4 weeks to complete. Amazing!

Photo Credit :: The Little Diamond Store

TWC TIPS ::
  1. Allot enough time for the entire designing and creation process. No ring = No fun!
  2. Be sure to check with your jewelery design center on their specific delivery dates.

Photo Credit :: Luminosity Photography by Jocelyn

Q: I have super sensitive skin. Is there a certain type of metal that won't give me a rash?

Yup! Say goodbye to itchy skin and red blotches and hello to Platinum and Palladium. These are your new BFF's... both non-allergenic and perfect for sensitive skin. Stick to metals without nickel to avoid the itchy, irritated skin. Be sure to communicate your sensitivities to your jeweler ahead of time so they can select the right metal for you!

Your dream ring is ready to come to life and make its glorious debut. Congratulations, bride! Now go on, flaunt that bling!

Photo Credit :: Luminosity Photography by Jocelyn

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