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Beyond Yes To The Dress

In my opinion, there are no coincidences. Things happen that defy logic, like deja vu, karma, or even signs from beyond that make us profoundly sad, yet simultaneously grateful and connected.

In this blog, we tell some powerful stories from our brides in our store, that show when you are saying Yes, there may be divine intervention…

My favorite story happened about two years ago. A bride came to us after numerous shopping trips. Her mother told me privately that she was so disappointed that she wasn’t finding anything she liked. The process had become a chore and to add to it, her mother – the bride’s grandmother – had recently passed away and they were very very emotional. Grandmom was going to buy her dress and they spoke often of how much fun they would have when the time came to go dress shopping. The time arrived, but they were not having any fun at all.

The bride did not want to shop anymore, yet agreed – on Mom’s urging – to go to one more store.  We were well over an hour away, Mom “randomly” chose to come to us.

With that knowledge, I went about the appointment quite differently.

I told the bride I understood it hadn’t been fun and she wasn’t into it, but since she was here, let’s pick out a few dresses you think are “crazy”.  Ones you would never wear. Let’s start with ones you wouldn’t consider and see how you feel.  No pressure.

She agreed and said it is much easier to find ones she didn’t like. After looking through every dress, she chose three.  The first 2 we laughed and took pictures and she had a little fun.  The 3rd dress she said she purposely saved for last.  She said, “I don’t understand this one. I’d never pick this out otherwise, it’s totally not me, but I am drawn to it.”  I said, “Let’s put it on.”

“Mom, I like this one,” said bride. “It’s has nothing I want, but I really like it. I don’t want to take it off and I haven’t felt good in any dress but this.”

Mom said, “I’m glad you said that, because as soon as you came out I loved it on you!”

Bride was looking for a plain, simple dress, no “frills or bedazzle” she said. She said she wanted a dress that was “quiet” but pretty.

This dress she connected to was a fully beaded fit to flare with a beaded illusion back and cap sleeve – it was almost the exact opposite of what she was looking for.

“I actually really like this one.  How did this happen?” She laughed and the mood completely changed. “Mom, this is my dress, I can’t believe it, I absolutely love this dress and I have no idea why!”

“The dress is named ‘Aster’,” I said.

They both shot me the strangest look and trust me, it was awkward. Really awkward. Mom put her hands over her face and sobbed.  Bride stood there not moving.  All I could say was, “I’m so sorry” because I couldn’t imagine what just happened.

Turns out, Grandmom loved flowers but there was one flower in particular that was everywhere – in her yard, paintings in her house, painted on dishwear, needle-pointed pillows – everywhere.  Her favorite flower was Aster. It was Grandmom showing she was dress shopping with them after all. Lead them to a “random” store, lead Bride to pick a dress that she’d “never consider wearing” named after her favorite flower.  Talk about a strong connection.

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Another bride came in just a few months ago.  She was so on edge and was talking so fast about not wanting to try on and not wanting to be “in this position”.  I asked her if something had happened recently and how could I help make the experience easier for her.  She said, “My mother just passed. I am very scattered and emotional and I know I don’t look good so when people tell me I look beautiful in dresses I think they’re just trying to make a sale. I need a sign, Mom send me a sign…” and she closed her eyes.  Truth be told, I had to hold back tears.

I told her we would take very good care of her as her consultant – who had not heard any of this conversation – came to the front to introduce herself.  Our consultant gave her a big smile and said, “Hi, I’m Sharon and I’m so happy to meet you.”  The bride started crying and hugged ME.  She found her sign.  Her mother’s name was Sharon.

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One of our brides purchased a dress and it fit her perfectly at try on.  She then lost a lot of weight before the wedding. She went for her fitting and was told it was impossible to alter it down to her new size and her wedding was only 3 weeks away.  She came in the store and said, “I know the answer is no, but the girls at work told me to just ask.  Can I swap this dress for a smaller one or is there anything you can do?” One of our consultants said, “Isn’t that the misordered dress in the back?”  It was indeed the same dress.  We pulled it out – brand new and FOUR sizes smaller – it fit like a glove.  She said, “You’d do this for me?!”  I told her, “Of course. It was ordered last year by mistake and it’s not doing us any good hanging here,” and I showed her the ticket.  Her eyes got huge.  “Oh my gosh, it was ordered it on my birthday!”  Well, that was meant to be! 🙂

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We had a bride in several years ago whose sister passed away.  She brought in a large support group and it was emotional for them because her sister would have been Maid of Honor.  She found her perfect dress and was super excited, and we needed to find the perfect belt for it.  We tried and tried and found some that were really nice and looked great, but not quite right.  Remembering one on display on a mannequin, we took that one off and brought it over.  It was perfect!  It totally transformed the dress into perfection! When she looked closer, she said, “No way,” and got very still.  “It’s a butterfly.” The perfect belt was a crystal and pearl butterfly design. The butterfly was their symbol for her late sister.  We all stayed quiet for a few minutes to take in the emotions.  We went through over 30 belts to find the perfect one, and the perfect one turned out to be incredibly meaningful and truly a sign.

These are just some of our beyond Yes stories. Maybe you have a Beyond story that you want to share? We’d love to hear it!

Dress Shopping For Brides With Chronic Illness or Mobility Impairment

In this blog, we focus on helping brides with specific needs for chronic illness or mobility impairment.

Choosing a bridal gown is a fun, exciting, and sometimes daunting task. Every bride deserves the day, and the gown, of her dreams! To make the most of your bridal appointment, think about any features of your gown that will allow you to focus on having a wonderful time with your loved ones on the day.

For brides who will be using a wheelchair:

Ask the bridal store if there are stairs or any obstacles that would be difficult for a wheelchair to move about.  When you try on dresses, you want room to maneuver so you can get a feel for the movement each dress provides.

Consider which silhouette will match your vision and also be comfortable.

What are the day to day struggles with your disability? Is a tight-fitting dress going to cause pain? Will a layered, poofy dress cause body temperature issues? Tell your stylist what your specific concerns are so she can guide you.

If you find the perfect “feeling” dress but think something is missing, consider adding a sparkly belt and jewelry accessories that would work for you.

Note:  Some of the headbands and tiaras are so beautiful and tight fitting.  These can easily cause headaches and migraines. Make sure if you have a head piece that you wear it before the wedding to test that out.

Also, you have choice in fabrics. Silks and satins are unforgiving and can be uncomfortably restricting. Many designers offer what’s called a “perfecting satin” which is a smooth fabric with a stretch. Lightweight, super comfortable, and ultra pretty, these are dresses you’ll love in various colors, silhouettes, and details.

Some beading and laces can cause skin reactions, or just be uncomfortable and scratchy. Make sure to note this and if you like the look, tell your stylist who can pull a different type of lace or one with beading that doesn’t come into contact with your skin directly.

While many gowns are easier to step into, consider whether you’d prefer a gown that you could put on over your head.

For brides who will be using a walker or cane:

Perhaps a gown with a detachable overskirt or train would work. That way, you get to keep the volume down the aisle with worrying about tripping or catching the front of your gown and then take it off for a light and easy look during your reception

For brides with hemiplegia/paresis or difficulty with manual dexterity, consider changing a lace-up corset back (or one with buttons and loops) to a hidden zipper, or even one with snaps. A good bridal seamstress can do this for you.

For brides with generalized movement difficulty (e.g., myasthenia gravis) or who may fatigue more easily:

Those who fatigue easily can often be more sensitive to temperature. The solution may be… layers! Add bolero jacket with sleeves to a strapless gown .


Or, add detachable sleeves to a gown with straps.

The bridal store you choose should have a good seamstress they work with,  one that knows construction and can offer you options to make your dress even more perfect for you. It will bring you more peace of mind and keep you feeling great and your stress level low.

Choosing a bridal gown is a fun, exciting, and sometimes daunting task. Don’t let anything get in your way, including needing a little help getting down the aisle.  Visit us at Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo!

The Wedding Experience: From A Guest Perspective

We recently had the good fortune to be guests at several weddings of friends of ours.  Working in the wedding industry doesn’t always afford us the opportunity to see the end result and it was really fun to be a guest and not just a vendor!

We thought a great blog would be to tell you some of the feedback we hear from the guests when the wedding is over (returning tuxedos, preserving the dress, etc.),  as well as some of our own thoughts on how to make sure your guests have a great experience.

The Ceremony:

All of these weddings were lovely.  Not only a beautiful locations, but they all started ON TIME.  That was amazing! Loved that! Please don’t be fashionably late on your wedding.

After your ceremony, is there a delay until the reception?  If there is, how long is it?  If it is more than a couple of hours, consider having something for your guests to do, or a place to go to wait and have some food.  The delay we experienced was hours long and hard to fill.

Cocktail Hour:

How many guests are coming – and what will cocktail hour look like? What kind of layout is there, and will the lines be long? How much food is there, will they run low or out?

At two of the weddings, the food was everywhere! At another one, they ran out very quickly at cocktail hour (the unhappiest guests are the unfed ones).

Are there tables or enough seating areas? Standing to eat, along with a drink in hand, is impossible.  Make sure your guests have plenty of places to put their plates and drinks down.

Is the bar open? How many bartenders will you have?  Make sure there are enough to eliminate long lines.

Is there a photo op area? Or a photobooth? This is a fun way for your guests to capture the day. One of the weddings we went to had a flower wall that was a really neat backdrop!

The Reception:

Place Cards – You may think the tiny, scripted font looks beautiful, but it is exceptionally hard for some guests to read. (My personal experience at one wedding: I walked around a circular table three times picking up cards to see what letter we were at. I thought the S was a J so I walked around to the other side to find the F that I thought was a T so back to the other side… it was awful.)  Please, consider a more readable font, especially if you have a large number of guests.

For other seating arrangements, do this task with the mindset of how to make it easy for your guests to find their place.

Music – Consider doing a sound check for the toasting and dinner portions. Read that again and give it even more consideration.

One wedding I felt was somewhat ruined by the noise level, and I know I wasn’t the only one feeling that way.  The emcee was shouting into the microphone to introduce the wedding party, and we still couldn’t hear anything because the band was playing so loud. It was just yelling over incredibly loud music and none of the guests could understand or hear the names and many guests had their hands covering their ears. Make sure the band understands the acoustics of the room and does a sound check!

Toasts – Advice to anyone at your wedding giving a toast:   speak slowly and speak up.  These speeches are amusing for sure, but filled with “inside jokes” that most of your guests don’t understand so while the toast giver may be nervous, it is a definite plus if they can be heard and understood.  Also…

Limit the speeches. We were at one where there were six.  Not only did we not understand any of them because we couldn’t hear, it took forever. We noticed even the wait staff seemed frustrated because they didn’t know when to start serving. Perhaps do some at the rehearsal dinner if you have that many.

Dinner – Whatever the food, please consider dinner music.  In the background.  Please.  When the band blares during dinner, none of your guests can talk to each other. After dinner, heck yes turn up the volume! But during dinner when guests are trying to speak with each other, consider having the music at a level that encourages that.

Personal note: One of the events we attended had lovely dinner music and it really set a nice tone to the evening and we were able to speak to many of the guests. Getting to know them definitely added to the fun once the music did get turned up and the party was fantastic!

Greetings – Depending on the size of  your wedding, speaking to everyone at length may not be possible, but definitely make a point to go to each table and greet ALL of your guests.  Also, if the bride or groom has never met someone at your wedding, be sure to make the introduction!

Favors – Personally, I have mixed feelings on favors. While I love the idea and some are so creative and special, many are left on the tables. I always feel bad when I think someone went to the trouble and so many are just thrown away.  If someone has a better idea  other than favors, or a favor no one would leave behind, I’d love to hear it.

Thank You Notes – Etiquette says that your guests have a year to send a gift and I am one of those people who actually sends one after the wedding.  It’s hard to wait a year to send a thank you note, however, give a little bit of time (maybe a few months?) to see if something will arrive from a guest who did not bring a gift on your day. Maybe something will show up at your home from your registry or even a personalized gift 🙂

Your wedding is the biggest party you will throw and you want to make sure your guests remember it for the great parts. Ask friends and co-workers about weddings they have gone to where something could have been done better or what was great about it – you could gain some more insight to wow your guests! Hopefully this blog was a good start!

 

Say Hello to Madi Lane Bridal!

Wondering where to find those romantic, lace dresses that you’ve been saving to your wedding board on Pinterest? Look no further. Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo is thrilled to announce that we are the exclusive retailers of Madi Lane Bridal in the entire Philadelphia region!

The Elora gown has been taking the internet by storm – so much so that we’ve been receiving phone calls from up and down the east coast searching for it – and beginning this August, Elora and a number of other breathtaking gowns will be in our store, like Haven shown here:

Madi Lane is an Australian-based bridal line that places a high emphasis on elegance and individuality. The intricate lace and sophisticated designs exude pure romance that speaks to every bride. These gowns are for the bride who has a sense of herself and wants her dress to reflect her personality. We’ll let the pictures speak for themselves!

TRUNK SHOW!

September 5-8, 2019, we will be hosting a Madi Lane Trunk Show!

In addition to the gorgeous dresses normally in store, we will be bringing even more of her dresses into the store for one weekend only. Appointments are required for the Trunk Show – availability is limited!

Come in and say “yes!” to your perfect Madi Lane dress! Fun specials and vendors TBA!  Click here to schedule your appointment or call/text us at 215-491-8500.

India by Madi Lane
Harper by Madi Lane

 

 

Izadore by Madi Lane
Fleur by Madi Lane

 

We are thrilled to be able to bring this designer to the Philly market.  With all of the unique and special venues in Bucks, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties as well as destination weddings, a bride deserves a perfectly matched dress for her choice.  Adding Madi Lane to our current designers of Morilee, Kitty Chen Couture & Ivoire, Casablanca Bridal, Beloved, Sincerity by Justin Alexander, Jessica Morgan, Blu by Morilee, and Moonlight assures that Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo has the most perfectly curated – and most affordable – designers in the entire region.

Our gorgeous dresses range new from $800-$3,000, with select off-the-rack dresses from $350-$999.

It’s always great time to be engaged at Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo!

The Bridal Glossary – What Does It Mean?

Wedding dress shopping is one of the most exciting parts of planning your wedding! While researching styles and shops, you may encounter some terms that you have never heard before.

To best prepare you for your shopping experience, we have created a Wedding Dress Glossary! Impress your entourage by being able to identify all the styles and details you come across.

ABOUT THE DRESSES

Appliqué: In terms of bridal gowns, applique are pieces of fabric made of lace or have been intricately beaded that are sewn on to a dress. Example of lace appliqué:

Bodice: The upper part of the dress covering the chest and back

Bustle: Buttons or hooks and eyes that gather the train on a dress. A bustle is done so that the bride can move around easily and not worry about guests stepping on her dress. The maid of honor, bridesmaids, or mother of the bride typically are responsible for helping the bride bustle her gown after pictures/the ceremony.

Crinoline: A stiff, netted-like fabric that keeps the shape of the skirt.

Detachable Train: This is a piece that hooks or buttons at the waist and provides a long and/or elaborate train that can be removed to reveal more fitted dress underneath.

Illusion: A mesh, see-through component of a wedding dress. An illusion neckline refers to the mesh that holds the neckline together. An illusion back refers to a back that appears open but typically has buttons that line up in the center of the back. An example of an illusion neckline is below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scalloping: This is a series of curves that resemble the shape of scallop shells, typically found at the hemline of a dress.  Below is an example of a scalloped hemline:

Train: This is the bottom back of the skirt that gets bustled at the reception. There are varying lengths of trains as well (see below for lengths).

 

TRAIN AND VEIL LENGTHS

Birdcage Veil: A type of short veil that covers part of the face or frames the face.

Blusher: The part of a veil that covers the bride’s face. The father of the bride typically flips the blusher over bride’s head to reveal her face after walking her down the aisle.

Cathedral Veil: A veil that is 108”-120” (nine to ten feet) long. These veils extend past the train on the bride’s dress and create a dramatic effect as she walks down the aisle.

Chapel Train: One of the more popular train options, a chapel train extends 36-48″ (three to four feet) from the waistline.

Court Train: The court train extends 24″ (two feet) from where the fabric hits the floor —one foot beyond the sweep train.

Elbow Veil: A veil that is about 25″ long usually ending at or around the elbow.

Eyelash Lace: Delicate threading that lines the neckline or hem. It is called eyelash lace because it imitates the look of eyelashes.

Fingertip Veil: A veil that is approximately 36”. It is called fingertip length because the veil extends to around where the bride’s fingertips are

Monarch Train: Also known as “royal” train, this very formal style flows 144″ (12 feet) or more from the waist.

Shoulder Veil: A veil that is about 15-20″ (1-1.5 feet) long that extends to at our about the shoulder.

Sweep Train: Also known as a “brush,” this train extends 12″ or less from where the fabric hits the floor. A sweep train is subtle, yet romantic.

Waltz Veil: A veil that is about 54″ (about 4.5 feet) long and ends at or about the knee.

Watteau: Attaching to the shoulders, this train style falls loosely to the hem of the dress. It creates a dramatic cape-like effect.

 

OTHER TERMS TO KNOW

Discontinued Style: This means that the designer has decided not to make that style any longer.

Sample (or Stock) Dresses: These are the dresses that are in the store for try on purposes. They are “samples” and can be ordered for size, color, or customizations.

Sample Sale: An event hosted by the bridal store where they sell the sample gowns off the rack. These dresses are typically marked down and are a great way for brides to find gorgeous dresses at an amazing price.

Trunk Show: An event hosted by the bridal store where additional gowns from a certain designer are brought in for a short period of time. The trunk show dresses are typically ones that the store does not normally have in shop or brand new features. These shows are a  way to showcase the collection of the designers that they carry and offer more style variety to brides.

Now that you’re prepared with the terminology, make your appointment with us to see it all in action!

How To Get Your Marriage License in PA

To obtain a marriage license in Pennsylvania, just read the special instructions, gather your documents, and then follow these steps!

AGE:

To be married in Pennsylvania, you must be 18 years old with a valid, US-issued government photo ID.  You can be married as young as 15 in PA, but the underage person must have his/her original birth certificate, written parental consent, and written consent of a judge from the Orphans Court.

DOCUMENTS TO PROVIDE:

NOTE: If you do not have these documents, your application will not be accepted:

Current and Valid Photo ID:

  • Driver’s License
  • State I.D.
  • International Driver’s License
  • Passport
  • Visa
  • Military I.D.
  • Resident Alien Card
  • Consulate Card

AND a Social Security card or any other form of I.D. issued by an official entity which reflects the applicant’s Social Security number

  • W-2 form
  • Income Tax Return
  • Prescription Card
  • Access Card
  • If an applicant does NOT possess a Social Security number he/she must produce a Secondary I.D. in the form of a birth certificate (officially translated, if appropriate); or any other form of I.D. issued by an official entity, in addition to the above-noted current, valid photo I.D.  Documents in a language other than English must be an original accompanied by a notarized English translation.
  • If an applicant does not speak English, you must bring an interpreter.

PROOF OF DISSOLUTION OF PREVIOUS MARRIAGES:

If either applicant was previously married, proof of dissolution of the latest marriage must be submitted at the time of application.

  • A widowed applicant must submit a certified copy of the death certificate of the deceased spouse.
  • A divorced applicant must provide a certified copy of the most recent divorce decree.
  • If either of the foregoing documents is not written in English it must be translated to English and the translation must be certified to be correct.

FEES:

  • Marriage license fees in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania vary from county to county. Please call the county in which you will be applying for their fees and other requirements.
  • In Pennsylvania, you do not need a marriage ceremony. You can apply for a Quaker/Self-Uniting License, and the fee varies by county. If you want this type of license, you need to inform the clerk before you begin the application process.

WAITING PERIOD:

  • There is a three (3) day waiting period from the completion of the application process to the issuance of the license.
  • The license will be given to you at the time of your application.
  • It cannot be used until the date of issuance, which is three (3) days later.
  • The issuance date appears on the license.
  • The three (3) day waiting period begins after both applicants appear in person together at the Marriage License Bureau.

WEDDING OFFICIANTS –  WHO CAN MARRY YOU?:

  • Any ordained minister, priest or rabbi of any regularly established church or congregation
  • Judges and Justices of Peace may perform wedding ceremonies. Mayors of cities and boroughs are also authorized to perform marriage ceremonies.

The officiant performing the marriage ceremony must complete and file the marriage return – the bottom portion of the marriage license – with the marriage license office that issued the license within ten (10) days of the date of the ceremony.

A marriage record will not exist if the officiant who performs the marriage fails to file this document.

EXPIRATION DATE:

  • A marriage license is valid for 60 days from date it is issued.
  • The marriage license can be used in any county in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

GET TO THE COURTHOUSE – IN A NUTSHELL:

  • Applicants that wish to be legally married in the state of Pennsylvania must first apply for a marriage license application at their nearest Marriage License Bureau of the Register of Wills and complete the application process.
  • Applicants should take the necessary steps to obtain a Marriage License 2 to 3 weeks before the scheduled date of their marriage ceremony.
  • Both applicants seeking a marriage license must appear together in person at the Marriage License Bureau of the Register of Wills office to complete the process.
  • Photo identification is required in PA
  • Marriage license fees vary from county to county. Please call or visit the website of the county Register of Wills in which you will be applying for their fees and other requirements.
  • There is a three (3) day waiting period from the completion of the application process to the issuance of the license.
  • A marriage license is valid for 60 days from date it is issued.
  • Be sure to contact your Local Marriage License Bureau well in advance of the wedding to find out on what days and during what hours the clerk will be in the office. Some locales will require an appointment.
  • An independent translator must accompany the applicants for any non-English speakers.

 

Imperfect Wedding Planning Is Normal!

A perfect wedding planning experience is definitely not normal. You’re not alone if you feel like pulling your hair out…

This Wedding Wire blog repost addresses this!  This blog creates awareness of some of the things that undoubtedly go wrong along the way, and how to adjust your expectations.  Don’t worry, also included is great advice to calm your nerves during an intensely stressful time!

1. Differences of Opinions

Planning a wedding is an emotional process that usually involves an abundance of opinions from yourself, your fiancé, and your friends and family. There’s bound to be a difference of opinion on some topics that come up during the planning process.

While this can be frustrating, it should be expected. It’s important to prepare yourself for these differences and to think through how you will handle these conversations, whether they’re with your fiancé, your parents, in-laws, or wedding party. It can certainly be uncomfortable navigating these waters, but it’s important to hear everyone out and let everyone know their thoughts and support is important to you during this process.

2. Vendor Issues

A lot of wedding planning relies on choosing vendors and working with them to create your perfect day. What you may not realize, however, is that working seamlessly with your vendors is not a guarantee. In fact, just the process of getting in touch with vendors that you’re interested in can be tricky. You’d be surprised how many vendors can be hard to nail down or communicate with. You also may end up disappointed by the availability or pricing of some vendors on your wish list. But don’t be discouraged—the process may just take longer and require more research than you originally anticipated.

On the flip side, make yourself available when your vendors contact you. If they are having trouble getting in touch with you, that can also put a real strain on things! You get what you pay for so make sure to research reputable vendors with abundant reviews who won’t cause you additional anxiety.

3. Heightened Emotions

As mentioned above, planning a wedding encompasses a wide range of emotions throughout the entirety of the process. While (hopefully) the majority of these emotions will be happy ones, there will of course be some low moments. It’s completely normal to end up in little fights and disagreements with your fiancé, to end up frustrated, or to find yourself overwhelmed throughout this process. Do not react in the moment, as hard as that may be. Know your limits and indulge yourself in these emotional moments. Ask for help when  needed and remember your day is going to be beautiful and one of the best days of your life. Sometimes the little things become big things for no reason – it’s just wedding nerves!

4. The Planning Timeline

Many brides think that everything about planning a wedding runs on a specific schedule, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. There is a general guideline and timeline, but everyone has a different experience. While you may expect your cake tasting to occur at a certain time or you may hope to get your invitations stamped and mailed by a certain date, things rarely go exactly according to plan. This could be due to hiccups in your own schedule or vendors running behind. Don’t let this get the best of you; remember that everything will work out and you’re the only one that will know if things don’t run exactly aligned with the timeline you set.

5. The Budget

Everyone goes into a wedding with an idea of what their budget is for the event as a whole. However, things rarely cost exactly what you expect them to. While some aspects of your wedding may come in under budget, others may be more expensive than you anticipated. There will also be unexpected expenses that arise associated with your festivities. Be prepared to be a little bit flexible on your budget or have contingency plans in place, allowing for sacrifices that might need to be made in order to account for these unforeseen expenses.

6. Your Groom’s Opinions

Many brides find that while they thought their groom wouldn’t have strong opinions about certain things pertaining to the wedding day, they couldn’t have been more wrong. Be prepared to hear out your groom’s opinions and stances on all things wedding planning. It’s a big day for him, too, so you want to be sensitive to letting him have a seat at the planning table.

This is especially true when it comes to his attire. It is a day for him to show his best self and style so be sure to search out a vendor (like Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo!) that will offer him over 60 different suit and tuxedo options, help style everyone, match the color pallet, and take good care of him and his party.

 

One of our grooms and his men, toasting the big day after choosing their attire!

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. Last-Minute Chaos

Even if you’re the most proactive bride out there, there’s bound to be last-minute chaos in the days leading up to your event. Something will go wrong or you’ll end up frantic over some kind of detail, especially things like final fitting schedules, deliveries, even the weather. Again, this is normal and pretty much unavoidable.

Go into the week of your wedding expecting minor hiccups and going by the mantra that you’re not going to let anything ruin your big moment.

8. RSVP Issues

Every couple experiences the dreaded invitation RSVP issues, finding that guests aren’t prompt or on time in letting you know whether they’ll attend the event. To counter that, some guests will ask to come (after replying no) at the last minute while other guests will be unexpectedly unable to make it. Remember that the guest list will even itself out and try to go with the flow of these (sometimes annoying) delays in communication or last-minute adds.

Remember to number your rsvp cards to correspond to the guest list in case a guest forgets to put his/her name on the reply card… that way you can look up the number and see who it is!

Even with things going differently than you probably expected, planning your wedding should still be an exciting and exhilarating process. You’ll remember this time for the rest of your life and it’ll be over before you know it, so soak up every moment—even when things turn out differently than you envisioned.

We always love Wedding Wire’s blogs and insights and the opportunity to add our input. Let us know if we can help you in planning your day. As a highly respected bridal and tuxedo store in Bucks County and partnering with some of the best vendors in the business, we can help not only dress you and your wedding party, but assist you with top notch vendors to help lessen your stress and make your planning much easier!

Help! What Dress Size Am I?!

Have you shopped for your wedding dress and been shocked at the size? You’re not alone. The fashion world is all over the place with sizing these days! Manufacturers are changing their cutting scales so now you could fit into a size much smaller than your “usual”, but this is not the case in a wedding dress.

While each designer cuts on his/her own scale, the sizing can be very confusing. Your measurements might fit into a 4 in one designer and an 8 in another. Your measurements could also fall into three different sizes.

Most of the time, whatever size you “usually” are, it is a larger size in bridal. Do not be discouraged! That number is meaningless – the FIT is what matters!

This is why it is so important to get the measurements right. Alterations can be costly, and multiple alterations are not good for the dress.

Some designers will offer custom measurements for a fee. This is a great option if a bride has a large bust and smaller hips, or vice versa. Ordering for the largest measurement is not the best option if you can get custom.

The drawback of custom is that you need to stay about the same size until your wedding day.

If you are intent on losing weight before your wedding, consider ordering your dress closer to your wedding date and getting measured just before ordering.

If custom is not available in the dress you choose or you’re not interested in going that route, your stylist will consult with you on sizing. Together you will look at your measurements, the size chart, the dress silhouette and features (is it a ballgown or a mermaid, full back with buttons or backless, etc.) and be confident with why a particular size is chosen.

Our stylists want the best for you! Be confident that we will make suggestions and offer ideas for consideration. While there are stores notorious for ordering larger sizes, ours is definitely not one. We want our brides to have minimal alterations, not only for your wallet, but also for the integrity of the dress!

Many designers also offer custom length and petite cuts as well. IF you commit to the shoes and get measured, you can have it made in your length! If you’re under 5’4″, ask about what a petite cut would look like in the dress you love.

We have had many brides come to try on their dresses and needed nothing but a bustle. How gratifying is that?! That is our goal and when our sizing and measurements hit the mark perfectly it’s a joy knowing that dress came directly from the designer and not one detail was changed!

We have also had brides lose up to 40 pounds (have you seen our TLC Say Yes: Wedding SOS episode?) and 4 sizes. We have had brides change medications and gain inches to where they needed significant alterations to fit properly.

Be realistic. If you know you lost or gained significant weight, be aware that the size ordered is then not your size anymore. If that happens, your stylist and seamstress will assist in the best solution! Do not panic and do not put off your try on. Go in as soon as your dress arrives so a plan can be made in plenty of time.

Remember, sizes are not standard. Every designer has their own. Do not worry or obsess over a number! They don’t mean anything anymore and it’s not about the size, it’s about the DRESS! Come on in and let us find that perfect one for you!

Our Staff Picks: Favorite Wedding Dresses

Our bridal consultants hear it often, “These dresses are all so beautiful, how can anyone pick one?” It’s true, we do carry fashionably savvy designers who make our job carrying their lines enjoyable because every wedding gown in our store is beautiful for varying reasons.

Often brides will ask for the opinions of our consultants and because this is what we do (and what we love to do, I might add), it’s easy for us because we work with brides every day and, therefore know our selection and inventory quite well. This works in our favor to help find the perfect dress for our discerning brides.

There are dresses that work on certain body types, and then there are dresses that work on every body, and truth be told: when a bride thinks she can’t wear a certain style dress, and we put it on her and she realizes she can – well in our store there is really no better feeling. We know she will feel as beautiful as she hopes to feel and it is our job to show her that.

However, all of that being said, each of our consultants has a couple of gowns that are their favorites. Just like a bride, we know what we like. So for this blog, we decided to have some fun and go behind the scenes in our bridal gallery and find out from our consultants which gown is their favorite.

Wendy’s Pick

Let’s start with shop owner, Wendy. Wendy started this business over six years ago with her husband, Franco, so, as the owner, she makes the final selections for our bridal gallery.  We consultants always get to choose our favorite new ones, but since we cannot bring all of them in, she has the final vote! In all of the years, and thousands of gowns later, Wendy’s top pick is Jayda by Kitty Chen.

“To me, this dress is perfection. It’s a classic style, an A-line with a full skirt, perfectly shaped and flattering sweetheart neckline, dreamy layered lace, a little sparkle… it’s so full of romance and joy. When I see a bride try this on, I can picture her with flowers, walking down that aisle, I actually see her as a bride.”

Of all the dresses Wendy’s daughter Daria has modeled  over the years, this is the one that made her cry (and it was only to take a photo!).  “That’s Daria’s dress.  At least for me, that’s it.  In the blush color.  We put her in Jayda and a veil, I just lost it. I’ll let you know if something ever beats it.”

Daria’s Pick

Daria has been working in the family business since opening in 2013  (it is named partly after her!) and, like her mom, she too has seen thousands of dresses and worked with hundreds of brides. Every bride is unique and so is every dress. Daria’s favorite is Sedona by Casablanca Bridal.

“The delicate lace is very classy and timeless, but still really fun with the royal train and the right amount of sparkle. The fit is gorgeous and works so beautifully on every bride.”

Daria said she also loves Jayda, but she prefers it in the ivory color… like Mother, like Daughter

Suzanne’s Pick

Suzanne joined Darianna as a bridal consultant with over 20 years in the industry. She’s seen the change from the age of the 90’s brides into the early 2000’s and now closing in on 2020. Working with thousands of brides, she’s also seen thousands of bridal dresses, yet even with all of that, her favorite wedding dress is the 1975 by Casablanca.

“This dress has everything. Lace and beaded applique, fit and flare with sweep train.  The built in corset is not only slimming but emphasizes the waist and curves and brides of all sizes look gorgeous in it. It is also equally appropriate for a boho chic wedding or a formal ballroom wedding.  Colors available to suit all skin tones, lightweight and easy to wear, it is definitely a go-to for me.”

 

Shannon’s Pick

Shannon has been a part of the Darianna family for over a year now, and her youthfulness and fun personality have certainly brought energy to the bridesmaids and brides. Not only that, she seems to know everybody!  Jumping into the bridal world can be overwhelming and new inventory comes quickly.  Shannon’s current favorite dress is the brand new December by Jessica Morgan.

“This dress is so elegant and with color options can be versatile to fit the venue.  The back is open, great neckline, pretty sparkle, and to top all that off, it’s light weight and more comfortable than most of the fuller dresses.”

 

Esther’s Pick

Esther is our most recent addition to the consultant floor and she loves working with our brides and spotting the perfect dress for each individual’s shape, personality and style. Her favorite gown was one she saw before she ever joined us. She was here helping her niece, Kirsten, find the perfect dress and her niece just happened to choose Esther’s pick (without even knowing it). Even as new styles come in, Esther still loves Casablanca’s Amber (#2289).

“I love the traditional elements of the lace over chiffon, the timeless elegance of the dress along with the illusion cap sleeve and back. However, my favorite part of this dress is the underlining of full sparkle that reminds me of fresh fallen snow.” Every time a bride says yes to this dress, we think of Esther and, of course, her niece who wore it just a couple of months ago in her winter wedding (and she customized it to have long sleeves).

Those are our picks and we’d love to help you find yours! It’s so much fun working with brides and hearing their stories of how they found their life mate. We love what we do and it shows.  Helping you find your dress is incredibly special and joyful. It’s a memory that will last a lifetime and we are proud to continue adding so many beautiful brides to our family!

Schedule your appointment and find your favorite today!

 

 

 

Satin, Organza, Chiffon: What Does It Mean?

Brides-to-be should take their time deciding which wedding dress is perfect for them, but that can be tricky without a familiarity with the most popular bridal fabrics. Here’s a breakdown of the most common wedding dress fabrics.

Satin

Satin dress by Jessica Morgan with box pleats and jeweled belt

Although many mistake satin for a type of fiber, it actually refers to the finish of the dress, as is the case for many fabrics. Satin can be made of fibers such as silk, nylon, or rayon, but still be satin because of its finish. Satin is a tried-and-true wedding fabric that has been popular across the ages for its smooth finish and durability. Because of its body, it can be easily shaped for structured bridal gowns as well. Very formal (meaning very “bridal”), this fabric is a perfect choice for a formal affair and, if the affair is outdoors, it is best worn in cooler temperatures. Beaded satin dresses are very glamorous and incredibly classic.

Charmeuse

Charmeuse dress by Beloved with lace overlay

Charmeuse, while similar to satin, is much lighter, making it great for dresses that drape, slink, and flow. This fabric is high-end and has a sophisticated sheen and has a slight stretch quality to it. It is exceptionally comfortable, silky, and lightweight. These dresses are great for destination events, they pack and travel easily yet still look rich and beautiful.

Chiffon

Chiffon is a lightweight, woven fabric that is sheer and flowing. Because it is sheer, it is layered over itself or another fabric with more body. It is common in both bride and bridesmaid dresses. Although its lightness does lead it to snag easily, a well-made chiffon dress can create an ethereal, fairy-tale look for a bride’s big day.  Bride’s looking for a more simple and less formal wedding dress lean toward chiffon. Chiffon dresses also work well for destination or warm summer events.

Organza

Beaded organza tiered skirt on this Casablanca dress

Similar to chiffon, organza is a relatively sheer and lightweight woven fabric. However, unlike chiffon, organza has a stiffness that makes it a more natural choice for structured gowns with more shape. Like chiffon, organza is quite delicate. Beaded organza and appliques look incredibly pretty and shimmery on this fabric. Organza is often used with layered or tiered skirts as a softer and less “pouffy” alternative to tulle.

Tulle

Layered tulle skirt with horsehair trim on this Justin Alexander dress

Tulle is a slightly stiff, netted fabric that is often used in ballerina tutus and veils. Often incorporating lace, tulle is a great fabric for structured dresses or to give a dress with heavier fabric some lighter accents. Like chiffon and organza, it’s important to be careful with tulle, as it can snag or tear easily.  Tulle is often used in ball gowns to create the dramatic and voluminous skirts and is lovely when layered or tiered with a horsehair trim.

Lace

Ornately beaded lace and applique on this Kitty Chen Couture dress

Standing the test of time, lace has been a popular feature in wedding gowns for centuries. Lace is normally used as an overlay atop another fabric, giving it a highly detailed accent that is perfect for a sophisticated wedding gown. Lace styles are normally named after the city in which they originated, with Chantilly, Alençon, Brussels, and Venice among the most popular types in modern wedding trends.

Lace can be incorporated onto your dress as beaded applique, or pieces of lace hand sewn on, or can be layered over other fabrics or even other lace patterns.

Floral lace pattern on a new Spring 2019 Casablanca Bridal dress

Although being educated about fabric types is important for any bride choosing her gown, it’s also helpful to see a variety of dresses in person to become familiar with the characteristics of different fabrics. To familiarize yourself with different types of gowns, view our gallery of real brides and our Pinterest boards, then call Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo at 215-491-8500 for an appointment today. We can’t wait to meet you!