vintage + rustic

While the rest of my life is a whirl wind of chaos (sparked by an impromptu move) I have found solace in gorgeous photography and fabulous vintage bridal style.

Stephanie Williams has a fantastic eye. Her photographic approach captures these vintage gowns perfectly; I adore each and every photo in this shoot. [Check out her website here].

As I haul boxes from point A to point B and clean like a mad woman, enjoy these pretty gowns and lovely photos...

The talented Amy-Jo Tatum is behind the Bridal Couture featured in this shoot. Amy-Jo offers sustainable alternatives within her newest collection, producing these gorgeous designs in cotton and hemp.
[Check out her shop here and her blog here].

This shoot also features the pretty veils and hair pieces designed by Batcakes Couture. Check out their shop for more lovelies.

I will never tire of Vintage Bridal Style. Bird cage veils, feathers, and classically cut gowns put me over the moon...

Now, back to the boxes.


How To: Spoil your bridal party on a budget (Part two)

Every girl would love to be gifted a special piece of jewelry.
I'm a firm believer that it's the thought - and not the price tag - that counts.

The following pieces are a thoughtful yet affordable way of letting your bridesmaids know that you care.

{Clockwise, top left: sora designs, $18; shi jewels, $22; everyday glory, $12; Elsewares, $50}

I adore classic cocktail rings (seen here in the top left and bottom right examples). It would be so lovely to have a story behind a fabulous costume piece.

There is also something to be said about traditional friendship rings. The pretty silver examples, pictured top right and bottom left, are perfect everyday pieces.

{Clockwise, top left: Cindy V designs, $21; kiska style: i, $24; ii, $29; and iii, $15}

I love how classic and girly this necklace by Cindy V. Designs is. The fabulous collection by Kiska Style is full of so many unique and stylish pieces; I had a hard time picking my favorites.

. . .

It would be a lot of fun to choose a different piece of jewelry for every bridesmaid, catering to each woman's individual taste. What's more, in many cases such pieces are one-of-a-kind.

The jewelry featured here - many of which assembled with handcrafted metals - provide style and elegance without the Tiffany's price tag.
Brides with large wedding parties will especially enjoy the value one can get for one's dollar by shopping handmade.


new york state of mind

With our upcoming New York trip on my mind (we're planning a late September visit), it's no wonder why I fell in love with this
Martha-featured wedding.

See more of this lovely affair, here.

There is something so elegant about New York City, black & white photography, and a china covered table.

The vintage glamorous feel of this wedding is oh-so-perfect.


... something blue.

Every once in a while a piece of jewelry stops you in your tracks.

I was instantly smitten with this bobby pin set by Everyday Glory.

How perfect would any one of these pins be for a bride's something blue?

A simple bobby pin is beautiful in an updo, a veil, or a bride's bouquet. I love how this set does not match perfectly; I think two or three would be very pretty in a cluster.

At $28.00US for the set, these charming pins would be a fantastic addition to any bride's day of style.

Check out Everyday Glory's shop for more lovely pieces.

Earth Day

Today is Earth Day.

{Image found here via here}

As an environmentally-conscious inhabitant of this great planet, I wanted to do a small tribute to mama earth.

What is Earth Day, you might ask?
Put most simply, “Earth Day will remain Canada's strongest positive voice in promoting constructive and sustainable environmental values, actions and solutions.” – Earth Day Canada

How can I give back?
There are so many ways we can give back by making minor adjustments to our daily activities.

Dan Levy's motivational Doop article inspired a couple of these links. They are chalked-full of inspirational how to's and useful literature for those of us looking to learning more:

The eco-conscious brides will enjoy the following glam-yet-green inspirational bridal sites:

Finally, the fashionistas will enjoy the Spring collection found at my favorite eco-friendly shop, Body Politic.

So, especially today, I encourage you to learn something about our Earth and -as they say- hug a tree.

{Image found here via here}


How To: Spoil your bridal party on a budget

During these difficult financial times, many brides are finding it tricky to spread the love to their best ladies. Bridal magazines do not make things any easier. They depict bridal party gift ideas such as spa weekends away and Tiffany’s jewelry among other costly items.

For this reason, I’ve decided to create a How To guide for brides looking to thank the women that have agreed to stand up with them.

Let’s be honest: we are who we are in part because of our girl friends. The special ladies willing to support and share in the most important day of your life deserve a thank you.

I’m here to let you know this doesn’t have to blow your budget.

. . .

Although you can't beat a Girls Night Out, a Girls Night In can be equally fabulous.

Whether it's a games night, a movie marathon, home spa treatments, or just chit chatting the night away, I'm a huge fan of staying in, especially with great friends.

The following are some ideas on how to spoil your bridal party with a budget-friendly Home Spa Night In.

The details...

Guest List: Your bridal party/ BFF's/ favorite females

Activities: I'm a huge fan of the Sex and the City box series [approx. $90 - $190 CAN depending on where it is purchased]. I think it would be great to set the mood for a fabulous evening, whether it is playing in the background or your guests sit down to enjoy their favorite episodes. Depending on how S.A.T.C.-versed your guests are, the board game is quite fun, too [approx. $30 - $50 CAN]. Either option is great for unique convo-starters. [Don't want to splurge on the set? Rent your favorite season from Blockbuster]. In my experience, the best nights have materialized out of great conversations. Use your discretion on how to structure the evening.

Home spa treatments [I'm a huge fan of Skoah's klearity mask, $40 CAN - which is enough for all of your guests] are always fun. Within the comforts of your own home (and in your most comfortable clothes) you and your girls can do your own mani/pedis [my signature OPI colour - a oui bit of red - is shown here, approx. $10 CAN].

Menu: Cheese trays, spinach & artichoke dip, olives, and other appetizers will provide your guests with an evening full of finger foods. If you have culinary-inclined girl friends, host a pot luck. Ask your ladies to bring their favorite appy (and to share the recipe)! This will cut down your costs and prep time, significantly.

As for drinks, no girls' night in is complete without a Pink Sparkling Wine toast [approx. $13.99 CAN/ bottle]. I love the idea of creating a special cocktail for the evening, such as the "Barbie-licious" Pink cocktail shown here. (You could have each guest bring a different ingredient from the recipe and mix them each a drink upon arrival).

Favours: I always enjoy giving party favours, no matter how juvenile it may sound. With this occasion being themed pamper-me-fabulous, I'd send my ladies home with lovely spa treats [such as Open Sundaes Body Scrub Pink Sugar, on sale for $4, or Diva Solid Bubble Bath, $6.95 CAN].

Budget: Depending on the size of your guest list, how much your guests bring, and the activities you plan, this party could run you anywhere from $100 - $300 [which is what it would cost you for one Tiffany's charm].

Enjoy the company of your favorite females; Happy Planning.


Sweet Touch Favours

Never one to turn down a sweet treat, I was thrilled to discover Sweet Touch Favours, made by the lovely Alexia.

Alexia creates these gorgeous personalized cookies for wedding favours or shower & stagette treats.

Her delicious sugar cookies, starting at $3 each, are baked, decorated, and packaged with you [and your colour scheme] in mind.

Each cookie is individually wrapped in a clear cello gift bag tied, with a personalized ribbon and optional tag.

. . .

Listen up Vancouver-based Brides & Party Planners...

As a Special Bonus for all C Star readers, Alexia has generously offered to include two dozen extra cookies on a minimum order of 150.

These two dozen could be in the same theme of your order or styled specifically for an earlier event [such as a shower or stagette].

Contact Alexia [sweettouchfavours@gmail.com] to collaborate on ideas for your next celebration [and don't forget to mention C Star Events].


Birdcage Beauty

Vintage-inspired birdcage veils have made a comeback in a big way. Many brides are opting for the delicate look of this classic style for their big day.

I was thrilled to see Drew Barrymore sporting this lovely accessory to the recent premiere of Grey Gardens [which, might I add, I am very excited to see].

This simple yet stunning veil works perfectly with her classic red lips and 1920s flapper-inspired dress.


She pulled off this look flawlessly, inspiring brides and fashionistas everywhere to experiment with veils whether or not they’re taking a trip down the aisle.

Perhaps you like the look but not enough to commit for your bridal style? I think this look would work perfectly for a pre-wedding celebration or a party.

Would you wear a birdcage veil for a non-wedding celebration?


Pew Cards

I was instantly smitten with the following DIY project featured on Style me Pretty and Twig & Thistle.

Although it is common that the first few rows of chairs or pews are reserved for the immediate family of the bride and groom, I have never seen "reserved" signs as lovely as these.

The creative Ellie at mint created these adorable pew cards for the benefit of the ushers at her upcoming wedding.

Ellie explains how she created these unique and personalized cards, here.


I've been tagged.

I have been tagged by the ever-inspiring Callie of Grayson: a different shade of grey

What is your current obsession? the Nintendo DS "rhythm" game from the Beyonce commercial... although I do not have the game... or the Nintendo DS "clap, clap, clap, clap!"
What is your weirdest obsession? This week, it's purchasing random kitchen gadgets.
What are you wearing today? Black skinnies, a b&w striped top, a baggy black sweater, and strappy flat sandals.
Why is today special? [I have to agree with Callie on this one] Every day is special.
What would you like to learn to do? Play the guitar* [Note: I am pretty amazing on 'Guitar Hero' and 'Rockband']
What's for dinner today? Salad with chicken
What's the last thing you bought? A pizza cutter [Note: the random kitchen gadgets answer].
What are you listening to right now? Kings of Leon.
What is your favorite weather? Sunny with a breeze and the smell of summer. [Too specific?]
What is your most challenging goal right now? Saving money for a down payment. Sigh.
What do you think about the person who tagged you? Callie is a sweetheart and her blog is one of my daily reads. She is so clever, creative, and full of lovely ideas.
If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you like it to be? Hawaii.
Favorite vacation spot? My cabin in the BC interior [& Hawaii].
What would you like to have in your hands right now? A chilled glass of monkey bay sauvignon blanc. [Again, too specific?]
What would yo like to get rid of? Global Warming and World Poverty.
If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go? I'd accompany my boyfriend on his night shift.
Which language do you want to learn? French. [My accent could use some work in a major way].
What did you dream of last night? Planning the third annual girl's wine tour weekend... more on that later!
Who do you want to meet in person? Conan O'Brien
What's your favorite part about the city you live in? My 'old' city: My family. My 'new' city: the weather, the fruit, and the wineries
What's the favorite piece of clothing in your own closet? New Question: What is a 'staple' in your closet? Skinny jeans.
What is your dream job? Wedding Planner!
If you had $150.00 now what would you spend it on? I'd donate more money to my friend Jessica who is balding for dollars in support of children with cancer and blood disorders.
Fashion pet peeve? When someone attempts to wear too many trendy pieces all at once.
Do you admire anyone's style? Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston.
Describe your personal style: Classic, casual, and only a tad bit "trendy"
Who's fashion show would you want tickets to? Zac Posen and Chloe.

Okay, here's the rules:
1. Respond and rework: answer the questions on your blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your own invention.

2. Tag seven other people: I'd love to learn more about these bloggers should they have time to share!

a "cheery" disposition
a summer picnic wedding
delight by design
down and out chic
tying the knot
under a paper moon


I Try, Ben Taylor

I have to say, it's hard not to enjoy the Cheerios commercial that features this song. [I'm pretty sure it's been used on another commercial, too, but I can't quite remember]. Regardless, this cover of Macy Gray's classic is both sweet & sentimental. I love Ben Taylor's version of one of my favorite songs from the '90s. It's perfect for a Wedding.


I think this song would be lovely as processional music or for a first dance, although it may be a little slow.


I may appear to be free
But I'm just a prisoner of your love
I may seem alright and smile when you leave
But my smiles are just a front
I play it off but I'm dreamin of you
I'll keep my cool but I'm fiendin
I try to say goodbye and I choke
I try to walk away and I stumble
Though I try to hide it it's clear
My world crumbles when you are not near


Pretty Hair Pieces

One of my current favorite bridal style trends is the hair piece. Today's Brides have the choice of pearls, flowers, feathers, & bows to add both style and personality to an updo or a veil.

This pretty flower by oh my deer completes the bride's messy updo, perfectly.
{Once Wed}

I adore these lovely yet understated pieces found on etsy. The effect a single pin can have on an updo is just striking. What's more, these pretty pieces are very reasonable; the cost-conscious bride does not have to sacrifice style.

{Clockwise from top left: freshwater pearl and copper wire hair pins, $16; Lotus Flower, $11; Set Of 6 Swarovski Pearl And Crystal Rondelle Hairpins, $22.99; Clay Gardenia flower, $12.50}

Both simple & stunning, a single hairpin can complete a bride's look.

I am also excited to see bridal parties using hair pieces as bold ways of expressing style. Although real flowers are very often used, I like the idea of faux floral pieces as these can be used again and again to update any outfit.


I know this look isn't for every bride.

What are your thoughts?


Spring Awakening

Please forgive me, I have been Missing.in.Action due to some off-blog developments. Like many of you, I have been kept busy with Spring cleaning, reorganization, and life in general.

I am very excited to report that things are moving smoothly with A & R's planning. All of our big picture to do's are checked off and as we move closer to the big day things are falling into place, quite naturally.

I am also thrilled that C Star Events is one step closer to a fabulous launch
{but more on that later...}.

. . .

With the last of Spring Snow Storms melting away and the temperature creeping upward, I've found myself being drawn to bold colours.
Enter: Inspiration.

I love finding new photographers & unique engagement photo shoots; the following is a brilliant example. In honour of Spring and the Wedding Season that is so quickly falling upon us, I wanted to share the work of Simply Bloom Photography.

I'm smitten with the organic vintage feel of their photography and how they are able to capture such raw emotions.


{Simply Bloom Photography via Wedding Chicks}

The photo shoot, the shoes, the colours, and the couple are flawless.
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