‘Bridalplasty’: Because Reality TV Simply Hadn’t Gone Far Enough

photo courtesy of chocolatebrides.com

If you read my earlier post about the E! series Bridalplasty, you mayhaps already have an inkling how I feel about it.  However, back then, it was merely speculation.  Yesterday, my friends, it became a reality… a sweet, suuhhh-WEEET reality.

You heard me :)  Bridalplasty made its convenient debut last night – November 28, 2010 – on E!, and as I watched train wreck after train wreck reveal her ridiculous idiosyncrasies and “look at me, look at me, I wanna be on TV!” personality, I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of satisfaction that my first year wedding anniversary could share itself with such a cinematic gem.

I mean, just look at this genius…

Okay, so maybe “genius” is stretching it a bit, but seriously??  Can anyone else say, Hot Mess!?  And that’s just the preview!!!  You can imagine, the show only got better – “better” being the operative word – from there on out.  These “fix me!” brides-to-be are literally competing with each other for plastic surgery rewards (ie. Botox bashes / suction fat slumber parties / rhinoplasty revelries / you name it), in order to be the last bride standing to win her dream wedding (and face!)!

Now, I can’t tell you all this without revealing the best part… All these slice and dice festivities will take place over the course of four months.  Four months in which the potential winning, somewhat sad brides-to-be will be away from family, friends and loved ones – including their future hubs!  Meaning: not only will they be away from the man of their dreams, but they also won’t reveal their new face to the dude who OBVI loved her old face until the big day.  Seems logical, right?

<sense the sarcasm>

Maybe I’m just bitter.  Bridalplasty is, after all, a bit reflective of 2004′s classic, The Swan, and who didn’t walk away from that hot mess of a series feeling at least a little bit better about themselves??  (Mainly because you weren’t on it, hehe!) 

And yet, I digress.  Because you already KNOW I’ll be tuning in each and every week – as my Mister rolls his eyes from another room – to see this beast (whoops!) I mean beaut unfold.  And all I wanna know is… who’s coming with me?

Gobble ’til you Wobble with Savings up to 50% Off

Who needs Black Friday Sales when you can Shop with Us and save year round???  Happy Thanksgiving to all our fabulous customers and many blessings to all the couples looking forward to tying the knot in the New Year!

**Now, let’s raise our glasses in honor of our soon-to-be newlyweds** 

May you treat each day as if it were your last, and each night as if it were first.  And cheers to many, MANY years of happiness :)

7 Ways to Take Advantage of the Holidays for Your Big Day

Who doesn’t love the holidays?  The gathering of family and friends.  The music.  The food.  The fun.  The laughter!!  Not to mention the most important factor of all… the extra vacation days, hellloooo??  It truly is “the most wonderful time of the year,” which is precisely why all you brides-to-be out there should take advantage of the generosity this season has to offer and kick your wedding planning into high gear! 

Indulge in all the small pleasures the holidays bring, and get your Santa on by making a list, checking it twice, and finding out what wedding stuff is naughty or nice.  Below are a few examples how:

  • Because the holidays create a time to gather all your loved ones in one area, you can easily get and share advice with other / former brides-to-be.  Ask family and friends for their top do’s and don’ts; so, you know what to look for and what to avoid.
  • If you find yourself hosting a party, take this time to test out potential caterers, florists, bakers, etc.  It’s an ideal time to “try out” who will have what it takes to impress all your guests!
  • Since many people vacation during holidays, get with your bridesmaids and go dress shopping.  Not only will they provide an honest reaction to your wedding gown options, but you can also start to see what bridesmaids’ dress styles will work for them.
  • Take time to practice wedding day hair and makeup.  Whether you’re doing it yourself or getting it done, chances are it’s going to be something fancier than usual; so, what better way to show off a fabulous look than when surrounded by family and friends?
  • Even benefit from bad weather.  After the holiday shopping rush is over and snow is still on the ground, people tend to snuggle up and stay in.  I say, “Get out!”  Go exploring for interesting ceremony and reception sites, and don’t be afraid to try something new… it just might end up being your ideal location.
  • On a tight budget?  No problem!  There are innumerable post holiday sales that you can gobble up, which will surely help you get the most bang for your buck!
  • If anything, use the holiday season to get organized.  If you’re sending out holiday cards, you’ll more than likely have a list or people and addresses that you’ll need for invitations.  Keep this list handy and be one more step ahead of the game!  

Also – if you’re brave enough – don’t forget to take advantage of all the Black Friday sales this Friday.  For more information on where and when you can get the most bang for you buck, feel free to check out the following sites and gear up for your saving frenzy:

And be sure to note Marilyn’s Keepsakes HUGE Black Friday Sales Event, as well!

Kate & William Sitting in a Tree… W.E.D.D.I.N.G!!!

The Royal Engagement of Prince William and Kate Middleton

photo courtesy of telegraph.co.uk

It’s been less than 48 hours since the royal engagement of Prince William to Commoner (still can’t believe this type of terminology exists) Kate Middleton was announced, and already the world has gone bu-bu-bananas about it!  Don’t believe me?  Well, perhaps you’ll believe CNN, WSJ, MSNBC, NPR, BBC… you give me a 3 to 5 lettered acronym, and I’ll give you their example of world getting whacked for weddings of the royal garden variety.

For instance, if you’re a gambling gal, feel free to head on over to CNN, where you’ll find an article cataloging the long list of items you can place your British pounds on!  People are taking bets on everything from when the wedding will be and where it will take place to the length of Kate’s train and the color of the Queen’s hat!   (Come on, pink!)

Or perhaps you consider yourself more of a financial and political opportunist; so, you might want to hit up Forbes or the Wall Street Journal where you’ll find arguments for and against the cost of the wedding – paid out of the tax payer’s pockets – to the (fingers crossed) overwhelming amount of UK and *African tourism they hope will spin from all this wedded madness.  *If you’re wondering, Africa???  It’s because Kenya is where Big Willy got down on one knee for his lady to be!

Really, it doesn’t matter what you’re looking for; because if ever there was even a faint whisper of concern, excitement, knowledge or otherwise uttered about the upcoming nuptials of the world’s most talk about royal family… you best BUUHHH-LIEVE there’s somebody or several somebodies out there who have already reported, tweeted, facebooked, YouTubed, blogged (holllerrr!), sent up smoke signals, Morse coded, tattooed on their forehead and / or regurgitated all its epic yumminess to the masses.

I, of course, know this because I’d be one of those people at the top of the list creepily concerning myself with it.  As some of you may already know, this ain’t my first rodeo when it comes to the royal wedding watch.  Last August, I wrote the infamous post, “Yes, Prince William, I will Marry You”: A Young Girl’s Dream Shattered?, as if William were my childhood bf and already pegged me as the perfect Best (Woah!)Man.  But alas, I’ll settle for a simple invite, kids - wink, wink, nudge, nudge.

So, as a Royal Wedding connoisseur, I think my favorite tid bit to surface thus far from all the mayhem is the ever so elegant engagement ring!  Originally worn by the late Princess Diana (William’s mum and hands down, the best leading lady evs!) as her engagement ring back to Charles in 1981, the 18 carat Sapphire stunner is now the crowning jewel amidst Middleton’s ring finger!  In an interview conducted by the BBC, Prince William had this to say (see clip below):

“It is a family ring, yes.  It’s my mother’s engagement ring; so, I thought it was quite nice ’cause (um) obviously she’s not going to be a round to share any of the fun and excitement of all this.  This is my way of keeping her close to it all.”  (Prince William, BBC News Interview)

(Pause to compose myself)  Aww!  I love love love that!  And I love love love all this!  Congrats to Kate and William!  May you live each day as it was your first and each night as if it were your last – ooh la la!  And cheers to many, many years of happiness!  You can be sure Marilyn’s Keepsakes will be watching!

Looks Like Another ‘Newlywed’ Will Be Walking Down the Aisle Too!

Jessica Simpson + Eric Johnson (photo courtesy of E! Online)

Referenced in last week’s post, Fingers Crossed for Round 2: Nick Lachey + Vanessa Minnillo are Engaged!, I think it’s time to rewind our wardrobes back to ’05 and whip out the Team Jess / Team Nick tees all over again!  That’s right, my little chick-a-dees, you heard it here first… 

After a down-on-one-knee weekend, it appears Nick Lachey’s ex-wife, Jessica Simpson, will also be joining the ranks of current celebutantes preparing to get their bride on in the near future!  According to E! Online reports, Simpson, 30, recently accepted the proposal of NFL free agent, Eric Johnson, 31, after five brief months of courting.  While some may speculate it is a pretty quick draw engagement - and mayhaps even hurried by Lachey and Minnillo’s recent big news -  the couple’s rep reports the two couldn’t be happier!

And good for Jess.  Poor thing hasn’t always had the easiest time with love, the media or life in general; so, if she’s happy, we’re happy.  She even took the higher road when she appeared On-Air with Ryan Seacrest and made the following statement when asked about her ex-love’s new engagement:

“I am extremely, extremely happy for him.  Our [Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey] relationship was over a really long time ago, and it would be nice if everyone could move on with us and really just celebrate the love between him and Vanessa.  I do, and I wish them all the best.”  (Jessica Simpson, On-Air with Ryan Seacrest)

My only question… Which one’s gonna use this as their wedding song?  Anyone?  Bueller?  Bueller?  Talk abuot awwwwkward.

Mr. DeMille Wants to Know: Are You Ready for Your Wedding Close-Up?

photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com

While weddings take months to plan, it feels like the actual day itself can go by in an instant.  Making the following analogy ideal… Planning a wedding is to the actual day as Michael Phelps’ training is to the Olympics. 

Phelps trained day in and day out for years in order to jump in the pool, swim less than a minute and take home the gold… 8 times.  It’s madness, I tell you!  Complete madness!

And while your wedding day might not garner you the same fame as eight Olympic gold medals did Sir Phelps, it’s still one you’ll hopefully want to remember forever.  But how do you remember something forever when it’s done in a flash?

In pictures, of course!

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a schmillion times… Your wedding photos are hands down some of the most important – if not the most important – keepsake you’ll have from your day.  So, it’s important to make them count!

Recently, theknot.com put out a list of the 50 (New!) Must Have Wedding Photos for Your Album, and I’m dying to know what you think (or what you would add!)!  While I consider several of the items to be a bit of “Pete and Repeat” and slightly unorganized, I do think it’s crucial to get as many ideas as possible; hence why i even put a few more of my personal suggestions at the end as well!  Whoop, whoop!  So, without further adieu, here they are (with a couple examples from our big day courtesy of the ahhhhmazing Jessika and Jimmy Feltz!!):

1.  A Really Good Kissing Shot

2.  The Guys Getting Ready (see also #21, #41, #43 and #50)

Ohhh to be a dude on the wedding day. (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

3.  Your Bouquet (see also #10, #14 and #49)

4.  The Reception Tables

5.  Your Shoes (see also #25)

Granted, this is merely the heel of my shoes... but I love this shot! (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

6.  You — In Action

7.  Your Favors

8.  Your Wedding Party Kids – Junior Brides, Ring Bearers, Flower Girls, etc.

Haha! Yessss! (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

9.  The Wedding Cake

10.  Bridesmaid’s Bouquets (see also #3, #14 and #49)

11.  The Ceremony — Pulled Back

Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

12.  Your Dress

13.  Your Hairstyle

14.  His Boutonniere (see also #3, #10 and #49)

15.  Candid Shots of Your Bridesmaids

Love love love these ladies! (photos courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

16.  The Ceremony — From a New Angle

17.  Your Wedding Party –Bridesmaids, Groomsmen, Ushers, Miniature Attendents, etc.

18.  Your Guests

Might I suggest doing a Photo Booth? The pics WILL be epic. (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

19.  The Scene (see also #32)

20.  The Reception — Pulled Back

21.  Getting Ready with Your Mom (see also #2, #41, #43 and #50)

22. A “New Angle” Photo (see also #46)

23.  The Ceremony Details

Part of the Four String Quartet (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

24.  Your Jewelry

25.  His Shoes (see also #5)

26.  A Sign of the Times Shot — Twitter, iPad, Facebook, etc.

27.  Your First Dance

28.  A Posed & Composed Couple’s Shot

From our editorial / aeroplane shoot :) (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

29.  The Escort Cards

30.  A First Look Photo

31.  A Silhouette Shot

Feel free to include the groom too, hehe! (photos courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

32.  A Scene Setter (see also #19)

33.  A “Magic Hour” Photo — reference term of photographers for right before sunset or right after sunrise when the light is best

34.  The Wedding Dog

35.  The Little Odds & Ends

One of our reception decorations standing proud. (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

36.  The Getaway Car

37.  A Dramatic Couple’s Shot

Again, from our editorial / aeroplane shoot! (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

38.  A Funky Backdrop Couple’s Shot

39.  A Movie-esque Old Hollywood Shot — Black & White

40.  The Lighting

From inside one one of the trees :) (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

41.  Your Bridesmaids Before the Ceremony (see also #2, #21, #43 and #50)

Grouped together outside the church! (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

42.  You and Your Dad

43.  Getting Ready Photo of You (see also #2, #21, #41 and #50)

44.  A Before the Ceremony Toast

45.  Your Glamour Shot

46.  An Artistic Angled Shot (see also #22)

47.  A Stolen Moment Away

Just the two of us! (photos courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

48.  Your Fashion Shot

Hiiiiiiiiit it! (photo courtesy of jessikafeltz.com)

49.  The Boutonnieres (see also #1, #10 and #14)

50.  A Before the Ceremony Shot (see also any # that becomes before the ceremony, hehe!)

I would also like to offer few more shots you could benefit from… ’cause goodness KNOWS I did!

  • Cake Cutting
  • Other “Special” Dances (ie. father/daughter, mother/son etc.)
  • Speeches & Toasts
  • Bouquet Toss
  • Garter Toss
  • The FOOD!  (Dead sere, these were some of my faves!)
  • Bridal Exit from Church
  • Wedding Party Entrance to Reception
  • Grandparents
  • Guest Book

10 Tips for a Fabulous “Love Birds” Themed Wedding

photo courtesy of Google Images

Because I’m a true lover of all things historical – I know.  My cool points just went up about 12 degrees, haha! – I love love love where the concept of “love birds” comes from.  Born centuries ago, the phrase first started making its way onto the scene when it was believed that birds began mating on February 14th each year.  This being the ultimate holiday of love, the two circumstances happened into one lovely little expression that has now become a commonplace endearment today.

The romance of this sentiment has inevitably translated into the world of weddings and has become a highly adaptable and trendy theme.  So, if you’re a sucker for love birds, here is your guide to creating the perfect, “Watch the Birdy!” themed wedding of your dreams.

#1.  Feathers.  One of the most stunning aspects of any bird and not to mention one of the hottest wedding trends today is feathers!  Feathers are the perfect touch of glamour and romance for any wedding day celebration and are easily incorporated into most of your details.  Simply sneak these  trendy tufts everywhere you can: boutonnieres, bridal hairpieces, bouquets, centerpieces, etc.  Even your dress can bird fur inspired!  The list could go on and on, so get creative!

photos courtesy of austinweddingblog.com, thesweetestoccasion.com and atticsunglasses.com

#2.  Card Holder.  Transform a beautiful vintage birdcage into a convenient wedding card holder. Guests will marvel at your resourcefulness, and this station is sure to complement the rest of your wedding seamlessly.

photos courtesy of marilynskeepsakes.com

#3.  Dove Release.  Create a striking ceremony finale by featuring a couple of real life love birds with a dove release. These stunning white flyers symbolize peace, love, and good fortune, making them a popular wedding favorite.

photo courtesy of virginiadoves.com

#4.  Place Cards.  Greet each guest at their respective place settings with a nest-and-eggs place card. Simply nestle a few sugar-coated almonds into some decorative moss, stick the place card inside and voila – a magical place setting that doubles as a sweet treat.

photos courtesy of exoticexcess.com and southernliving.com

#5.  Bird Houses.  No bird-themed bash would be complete without a few fowl-friendly abodes.  These miniature dwellings can float from the reception hall’s rafters, but can also be utilized as centerpieces, table numbers or a wish “jars”.

photos courtesy of joeelariophotography.com

#6.  The Send-Off.  Go green by providing some traditional bird seed for your guests to celebrate the send-off.  The seed is easily accessible and affordable and will complement your theme flawlessly.  Plus, it provides a tasty treat for the actual birds hovering nearby.

photos courtesy of babyshowerhosting.com, manolobrides.com and heidiryder.net

#7.  Beverages.  As couples imagine more and more creative ways to keep refreshments cold and refreshing (bathtub coolers, canoe coolers, etc.), why not think like the birds? Get a few big-basined bird baths, fill with ice, and let cocktail hour begin.

photos courtesy of alyssajulblog.com and plowhearth.com

#8.  Cake Topper.  A simple detail, but important none-the-less. The latest cake topper favorites include classic and modern porcelain birds, or quirky and whimsical fabric birds. Either way, tailor your love bird cake topper to complement your theme and your personality as a couple.

photos courtesy of marilynskeepsakes.com and thisnext.com

#9.  Tweet.  Even with all the above ideas, there is still plenty of room for imagination.  Fill your reception venue with plenty of bird inspired décor, such as: Paper bird pendants, fabric birds perched on branches, signs that read “Love Tweet Love” and “Love Birds” or miniature birdcages filled with candles.

photos courtesy of boards.weddingbee.com, debbiemumm.com and modernepr.com

#10.  Favors.  Don’t send your guests back to their nests empty-handed.  Make sure you end the night with take-home treats that pay homage to the love bird theme.  Bags of sugar-coated almonds will act as delicious, candied robin’s eggs.  Or go a little greener with ornament-style birdseed that guests can treat to their backyard friends.  And don’t even get me started on love bird themed jewelry for bridesmaids!  Talk about trendy and unique!

photo courtesy of weddingchicks.com

No matter what you choose, there’s no denying the chic appeal of a love bird themed wedding!  It’s understated elegance allows you to go as simple or outlandish as you like, while still maintaining the underlying theme of love, peace, and hope.  For more great love bird wedding ideas, check out Marilyn’s Keepsakes.

Fingers Crossed for Round 2: Nick Lachey + Vanessa Minnillo are Engaged!

The happy couple ringing in the New Year in New York. (people.com)

Whoop, whoop!  Looks like the former Mr. Simpson (ya snooze, ya lose Jess!) and his long time lady friend, Vanessa Minnillo are finally making it official, and this wh@cked out wedding crasher is as pleased as punch!  I mean, y’all already know I love me some hot celebrity gossip, but there is nothing better when the famed whispers heard ’round the water cooler become factual news… especially when it is centered around reports this sweet!

According to people.com, Lachey, 36, and Minnillo, 29, became the latest on a long list of sexy celebs gearing up to take “the plunge” when late Thursday afternoon near a beach in California, Lachey got down on one knee and romantically requested for Minnillo be his wife.  **Swoon City**

I mean, will you just get a load of these two lovies??  Too freakin’ cute, right? (story cont’d below…)

Taking a carriage ride in New York's Central Park on Valentine's Day 2010. (people.com)

The engagement ring – according to a people.com source – is a Bader & Garrin Asscher-cut diamond flanked with trapezoid trinkets, and while I have a tendency to get twisted around with ring shapes, sizes and designers, as jewelry was never my thing – gasp!, I have no doubt that it’s b.e.a.uuuutiful because they are so beautiful!

As a girl who openly supported “Team Nick” through the post J. Simp years, I have to admit my bias in seeing that my boy was still open to and has since found love again, which is precisely why I’d like to wish Lachinnillo – ha, don’t act like you’re not impressed – all the best!

And cheers to many, MANY years of life, love, happiness and (fingers crossed X2) babies!!!  Helloooo???  Don’t even front like their children wouldn’t be all kinds of beautiful!  Heck, with the DNA combination those two will provide, they would be doing the world a disservice by not procreating.  Their kids will probably come out glowing with wings!

Because Every Bride Deserves the BEST…

wedding savings coupons discounts sales

Weddings are expensive (boo!), which is why Marilyn’s Keepsakes la-Louvres helping our brides SAVE (whoo!)…

And today is no different!  With all the final details that go into making your day the BEST day, it’s easy to see how so many brides get the overwhelming itch to call it quits!  Buuuuut, if you do yourselves a favor and pop on over to Our Site… you’ll be up to your eyeballs in all things fabulous and rejuvenated to go another 12 Bridal Rounds!

And after you take advantage of our 20% OFF site wide sale, you’ll TKO any remaining pre-wedding stress and have one less thing to worry about!  Come on… what are you waiting for?  Marilyn’s Keepsakes is calling and it’s time for you to answer :) 

What Happens When Fairytale Florals & Vampire Vixens Collide?: Pure Magic, of Course!

Designer, Lazaro (photo courtesy of jlmcouture.com)

If the saying, “little girls are made of sugar and spice and everything nice” holds true in its nature… then the following wedding dresses are a girl’s dream come true!

Combining the “sugar” of delicate florals and flowing fabrics to the bottom and the “spice” of form-fitting corsets and vamp’ed up couture to the top, designers the world over have discovered just how much opposites do attract when it comes to bridal gown glamour.  By creating the sharp contrast between the two, equally fantastical design trends, wedding gowns based off of this unique pattern give a large dose of once-upon-time whimsy with a supersized side of uber sessy!

My eye can’t help but dance from dress to dress styled with curve-hugging corsets, inspired by the undeniable sensuality of Victorian vixens and blossoming bottoms, paralleled by oversized Springtime blooms.  While neither design element is new to bridal fashion, the combination has become one of 2010′s biggest jaw dropping looks and is showing little to no sign of letting up in 2011! 

And while designers like Monique Lhuillier and Allure Bridals lead the pack for mixing these fashion phenoms, it’s no wonder soooo many others have also dabbled in this DIVA-liscious dress trend!  Look below to see what I mean:

Designer, Allure Couture (photo courtesy of allurebridals.com)

Designer, Allure Couture (photo courtesy of allurebridals.com)

Designer, Allure Bridal (photo courtesy of allurebridals.com)

Designer, Allure Bridal (photo courtesy of allurebridals.com)

Designer, Allure Bridal (photo courtesy of allurebridals.com)

Designer, Illissa by Demetrios (photo courtesy of demetriosbride.com)

Designer, Blue by Demetrios (photo courtesy of demetriosbride.com)

Designer, Ultra Sophisticates by Demetrios (photo courtesy of demetriosbride.com)

Designer, Monique Lhuillier (photo courtesy of moniquelhuillier.com)

Designer, Monique Lhuillier (photo courtesy of moniquelhuillier.com)

Designer, Monique Lhuillier (photo courtesy of moniquelhuillier.com)

Designer, Sposa by St. Pucchi (photo courtesy of stpucchi.com)

Designer, Sposa by St. Pucchi (photo courtesy of stpucchi.com)

Designer, St. Pucchi Couture (photo courtesy of stpucchi.com)

Designer, St. Pucchi Couture (photo courtesy of stpucchi.com)