We’re heading off for the weekend, but not before leaving you with some seriously pretty images from Charla Storey. A creative team including Lauren Field Design and Clementine Botanical Art made their way to Mission San Jose, using the inherent beauty of the architecture as a jumping off point for the design and vision. You’ll spot an airy blue wedding gown, an ethereal green gold skirt, and a tablescape so lovely it almost hurts. Don’t take our word for it, though — take a peek yourself!
I never need an excuse to ogle amazing wedding gowns, ever. Every day I’m wowed by another new design, and let’s be honest, sometimes it’s tough to keep track of all of the incredible designers and lines out there! To make things a little easier, we’ve picked out 20 wedding gown labels we think you’ll love in order to help you narrow down your search. Enough chit chat, let’s get on to the fashion!
The second we saw the Cristallini gown in this bridal shoot from 135milimetros, we stopped in our tracks. Soft blue-grey lace, a dusty mauve skirt, plus an illusion neckline? Utter perfection. Add in the most jaw-dropping scenery straight from Portugal, and you’ve got the ideal bridal inspiration shoot.
From the photographers, 135milimetros: Some weeks ago we got the desire to do this styled shoot. “We have to!” – that was our feeling. When we feel this onset of inspiration we never second guess it and we always go ahead, even when that transforms the whole logistics into the greatest adventure.
What would a Best Of list be without mentioning our favorite wedding fashion from 2015? This year saw so many goodies, it was all but impossible to narrow down our list of favorites and most popular images from Pinterest and Instagram. In no particular order, here were the bridal and bridesmaid dresses that truly shone this year:
The illusion lace details on the Yaki Ravid gown from this wedding photographed by Taylor Lord were stunning a million times over!
The bohemian style of this bride and groom wowed us — photography by Erich McVey, wedding dress and cape from Shareen Bridal, veil by Julie Harris Designs, headpiece by Erica Koesler, groom’s jacket by Rock & Roll Religion.
There’s no time like the present to dream of the rocky coast, and thanks to this bridal inspiration from Michael Radford Photography and Tinge, that’s exactly how we’ll be spending our day. Michael captured both bridal and boudoir looks designed by Emily Riggs Bridal, and if you’re anything like us you’ll be absolutely floored by how beautiful the pieces are!
From the floral designer, Ashley of Tinge: Being from Salt Lake City, Utah, I am used to the gorgeous mountains and meadows which are so inspiring. I feel fortunate to live in such a beautiful place! But since California brings such a change in scenery we decided shooting at this gorgeous spot in Laguna was the perfect setting. The mossy rocks and cliffs are rugged, which contrasts so beautifully with the soft, beautiful draping of Emily’s gorgeous Ophelia gown.
I took inspiration of what lives beneath the sea for the florals. I incorporated different colors but kept them all fairly muted, with the exception of a few peach and sea foam tones. I loved the way the soft colors complemented Emily’s gorgeous gown.
As a wedding blogger, I love hearing about how friends and family come together to plan a special day for their loved ones — much like how the mother of today’s bride, Dani, grew squash and sunflowers after hearing her daughter wanted them in her wedding. So sweet! Tory and Dani’s day was full of heart-warming details like these, and was captured to utter perfection by Emily Steffen.
From the bride, Dani: We wanted something that felt like us. As artists and musicians, we wanted details that spoke to who we are. When people asked us our “theme” or our “colors” in our planning process, we were kind of at a loss! The best we could come us with was that it would be something eclectic, with a nod to vintage. We love thrifting and antiquing, so we just filled our wedding with the kinds of things we love and already had in our lives.
It felt like we had a million DIY projects! The wedding was held on a portion of land owned by my mother in northern Wisconsin. And when Troy and I wanted sunflowers and squash for ceremony decor, my mother grew them for us! A good friend and neighbor let her use a part of his field (all of my mother’s land is wooded) and helped her keep it up over our very dry summer, and the result was amazing! We had so many extras we gave away boxes of squash, and our extremely talented florist incorporated the extra sunflowers into our reception flowers and each of the bouquets. One of my mother’s good friends sewed our favor bags to hold our locally-crafted chocolates, and my dad spent a few nights finishing them off with string. My dad also found all of the barn wood for our directional wedding and parking signs which he made and painted by hand.
We were engaged over a year before our wedding, so we had plenty of time to collect! We collected dozens of vintage metal frames for table numbers and signs, which I painted by hand the day before the wedding. For reception flowers, we used our own vintage glassware and mason jar collections, which our florist worked into beautiful, eclectic arrangements. We also purchased over 100 vintage wooden folding chairs, and another 100 or so vintage metal folding chairs for our ceremony. We also collected a few dozen glass, ceramic and brass hand bells which we decorated with bows of floral fabric to match our favor bags for each table, so guest could ring them in lieu of clanking glasses with spoons.
My favorite DIY project of all had to be my floral headpiece – I made it the morning of our wedding using vintage leaves and flowers, and silk ribbon from Tinsel Trading Company in New York. It felt good, as an artist, to make something on my wedding day! As gifts to my maids, I gave them custom monogrammed totes, and vintage handkerchiefs. Each of the men also had a vintage handkerchief to use as a pocket square, and our guests were provided with an assortment of handkerchiefs to choose from at the ceremony, all of which I collected from antique shops and eBay, and that my mother washed and pressed.
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Accept all offers of help and don’t take on took much at one time. And be sure to get to work early! Our wedding ended up being a month or so after a large-scale move to another state, a job change and a few weeks Troy started his graduate program – none of which we expected when we set our wedding date! I feel like we had to put off a lot of the smaller details of until the last week, simply for lack of time in the months before, and some projects just didn’t happen. Our family and friends, and especially our parents, were an amazing help though – we couldn’t have done it without them, and they tried to help as much as they could since were a bit overwhelmed by life in those chaotic months!
Processional: Bartok’s Violin Solo Sonata: Fuga and Bach’s Partita No. 3-Prelude
Ceremony: Original music by Spiral Joy Band
Vow Exchange: Couple’s rendition of “If Not For You,” George Harrison
First Dance: “Unchained Melody,” Righteous Brothers
Father/Daughter, Mother/Son Dance: “You Are the Sunshine of my Life,” Stevie Wonder
Wedding Location: Wausau, WI / Wedding Photographer: Emily Steffen / Ceremony Venue: Private Residence / Reception Venue and Caterer: El Tequila Salsa / Wedding Flowers: Evolutions in Design / Wedding Dress, Jacket, and Earrings: “Crashing Waves” by Va Et Vien via BHLDN / Reception Dress: Hoaglund New York via Bloomingdales / Wedding Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Hair: Lori of Salon Allure, Appleton, WI / Wedding Rings: Bill Fuhrman / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Ann Taylor, J. Crew / Groom’s Attire: J. Crew / Pocket Squares: Vintage and Handmade / Wedding Cake: Sweet Nothings Cakes / Ceremony Music: Laura Schafer and Spiral Joy Band / Wedding Invitations: Dani Schafer / Transportation: Lamers
While wedding days have their own romantic magnetism, there’s something extra-special about the day after. The newlyweds are together in their first full day as husband and wife, after saying their I do’s in front of friends + family and dancing the night away. The day after is just the two of them. That’s what Kristy and Kevin did, bringing along the duo from Lang Photographers. We’re madly in love with her black wedding gown and paper bouquet!
All it took was one glimpse at bride Eileen’s wedding gown before we became fully obsessed with this wedding — a non-traditional gold sequin number designed by none other than Eileen herself! Photographers Love Katie + Sarah knocked every detail of this wedding out of the park.
Wedding Location: Melbourne, Australia / Wedding Photographer: Love Katie + Sarah / Wedding Venue: Stones of the Yarra Valley / Wedding Dress: Designed by bride / Bride’s Hair: Hairdresser for Sportsgirl
The bride and groom from today’s wedding might just be the cutest pair we’ve ever seen, so it makes perfect sense they’d have the cutest wedding theme! With Mary Phan of Very Merry Events in charge, we knew Sherry and Tai’s vintage carnival inspiration would be done to the nines. Bursting with color, games, and treats aplenty, Alfred & Emma Photography captured it all. Every image is a pin-worthy gem chock full of ideas – we even spotted these fun DIY rosette wheels idea, with more tutorials here and here!
From the bride, Sherry: Tai and I met in college, back in 2004. We first noticed one another during class, but we didn’t we didn’t really become friends until a year later when a mutual friend brought me to a house party, that just happened to be Tai’s!
The theme came to me by a random stroke of inspiration. I just came across a ferris wheel and it dawned on me that I want my wedding to be like a carnival because it’s non-traditional and fun! The whole vintage vibe is just a style that I’ve always been drawn to, so that’s why I thought having a Vintage Carnival theme would make my dream come true. I wanted to have a wedding that’s not only unique and fun for the guests but also be able to express myself through personalized and handmade projects! My favorite projects were… well everything! I love crafts so when I started working on my bouquet, I just couldn’t stop finding more things to do to incorporate my personal touch.
I knew I wanted a Vera Wang dress because she knows how to design a dreamy gown that is truly one of a kind. When I first went to try on dresses, I tried the pink one on first and immediately, I knew that this was going to be the one. I tried on a few more dresses, but nothing screamed carnival or SHERRY like the pink one!
I found my reception dress accidentally when I was out shopping for wedding accessories. My dress was on a mannequin in the window and I just stared at it as I walked by. I then walked backwards to look at it more, then decided that the dress was perfect as a reception dress. It was so vintage carnival to me that I just had to buy it! I worked with a seamstress to do some alterations. The reception shoes were Toms. I wanted to match Tai, since he would be wearing Toms for the wedding. I bought lace ones to match my dress and added some Swarovski crystals on it because I wanted to give it a little more bridal glam.
My most cherished moments were moments that didn’t include people… Moments when I saw the ceremony, the tent and the barn. I was so touched at how perfect it all was and how I’m so blessed to be able to have this fairytale wedding! I simply can’t decide on my favorite part of the day because there were just so many moments throughout the day that I was so fond of! The most unforgettable moments were hearing Tai’s vows (surprise vows, might I add), my sister’s toast, the Father-Daughter dance, and the surprise flashmob!
Wedding Location: Sonoma, CA / Wedding Photographer: Alfred & Emma Photography / Event Design and Planning: Very Merry Events / Wedding Venue: Cornerstone Gardens / Wedding Flowers: Nona Tai of Floral Design Studio / Bride’s Hair and Makeup: Revewedding Makeup / Wedding Caterer: Alex’s Catering / Wedding Cake: Tucker’s Ice Cream / Cupcakes: Angel’s Cakes SF / Pie Pops and Cakewalk Desserts: Cakewalk Desserts / Macarons: Chantal Guillon / Vintage Rentals: One True Love Vintage Rentals / Vintage Carnival Signs: Georgia Arts / Carnival Games: Fun Services / DJ and Lighting: Spintronix / Wedding Invitations and Paper Goods: Jen Simpson Design / Videographer: Alan Silva
Botanical garden weddings never cease to amaze me with their ultra romantic settings. With a spin on the psychedelic movement, this botanical setting takes the stage for the perfect marriage of soft and bold. Styled by Belovely Events and shot by Jillian McGrath Photography, these images offer inspiration aplenty for a botanical psychedelic wedding. We may be biased, but we’re loving her pink ruffled wedding gown!
Wedding Vendors (Philadelphia, PA):
Venue Location: Fairmount Park / Wedding Photographer: Jillian McGrath Photography / Event Designer: Belovely Events / Wedding Flowers: wildflowers by design / Wedding Dress: Patina Vintage / Wedding Hair: Brianna B. Adams / Wedding Makeup: Dylan Michael Cosmetics / Groom’s Attire: Tony Laguda Formal Wear / Personal Stylist: Brittany Bollard Styling / Wedding Caterer: Leila Miller of Stephan Starr Catering / Baked Goods: Addy Mae’s / Vintage Rentals: Maggpie Vintage Rentals / Wedding Invitations: Studio Four Three
Once we caught an eyeful of this baby blue wedding dress, we knew we were sold, and for a good reason — the stylists at AniA Collection Bridal Boutique built the entire shoot around it! Ashley Forrette and Aaron Courter were there to capture all of the romance-meets-steampunk with pops of one of our favorite flowers, protea.
From the stylists of AniA Collection Bridal Boutique: As a bridal salon, we wanted to create a shoot completely based on a gown- and not just any gown- a huge, blue tulle ballgown. We’ve been inspired by the colored bridal gowns this season- blush pinks and soft pastels peppered the runways in New York; we wanted to take it to that level and try out a colored gown as well.
Local designer Jennifer Phillips (owner of Nicole Couture Bridal) designed and created the gown off of our vision – and the result was this one-of-a-kind, romantic yet glam statement dress with a vintage twist. The illusion neckline, layers upon layers of soft tulle and hand beaded Swarovski belt bring together a soft, yet still highly dramatic, tone. The teapot, teacups, Eat- and Drink-me tags, clocks and top hat were our homage to the classic Alice tale, but we strayed from too many whimsical or overly “happy” items- trying to maintain that Victorian steampunk vibe.
The proteas made a simple, oversized look on the tables and the bouquets. The Queen Anne Victorian Mansion’s quirky taxidermy and truly vintage allure made for the perfect backdrop. Our dessert stylist, Amy Childs of One Divine Party, created a unique tablescape of candied apples, gold chocolates, and blue macaroons. From the top hat to the steampunk wedding rings, we used local or independent designers for as many details as we could- we are from Portland, after all.
Wedding Vendors (Portland, OR):
Wedding Venue: Queen Anne Victorian Mansion / Wedding Photographer: Ashley Forrette and Aaron Courter / Event Stylist: AniA Collection Bridal Boutique / Wedding Dress, Bridesmaid’s Dress and Bolero: Nicole Couture for AniA Collection / Bride’s Shoes: Creative Recreation / Jewelry: Rachel Roellke Jewelry Designs / Makeup: Kale Teter / Hair: Venus Allure Salon / Groom’s Suit: Duchess Clothier / Tophat: Ashley Lindberg Lawrence / Wedding Flowers: Fleurology / Paper Flowers and Stationery: Sunny & Stumpy / Rentals: Peter Corvallis Productions / Groom’s Ring: Swank Metalsmithing / Bride’s Ring and Groom’s Cufflinks: Noble Studios / Dessert Styling: One Divine Party / Coffee Favors: Apropos Roasters / Models: Kaysha Everetts, Alex Cooksey and Ryan Hinkle
Nothing better than a beyond gorgeous engagement session to officially kick off the Valentine’s Day season! Megan and Seth’s session is just a glorious teaser of what we have lined up for you this week. How much do you love Megan’s black lace dress? I’d say it’s a pretty strong contender against the queen color of all wedding dresses, no?