Make sure you read this BEFORE you start bridesmaid dress shopping

bridesmaid dress tips

On your big day you want to have happy, smiling bridesmaids in your photographs. Fabulous pictures that show your squad looking and feeling great.

One way of making sure your girls feel that way is by making sure that they're wearing the right dresses. For them (as well as you). So here's how to get it right.

Think about your own wedding dress

Your bridesmaid dresses need to work with your wedding gown. So if you're wearing a boho kind of a dress, don't dress the girls up in formal structured dresses in fabrics like satin. Let it flow. Think about it. Will the looks you have in mind for your bridesmaids work with your wedding dress or do you need to consider making some alternations to your ideas?

What about the weather?

When are you getting married? You won't want to dress your girls in flowing chiffon in the depths of a snowy winter. Or heavier satins for a beach wedding. Think carefully about the style and materials and the time of year (you can order fabric swatches from Dessy while you make your mind up).

Do you really want your girls to all wear the same?

No two girls are exactly the same shape and size and each one will have features they are happy to show off and others they'd prefer to disguise. So you really don't need to dress your girls all the same.

Of course you can have the same color and the same length of dress, but mix it up a bit with different necklines and possibly waistlines. Your squad will thank you for it.

Allow time to get your bridesmaid dresses

If you're ordering from Dessy, we recommend that you order your dresses so that you receive them at least two weeks before your wedding day.

We have a big selection of in-stock bridesmaid dresses that are shipped 1-3 business days from the date of the order, whilst our special order dresses ship around 9-10 weeks from the time you place your order.

Wear shoes of the right height when trying on dresses

When your girls are trying out different dresses, make sure they are wearing shoes. If they're wearing heels on your big day, they'll make a difference to how the dress hangs (and the length of course). So take along heels of a similar height. Same thing if they're wearing flats - you need to see how the dresses look with flats - girls can change their minds you know!

Think about colors

There are some colors which make a girl look fantastic and others that make her look washed out. Ask your girls which colors they feel particularly suit them and which don't. Of course, at the end of the day it's up to you but you might like to moderate your ideas a little (you could have an ombre effect or dress girls in two different shades, which looks very chic).

All images taken from Dessy Facebook page.

18 ways to save money on your wedding day (that your guests won't even notice)

If you're anything like most brides-to-be (and we even think this would include a certain Miss Meghan Markle) you won't have an unlimited budget to spend on your wedding day.

Sticking to a wedding budget you set is really important - you don't want to start off married life together with a pile of debt. 

So we've talked to some clever brides and asked for their tips on saving money (and many of them won't even be obvious to your guests). 

  1. Get married on a Sunday or Monday to Wednesday. Venues are less busy at these times so you're more likely to be able to negotiate a special rate. Try and avoid a Saturday at any time of the year as this is the most popular day.
  2.  The same applies to your photographer. Try and pick a time when your photographer is unlikely to be innundated with work. They will be more open to negotiation.  
  3. Look out for your wedding dress at designer sample sales. You could pick up a top label dress at 50% off the retail price - it will be cleaned and altered to fit you.
  4. Have a tiered wedding cake (but only one tier is real cake, the rest are for show!)
  5. Decorate your cake with fresh flowers rather than intricate icing.
  6. Serve canapes instead of a starter.
  7. Consider having a wedding during the afternoon with a vintage theme - maybe a Great Gatsby theme? Serve traditional afternoon tea, sandwiches and cakes with music from a 1920's style band. Much less expensive than a sit-down, three course dinner. 
  8.  Use flowers that are in season rather than exotic blooms that have to be flown in (you're also keeping your eco credentials intact).
  9. Or use greenery on your tables.
  10.  Forget wedding favors. People won't even notice. 
  11. If your ceremony and reception take place at the same venue you won't need wedding transport. 
  12.  Really think about your guest list. You don't have to invite everyone. Just the people that matter to you. 
  13. Have a rustic wedding with bowl food in different styles of cuisine - and let your guests sit where they wish. Less formal and pricey than a sit-down three course dinner. 
  14.  Do your wedding make-up yourself. Have some lessons beforehand and try out some different looks so you know what will suit you. 
  15. See what you can borrow. You never know who has a spare tiara or even a wedding veil you could use.
  16. Make your own wedding table centers. A pot of hyacinths or daffodils in Spring would look and smell fabulous. Or put one or two blooms (roses, gerberas, daisies) loosely in a simple stem glass vase.
  17.  Ask a friend with a classic vehicle to drive you to and from the ceremony.
  18. Don't have children at your wedding. Avoid getting married during school vacations or taking your honeymoon at that time. Airlines and travel agents put a premium on flights and hotel rates then, so you'll be paying a lot more than you would during term. Travel when the kids are in school and you'll save (you may also find your flight/hotel/beach is a lot quieter). 

10 photos to take of your bridesmaids that they'll LOVE (and so will you)

must-have photos of bridesmaids

Okay, so you know which photos YOU want taken of your wedding day. 

  • The Dress
  • Arriving at the ceremony
  • Walking down the aisle as a newly married couple
  • Cute flowergirls

And so on ...

But what about your bridesmaids? You might be thinking of the typical group shot with the wedding party before or after the ceremony but there are a few other scenarios that will make more memorable and original pictures. 

Here are 10 to be thinking about ...

1. The view from the back: A shot of your bridesmaids linking arms from behind. It's all over Pinterest and offers a more casual yet intimate feel of the bride and her bridesmaids. Plus, if your girls have great detail at the back of the bridesmaid dresses you've picked out, you get to show it off. 

2. Before the wedding: Pictures of the girls helping the bride, or getting ready if the bridesmaids are getting ready all together. Little details also include close ups of the hair, the face and details of the dresses.

3. Fun and crazy poses of bridesmaids: Girls just want to have fun! And they are when it comes to taking pictures, whether it's crazy group shots where each girl is making a different face or doing a different pose, it's all about having fun.

4. Details of your girls' shoes: If your girls are wearing pretty shoes, multi-colors of different styles, then a group shoe shot looks fabulous and saves the moment.

5. Down the aisle shots: Another popular photo are the girls standing alongside the bride. This isn't new, but you will find photographers shooting specific details like a facial expression or they will take an overview shot to include the bride, the groom and the bridesmaids looking on.

7. Pictures between pictures: While prepping the bridesmaids and the bride for the formal photos, photographers should take inbetween shots, of the girls laughing and talking amongst themselves or with the bride. This also provides a more intimate look and feel of what the day was like for everyone.

8. Hairstyles: Your girls will be looking their best and their hair is probably looking incredible. So make sure they get a memory of it to savour. 

9. The seating plan for their table: Get your photographer to take a close-up of the seating plan for their particular table. And a photograph of the table itself when they are all sitting down.

10. You and your squad: You and your bridesmaids may have known one another a long time and been through a lot together. So make sure you also get that one traditional shot of the group to treasure. No bridegroom. No guests. Just you girls.

All photos taken from Dessy Facebook page

 

10 ways to create the perfect pastel wedding day

pastel wedding days

There's something about a rustic wedding that's particularly suited to soft, muted pastels.

Why? Well, in the countryside in the height of summer the light can be mistier, more diffuse and it seems to suit gentler hues much better then bright strident colors (which do however look fabulous at beach weddings).

Thinking about going down the pastel wedding path ... read on 

  1. Pastels to use; soft blues, blush pinks, apricots, pale lemon, apple green, lilacs
  2. Think of flowers like soft sweet peas, ranuculus, the palest roses, peonies, duck egg blue, soft greys
  3. You can use the palest succulents too in the softest greens for contrast
  4. Men can wear suits in the softest greys or a baby blue or maybe a pink?
  5. Think chiffons for your bridesmaid dresses - giving pastels a dreamy floatiness that is very romantic
  6. If the weather is fine and likely to stay that way, take a tip from the wedding shown above and put comfortable seating out of doors for a bohemian, artsy mood
  7. Of course, if you're going for pastels, you don't have to dress your maids all in the same shade. Pastels are easy to mix and match up - you could go for a sort of faded rainbow look if you wanted. Heather, limeade and blush would all work well together and there are many different Dessy styles in these shades (which you can find here). 
  8. If you do want to have the same color, then add a different accent by choosing different designs of dresses in the same colour for your maids (again, this is easy to do with Dessy). If you're having flowergirls, you could just add a pastel sash. Or if it's a little chilly, a soft pastel wrap for your bridesmaids. 
  9. Pale pink rosebud boutonnieres work well with a pastel wedding theme
  10. The bridegroom can wear pastels too. If a pink suit is a little too much, then look at the seersucker men's suits at Dessy for warm weather inspiration. 

 

Main image credits from top left to right: Ruffled blog,  Dessy real bridesmaids on Facebook, pink suit from Asosbuttonholes via Laura Murray photography,  Jenny Packham bridesmaid dress at Dessy in blush, Dessy real bridesmaids on Facebook, central bicycle photograph via Ruffled Blog

 

 

Love the look of one-shouldered bridesmaid dresses? Here's what you need to know before deciding.

The one-shouldered gown style has never really gone away. In fact, if you think about it, it's been in vogue since the Ancient Greeks.

Images from left: Social Bridesmaids Style 8156, After Six Bridesmaids Style 6706 Blush Garden, Dessy Collection Style 2905

One-shoulder dresses are flattering, feminine and timeless. If you're happy for your maids to wear different necklines, then mixing in some one-shouldered styles will make some girls very happy. Here's what you need to know.

  • One-shouldered bridesmaids dresses will flatter girls with broad shoulders and athletic physiques.
  • You can choose a ruched or a draped style.
  • Think that only girls with a small bust can wear one shoulder styles? Then think again. Well-endowed girls can wear them too and in fact they offer more support than a strapless gown. 
  • But if a girl has a smaller bust then a one-shoulder gown will flatter that too, particularly if it's ruched or draped.
  • Forget about wearing necklaces with this style. Instead opt for chandelier earrings or a statement cuff. Necklaces would just look untidy.
  • Depending on the effect you want, you can choose a style in a floaty chiffon or a sophisticated satin. Floaty chiffon one-shoulder styles would look amazing at a beach wedding.
  • If you are having an afternoon wedding, check out Dessy's cocktail style dresses that are shorter - but still in one-shouldered styles.
  • One-shoulder styles have been worn by some real style icons - Elizabeth Taylor, Princess Diana and more recently Emma Stone, Viola Davis, Penelope Cruz ...the perfect red carpet look.
  • A word of warning. Make sure you don't have any tanlines (same applies when you're wearing a strapless dress). Either tan evenly (in a strapless bathing suit) or use fake tan (a few days before so it doesn't mark your dress). 
  • Dessy has a selection of one shoulder bridesmaid dresses in a myriad of different colors. Start taking a look here. 

 

 

Images from left:Alfred Sung Style D691, Dessy Collection Style 2905, After Six Bridesmaids Style 6706After Six Bridesmaids Style 6706 

30 things to avoid doing on your wedding day at all costs ...

It's easy to be wise after the event. Read our tips and you'll be wise before your wedding day, and make it your best day ever. 

  1. Wearing sticky lip gloss. Your veil will stick to your face when there is the slightest breath AND it will smudge and mark the veil. 
  2. Taking ages to have your wedding photographs taken and leaving your guests outside the ceremony, getting bored (and wet and cold if the weather is bad).
  3. Forgetting to give your photographer a list of photographs you want taken (and people you want to be in them).
  4. Walking on soft, wet ground in high heels. You'll stick in the ground and you'll mark your precious heels.
  5. Not having a wrap to wear outside in winter. Blue lips on a bride are not a good look and you don't want to be brewing pneumonia for your honeymoon.
  6. Putting singles on a table full of marrieds. Boring, lonely and depressing for all the singletons. Have a singles table or tables instead and see what happens!
  7. Scrimping on the food. If you're marrying early afternoon and dancing until midnight, you're going to have to feed your guests twice. Better to have an evening wedding and evening party rather than carry on too long with hungry guests (who will probably leave anyway).
  8. Having very long poetry readings at the ceremony - keep them short.
  9. Being a control freak and not allowing your other half to get involved in the wedding planning.
  10. Drinking too much champagne whilst you're getting dressed in the morning. Stick to water. You'll keep a clear head and won't get dehydrated (or need the bathroom at an inconvenient moment). 
  11. Not going to the bathroom before putting on your dress.
  12. Forgetting to give your maid of honor a bag with back-up essentials - tissues, lipstick, mascara, foundation, painkillers.
  13. Not having umbrellas available when rain is forecast.
  14. Not serving enough soft drinks.
  15. Not having a photograph taken of your beautiful reception room before the guests arrive.
  16. Not having a close-up photograph taken of your table centerpieces.
  17. Not having a first dance together.
  18. Serving shellfish. Just no. 
  19. Leaving people nowhere quiet to sit when the dancing starts (they'll start to leave, particularly if they can't hear to talk above the music)
  20. Not having some quiet time together with your brand new spouse.
  21. Getting stressed because some guests don't show up/turn up late.
  22. Worrying whether everything will all go to plan - let it go.
  23. Using new eye makeup and mascara you haven't tried out - you might have an allergic reaction.
  24. Not having a receiving line - old-fashioned maybe - but a good way to know you've greeted all your guests.
  25. Not having breakfast. Fainting isn't the way to go. 
  26. Not eating anything at the reception because you forget - you're going to need your energy. Plus which, you chose all that delicious food anyway. 
  27. Not scratching the leather soles of your new shoes (you will slip on carpet and tiled floors if you don't).
  28. Not tasting a piece of your wedding cake.
  29. Not being mindful - today is it. Stop thinking about yesterday or tomorrow - enjoy the moment.
  30. Forgetting the most important thing - which is that you're marrying the love of your life.

Main image via Beautyholics Anonymous 

 

How to style a Great Gatsby wedding theme

Love vintage style? 

Love Art Deco? The glamor of the 1920's? Want to learn to dance the Charleston? 

Want a fabulous, unforgettable wedding theme? 

Then a Great Gatsby-styled wedding day could be super cute and perfect for you.  

The music

We think a live band if at all possible. In the 1920s it was all about the Charleston and Jazz.  

The dress code

To really make this style of wedding work, it would be best to guide your guests on what to wear. Put 'Great Gatsby style' as your dress code and see what happens. You're probably going to see plenty of Daisy and Gatsby lookalikes. 

The 1920s was a very elegant era and the flapper style of dress suits many different shapes of women. And what man doesn't look good in a tuxedo

Your colors

Black and gold work really well for this wedding theme. Although you could also have silver and black if you prefer. 

On your tables, have centrepieces of white and black fluffy ostrich feathers

Have black charger plates and gold cutlery

Make sure your invitations and place settings are printed in classic Art Deco style. 

Entertaining your guests

  • Have some paparazzi dressed as old-style journalist hacks, taking photographs as your guests arrive (and make sure there's a red carpet. 
  • (By the way, make sure you arrive in a vintage car.)
  • You could have a speakeasy bar for your guests for serving drinks. 
  • Then maybe some blackjack tables in a corner. 
  • Have a photobooth with dress up clothes. We're thinking feather boas, long strings of pearls, 1920s style flapper hats, trilbys for the men, some sharp double breasted jackets. 
  • On a wall you can have some old black and white movies playing (without the sound). We're thinking Some Like It Hot? 

 

The drinks

Cocktails ruled supreme in the 1920s so a cocktail bar, complete with a barperson and a cocktail shaker, is a must if you want to get the mood just right. 

This is a theme that's going to razzle dazzle you. 

Main image credits clockwise from top left: Art Deco earrings by Dessy, Deco invitation via Zazzle, Place setting via Pinterest, Tuxedo by Dessy, Art Deco wedding cake by The Pastry Studio , Wedding Chicks, Wedding Chicks, Pinterest. 

 

 

 

14 stunning photos of wedding shoes (and how to choose the perfect pair)

It's a small detail in your overall wedding day look, but an important one.

Your wedding shoes need to show off the dress you're wearing perfectly. You may want to hide them away under your dress, with just the merest glimpse, but they're still very important. 

 Here's what you need to be thinking about when you're choosing your wedding day shoes

Are the shoes comfortable?

While some shoes may be deceiving and feel comfortable in the store, will they be comfortable for hours at a wedding? Make sure to walk in them for a while, do a little dance if you have to, in order to see if they can withstand anything your day may include.

via GIPHY

Can you manage the height? 

While you may have fallen in love with a certain pair of shoes, are they too high? You want to make sure the height works for you and that you can in fact walk in them. Pick out shoes you love in varying heights before you choose the tallest one. If you never wear heels but are desperate to on your big day, then you're going to have to get some practice in at home. A well-known supermodel said you should wear heels at home until you can walk in them without blinking an eye. Just make sure you wear them on the carpet so you don't scuff them accidentally. 

How about colors?

You may want to go with a metallic if you are a bridesmaid, because unless you are getting shoes that are dyed to the color of your dress, finding a shoe that is exactly the color of your dress could be difficult. If you are the bride, a white or ivory shoe will work just fine here. Alternatively you could choose a bright color or a pastel, a floral design, a key detail, beading ... 

via GIPHY

How much should you spend?

If you've always wanted a pair of Christian Louboutins or Manolo Blahniks, then this might be the time to work them into your wedding budget. If you choose shoes that you will wear over and over again, then the cost per wear goes down dramatically so a pair of fabulous heels that get a regular outing could ultimately work out cheaper than a pair of white or ivory bridal shoes you'll only wear once. It's certainly something to think about. 

Should your maids all wear the same shoes? 

Not necessarily. Some of your bridesmaids may be fans of heels, others prefer flats or a low heel. They don't all have to wear the same color either. Talk to them about shoe choices before making any decisions. It's important they feel comfortable and wear something that flatters them. 

Bring your wedding shoes to your dress fittings

The best way to get a good idea about the length of your dress is to bring shoes to the fitting. It will give the seamstress a chance to see how much she needs to shorten.

Will your wedding shoes take a good photo?

Today some of the most popular pictures being taken are of the bride's shoes, so make sure to pick a pretty pair for the wedding.

Image credits from left to right.  

Top row: Dolce & GabbanaTory Burch, Jimmy Choo

Second row: Vince Camuto, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Christian Louboutin

Third row: Manolo Blahnik, Dessy, Dessy

Bottom row: Manolo Blahnik, Dessy, J Renee, Paradox

A white and gold wedding theme

white and gold wedding theme

As a bride to be, you probably spend quite a bit of your time just now looking at wedding blogs like this one and thinking about ideas. 

Particularly if you haven't quite decided on a wedding theme just yet. 

Maybe you look at some of the adventurous themes out there (we're thinking of Game of Thrones, Twilight, Frozen) and thinking that although they look amazing, they're not quite for you. 

You'd like something a little more timeless. A little more subtle. A theme that's not going to make you shudder when you look at your wedding photographs a few years down the line. 

Which is why a white and gold wedding theme might just be what you're looking for.

White and gold are in fact neutrals.

If you're a traditional sort of a bride you'll be wearing a wedding dress in a pale shade - maybe a white or an ivory. And gold will go beautifully with it. 

  • Have a gold thread woven into your bodice
  • Wear golden wedding shoes 
  • Have golden ornaments in your hair

What about your bridesmaids? They could be on trend with sequinned dresses. Maybe in separates of white and gold or block colours. 

You could put them in long white gloves (see the picture above).

From left: Dessy Bridesmaid Dress 3011, After Six Bridesmaid style S1509

At your reception

As for your wedding tables, this is where a white and gold theme will really come into its own. Talk about the wow factor. 

  • We're thinking clouds of white flowers on the tables. Delicate golden chairs. Maybe white chiffon sashes or mix it up with metallics. 
  • Have a wedding cake subtly brushed with gold leaf. Or up the glamor factor with shiny gold layers. 
  • Gold cutlery and white plates with gold detail. Talk to your caterer or wedding stylist about what is available. 

The thing is, you can be as bling or as low key as you want to me. You can make your reception look like the court of King Midas or just have a whisper of gold throughout a largely white theme.

Gold calligraphy on your wedding invitations. And gold edges.

Enjoy the planning! 

Preston Bailey Ivanka Trump Wedding 

Main image credits from top left: Preston Bailey Ivanka Trump wedding, gold temporary tattoo from Etsy, gold wedding cake via Pinterest, gold table setting by Elizabeth Anne Designs, gold nail art via Nenuno, other images via Dessy Facebook page. 

 

 

 

 

 

Add drama to your wedding day in all the right ways - with deep purples and reds

purple and red wedding

There is a reason why kings and queens over the ages have enveloped themselves in rich, dark reds and majestic purples - it is a color combo that just oozes opulence, warmth and a celebration of life.

And these colors are just perfect for fall or winter if you don't want to go down the russet, orange and earth shades route. 

Image left Elizabeth Cake Emporium, After Six Bridesmaids Style 6697

 

Just look at the sheer exuberance captured in these ideas. You can also mix purples and red up with gold. 

Dress one maid in a dark purple, the other in a striking flame red. (Or mix up the two shades with Dessy's clever collection of separates.) 

Left to right: Social Bridesmaids Style 8186, Social Bridesmaids Style 8159

 

Have trails of purple orchids and red roses festooning the lengths of your tables. Tie your chairs with alternating chiffons in flame and aubergine colors. 

If you want to get this theme right, you have to work it to the full - it's not a choice if you're the shy, retiring sort. 

From left: Social Bridesmaids Style 8182, Dessy Collection Maternity Bridesmaid Dress M432

Browse through the different shades of Pantone purples and reds on offer. (The joy of using a Pantone color is that you can share it with your caterer, your florist, your stationer and know that you're matching everything up just the way you want it. 

Other ideas for using purple and red

  • Let your bridesmaids wear purple shoes with red dresses (or the other way around if you prefer)
  • Carry a bunch of red roses and choose purple blooms for your maids
  • Wrap your red roses in purple ribbon
  • Let your bridegroom and his party get in on the act with purple cravats and vests (or may be red, or maybe mix up both colors, alternating between the groomsmen)
  • Drive off in a red car?
  • Talk to your florist about dark purple and red flower choices
  • Have dark purple petals interspersed with red for your wedding confetti
  • Maybe have rose and violet chocolate creams on your wedding tables  

Just some of the red and purple shades you can choose for bridesmaid dresses from Dessy

 

Main picture image credits: 
Tothebrideandgroomupdate.blogspot.com, linentablecloth.com, dkdesignshawaii.blogspot.co.uk