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The latest from www.glamour.com - Weddings

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    reader-dilemma


    Writes Save the Date reader Kirsten:

    My cousin and I are less than two months apart, and we've always been very close—more like siblings. He's about to get married, and while I want to be happy for him, I'm worried about the woman he's chosen to marry.

    His bride recently told me that instead of hosting a traditional wedding, she's decided they will "sneak onto a college campus and get married real quick by their friend." Who's not an ordained anything, I should add. "I don't want any of the family there," she told me. "It's just going to be us, my best friend, and no family at all." She said after the ceremony "everyone else" would be invited to their house for food and gifts. When I asked her why they were essentially eloping, she replied: "It's a battle of wills between me and [his mother] and I refuse to lose. I don't like her, so I'm determined to exclude her." It seems strange, to me, that she'd want to start their life together on such a spiteful note.

    I understand why people have small weddings, but I can't believe she's refusing to include my cousin's parents and his little sister. That, and she has the audacity to ask for gifts. Tacky! My cousin says he doesn't care, but I think he's just trying to prevent a total freak-out by his bride. (She has a nasty temper.)

    So here are my questions: 1) Can I say something to my cousin about how his bride's decisions are making the rest of the family feel? 2) Am I obligated to give them a gift? (The bride has made it clear that "the thought" definitely does not count, but I don't want my money funding her appetite for cheap liquor and RedNek Wine Glasses.) 3) Is there any way to politely bow out of the reception? As much as I want to be there for my cousin, I don't think I can stand watching his bride get drunk and start slapping him, which she did at his birthday celebration.

    Here are my thoughts:

    As I've said in the past, a wedding invitation is just that: an invitation. It's not a subpoena. You are in no way obligated to attend. So if you don't support the marriage, don't go to the wedding. (Or the "reception," as it were.)

    I'm assuming your cousin is in on the wedding plans, so I'm not sure if speaking with him is going to improve the situation. You could say something to the effect of, "Not being a part of your wedding ceremony is really going to break your parents' heart." But I suspect he already knows that.

    As far as gifts go, again, there's no obligation. But personally, I can't imagine getting an invitation (assuming they're sending invitations) and not sending something. So in this case, I'd get a not-too-spendy gift with your cousin in mind. Maybe a gift certificate to his favorite restaurant or tickets to a sporting events you know he'll enjoy. (Sure, neither is a traditional wedding gift, but this isn't a traditional wedding, to say the least.)

    Ladies, what do you think? Should Kirsten boycott her cousin's wedding? Should she speak up? And does she need to give a gift?

    Have a wedding-y dilemma of your own? Email me!


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    I don't watch How I Met Your Mother but I gather there may be spoilers ahead, so proceed with caution. (Although really, if you want to avoid spoilers from a series finale, you probably shouldn't be on the Internet.) Anywho, we discussed Robin's Monique Lhuillier wedding dress a few weeks ago, but last night we saw another wedding gown: on the mother.

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    E! got the scoop on the custom gown straight from HIMYM head costume designer Reiko Kurumada: "Since the wedding takes place in the future years from now, I wanted the dress to be age appropriate for Cristin [the mother]. When I suggested the overall look to be very simple with a little vintage feel, a la Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, [creators] Carter Bays and Craig Thomas agreed completely." Instead of scouring new wedding dresses, "we found a gorgeous simple gown in the vintage section of a costume house, along with a vintage broach that we made into a hair pin," she explained. "The dress fit her perfectly. No alterations needed at all. It was meant to be!"

    Read the full story here.

    Thoughts on the HIMYM mother's wedding dress? Would you wear something similar?

    Here are Megan's thoughts on the HIMYM finale. She seems less rage-y that my Facebook newsfeed.


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    Sophisticated minimalist brides, you have found your style icon: Emma Watson in Ralph Lauren at the UK premiere of Noah yesterday.

    emma-watson-uk-premiere-noah-dress-designer


    I'm loving everything above—plus, her especially bridal accessory: hair gems! (Which Beth discusses at length here.)

    emma-watson-noah-premiere-hair-accessories-gem-stones


    Would you copy Emma Watson's sleek, chic look for your wedding? Or do you want something a little floofier?

    I can so see this on a city bride. In fact, her head-to-toe look kinda reminds me of Glamour editor in chief Cindi Leive's wedding-day get-up; see that here.


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    Tide and Joy Dress in Floral from ModCloth, $40.99. Vera Wang Princess Floral Peasant Dress from Kohl's, $39.99.


    Spring has—eh—sorta sprung, so you can bet you'll be getting invites to loads of springtime bridal showers, low-40s temps be damned. Even if the flowers aren't quite ready to bloom, you can get in a spring-y state of mind with a sweet, flower-motif dress, perfect for an afternoon party.

    Would you wear any of these dresses to a bridal shower?


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    If you've spent any amount of time staring at Jessica Alba's left hand {cough, guilty } they you're familiar with her engagement ring, a cushion-cut diamond (I think) on gold pave band.

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    So I was totally surprised when I saw this pic, taken post-engagement, pre-wedding:

    2-jessica-alba-engagement-ring-pictures


    Here's a slightly clearer shot.

    Looks to me like a slightly larger diamond—although it might be the same diamond—but the bottom ring is in a platinum or white-gold halo setting. My guess: Jess was feeling so-so about the original setting and asked her guy to take the bling factor down a notch.

    What do you think's going on with Jessica Alba's ring finger? Which ring do you like best? And would you have the guts to ask your guy to swap your setting?



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    Look, the big-name bridal houses aren't going anywhere. You'll always be able to get a $10,000 wedding dress if your heart desires—and your budget allows. But I'm happy to report that there are more affordable wedding dresses on the market than ever. A new player in the game: online cute-clothes depot Ruche, which just launched its first bridal collection. Here are four of my faves:


    Wedding Dress 1
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    Zoe, $458.99.


    Wedding Dress 2
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    Angelique, $128.99.


    Wedding Dress 3
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    Darcy, $114.99.


    Wedding Dress 4
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    Clara, $348.99.


    Click here to check out Ruche's entire bridal collection. And click here for cute dresses for 'maids and guests.

    How much will you spend on your wedding dress? Do any of these wedding dresses impress you?


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    classic girly fun boudoir sessions classic girly fun boudoir photography Boston boudoir photographer

    While clicking around the WWW to write my master list of bridesmaid duties, I stumbled across "the sex pot" on a Pinterest board named "bridesmaid jobs!" I can't decide if it makes me grin or groan, but I'm leaning heavily toward the latter.

    The premise, if you're too freaked out to click the link, is that a bridesmaid is supposed to present the bride and groom with a "sex pot," an empty fish bowl or vase outfitted with a note that encourages the newlyweds to toss in a quarter every time they do the deed during the first year of marriage. Then, for their one-year anniversary, the couple can use the cash to pay for dinner.

    So, yeah, I'm decidedly lukewarm on this for several reasons:

    1) Bridesmaids have enough jobs, damn it.

    2) Even if you hit the sheets once a day, every day {and--spoiler alert--you probably won't } you'll only have about $90 after a year. That's kind of a sad anniversary dinner, at least in the greater NYC area.

    Plus, logistically speaking, who wants a sex pot lying around the house? Even if you take the note off, you KNOW your bridesmaids are going to be giving the fish bowl a sideways glance every time the visit.

    Perhaps I'm overthinking this. (Wouldn't be the first time.) But I'm going to go ahead and declare the sex pot a big ol' Don't. Save your quarters for laundry, instead.

    Thoughts on the sex pot? Would you make one for a friend? Would you like to be gifted a sex pot?

    That's another thing: I would NOT want to open a sex pot at a bridal shower, in front of my mom and future mother-in-law. Just...cringe.


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    When your wedding guests arrive at your reception, they're probably going to be a little bit antsy. And if you have a traditional bar set up, they're going to be antsy while standing in line, waiting for a drink. Un-fun.

    To ease the crowd at the bar without hiring extra waitstaff, ask your caterer to set up some grab-and-go drink stations, whether they're buckets of beer on ice or mixed drinks in a spigot container that your guests can pour themselves.

    vintage bath tub for drinks at wedding


    You probably don't need a whole bathtub full of beer, but if you have a tub to spare, why not?

    Do you hate waiting in line for drinks at a wedding? Would you be psyched to find a serve-yourself option? Or is it all a little too boozy for you?


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    If I didn't already have an engagement ring, I might print out a picture of one of these sparklers—juuuuust in case someone was looking for inspiration.

    Engagement Ring 1
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    Tiffany, who's getting married in May, says her ring is "perfect."


    Engagement Ring 2
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    Kelly's boyfriend led her on a scavenger hunt, where his friends directed her to all of their favorite places. So romantic!


    Engagement Ring 3
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    "I know my ring is very unusual," says Lilly, "but I had been coveting it for years and thought you might need an extra-unique one." Love it!


    Engagement Ring 4
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    Millie's boyfriend totally surprised her, proposing during the Super Bowl halftime show in front of their friends and families.


    Engagement Ring 5
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    Kate's guy proposed during choir rehearsal—which is extra-special, because that's where they met.

    Which of these engagement rings is your favorite?


    If you'd like to share a photo of your ring on Save the Date, you can click here to submit it with the contact form. Or you can email a photo to glamour[dot]weddings[dot]girls[at]gmail[dot]com. I try to run reader engagement ring posts often, so take your time and send a biggish, nonblurry photo! (Please DON'T send an Instagram photo or add text or special effects!) And if you've already sent a pic, sit tight—it's coming!


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    wedding-skincare

    Models backstage at Temperley London's fall 2014 show got treated to a pore-brush session.

    My feeling about wedding beauty is that it's at least 50 percent about the good habits you have in the months leading up to the wedding—not just about the hair and makeup you do the day of. Example: Here are a few basic, boring tools that, when used regularly, will get your skin looking spectacular from head to toe.

    1. Body gloves. Unlike loofahs, gloves let your scrubber hug every curve of your knees, elbows, heels. And because you can feel what you're doing better, you don't miss as many spots. The result: a totally squeaky-smooth body that's ready for your wedding dress, not to mention any skin-baring outfits in your pre-wedding repertoire. Bonus: If you self-tan or spray-tan, it'll go on even more naturally.

    2. A pore-cleansing brush. The Clarisonic is pricey, but its ongoing popularity speaks to its effectiveness, and it's a great long-term investment. (And there are a few less-expensive alternatives out there now that our readers say work well.) Apply cleanser to it morning and night, then take your time cleaning your pores. It'll help prevent blackheads and breakouts as well as clean your skin more thoroughly so the products you apply penetrate more effectively.

    3. Pedi socks. Activated by the heat of your body, special gel-lined socks infuse moisture into your feet using ingredients like aloe, jojoba oil, and vitamin E. Toss them on for 20 minutes while you're watching TV each night, and you won't have to worry about calluses or cracked heels (or spend as much time working on your feet with a file).

    Engaged ladies, what has your pre-wedding skin care routine involved? Tell us below!


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    brides-logo

    Everything about getting married is exciting—well, almost everything. Along with buying your dress and honeymoon lingerie, there's something else you need to check off your wedding to-do list that's not as sexy but just as important: filing paper work. Below are three important steps to take care of (name change, anyone?) to avoid unnecessary headaches before and after the big day.

    bride-hair

    Marriage License: Check your state's application rules six months before the big day, says Ali Phillips, president of Chicago's Engaging Events by Ali. On the day of, have a plan for when you, your officiant, and witnesses (if they're required) will sign — usually right after the ceremony. Phillips also suggests asking the officiant to make a copy before she sends it in. Destination brides: Quadruple-check local laws; some countries have residency or blood-test requirements. Or hold a quiet (even secret!) civil ceremony in the U.S. before you go to be safe.

    Name Change: Start with your Social Security card, then your driver's license (both in person). The rest (credit cards, bank accounts, airline rewards programs, et cetera) can usually be done online. Check your spelling, because a mistake equals disaster. It all must match.

    Passport: You may be gung ho to change your name before the honeymoon, but the application process can take up to six weeks. If there's any chance you won't get it all done, wait until your return; the name on your tickets must match the one on your passport or you'll have trouble at customs, says Kara Bebell of the Travel Siblings. Also, if your passport doesn't have several empty pages and at least six months until it expires, it will be difficult to get into certain countries, especially with a visa. "This is an incredibly common mistake," says Bebell. "Update it!"

    —Written by Nora Zelevansky for Brides

    More from Brides:
    *4 Inexpensive Date-Night Ideas You Haven't Tried Yet but Should
    *11 Things to Do After Getting Engaged
    *50 Ways to Slash Your Wedding Budget


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    When I was, like, 6 years old, my dad bought me a copy of A Very Young Dancer from a flea market, initiating my long-time fascination with the New York City Ballet. So I'm SO excited to share these three custom engagement rings, which former NYC ballerina Jamie Wolf designed for three current members of the New York City Ballet—who are all marrying dancers. (I'm pretty sure a boy dancer is called a ballerino, but don't quote me on that.)


    Engagement Ring 1

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    Principal dancer Tiler Peckengaged to principal dancer Robbie Fairchild


    Engagement Ring 2

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    Soloist Brittany Pollackengaged to principal dancer Jon Stafford


    Engagement Ring 3

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    Soloist Ashley Laracey (on the right) engaged to corps de ballet dancer Troy Schumacher

    After dancing in the corps in Black Swan with Natalie Portman, Jamie custom-designed her engagement ring in 2010, and just now started offering custom designs to the masses. Click here to check out all of her offerings.

    Which ballerina's engagement ring do you like best? And who else kind of wants to be a ballerina when she grows up?


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    Two Birds Bridesmaid Dresses

    This doesn't fall under your formal bridesmaid-ing duties, but if you have these two extras on-hand for wedding-day emergencies, you'll automatically take home the Best Bridesmaid EVER trophy:

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    A sewing kit and a packet of fashion tape. You probably have both at home, anyway, so throw them in your bag. They could easily wind up being life-savers (or, at least dress-savers) for the bride and a bridesmaid or two.


    Have you ever been at a wedding with a dress fiasco?

    My friend Tatum went to get in her dress only to realize the zipper had never been sewn in. Feeeee-asco! (But she got sewn into her dress and looked gorgeous!)


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    It seems Jennifer Lawrence's brother Blaine tied the knot recently, and the wedding—with J.Law in all her bridesmaid-ing glory—made the cover of the latest issue of Martha Stewart Weddings.


    The mag calls the J.Crew bridesmaid dresses ivory, but it looks to me like they're soft peach, right? (Click here to see the ivory.)

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    Arabelle Long Dress in Silk Chiffon from J.Crew, $365.

    Thoughts on Jennifer Lawrence as a bridesmaid? Would you want to wear that bridesmaid dress?

    My bridesmaids wore J.Crew!


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    We've been doing sexy-back wedding dresses for a few seasons now, so I'm betting designers are going to take it up a notch this season, with more built-in rear-view bling. Here's a heavy-metal gown from Johanna Johnson's previous collection that I'm still obsessing over:

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    The Lexington.


    Bridal Market kicks off this week, so we'll see soon if my prediction comes true.

    Would you wear a wedding dress with major back bling? Or are you looking for something a little more low-key?


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    Kristen Bell isn't the type of celeb to flash her engagement ring all over social media, so it's not surprising that I'm just noticing it now—even though she and Dax Shepard got engaged, like, four years ago. But now that I've finally seen it, you guys HAVE to get in on this. It was SO worth the wait. Check it out.

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    It looks like a champagne diamond (I'm guessing it's bezel-set and emerald-cut, around 3 carats), which is SO different for celeb. And the setting—if I'm remembering correctly, it's Neil Lane—is so dainty and unique. Love.

    Thoughts on Kristen Bell's engagement ring from Dax Shepard?

    It might be my new favorite celebrity engagement ring. Even though it's not, um, new.


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    Kat Braman Photography

    If you're in the midst of planning a wedding, you need to get on Groupon, stat, for some major wedding savings. Here are some deals that are happening right now through April 16:

    + Half-off a three-hour photo booth rental. (It's $595, which is way cheap, in my experience.)

    + Wedding dresses—including gowns by Nicole Miller—from $199.99.

    + Veils from $49.99.

    + Half-off a self-inking stamper, which is also great for a shower gift.

    There are about a billion more deals to be had, but you're going to need to click your way over there and check 'em out for yourself. (You might recall our real bride Chandra, who highly recommended Groupon for couples who are in wedding-planning mode.)

    Have you scored any major deals while planning your wedding?


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    Modern purple and green wedding 42


    Obviously you want your best friend and your far-flung relatives to have access to all 12,038 photos from your wedding. But it feels a little dicey if those same pics are junking up in the Facebook newsfeed of, say, your high school frenemy, your ex, and the coworkers you {gulp! } didn't invite to the wedding.

    If you want to show off your wedding pics without feeling like a show-off, corral all your wedding photos with the Wedding Party app, which works sort of like Instagram, but the only people who have access are the people you invite. AND anyone with an invite code can add pics, so you can get shots from your rehearsal dinner through your post-wedding brunch, which your pro photographer probably won't have access to. Pretty sweet.

    Of course you can still share some select snaps on other forms of social media, but if you have control over which pics show up where, you won't have to wonder if the sorority sisters you haven't spoken to in seven years analyzing your "WOO-HOO!" face at the after-the-after-party.

    Oh, and Wedding Party works on iPhones, Androids, tablets, and desktop computers, so you don't have to worry that only your tech-savvy friends will have access to it. Click here for more info.

    How are you planning on sharing your wedding pics? Are you cool with being tagged in 7,371 photos on Facebook? Or do you want something a little more discreet?


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    Happy bridal market, ladies! I spent some time perusing the latest from David's Bridal yesterday morning, and there's SO much you're going to love. Here are four noteworthy items.

    1. This Melissa Sweet Wedding Dress The lighting in my photos doesn't do it justice, but trust me: It's to-die-for.


    Here's a rear view:

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    2. This Lovely Bridesmaid Dress That's the same dress in two colors. I love the jeweled neckline, the cutout (but bra-friendly!) rear view, and POCKETS!

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    3. These Wedding Shoes FINALLY a wedding shoe you won't have to kick off to dance: These pretty shoes have a 2.5-inch heel. They also come in pale pink (my fave) and light blue.


    4. This Beaded Wedding Dress This dress features 50,000 pearlescent beads. So it's approximately 50,000 times prettier in person.

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    Here's a closer look at the beadwork. The dress takes 120 hours to hand-sew. Stunning!

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    There was a LOT more pretty to be had (including a bunch of dresses with sleeves), but you're going to have to wait till the official pics come out to see it all.

    Which of these items is your favorite? What new collections are you most excited to see pics from?


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    As a general rule, any island that offers great weather year-round is going to attract the most visitors in the winter (high season), when we're all trying to escape the snow. Once summer rolls around, many islands see a sharp drop-off in tourism since many people have beach weather right in their own backyards.

    If you're the type of person who sees hot summer weather as a plus (after all, it's better than risking a rain-filled visit in the fall, right?), then take advantage of low-season prices—you can get an amazing deal at an otherwise out-of-your-price-range resort. Browse some luxe options below.
    viceroy
    The Viceroy Anguilla:
    The "VIP package," available all spring and summer, includes all meals at the resort. It essentially turns your trip into an all-inclusive for food. A great way to save.

    Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo:
    When you book four nights at this resort, you'll get a fifth night free.

    Fairmont Southampton Princess, Bermuda:
    This hotel's Honeymoon Package includes private round-trip airport transfers, a Willow Stream Spa treatment, dinner at the Waterlot Inn, and a few more little extras (we're guessing champagne and chocolate in your room). Prices start around $360 per night, based on a five-night minimum stay.

    Four Seasons Resort Seychelles:
    The resort's Lamour Kreol romance package includes a daily buffet breakfast in ZEZ restaurant, a romantic dinner on Petite Anse beach, and a Blissful Connection couple's treatment at the spa. Another good idea: the Stay Even Longer package, in which the sixth and seventh nights are free.

    Fairmont Le Chateau Montebello, Quebec, Canada -:
    The Romance Package has tons of extras year-round, but two extra benefits during spring and summer: iI's priced lower in May and June, and the weather is also beautiful this time of year. Included in the rate: your room, chocolate-covered strawberries, dinner in Aux Chantignoles Restaurant, breakfast (buffet or room service), a 60-minute massage for two, access to the sports center, pool, and squash courts. Bookings (two-night minimum required) start around $449 per night.

    Gansevoort Turks + Caicos:
    From July to October, an Oceanfront Studio starts at just $375 per night. Aside from the stunning Grace Bay Beach, the resort also boasts a 7,000-square-foot infinity-edge swimming pool (complete with lounging islands where you can float during the day and enjoy an intimate, candlelit dinner at night).


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