25
Dec

Your Perfectly Practical Panty Prospectus

Your Perfectly Practical Panty Prospectus

You might think that the undies under your dress aren’t that important, but it’s called foundation wear for a good reason: it’s the support system that will make your dress fit perfectly.

When you’re standing in the lingerie department, it’s fairly normal to feel like you’re drowning in a sea of undies, but don’t get your knickers in a knot, we’re here to help you make the perfect panty purchase for your big day.


(Courtesy evokingyou.com)

Different Kinds of Knickers

There’s more to picking panties than simply going for the cute ones. You need to find a style that suits your shape, and you need to feel comfortable wearing it. If you’re a full brief kinda gal, then a G-string on your wedding day is going to feel like unpleasant derrière dental floss – and you just don’t need that extra stress! If you feel that these miniscule morsels of material are obligatory when you get married, you’d be wrong, as there are sexy versions of just about every type of underwear out there. You’re also more inclined to feel confident, if you’re comfortable and fully supported.

Here’s a quick rundown of popular underwear options, but bear in mind that these categories may differ among brands:

–          Bikini – these are the most common choice as they provide a reasonable amount of cover and are easy to wear.

–          Hipsters the waistband is lower than the bikini, but it has a wider side section, while still adequately covering your bottom.

–          G-string – the front has a small triangle of material, and it’s connected to the waistband at the back with a narrow string of fabric. It’s ideal if you like barely-there underwear.

–          Briefs – these sit at your natural waistline and completely cover your rear

–          Boyshorts – this is an easy style to wear as it’s comfortable and seamless – because it sits under your butt cheek.

There are of course many variations on these, such as wide-waistband G-strings, which give you more support, but still provide you with an invisible underwear look. You should also definitely consider shapewear, which helps you to flatten down your bulging bits, and lift up your sagging bits. Select seamless or laser cut undies as they have no seams, and will give you a smooth silhouette.

SIZE OF UNDIES

Just like a bra, you often don’t realise you’re wearing the wrong one, until you put on the right one. Undies that are too big will ride up or roll down, and those that are too tight, well, I have two words for you: muffin top. Find the right size and style for your body and gown, so that it complements you and your dress. The perfect underwear provides you with support, so that your dress sits correctly on your specific body shape.

COLOUR AND MATERIAL

Gone are the days where you only had black or white underwear, today you have a kaleidoscope of colours to suit any mood. Your favourite pair of panties might be leopard print, but a word of caution to your feral side, only wear these if you are 100% certain that they won’t shine through your wedding dress. Nude is best, as it disappears under a white, or light, dress. Similarly, if you want to wear undies with buttons, ribbons or lace, make sure you can’t see any of these, especially if your dress is on the slinky side.

Working Around Your Wedding Dress

Before you find the right undies though, you first have to find the right dress. Underwear comes in such a dizzying array of styles, shapes and sizes, and each one will look different under your frock. Ask your dress maker for advice on what would work under your outfit, and then bring your undies to your fittings. The wedding lingerie that you choose will be dictated by the style of dress you’ll be wearing.

Sheath or Column

These styles are the most unforgiving, as they cling to every curve, but unfortunately, this means that they also display every lump and bump. Avoid the dreaded VPL – visible panty line – and prevent unsightly bulges, by choosing undies that give you a clean (and enviable!) silhouette. Look for seamless panties and G-strings, or consider wearing pantyhose to smooth any lines. Shapewear is another option as it will slim your thighs and hips, and give your bottom a little boost.

Mermaid, Trumpet or Flair

Women with curves love this style of dress, as it nips and tucks in all the right places, to give you the hourglass figure we all dream of. Because the dress hugs your hips, you have to make sure you can’t see where your undies meet your waist or your bottom. What you need is underwear that puts a bit of junk in your trunk, and something that is high-waisted, to control your tummy. Look for laser-cut – particularly in a G-string style – to prevent all your guests seeing your VPL. Shapewear will also help to slim down your hips and bottom, and smooth over this notoriously troublesome area.

Ball- Gown, A- Line, or Empire

These dresses are popular because they are flattering, and they give you more freedom in the undies department. They usually have a fitted bust and a skirt that flares out, which means you can wear that sexy lace number that you’ve been teasing your fiancé about. You can of course go the other route, and forgo the shaping and sculpting undies, and simply choose something for comfort, as the full skirt successfully hides whatever underwear you put on.


(Courtesy julep.com)

How About the Sexy Wedding Lingerie?

Like most brides, you’ve probably picked panties that are somewhere between industrial-strength control undies, or something a bit more forgiving and a lot more comfortable, but this doesn’t have to be a passion killer for your wedding night. Have a second set of lacy and racy underwear that will fulfil all your new husband’s wildest wishes.

Top Tips For a Pert Posterior

These days it’s not the size of your bottom that will catch someone’s attention, but rather its perkiness. Here are a few dos and don’ts to help you achieve a desirable derrière on your wedding day.

DOS

–          Once you’ve found the perfect pair- buy two just in case

–          Check your profile from every angle to make sure you’ve got the perfect fit

–          Get help from your dress maker or bridal consultant

–          Buy the best that you can afford

–          Wear them for a trial run to see how they feel

–          Cotton (or at least a cotton gusset) is more healthy, as it allows your skin to breathe

–          Comfort supersedes sexy on your wedding day

–          Find a matching set for your wedding night

DON’TS

–          Underwear that’s brightly coloured or has bold patterns, will be seen through a sheer dress

–          Buying undies last minute is a bad idea

–          Your underwear shouldn’t be seen – it should be invisible

–          The groom doesn’t need to know if you’re getting some shapewear help

–          You risk being uncomfortable if you put on a style you’ve never tried on before

–          If you wear panties with an elastic edge you risk getting a VPL – rather choose silicone

–          Avoid squeezing into something just because you think that’s what bridal lingerie should look like

There’s no greater boost to your confidence, than perfectly fitted underwear that supports and shapes you in all the right places. Find the undies that make you look and feel good, and walk down the aisle with a satisfied grin, knowing that you’re the only one who knows what you’re wearing under your dress.

25
Dec

Choosing the Right Tights: Hosiery Explained

Choosing the Right Tights: Hosiery Explained

Picking the perfect dress is the first step to looking gorgeous on your wedding day, the second is selecting the right hosiery to complement your outfit. If you don’t know your sheer from your spandex, here’s a handy guide that unravels the perplexity of hosiery.

Pantyhose, knee highs, stockings, tights and leggings, these are just some of the types of leg coverings that fall under the general term hosiery. Many people might consider them the realm of an older generation, but with some rather racy styles available, you’ll certainly be able to spice up your wedding night.

(Courtesy part-l-ypoison.tumblr.com)
Hosiery should act like your foundation – improving your look without really being noticed. It hides skin imperfections, provides uniform colour and highlights the shape of your shapely legs. For your wedding, you’ll likely choose between wearing stockings and pantyhose.

Stockings

Your memory of stockings (together with hairspray and rose talcum powder) may remind you of your grandmother, but they’ve taken a sensual turn since they were first created. Stockings come in pairs – one for each leg – and they cover from the foot up to the thigh. There are three types:

– The earliest stockings were held up using a garter – a ring of fabric that was slipped over the stocking, and tied near the knee to prevent it from falling down. Garters today are more traditional than functional, and one- usually made from ornate lace – is worn at a wedding for the garter toss.

– In the early 20th century women began using a garter belt, or suspender belt, to keep stockings up. It’s a piece of lingerie that’s worn around the waist, with four or six straps that hang down, and get clipped onto the top of the stocking.

– To make stockings easier to use and to eliminate suspender bumps, stay-ups or hold-ups were created. These have a band of tractive material, such as silicon or elastic, on the top and inside of each stocking, to prevent it from sliding down the thigh. On the outside is usually a wide scalloped lace top.

Stockings are both sexy and functional, and they’re synonymous with old fashioned glamour. They don’t bunch at the waist, are less restrictive than pantyhose, and allow more ventilation in your nether regions. This is good for hygiene and it also keeps you cooler in the warmer months. Contrary to their name, stay-ups don’t always stay up, and for that reason a suspender belt is the most popular way to keep your stockings in the right place.


(Courtesy lilleboutique.com)

Pantyhose/ Tights

These first made their appearance during the 1940s and 1950s, and because they were more convenient, they began to encroach on the stocking domination. Pantyhose extend from the toes up to the waist, where it’s held in place by an elasticated waistband, and it usually has a reinforced crotch. There are different types of pantyhose, including:

– Regular. These are the simplest kind and they’re soft, stretchy and easy to wear.

– Control top. Extra spandex allows more stretching, and the thicker material at the top provides additional support for the tummy and thighs, while also lifting and shaping the buttocks. You have a variety of control options to help create a smooth silhouette.

– Sheer-to-waist. This is sheer from your toes to your waist, which means no panty lines and a smooth continuous form.

– Body shaper. This longer line control top can extend down to the thighs, giving you the greatest amount of support. Waist, hips and thighs are streamlined and, depending on the control option you choose, you can also gain a pert derrière.

Pantyhose are an easier option to put on and take off, and you don’t have to worry about anything slipping down as you walk. The bonus is that they usually come with a slimming feature, which helps you achieve fabulous curves. There are hygiene concerns about nylon, but for most women this isn’t a problem if they’re worn for a short period of time. They’ll keep you warmer if your wedding is in the cooler months, and they prevent your thighs and feet from chafing.

Once you’ve chosen between pantyhose and stockings, your job isn’t done, because you also need to consider classification, colour and comfort. The thickness of hosiery is measured in deniers, the lower the denier the more sheer and fragile the item, the higher the denier the more opaque and durable it becomes. It’s important to bear in mind that there are also huge varieties of styles between different lingerie brands.


(Courtesy lilleboutique.com)

Classification

– Ultra sheer. This is the next best thing to going bare and it perfectly shows off the shape of your pins. Blemishes are smoothed out, it’s ideal for hot weather and it’s perfect for glamorous evenings. It has a denier of 15 or less, so your natural skin tone shines through.

– Sheer. It’s a slightly thicker option and is more durable, but is still soft and silky. It is more noticeable that you’re wearing stockings, but a good quality brand will give your legs an even, natural appearance. The denier is between 15-30 and this makes it less likely to ladder.

– Semi-opaque. Stronger and more hardy than sheer, these give your legs good coverage and your skin is still visible. The denier is usually between 30 and 40.

– Opaque. This is the thickest member of the hosiery family and they’re often referred to as tights. With a denier of 40 and up, you won’t see your skin through the fabric, which can make your legs seem heavy, but you will be warm, which works for a winter wedding.


(Courtesy thetightspot.com)

Colour

Every lingerie company has a slightly different interpretation of shade, which can make this quite tricky. From English Rose and Linen, to Ivory and Petal, be sure to match your skin tone as closely as possible – don’t choose a sun-kissed shade when the rest of you is alabaster. Depending on the thickness of your dress, you may be able to see white hosiery through it, so it’s best to choose natural, nude hues. If you’re a bold bride, pick a vivid colour, or opt for something more romantic, with a hint of sparkle, so that you shimmer as you walk. There are also quirky styles with cute but subtle bows, hearts and floral designs.

Comfort

If you do choose to wear hosiery on your wedding day, you’ll be wearing it for the entire day- so make sure you pick something that fits you well so you don’t keep tugging and fidgeting. You want the right size, shape and style for your body, and that means finding a pair long before you walk down the aisle. Try them on and be sure to sit, kneel and dance around, so you’re completely comfortable. Sizing isn’t standard, particularly with cheaper brands, so check the measurements on the hosiery box to see what you need. If you’re at the top end of the range then go up a size. If it’s too tight it’s more susceptible to tearing, you may bulge in places you don’t want to bulge, and you’re likely to have poorer circulation. When you find what you like, buy an extra pair for backup.

Environment

There are of course other factors that influence your decision: the style of your dress, the season, the formality and your shoes. Your garter belt will show through a form-fitting sheath dress, but a full skirt will hide it. Wear a higher denier for a winter wedding, compared to a summer one, and if your wedding is formal, you should wear hosiery. If you adhere to etiquette, it’s a definite no-no to wear hosiery with open-toed shoes, even if you have an invisible seam and a sheer toe. According to these sticklers it’s no hose with open toes!

If you’re worried about having a Bridget Jones moment on your wedding night, you do have another option. Wear shape-enhancing, comfortable hosiery during the day, and slip into something femme fatale for your wedding night.

It was once considered quite scandalous to leave home without wearing stockings or pantyhose, but these days (and particularly on your wedding night!), it’s more of a private pleasure. Whatever you decide to buy, know that your husband has spent a good portion of the day wondering what you’re wearing under your wedding dress – I can guarantee he won’t be disappointed.

25
Dec

Bridal Lingerie Checklist

Bridal Lingerie Checklist

One of the keys to make certain that your dress looks amazing on your big day is to ensure that the lingerie underneath is flattering. There are two types of wedding lingerie you need to purchase: wedding day-time and wedding night-time/honeymoon. This checklist will help keep you on track with both types. The shopping process doesn’t need to be stressful or embarrassing. In fact, it’ll help the shopping process if you’re able to relax and have a little fun with it!


(Courtesy brayola.com)

6 Months

• Start looking around for white or nude-toned lingerie to wear under your dress on your wedding day. Shop around, try on different styles, and keep your dress in mind at all times – just because those frilly undies look cute, doesn’t mean they will look flattering under a figure-hugging dress.

3 Months

• If you’ve had a bespoke dress made, this is probably about the time that your dressmaker will call you in for a fitting. Take your wedding day-time lingerie with you, to make sure that the dress sits well with your underwear. Your dressmaker may need to make a few adjustments, to make sure that the dress looks as flattering as possible, on your big day.

• If you’ve ordered an off-the-rack dress, it might have arrived by now. The same rule applies here as with a dressmaker fitting: take your day-time lingerie with you. If something doesn’t look right, you may need to purchase different lingerie, or take the dress to a dressmaker for altering. Remember that in-built bras are a great option for specific cuts and body shapes- consult with your dressmaker!

shapewear spanx.png(Courtesy spanx.com)

2 Months

• If you haven’t already started collecting bits and pieces, now is the time to get stuck into shopping for lingerie for your wedding night and honeymoon.

• Make good use of the sales assistants in lingerie shops – they are experts at fitting bras and suggesting underwear styles suitable for your body type.

• If you’d like to surprise your honey with something a bit naughty, but you feel a little embarrassed to walk into an adult store, you can shop online, from the comfort of your own home. There is no guarantee that online purchases will fit perfectly but you can get a pretty darn close fit, if you’ve kept your measurements from your professional dressmaker.

• Make sure that you’ve purchased enough lingerie to last your entire honeymoon. Lingerie is delicate and, if you don’t trust the hotel housekeeping staff to carefully wash it for you, you don’t want to spend your honeymoon hand washing your delicates in the bathroom basin. Pack plenty of different options and enjoy your time with your man.

1 Week

• This is the time that you’ll probably be celebrating your hen’s night. If you’ve got some cheeky friends, there will no doubt be a lingerie surprise in at least one of those gift boxes. Make sure it fits. If not, kindly ask your friend to exchange it for a better fit – some stores will do this, some won’t (most will accept returns/ exchanges for bras, but not panties)– before your wedding night.

• While packing for your honeymoon, make sure that you’ve cut all the tags off your new lingerie. The last thing you want to be doing is scrounging around the bathroom for a pair of scissors, while your husband is waiting in bed for you.

lingerie vs.png(Courtesy victoriassecret.com)

The Big Day

• Carefully slip into your beautiful new lingerie. Make sure that everything is tucked in and sitting straight before putting on your dress.

• Once your dress is on, ask your bridesmaids to check that your panty line isn’t visible and that the dress line is seamless.

The Big Night

• Give your husband a smooch. Go into the bathroom and get into that saucy number. Freshen up, take a deep breath, check yourself out in the mirror and then open the door. Be prepared to pick your groom’s jaw up off the floor.

25
Dec

Dressmaker Checklist

Dressmaker Checklist

For millions of women the world over, The Dress is something they’ve been fantasising about since they were little girls. For millions of others, it hasn’t been quite decided on, irrespective of the date creeping towards them. Whatever your case, If you’re like most women, you’ve been dreaming of your wedding dress since you were a little a girl. Even before your fella popped the question (or perhaps before you’d even met him) you had probably already decided on the style, material and hue. This checklist will help you to plan the timeframe that you need to convey that vision to your dressmaker, so that they can turn your dress dreams into a reality.


(Courtesy nytimes.com)

Keep in mind that this guideline isn’t the be all or end all of checklists- everyone’s timeline will differ depending on the style of dress you want , the amount of detail involved, and will of course, vary from dressmaker to dressmaker. It is a fantastic general point of reference, however, as it includes a generous timeframe and dictates the typical order in which dresses are created. In other words, we’ve tried to keep it as simple and foolproof as possible!

One Year to Go

• If you haven’t been doing so since you left your mother’s womb, start collecting some pictures of dresses you like, as well as material samples, to explain your wedding dress vision to a dressmaker.

10 Months

• Head to a bridal store and try on some off-the-rack dresses. There’s no need to tell the sales assistant that you have no intention of actually purchasing one, but trying a few on will give you an idea of what style best suits your body type.

9 Months

• Once you’ve got a pretty clear picture in your mind – and some clippings to explain your ideas – it’s time to consult a dressmaker or two.
• Don’t be upset if your dressmaker tells you that some of your ideas aren’t realistic. She/he is an expert and knows which materials can be used with which styles, as well as which ones will suit your body shape.
• Ask the dressmaker about purchasing material – is it your responsibility or theirs? If it’s yours, make sure that you are clear on what type of fabric will best suit the look that you’re trying to achieve.

8 Months

• Once you’ve found your fabric, deliver it to the dressmaker and have your measurements taken while you’re there.
• Put down your deposit and sign the contract.
• Ask about when you should come in for your first fitting and mark the date in your calendar.

3 Months

• This is probably about the time that you’ll be going in for your first dress fitting. Don’t forget to take along the lingerie that you’re planning on wearing on your big day, as well as any accessories you’ve already purchased, like shoes and jewellery.

1 Month

• Continue having your dress fittings until you’re completely satisfied with the alterations.
• Whenever you have a fitting, don’t forget to move around a bit. Sit down, walk around, give a twirl (never underestimate how much dancing you’ll do at the reception), and even do a few squats (this ensures that the dress isn’t going to tear while you’re on the loo).

2 Weeks

• If you haven’t already done so, go and pick up your dress, girl. Keep it somewhere safe, where it’s not going to wrinkle.
• Pay the final amount, if you haven’t already.

The Big Day

• Put those bridesmaids to good use and have them help you into your dress.
• Stand in front of the mirror and gaze at your beautiful bridal glow.
• Now go show off that gorgeous dress to your groom!

25
Dec

Who Makes What: The Difference Between Tailors, Dressmakers, Seamstresses, and Pattern Makers

Who Makes What: The Difference Between Tailors, Dressmakers, Seamstresses, and Pattern Makers

Tailors, dressmakers, seamstresses and pattern-makers are terms that are often used interchangeably, to refer to people who make clothes. But while they have comparable skills, and use similar machines and equipment, their jobs are quite different. Here’s a short guide to help you distinguish between these professions in the textile industry.


(Courtesy hoodoothatvoodoo.com)

Tailor

As long as there have been clothes to make and fix, there have been tailors. The term dates back to the 13th century, where a tailor was the man who cut and sewed cloth into the shapeless garments that both men and women wore. In the Middle Ages they began creating clothes that highlighted, instead of hid, the human shape, and this is regarded as the birth of modern tailoring.

A tailor needs to have a strong understanding of fabrics, patterns and stitching techniques, they need to be adept at hand and machine sewing, and they must be able to make alterations, as well as produce clothes from scratch. The clothes usually made or altered by a tailor are suits, jackets and trousers. To achieve the perfect fit, a client needs to be accurately measured, the pattern cut and the material sewn for each custom design.

Clothing today is mass-produced and affordable, which has decreased the need for a tailor, however, people still use tailors to make items for special occasions, and the some still regularly employ bespoke tailors to create one-of-a-kind garments. A tailor is traditionally regarded as a male, who works on men’s clothing, but today it is in fact a unisex title and tailors can create clothes for men and women.


(Courtesy magnumphotos.com)

Dressmaker

Contrary to logic, a dressmaker doesn’t only make dresses. In Medieval times it was the men who manufactured all items of clothing, except for underwear and children’s clothing – these were made by women. The dressmaker was called a mantuamaker- the name deriving from the  loose robe worn by women in the early 18th century, called a ‘mantua’.

Many women could make simple garments at home, but they went to a dressmaker for more elaborate, formal items, which were copied from fashion houses around the world. As more women looked to become self-sufficient, they turned to dressmaking as a career. It was considered socially acceptable and a decent way for a woman to earn a wage, and by the 19th century it was a predominantly female occupation.

A dressmaker needs measuring skills, must be able to sew – by machine and hand – and because they work closely with customers, it’s essential to be a good communicator. They should be able to create a garment from start to finish, and be able to alter and repair ready-made items to get the ideal fit.

It’s usually considered a career for women, but it’s one that both genders can undertake. A custom dressmaker will specialise in women’s clothing, focusing on dresses, suits, evening wear, sportswear, lingerie or bridal wear.


(Courtesy departures.com)

Seamstress

A seamstress is often regarded as an alternative for a dressmaker, but historically, a seamstress was someone who could sew, but didn’t necessarily have the technical skills to create custom garments from scratch. In an industry dominated by men, a mantuamaker was eventually allowed to employ his wife and daughters as seamstresses, to do the sewing.

From this, women began working at home, sewing pre-cut fabric into clothing, and by the 1800s it was common for wealthy families to hire seamstresses to make their clothes. They were however badly paid – compared to dressmakers – who crafted the more elaborate and expensive pieces.

The job has changed over the centuries, and seamstresses can now be male or female, and they focus primarily on alterations and amendments. A seamstress must be highly skilled at sewing on a machine and by hand, and they should be comfortable working with all types of fabrics. Though they often sew clothing, any textile item, from accessories to upholstery, can be constructed or altered by a talented seamstress.

There are many modern seamstresses who find their niche in the bridal sector, because wedding dresses often require considerable alterations before they can perfectly fit the bride. Their knowledge of fabric is essential, as gowns are usually made from expensive, delicate or embellished material.


(Courtesy indulgy.com)

Pattern Maker

When it became fashionable for people to wear fitted clothes, the wealthy could afford tailors, dress-makers and seamstresses to create their custom-fit outfits, but everyone else had to be satisfied with rather formless and baggy clothes. This was until the early 19th century, when patterns started to appear in some women’s magazines, although these early designs were limited in size and were hard to use. This was rectified by the 1860s, when dress patterns – using proportional grading – were mass-produced.

Before most items of clothing are made, they need to have a pattern, and this is where the pattern-makers step up. They are responsible for deciding the best way to break down a pattern into a series of smaller shapes. They need to make sure that a manufacturer or a consumer at home, can assemble the item easily and perfectly, using the instructions they’ve supplied, whether they’re a novice or a professional.

It’s an important job in the industry and it requires specific, technical skills. They need to be aware of body proportions, must be comfortable working with geometric concepts, can visualise how all the shapes fit together in three dimensions and, of course, they must have knowledge of different fabric types.

Pattern-making has kept up with technology, and there are computer programs that assist with drawing, adjusting and calculating specific measurements for each pattern. This certainly hasn’t negated the position, and pattern-makers today are as instrumental in fashion as they were 150 years ago.


(Courtesy lucianagrimaldi.com)

When people dress well they make a good impression, it also gives you confidence and it’s often regarded as a measure of success. Whether you go to a tailor for a handmade suit, or a seamstress to alter your hem, make a statement and express yourself with the clothes you wear.

25
Dec

Marriage Celebrant Checklist

Marriage Celebrant Checklist

Wouldn’t it be great if we could just invite all of our loved ones to our big day, rock up at the venue, kiss to seal the deal, and live happily ever after? The other elements of your wedding can, by all means, be a fairy-tale. Unfortunately, in the real world, a kiss does not fulfil the legal requirements of marriage.

Enter: wedding celebrant. A celebrant is like the fairy godmother of legalities and paperwork. Without a celebrant, there is, essentially, no marriage. Your celebrant will not only arrange all of that fiddly paperwork for you, they will also conduct the ceremony and, hopefully, add a unique element to your special day.

(Courtesy serviceseeking.com.au)

With a bit of research and time management (this guideline should help you, in that respect), you can find a celebrant who will, not only, perform all of the legal duties of the ceremony, but will also provide marriage insight, mesh well with you and your partner’s personalities, and perhaps even become a friend.

One Year to Go

• If you’re planning on getting hitched during peak season, it would be a wise idea to start meeting with celebrants now.

6 Months

• If you haven’t already, start consulting celebrants. When ‘shopping’ for a celebrant, try to find someone who you feel comfortable with, has received plenty of positive testimonials from previous clients, and who understands your vision for the ceremony.

• For those brides who have their heart set on a particularly reputable celebrant, now is the time to book and put down your deposit for their services. Popular celebrants book up fast, especially during peak season.

3 Months

• Put down that deposit, girl! If you haven’t chosen a celebrant by now, what are you waiting for?

2 Months

• It’s a good idea to sit down with your celebrant for another consultation, and to sign your “intent to marry” paper work. Use this consultation to make sure that you are all on the same page. This is also a good time to finalise plans for a P.A. system – your celebrant may provide it, or you might have to hire one yourselves.

1 Month

• Your “intent to marry” paperwork needs to be submitted to the attorney-general’s office at least one month in advance. Give your celebrant a quick call to check in and make sure that they have submitted the document on time. This isn’t madatory for the celebrant to do, so the onus is on you to check that your celebrant will be submitting the document for you.  On the other hand, if your paperwork has been submitted, kindly move onto the next step.

1 Week

• Couples who have decided to write their own vows need to finalise them now. Check in with your honey and make sure that he has finished writing his (you know what he can be like).

The Day Before

• Go through the ceremony program at the rehearsal and iron out any wrinkles with your celebrant.

• Pay the remaining celebrant’s fee at the rehearsal. That is, if your celebrant is willing to accept the remaining balance at this time.

• In the event that your celebrant wants the remaining balance on W-day (or that you are afraid that your celebrant will run off with the cash and leave you stranded at the aisle), arrange for the best man to pay the remaining balance to the celebrant at the end of the ceremony.

The Big Day

• Smile and don’t forget to breathe. If you find yourself overcome with emotion and can’t remember what to do or say next, follow your celebrant’s cues – he/she is a pro at this, and will endeavour to keep you from making a fool of yourself.

25
Dec

Not So Simple: Standing Positions During Your Ceremony

Not So Simple: Standing Positions During Your Ceremony

There are so many finer details that matter when it comes to planning your wedding, and one of these is where you, the groom and the bridal party stand. If you want the traditional – and some unorthodox – options, read on!


(Courtesy weddingchicks.com)

What you might not know is that there’s an interesting little tale behind this custom, and it goes way back to Anglo-Saxon England. To set the scene I should inform you that it was common practise for men to kidnap, and then marry women from neighbouring villages. To prevent this from happening, the fiancé would use his bravest and most fearless friend as a sort of bodyguard, who would fight off any jealous rivals until the couple wed. The friend is the modern-day best man, and because the groom was anticipating having to draw his sword with his right hand, and then fight, the bride would stand on his left so he wouldn’t accidentally wound her. One does wonder what happened to left-handed swordsmen, but I digress.

Christian Weddings

We’ve moved on from this decidedly more combative age, but this tradition has stubbornly remained. Perhaps modern brides like the idea that their grooms will fight to marry them – metaphorically of course!
The bridal couple face their marriage officiant, who stands behind the altar, and they have their backs to their guests. To the bride’s left is her maid of honour – within easy reach as she has to hold the bride’s bouquet and she’s the supplier of tissues – and then the other bridesmaids further left. To the groom’s right is his best man, with the other groomsmen further right. The bridesmaids and best men generally face the couple, but with a slight angle towards the guests.

Most weddings have a cute little ring bearer and adorable flower girls, and depending on their age, they can either stand with the bridal party or sit with their relatives. The bride’s friends and family are traditionally seated on the left, and the right is for the groom’s friends and family. The front few rows are reserved for parents (with the mothers next to the aisle), grandparents, other immediate family and special friends. Divorced parents can sit together, otherwise the father and his partner usually sit a few rows back, but of course this depends on the family and their situation.

(Courtesy jimbyrdphotography.com)

Jewish Weddings

That’s the norm at a Christian wedding, but if you go to a Jewish wedding you can expect the exact opposite: the bride is on the right of the groom, under the Chuppah – an open canopy supported by four poles. Both sets of parents walk their son or daughter down the aisle, and then stand alongside them. The bridesmaids and best men stand behind the parents, on their respective sides, in order from tallest to shortest.

(Courtesy junebugweddings.com)

Muslim Weddings

Islamic weddings can vary significantly but the most important event is the nikah ceremony. It’s a simply, quick service performed by an imam, that legally binds the bride and groom as husband and wife. In front of witnesses, the groom agrees to the bride’s mahr, or dowry, and the wedding contract is signed. If tradition is followed, men and women sit separately, in this case the bride’s wali, or guardian, acts on her behalf. The groom and his family will later host a walima, a lunch or dinner, to officially declare the marriage to friends and family.

(Courtesy shaadi-bazaar.com)

Military Weddings

Interestingly, if the groom is in the military, the bride stands on his right if he wears a sword, and to his left if he doesn’t.

Your Own Wedding

As weddings move from churches to forests, hotels to gardens and halls to beaches, the usual standing positions at ceremonies are being challenged. Like everything in a wedding, you can go along the conventional route, or you can throw tradition out with the bouquet. If you’re convinced that your left side is more photographic, or you just want to be different, by all means, switch sides and stand on the groom’s right. While it’s your wedding and you should be able to stand wherever you like, your religion might dictate otherwise, so it’s best to first check with your marriage officiant.

If you choose to have a celebrant marry you, they can stand anywhere. Here are some great, non-traditional options to consider:

– Between the couple and their guests. While his or her back is facing the crowd, any sound issues can be resolved with a microphone, and it allows everyone to see the smiling faces of the happy couple.
– The officiant and the bridal couple to stand sideways, so that the guests are seated on their right or left.
– You can have the officiant off to one side, so that you’re all at an angle, but remember that you want to see their reassuring smile or wink (and practically you need to be able to hear them!), so don’t be too far from the person conducting your ceremony.
Many grandparents will disagree, but it’s no longer customary for guests to sit on a particular side, they’re encouraged to mix. Here are a few unusual seating arrangements to contemplate:
– place your chairs in a circle with the bride and groom in the centre. This works best when you have plenty of space, like a beach, forest or garden wedding.
– If you like the idea of having your friends and family around you – but you’re short of space – use a semi-circle instead. This works particularly well if you have a focal point, such as getting married under a huge tree.
– An unusual and quite fun seating plan is a spiral, which gives everyone a chance to see a bride and groom walk in, and a husband and wife walk out.

There are no right or wrong answers to where you stand; you have to choose what best suits you, what works with your spirituality, and often the wishes of your family or partner. Whether you face them, have your back to them or stand alongside them, what is unlikely to change, is wanting your family close to you when you say your vows.

25
Dec

How to: Choosing Your Celebrant

How to: Choosing Your Celebrant

Between your dress, the flowers, the canapés and the weather, there are so many details of a wedding that a bride needs to consider; but one of the most important is who solemnizes the wedding. He or she will set the tone for your day, and they’ll always be the person who officially made you husband and wife.

Deciding on a celebrant can be a challenging decision, which is why we’re here to help you. There are two different elements you need to consider before you select your marriage celebrant: legal and personal.


(Courtesy simplerregistry.com)

Legal

To be legally married In Australia, the ceremony must be performed by an authorised celebrant, but you may choose whether you want a civil or religious ceremony. There are four types of celebrants with this authority:

– A Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrant who performs a religious ceremony, for an independent religious organisation.

– A Commonwealth-registered marriage celebrant who conducts a civil ceremony, for people who may have religious beliefs, but who choose not to get married in a religious building.

–  A Minister of Religion who conducts a religious ceremony, and who belongs to a recognised denomination.

– A State official who performs a civil ceremony.

Civil marriages have outnumbered religious services since 1999, and if you’re reading this, you’re in the 72% of Australians who are choosing to use a civil marriage celebrant. In recent years, couples tend to want an increased sense of flexibility on their wedding day, from the time and venue, to the content of the service.  If you choose a civil marriage celebrant, you can have your wedding virtually anywhere – a boat, a beach or a backyard.

Before the Wedding

Whether you decide on a civil or religious marriage celebrant, you must check that they are registered with the Australian Government, which gives them the authority to conduct your marriage. This includes legal advice and processing all the necessary paperwork. You’ll need to provide them with the following documentation:

– A Notice of Intended Marriage form is to be submitted at least a calendar month before your wedding day, and up to 18 months ahead. The form is evidence that you pass the requirements to get married in Australia. It is possible to have it approved in less than a month, but this is limited to specific situations.

– Proof of identity. For people born in Australia, a birth certificate is required. If you were born overseas, your home country’s passport will suffice.  From 1st July 2014 an Australian passport can be used to show the place and date of your birth if neither of the other options is available.

– If you have previously been married, you need to provide original divorce decree papers or the death certificate of your previous spouse.

During the Wedding

All celebrants must:

– Introduce themselves to the congregation, to identify themselves as the person who is legally conducting the ceremony

– Declare the bride and groom’s full names, so the congregation can identify with them

–   Recite a monitum (Latin for ‘warning’) from the Marriage Act, which begins, “I am duly authorised by law to solemnise marriages”.

–  The couple must say their wedding vows out aloud.

After the Wedding

Just after the ceremony the new husband and wife, two witnesses, and the celebrant all need to sign the marriage certificates. The couple get to keep one, the celebrant keeps the second, and the final certificate gets sent to the State as an official record of the marriage.

The final task of your celebrant is to have your marriage registered, within 2 weeks, in the territory or state where you had your wedding. This notification must be made with the registry of births, deaths and marriages.


(Courtesy weddingchicks.com)

Personal

This is an immensely important day for you, and the decision about who solemnizes your wedding is an essential one. You want a person who is warm and friendly, but also professional and competent. Other handy traits are: being organised, confident and calm under pressure. You need to feel comfortable with them, and be able to easily establish a relationship. Remember that not every celebrant will suit every couple, and that’s why personality is important.

Seeing them conduct someone else’s wedding is ideal, but a personal recommendation can also help you make the right decision. Thankfully, the Internet allows for unparalleled ease of access to any information about the celebrant, and this allows you to do your homework before requesting a meeting. The simplest way to narrow down your potential list is by looking at feedback.

When you have a face-to-face conversation it allows you to instantly see how you get on, and you’ll quickly be able to make your decision. You want your ceremony to run smoothly, but above all, you need it to be legally sound.

Aside from asking if they’re available on your wedding date, these are the types of questions to ask your potential celebrant:

How long have you been a celebrant for?

– If they have many years of experience, they’re more likely to listen to your thoughts and concerns, and give you the ceremony that you really want.

How many weddings have you performed?

– The more weddings they’re conducted, the more knowledge they have about designing and delivering ceremonies, and they’ll be able to tell you if your particular ideas will actually work.

What do your clients say about you?

– You want to know what their reputation is like, and how successful their previous weddings have been. If you get given references, call them.

How flexible are you?

– Of course this isn’t referring to your celebrants ability to touch his or her toes, but rather if they’re happy to let you dictate the terms of the wedding, rather than insisting on their format.

Do you belong to a celebrant association or network?

– It’s important to know if they’re keeping up to date with laws and procedures.

What equipment do you have?

–  By law, your celebrant needs to ensure that everyone can hear the ceremony, particularly if it takes place outside. Modern celebrants use a range of equipment like PA systems and computers to do their job.

How far away are you from our venue?

– If your celebrant needs to travel, you’re obliged to pick up transport and potentially accommodation costs, and you need to know if you can afford that.

Once you’ve found your ideal celebrant, make sure you book them immediately to secure their service. Your chosen celebrant has a vital and undeniably special role in your wedding ceremony and, of course, a huge legal responsibility. Select someone that will support you, fill you with happiness, and perform a ceremony that reflects your personality and captures your dreams.

25
Dec

Nailed It! Our Definitive Guide to Nail Salon Treatments

Nailed It! Our Definitive Guide to Nail Salon Treatments

What better way to show off your new, very sparkly engagement ring than by having an immaculate manicure to match? It doesn’t matter if you have brittle or torn nails, have trouble growing them, or you’re a biter – there’s a salon treatment to help your nails look instantly beautiful and healthy.

You can, of course, paint your nails at home, but where’s the fun in that? At a salon you get to relax, be pampered, and walk out with smooth hands and flawless nails. Overwhelmed by all your options? We provide you with all the help you need, to get your nails camera-ready for your wedding day.


(Courtesy shabbyandlovely.tumblr.com)

Manicures

Many women regularly have manicures, which involves buffing and shaping the nails, and then applying a colour. There are different types of manicure, but the most popular for the Big Day is the French. With this option the nail base is coated in a light pink, and the tip is painted white, which is essentially an enhanced version of your nail’s natural state (much like how we wear pink lipstick), and is considered an elegant and timeless go- to.

With all of these manicures, you’re improving your nails by simply painting over them, but if you want to add length or thickness to your natural nails, you need artificial enhancements. For this you have two choices: nail overlays and nail extensions.


(Courtesy raredelights.com)

Nail Overlays

During this process you get a strengthening mixture painted on top of your natural nails, and this makes them harder and more durable, but not longer. Overlays are ideal if you struggle to grow your nails, or if they’re weak and prone to breaking or splitting.

Nail Extensions

As the name suggests, this is the option to choose if you want longer nails instantaneously. A lightweight plastic plate that follows the shape of your natural nail, is glued to the nail tip and then a strengthening mixture is applied over the entire surface, to keep the tip in place. You can shape the tip into any style you choose, from round and square to stiletto.

For both overlays and extensions you can choose which strengthening system to use: acrylic, gel or fibreglass.

(Courtesy ebook3000.com)

Acrylic

This is one of the oldest, most affordable and popular types of nail treatment available. A technician will mix a powdered acrylic with a liquid acrylic, and then brush this onto your natural nail – if you’re having an overlay – and onto your nail and tip – if you’re having extensions. The product hardens quickly when it’s exposed to air, and when it’s dry it forms an elongated nail. This is filed to the length and shape you want, and then it’s buffed until it shines.

There are two types of acrylic nails – normal, and pink and white.
– With normal acrylics you can use any colour polish over the nail, and this can easily be removed at home, when you’re bored, and replaced with a different shade.
– Pink and white acrylics have a translucent base and a white tip, which replicate normal nails.

Acrylics grow out with your natural nail growth, and so they last for about 2 weeks, before a gap appears between your cuticle and your artificial nail. Instead of having a new set done, you can choose to have them filled, where your nail technician simply tops up the “gap” with the same colour, and your nails look like new.

Pro: This treatment is widely available, and it’s the strongest, thickest and most durable type of artificial nail. It’s ideal for the active woman, or if you want something that won’t easily chip.

Con: If they’re not applied professionally, your nails will look thick and unnatural. The most common problem is infection between the false nail and your real nail, which happens if they’re poorly fitted or not properly maintained. Long term use can also leave your nails weaker and more brittle.

Gel

These are quickly gaining popularity as a more natural-looking artificial nail. They’re formed by painting a premixed liquid chemical gel onto your nails, and after each coat, your nails are put under a UV lamp to “cure”- which means to set them. The hardened gel creates an artificial nail coat on top of your natural nail, and this strengthens it. You can use the gel to fix broken or split nails, or you can paint over your extensions to give you extra length.

You can also get a gel manicure that is cured using a special activator, or by dipping your hands in water, if you don’t want to use a UV light.

Gel nails, like acrylics, will grow out after about 2 weeks, but will last longer if you choose to have them filled.

Pro: Gel nails are hard and glossy and resemble your natural nails. The gel doesn’t turn yellow or damage the nail bed underneath. It forms a protective layer which promotes growth, and this makes it perfect for people who want help growing their own nails. The gel is odourless and because it hardens within minutes, there’s no chance of accidentally bumping your wet nails, or waking up in the morning with your sheet pattern imprinting on your nails. You can apply polish or leave them clear and shiny.

Con: This treatment is usually more expensive than acrylic nails. The gel is more flexible and therefore less durable than acrylics, which means that the colour will chip quicker on a person who is very active. With most gels you have to return to the salon to have them professionally removed.

(Courtesy www.simply-inspiring.com)

Wraps

This method can be applied to all nails (to add length), or to individual nails that are cracked or broken. Fine layers of silk, linen, paper or fiberglass are pre-shaped, according to each nail, and then they’re attached using a special glue that won’t damage the nail underneath. It’s a temporary treatment as the adhesive loosens within 2-3 weeks.

Pro: These are the thinnest type of artificial nail and so they’re considered the most real-looking. They’re ideal for people who are allergic to the chemicals in the acrylic or gel treatment. This is the best method for nail repair as it helps cracked nails grow out.

Con: Because it’s thinner and softer, it’s doesn’t handle as much wear as other artificial nails. It’s also not a great choice for women who have a particularly active lifestyle as the glue is water soluble.

(Courtesy mamasteahouse.com)

Sculptured

Sculptured nails are another very popular treatment available at most salons. The process uses metal, foil or forms – essentially big, stiff stickers – that are placed underneath the tip of each natural nail, between the nail and your skin, creating a platform. An overlay of gel, acrylic or fibreglass is then brushed over the nail and the platform to create a new, longer nail. This allows you to get nail extensions without having to glue on artificial tips. Once the artificial nail is hard, you can remove the platform. The final product is transparent and you can then shape the nail and file it to the desired length. How long the nails last, will depend on the overlay that’s used.

Pro: The enhancement takes the shape of the natural nail, and this makes it more comfortable. Sculptured nails are stronger and last longer than glued on tips, as there is no weak point where the tip is attached. You can file the nail into any shape you want.

Con: They aren’t suitable for thin, fragile nails and they need lots of maintenance. It also takes practise to correctly place the metal, foil or form.

(Courtesy youtube.com)

Handy Hints

Have you ever seen those women with exceptionally long nails trying to type, do up a button on their shirt or open a can of soft drink? Long nails may look great, but think about your lifestyle before you decide on the length. If they’re not practical, they won’t last. Pick an established salon that has a good reputation, to ensure that your nails are professionally done. Treat your nails with care to keep them healthy, and to make them last as long as possible.

Many women don’t have the time, patience or skill to do their own nails at home, and with an array of affordable treatments available, a trip to the salon can be quite reasonable. It also prevents the frustration of trying to use your non- dominant hand to paint your dominant for the seventh time!

Are you looking for the perfect matrimonial manicure? Whether you go quirky and bold, or simple and understated, getting enhanced nails will ensure that you walk down the aisle knowing that you’ve nailed it.

25
Dec

The Essentials of Becoming a Golden Goddess

The Essentials of Becoming a Golden Goddess

We live in very sunny parts of the world, where it’s essential to put on sunblock before you even think about stepping outside. But, being skin conscious doesn’t mean you have to be an alabaster bride, as there are all sorts of ways to achieve a healthy, sun-kissed glow. Read on for all the do’s and don’ts of bronzing on your big day.

(Courtesy life.time.com)
Fake tans generally fall into two categories: cosmetic bronzers and sunless tanners. Cosmetic bronzers can be compared to regular makeup, as the application is similar, and you get to wash it off at the end of the day, while sunless tanners stain the skin to achieve a darker colour, and only fade when you lose skin cells.

Cosmetic Bronzers

These products are usually applied to the face, and come in a range of forms: powders, gels, spray, creams and sticks. They are generally easy to apply, and they last from a few hours, up to a full day, depending on the quality of the product (and when you wash your face!). Bronzers have warm tones that mimic a healthy tan, and give your skin a radiant glow – just what every bride wants on her wedding day.

(Courtesy beautifulmakeupsearch.com)

Bronzing Powders

Powders are by far the most popular form of bronzer. You can use pressed or loose powder, and it’s available in a variety of shades. It’s easy to blend, you can place it perfectly wherever you want, and it instantly makes you look like you’ve just come back from Bali.

Bronzing Gels

These are harder to apply and dry quickly, which means that your results can vary. This is a concentrated product and it requires some experience to correctly apply it. Add a small amount of gel to your moisturiser and apply it over your face, neck and chest.

Bronzing Spray

This is a quick and easy way to fake a tan, but it can be messy, so apply the spray while you’re in your bathtub. They’re usually water-based, so if you find that you’ve created a Jackson Pollock on the wall behind you, you should be able to hose it down without a problem. Use it on your face, neck and chest, and apply under natural light to get the right effect.

Bronzing Cream

This is a good choice for dry skin as it moisturises while leaving a healthy tan. It blends easily onto your skin, or over foundation, but use it before powder to avoid caking and streaking. Apply using fingers or a sponge.

Bronzing Stick

It’s quite similar to a deodorant stick and it’s popular for its no-hand application. You can also dab the stick onto problem areas like scars, and then blend the colour using a sponge or your fingers, to hide the imperfections. Use powder to set the bronzer so it won’t rub off.

General Bronzing Dos:

– Choose a colour closest to your natural skin tone, no more than a shade darker, and preferably matt
– Pick a product that suits your skin type (sensitive, oily, combination)
– If your hair is up, remember around your ears and your hairline
– Apply and blend down your neck and décolletage
– Touch up during the day
– Focus on areas that naturally get sun, such as cheek bones, the bridge of your nose and your chin
– Work slowly – you can always add more colour

General Bronzing Don’ts:

– Avoid anything too dark or too orange
– Shimmer could collect in the creases of your face, and it may also make you reflect like a disco ball in your photos
– Using the same products throughout the year is a no-no, as your skin is different depending on the season
– Too much bronzer can make you look dirty
– Collar bones and shoulders shouldn’t be forgotten, so apply shimmer to accentuate them
– Applying bronzer to your entire face is unnatural, you should be highlighting and contouring certain areas

Self- Tanning/ Sunless Tanners

All sunless tanning products contain a substance called DHA, and while it sounds scary, it’s actually safe to use. It works by turning the topmost layer of your skin darker, and as your skin cells get rubbed off, the tan will begin to fade. It’s considered semi-permanent and usually lasts between 3-7 days. Bronzers come in many forms: sprays, lotions, gels, mousse or towelettes, and there are specific products for the body and more sensitive ones for the face.


(Courtesy womenshealthmag.com)

Self- Tan Spray

This is one of the most popular types of self-tan, and as the name suggests – it’s a tan that gets sprayed on. You can have it done in a booth at a salon, by using an airgun, or spraying from a bottle. It’s a quick and effective process when you have it applied professionally, but it can be tricky if you’re at home alone, and you’re trying to reach between your shoulder blades. Your spray-on tan looks best on the second day after application, so book your session for 2 days before your wedding, but only if you’ve been before and know exactly how your tan will look.

Self- Tan Lotion

The appeal of a lotion is that you moisturise while gaining a tan. Many companies have also created products that have a small amount of DHA, and this allows you to gradually build your tan over time. The more you use, the darker your skin colour will be, but don’t be hasty as your colour takes time to fully develop.

Self- Tan Gel or Mousse

These both dry fast and so they need to be rubbed into the body quickly, to stop you from streaking and blotching. Neither seems to lasts as long as a lotion.

Self- Tan Towelettes

These individually wrapped towlettes are rubbed onto your face and body in a circular motion, but shouldn’t be pressed too hard or you’ll get an uneven result. Use only one per application and repeat every 3-4 days to maintain your tan.

General Self- Tan Dos:

– Exfoliate before you apply self-tan – especially knees, heels and elbows – to minimise blotching.
– Wax or shave a day before your session, so your pores have time to close.
– Get help for those hard-to-reach places.
– Apply moisturising lotion to your elbows, knees, hands, around the edges of your feet and between your toes  to create a barrier as they tend to go darker than the rest of your body.
– Remember around your hairline, and on and behind your ears.
– Have a trial run long before your wedding day.
– Lighter is better than darker.
– Wait a few hours to see if your colour is developing.
– If you have a sensitive skin it’s essential to test the products first, to see if you have a reaction.

General Self- Tan Don’ts:

– Remove all moisturisers, deodorants, perfumes and makeup on the day, as these prevent you from getting an even tan
– Follow your instructions and wait before putting your clothes back on
– Applying products up and down will cause streaking – rather apply in a circular motion
– Immediately wash hands after applying products to avoid staining, or wear gloves
– Don’t shower for at least 8 hours
– When you wash for the first time, don’t use soap, and then pat yourself dry – don’t rub
– Avoid soaking in water – especially if it’s chlorinated
– If you tan on your wedding day you could stain your beautiful white dress
– It’s about enhancing your skin tone, not changing it
– Leave the skin-tight clothes in your cupboard for a few days

You don’t want to blend in with your ivory dress, but you certainly don’t want to look like an Oompa Loompa, and that’s why it’s important to test all bronzers and sunless-tanners before you walk down the aisle. There are a wide range of products to suit every skin tone, and you need to find that perfect shade, so that you suggest a tan, rather than fake one. Having a beautiful tan doesn’t mean you need to risk skin damage, you can achieve they perfect sun-kissed, holiday look to ensure that you walk down the aisle looking tan-tastic.