Your wedding budget: Sometimes it is all about how it looks.

As I have said before I am an organizational geek.  The office supply store is one of my favorite places to shop.  I love to see the new pretty ways to organize my stuff.  Pretty is the key word though.  If it is not pretty, I don’t get as excited or motivated to organize or deal with anything.

Unless you love math and numbers, your wedding budget is probably one of the scariest things about planning your wedding.  I am so scared of math, that the thought of making or dealing with a budget almost gives me an anxiety attack.  Sticking to and keeping track of your wedding budget is going to be one of the biggest and probably most important tasks during the planning process.  So, make it as pretty and as fun as you can.  I love to use pretty binders and folders.  My big find this weekend are these pretty binders and folders that I found at BJ’s Wholesale.  Do I still have tasks that I still don’t really want to do?  Yes, but they are going to look really pretty when I am done.


A Day of Shopping with my Fashionista

My youngest daughter is definitely my little fashionista.  She has been saving her money for months for a back to school trip to the mall.  Monday was the day.  She actually could hardly sleep the night before because she was so excited.  Another thing she gets from me.  Her day of fashion started out with a free haircut thanks to JC Penny.   Other stops had to include lunch, seeing the cats at the adopt a cat store and of course ice cream and the bookstore.  One of the best parts of her day, was the surprise manicure I got her at the Candyland Spa for kids.  I thought she was giggly and excited before.  🙂

My Brush With Celebrity

To tell this story I first need to give a little background.  For years as we drive back from Olean on route 16, there is a sign that reads 1999 Miss USA from Franklinville, NY.  My husband and I have had discussions about it over the years that she used to live up the street from him. So he actually kind of knew and her family.

Fast forward to a Tuesday here at the shop when a woman walked in.  You know the type, beautiful skin, flawless hair, a person you want to hate because they are so perfect, but, you are too busy being jealous of her.  We talked for a few minutes, and she said she was meeting some people there.  In comes the bride, her mom and a bridesmaid.  They were pulling and trying on dresses while I was taking in consignment and measuring for a tuxedo.  Of course everything happens at once.  The bride found a dress she loved and the dress shopping seemed done.  As they were leaving,  the beautiful one saw a purple leopard print dress I had hanging on the rack and said she really liked it.  She is going to judge some pageants later this year and decided to try it on.  This is when the story really gets good….

The mother of the bride says to me, you should ask if you can take her picture because then you could say you had a former Miss USA in your shop…..then when she said her name all the pieces started to come together.   Her name was Kimberly Pressler and she was the actual person whose name I have seen on the sign so many times.

Surprise, surprise the dress looked beautiful on her.  So that was my brush with celebrity here in my exclusive consignment bridal shop.  Maybe the pageant, she and the dress will be on tv…….hmm…..stay tuned.

Shoes for Your Bridal Gown


A fabulous wedding dress deserves an equally fabulous pair of shoes. These  days there are so many great options, brides often don’t know where to begin.  Learn how to match your bridal shoes to your wedding dress for gorgeous  results.

When you start shopping for your bridal shoes, you want to keep in mind  certain things about your gown to get a good match. The color of your dress is  one thing. If you wish to match it, definitely get a swatch you can take  shopping with you. However, do not feel like you are limited to white or ivory  shoes; a lot of brides these days are making a splash with blue, green, red, or  metallic footwear. It is a fun way to add personality to your attire and also  makes the shoes more likely to be worn again after the wedding. And if you are  splurging on a to-to-die-for pair of designer heels, every little bit of  justification for the price helps!

The style of your dress is also very important, particularly if you are  wearing a vintage inspired gown. Pumps, slingbacks, peep toes, and D’orsay pumps  look wonderful with classic 1950s inspired wedding dresses. If you wearing a  flapper inspired beaded sheath, you might consider a high heeled Mary Jane in a  champagne silk color. More cutting edge modern gowns can carry off really wild  shoes, so shop with abandon. You can consider high heels with a slight platform  (a high platform tends to make it hard to walk without stomping), crystal  encrusted stiletto heels, patterned shoes, or whatever else captures your  fancy.

The shoe fabric is another thing to consider. It should complement the  material of your gown, but not necessarily match it exactly. If your gown is  made of silk, a silk pump or sandal would definitely work. Dresses made of matte  fabrics like crepe or chiffon tend to look better with non-shiny crepe fabric  shoes. But you can also experiment with interesting textures. A simple A-line  strapless gown would be great with an exquisite pair of lace heels. Or choose a  metallic brocade to wear with a mikado dress. Generally speaking, if your gown  is very textured, your shoes should be less so. Lace pumps with a lace dress  would be overdone.

Look for shoes that tie in with the embellishments on your gown and in your  bridal jewelry. If you are wearing a dress with a crystal belt and sparkly cz  bridal jewelry, choose footwear with a gorgeous crystal brooch on the toe. If  you are wearing a shredded chiffon gown and a feather fascinator tucked into  your hair, opt for shoes with a fun feather accent. Brides who are pulling a  signature color into their gown and bridal jewelry and also use that hue for  their footwear. It is a great way to tie your whole look together.

The popularity of colorful bridal gowns adds a whole new wrinkle to shoe  shopping. A neutral or metallic will always be a good choice if your dress is  not white or ivory. Silver sandals would be stunning with an ice blue dress (or  one of those wild black Vera Wangs), while champagne flats are a darling choice  with a blush tulle confection. Finding the perfect shoes to wear with a unique  wedding gown might not be easy, but you will definitely be glad you put in the  effort when you see how stunning your whole bridal ensemble looks on your  wedding day.

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Western New York Wedding

I had the honor of working with Sarah and Shaun on their wedding that took place on July 21st.  They are a great couple that had to put of the wedding for a while because their youngest daughter was diagnosed with cancer.  They had a beautiful outdoor wedding at their home in Freedom, with the ceremony by the pond and the reception in a tent.

She had blue and pink for her colors and used a few fancy linens to add that special touch. Butterflies were also part of the theme and she had some centerpieces with floating butterfly candles alternating with blue and pink sand centerpieces.

Why is everything I like so expensive!!!


I know how it is.  Every time I look at something I like it tends to be the most expensive thing or option available.  I am not one of those lucky people who can just buy whatever I like no matter what the price.  So then I have to adjust my thinking to consider things that look good, but do not cost as much.  Sometimes that can be fun.  Sometimes I truly need some time to get over being frustrated and mad that I cannot get what I really want.

I am not sure that I really knew when I first started if that was why I wanted my wedding business to be about weddings that combine value with style.  I knew having a bridal consignment shop means that I will get brides who are looking to save some money.  But as time has gone by, I have come to realize that I am here to help brides not only save money, but have a wedding that does not scream I am on a small budget!  I am actually pretty good at that, if I do say so myself.  Believe me, I have a lot of real life practice.  Just ask my husband when we go shopping for anything…….. 🙂

How To Dress Up Brown Paper Bags For a Wedding

It’s not just the guests who have to get dressed up for a wedding…

Finally, after years filled with groceries and children’s soggy sandwiches, it’s the brown bag’s chance to shine!

  • Yes, the brown bag shall go to the ball. All it needs is a little decoration and it’s transformed into a chic and unique wedding detail.

    I LOVE brown paper bags as favour bags or candy buffet bags at weddings ~ they’re super cheap and a really sweet touch.

    The simplest ways to dress up a brown paper bag…

    Pop a customized label on the front like this free downloadable ‘candy bar’ label from The Wedding Chicks:

    Wrap a doily over the top and stick it down like these sweet bags on The Sweetest Occasion:

    Or print directly onto the bags like this idea from a DIY wedding featured on Elizabeth Anne Designs:

    {These are actually bags full of petals for contetti, with the order of ceremony printed on the back. Genius!}

    If you’re more BUY than DIY, you can get these customisable script paper bags from Loft Bridge Designs on Etsy. {50 for $29}

    Here are a few more ‘advanced’ DIY ideas for all you crafty folk:

    Accessorise your brown paper bags by using craft scissors to create pretty edges, luggage labels, origami/fabric flowers, paper hearts, colourful twine, clothespins, buttons or anything else you can stick/glue staple/tie onto them!

    Luggage Labels via The Party Studio | Doilies via Oh Dee Doh |Photos via Young House Love | Buttons via Design Sponge | Clothespins via Two Broads Design on Etsy| Hearts via Creature Comforts

    My favourite idea is to attach photobooth prints of the two of you with signs saying ‘thank you for coming’.

    Or, like the brilliant idea above, where the couple in the photos are covered in lipstick kisses and their signs read ‘plant one on us’ to go with their gladeoli bulb favours. How fun!

    So which do you think is the best dressed brown paper bag?