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Southern Weddings

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One of the more beautiful things about the South right now is that you don’t have to be born here to fit right in with our culture. (In fact, I’m actually a Southerner by choice, not birth!) Southern brides can pick and choose from the best the world has to offer while planning their weddings, combining details from here and there to find the mix that best represents them AND the grace and warmth of our part of the country.

One of my favorite examples? Bridal gown designers! Fashion houses around the world are keying into details that gals like us are drawn to — heirloom lace, fabulous bows, sweet rows of buttons — meaning sometimes the most Southern look can be sourced from halfway around the globe.

Rosa Clará is one such designer I think all Southern brides should know about. I’m always drawn to their sleek shapes, classic styling, and yes, perfectly-placed bows, and I think y’all will be, too!

Today’s bride, Skye, is a perfect example! Though her wedding took place in California, her Rosa Clará gown’s sweet neckline, dainty beading, and breezy material would have worked equally well in the South.

You can view all of Rosa Clará’s lovely gowns on their site, and by visiting a salon near you. Don’t miss the Nassau, Namibia, Neida, Neira, Niher, Neiva, or Nazar dresses from their Spring 2017 collection as you browse! Seriously though, too many favorites :)

I’d love to hear: what was Southern about your wedding gown? I think my gown’s tulle skirt was very feminine, which I think is an attribute many Southern gals claim (though of course each in her own way!).

This post is brought to you by Rosa Clará. Thanks for your support of the brands that make Southern Weddings possible!

emily Written with love by Emily
3 Comments
  1. avatar Mary Kay reply

    My gown was from Rosa Clara. I loved the luminous silk and classic elegance. They also customized the gown for me, putting a giant bow on the back!

  2. avatar Taylor reply

    Love this! Photography credit is always appreciated though… Next time please. 😉

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With all the excitement surrounding finding your dream wedding dress, it’s sometimes easy to forget that the dress is only one part of your wedding day look! In the same way little details and sweet touches add layers of beauty to your reception tables, carefully chosen accessories customize your look in a way that’s all your own. I couldn’t help but think back on my own wedding day while perusing Bel Aire Bridal’s new collection–I was a spring bride, and thought an elegant, but still romantic and sweet, bridal style would be a perfect fit for the season. All of those words rang true to me when I was thinking of ways to describe these new Bel Aire Bridal pieces, from the rose gold and pearl comb to the horsehair-edged veil. So, if you’re a spring bride too, you’ll definitely want to take a look!

Just like when hunting for your dress, the key to choosing the perfect accessories for your wedding is to keep the big picture in mind. Is your venue ultra-modern and chic or romantic and rustic? Are you planning a black-tie soirée or a garden brunch reception? Envisioning your celebration and how you hope to look and feel will make it much easier to decide between multiple options you love! Need a little extra help? Click through Bel Aire Bridal’s My Bridal Style pages for inspiration (and let us know in the comments what kind of bride you are! I was a “Classic Bride” :))

Of course, if you have your dress, that will certainly play a major role in your accessories decision, but here’s a secret: if you fall in love with a veil or earrings or another accessory early on, there’s no rule saying you have to wait to find your dress first! We’ve heard plenty of stories from brides who searched for a dress to match the veil they dreamed of wearing. In fact, I kind of love the idea of basing your wedding day look around an accessory (what kind of dress would you pair with this tiara or this comb?), especially because it’s something that’s so easy to pass down to future generations. “Heirloom potential” is an important consideration when choosing your accessories, and I can imagine any of the Bel Aire Bridal pieces becoming family treasures for decades to come!

Which of these pieces is your favorite? Did you have a favorite wedding day accessory? We’d love to hear!

Photography: Kurt Boomer Photography | Styling: Joy Proctor | Venue: Culver Hotel | Gowns: Musat Bridal | Shoes: Bella Belle | Hair and Makeup: Team Hair & Makeup

This post is brought to you by Bel Aire Bridal. Thank you so much for your support of the brands who make Southern Weddings possible!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
2 Comments
  1. avatar Bri A reply

    I’m a long (looong) ways off from a wedding, but I love the idea of finding a dress to match the veil! That sounds like it would be much less overwhelming than starting with a blank slate or without a vision. Thanks for the tip!

  2. avatar Kirsti reply

    I will be a “Classic Bride” as well, Lisa! I have always pictured my wedding day look to be timeless and classic and am about to start my search for a dress to match that!

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When it comes to unique, but elegant, silhouettes and perfectly on-trend colors, Joanna August is one bridesmaid line that consistently hits it out of the park. I can’t even begin to count the number of times we’ve seen their styles in real weddings–plus, they’re practically always a part of bridal parties rocking mismatched styles. Year after year, I’ve loved keeping an eye on the new designs and colors they come out with, and the newest collection might be my favorite yet (seriously, y’all, can we talk about the Kathy gown? So romantic!). It was a treat to learn about how the company began, how Joanna approaches her collections, and even how designing for flower girls is different from designing for bridesmaids in today’s Designer Spotlight!

Tell us about the beginnings of Joanna August—why did you want to start a bridesmaid line, and how did you get started? When I got married in 2008, I searched high and low for bridesmaid dresses that I thought would feel special, interesting and fashionable. I wanted my friends to be excited for their wardrobe and I also wanted guests to be intrigued by the visual display of all the dresses together–I wanted the bridesmaids’ fashion to make an impression, just like the flowers or the food or the band. But I couldn’t find anything to achieve my vision, so I designed my own! After the wedding, I started to think there might be other brides looking for the same thing, and the Joanna August bridal line was born!
What sets Joanna August apart from other bridesmaid dress brands? We truly approach bridal as ready-to-wear–no exceptions! Every single style, fit, and fabric is designed to be worn in “real life,” not just for weddings. The variety of colors and silhouettes makes it easy to for a bride to tailor the collection to achieve her vision and for the bridesmaids to find a style that suits her personality and body type, but at the end of the day, if any style feels like it would only be appropriate for a bridesmaid, we take it out of the collection!

What is your single best tip for a bride about to start shopping for her bridesmaid dresses? Options are your (and your bridesmaids’) friend! Of course, it is YOUR day, so if have your heart set on a single style and color for everyone to wear, your word goes! But whenever possible, if you can allow your maids to have some say in their style selection, they are going to feel empowered and more comfortable on your wedding day.
What is your current favorite dress in your collection? If you were to get married tomorrow, which dress would you choose for your best gals? I hate to play favorites because I love so many dresses in the collection! You would think it would be out with the old, onto the new, but I still wear several of the legacy styles from my very first collection (the DC dress is my go-to for black-tie events). But, at this exact moment in time, I’d choose our Lauren wrap dress. Since it is a wrap style, it is easy and comfortable to wear, and I love the romance of the off-the-shoulder flounce. I would wear it anywhere! If I were to get married tomorrow, I would let my friends choose any style they wanted but, I would choose the fabric and color for each and add different textures (like lace)
into the mix!

Tell us about your flower girl collection! How did you decide to start that collection? How is designing for little girls different from designing for bridesmaids? Now that I have two little kids, designing for littles felt like a very natural progression. While I totally love and get the appeal of putting little girls in fluffy skirts, I felt there was a void in the marketplace for more simple, bohemian styles, and that is what I was looking to fill with Babes of the Nile. There are definitely certain considerations for flower girls that you don’t think about with bridesmaids, like will a three-year-old keep the waistband on that skirt in the right place? And will a four-year-old dislike the feel of that smocking? Everything needs to be age-appropriate as well–nothing strapless or with spaghetti straps. Other than those considerations, the style and aesthetic of Babes of the Nile is very much in line with the bridesmaids collection.

What is your favorite memory from your own wedding day? There are so many great ones! My husband and I got married in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where the altitude is high and the weather unpredictable. It had been sunny and gorgeous the whole weekend, but the day of the wedding threatened to storm before the ceremony. Everyone tried to get me to move the ceremony indoors, but something inside of me told me to wait. Then, minutes before the ceremony began, the clouds parted and the sun came out for exactly the 20 minutes we needed get married. The minute after we said “I do” and the guests headed inside for cocktails, the heavens opened and it rained the rest of the night.
Name three items every gal should have in her closet.
1. A really nice bag!! If you are having a bad hair day or aren’t fitting into your favorite pants or just can’t figure out what to wear, you can throw on jeans and a white t-shirt, and if you have a special purse, the outfit will feel super cute and fashion-y. Mine is a simple black Celine bag that I use every day–it makes me feel special every time I leave the house with it!
2. A pair of vintage Levis that fit you just right. Always comfortable, effortless, and in style, and can be dressed up or down for a million occasions.
3. A great black leather jacket–tailored, boxy, moto, whatever suits your personality. Throw it on with jeans to grab coffee or dress down a cocktail dress and go out for dinner. It will never go out of style, is super versatile, and it keeps you warm–what else can do all those things? I couldn’t choose just one, so I have a tailored one from Theyskens’ Theory for when I am feeling “fancy” and an Acne one with star-shaped rivets for when I feel more punk rock.

Thank you so much, Joanna! Follow along with Joanna August here:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Dresses: Joanna August | Photography: Stephanie Sunderland | Venue: The Gramercy Park Hotel | Hair and Makeup: GlamSquad | Florals: The Arrangement

This post is brought to you by Joanna August – thanks for your support of the brands that make Southern Weddings possible!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Bri A reply

    Love the off the shoulder style! Those flower girl dresses are too cute!

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