Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Right Gown for Your Body Type

Congrats, Congrats, Congrats!!

If you thought that this would be an article defining a small category of bridal gowns that you should be choosing based on the proportion of your waist to hip are incorrect. There are guidelines, sure, but finding your wedding dress is a completely personal decision based on your personality, venue and style. Don't let anybody make you think otherwise.

I will, however, give some info and tricks that I have gathered along the way.

-First and foremost, set a budget. This will eliminate a whole slue of options, as well as define the designers that are worth exploring and researching. An average custom order gown is around $2000. This does not include the cost of a seamstress that will be needed to perfect the fit and add the bustle. Set aside around $400 this this service.

-Know your timeframe. Custom order bridal gowns will take 4-6 months to arrive into your salon. "Custom" gown simply means that you will be ordering your size, based on measurements, per the designer, as well as any special changes that differ from the sample.....such as color, neckline, length, etc. Don't be surprised if you end up ordering a much larger size than a dress that you would pick up at Nordstrom. It's a totally different ball game when dealing with mostly European sizing. Are you an uber proficient planner, and set a wedding date sooner than the allotted time?? Not to worry, there are rush shipping options as well as sample sale gowns in most salons that can be purchased directly from the floor if need be.

-Consider your venue and season. Yep, it's usually warm in Texas, and depending on the setting of your wedding, this will impact the decision of what gown to choose. Outdoor settings scream for flowy, lacy options, and indoor venues open the doors to heavy satin, full ball gowns and just about anything that you can imagine. Does your wedding day include a little bit of both? Consider versatile gowns that photograph great in both settings. Texture, delicate details, and layering will do the trick.

-Now to the silhouettes....bridal consultants will throw a lot of gown terminology at with it what you will. Keep in mind that each designer has their own interpretation of these shapes. As long as you feel gorgeous, and like a bride, whatever "line" the gown is...that's the one for you. The most universally flattering style will forever be the A-line. Just as it sounds, the A-line is simply constructed with a fitted bodice and a skirt that flows away from the body creating emphasis at the small of the waist and attention away from the hips.

-Always want to be the belle of the ball? Ball gowns are probably better suited for you. Typically, if dresses are given this royal title because of the size of the skirt, and can be jazzed up by adding more petticoat when desired. Many of these skirts will be given more pizazz and visual interest with a variation of pleats. Box pleats wall lay flat and create a more heavy and formal fit, and small gathered pleats will add volume without weight.

-Feeling sassy?? Mermaid and Trumpet styles can be a little more sultry if that is what is desired. These shapes can range for the slightly shapely to the extreme. Similarly, these gowns will hug the body from top to bottom. The definitive difference is that the mermaid will have a joinline to separate the skirt, creating a more dramatic "poof" at the hem.

- A trumpet will typically have less petticoat, and allow more ease of movement for those that plan to boogie their night away.

-Looking for a flirty cut, but not a totally fitted shape? A fit and flare might be the right line for you. These gowns will again be fitted at the bodice, but differ, in that the skirt will be slightly snug at the hips and then trail into a fuller skirt.

-If boho chic or glam gowns are your thing...look into the sheath or empire cuts. These gowns are perfect for smaller, outdoor affairs, as well as destination weddings. The empire dress will have a join line just under the bust and can either float away from the figure or remain fitted at the rib cage. A sheath dress will usually be constructed in a lighter fabric such as a charmeuse...which means one thing...SPANX, baby SPANX. Even the tiniest and tightest of bodies will need some slimming and smoothing. Think..Pippa.

Now for the necklines.....

-Strapless. This is the most flattering, and most popular of necklines. Included in these lines will be the sweetheart, scoop and straight across, and believe it or not, there are several variations of each of these styles. The key to this puzzle?? Pick a line that lengthens your neckline, flatters your feminine d├ęcolletage and appropriately stores and supports your "girls." Are you stepping away from strapless because you have seen too many brides doing the dreaded yank move in the middle of their wedding? Don't dispair. The way to nip this obnoxious issue in the bud, is simply by wearing the proper undergarments as well as making sure that a professional seamstress is customizing the cut. Yank no more.

-Halter. Always a classic and comfortable choice. Just be aware of proportions. The smaller your frame is; the thinner the straps should be, and the deeper the plunge should go. If you have wide shoulders, choose a thicker line and a crossover bodice for more coverage and balance out your frame. Double sided tape would be a good purchase to go along with these gowns. Just to be safe.

-Off the shoulder is making it's comeback. There are not as many gowns with this option, and the reason behind this is tends to restrict movement. Dancing and hugging can be more difficult with these shoulder hugging straps, but if they are made with lace, this fabric allows for a little more stretch, and if you find the right fit, it will make for a memorable look.

-Want sleeves? Thanks to Dutchess Kathryn, there are more samples of these styles than ever. These demure designs can be customized, to create the desired length and circumference of sleeve that you desire. Another simple way to create your very own royal style? Add a lace bolero to just about any strapless gown, and viola! Your reign begins.

This is a LOT of info, and there is much more out there. Use it as you wish, and keep in mind, looking at photos of gowns is totally different than seeing them in person, and be prepared to fall in love with something that is completely different than you had envisioned. You never know how you will feel until you start trying them on. The experience when searching for your wedding dress should be fun, exciting and full of joy. Bring along loved ones if you wish, but keep in mind that this is YOUR decision, and YOUR day. And, when you find your dream dress that works with your timeframe, budget and venue.....( please forgive me for this)...Say yes to the dress. Trying on too many will only confuse and delay the situation. Again, congrats!

All of the designer gowns photos in this piece are available at Serendipity Bridal.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Popping the Question....

Planning on the popping the question during the Holidays? First of all, congrats!!!! Now, I am going to pass on the perfect sure to get the memorable moment on film. Have "paparazzi" stake out the location and snap the special moment. Keep it a secret until the next round of gift giving and present the picture in a wonderful will score MAJOR points, and be cherished forever!!

Next, be sure to schedule an appointment with the locally and family owned Austin landmark, Serendipity Bridal. We are so excited to meet and style our newly engaged brides in our recently updated boutique salon!! Serendipity is beyond proud to be the official bridal consultants of television personalities, Longhorn Legacies, and cherished ladies for close to 25 years.

Happy Holidays, and best of wishes from our family to yours!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

New Paloma Blanca Gowns Arrive!

Just in time for the Holiday engagements...two show-stoppers from our beloved bridal house, Paloma Blanca, arrive in the salon.

These flattering gowns are different styles, made with the same quality and construction that Paloma Blanca has become famous for.

Style #4165, from the Premier 2012 collection, has a glam rock vibe that I so adore, but instead of adding too much volume along with the textured skirt, they have managed to keep the A-Line silhouette slim with a unique layering method. Genious. Pair this gown with amazing statement pieces from Kendra Scott to complete the look.

Style #4202 is a streamlined, romantic number with a light and airy rosette skirt. The fit is as sassy and sweet as it gets, and the visual interest in the skirt and train give the effect of walking on a cloud of roses. Doesn't get much dreamier than that, does it?? Styling this gown is key to making it your own....softer gold pieces like these from our favorite celebrity jewelry designer give this look an added warmth and softness.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Super excited to be featured in Jan/Feb 2012 issue of Destination Weddings & Honeymoons on shelves now!
"Side-swept undone do’s

make Lacy Pool, a buyer and stylist for

Serendipity Bridal, swoon. The perfect way

to flaunt the look? Suggests Pool, “Wear a

floral or feather comb solo, or pair it with a

low-slung veil.” — Charyn

Winter Weddings

It's true, we don't get many white winter weddings here in Central Texas, but we can draw inspiration from them none the less. I have gathered some favorite shots of wonderful winter weddings to get into the spirit.

Jim Hjelm has one of my favorite bolero jackets that would add a touch of the season's sparkle and fantasy to any bridal style!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Jim Hjelm Bridal and Blush Trunk Show

Jim Hjelm Fall 2011 Collection

This weekend we are so excited to be debuting an array of collections from Jim Hjelm and Blush! These designs were definitely stand outs at the New York Market, and received rave reviews by press and bridal editors.

This is still one of my overall favorites from Jim Hjelm's Blush collection, and I am so excited to see the reaction from our brides as it makes it's debut to Central Texas.

Blush 1204 at NY Market

Jim Hjelm Bridal continues to upkeep the highest standards of quality, fit and style. These gowns are classics in the making. The signature low, scooped backs and delicately manipulated layered fabrics create a one of a kind designs and breathtaking styles.

Jim Hjelm Fall 2011 Collection

Blush has been given a refreshing rejuvenation with its newest designer Haley Paige on board. The sweet, and flirty silhouettes that Haley is known for, has left an unforgettable mark on this fashion forward line, and has defiantly become one of my favorites. Included in the variety of traveling dresses for the show will be some best sellers of past collections. Very Exciting!!

Jim Hjelm Blush Collection 2011-2012

Be sure to schedule an appointment with one of our stylists to view this amazing collection, and see what all of the buzz is about.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Bridesmaids Dress for a Holiday Party?!? Yes, You Can!

Tis the season ladies...Holiday parties are in full swing, and if all that is keeping you from your dream dress, is free time and excess funds...then I may have just the tip for you.

Dig in the back of your closet, yank out your collection of bridesmaids frocks, and put on your thinking cap. Let's be honest- there are so many gowns that are offered right now from amazing designers that are adorable enough for any soiree, but if you simply cannot visualize wearing these gowns without wanting to pair them with matching shoes and holding a cluster of flowers, then maybe we can "deconstruct" a dress together.

Here are a couple of tidbits that could bring your taffeta number to the next level....

Seek out a seamstress.
Not that Monique Lhuillier or Amsale needs styling tips on their designs, but maybe a floor length chiffon skirt hides your great gams, and the only thing keeping you from your "go to gown", is too much problem! Simply contact an experienced seamstress, and let her know how much leg you love to show, and there you go....a custom cut, designer gown collaboration made just for you!

Here are two great examples of Amsale bridesmaids dresses in both the longer and shorter version.

Thinking about busting your leather leggings for a night out? Here is another option for you to ponder when taking these gowns for a makeover. How would one of these dresses look as a top?? Bustiers are big, big, big, and if you have a strapless gown with a prominent join line at the waist and exposed boning, then you already have a designer piece hanging in your closet, and you just don't know it!! Take it to your seamstress and see what can be done. If you decide to cut the whole skirt off, you need to make sure to bring your pants with you for the fitting. Unless you want to expose your midriff, make sure the top is cut long enough. Don't forget that peplums are really in right now too, so if your bm dress has a full skirt with box pleats, leaving a few inches of the skirt would create you this adorable look in just a few nips and tucks.

This great Lazaro gown has a super fashionable corset top.

These Watters, Lazaro, and Monique Lhuillier bridesmaids dresses could make adorable peplum tops when given to the right seamstress.

Add a piece from your own wardrobe.
If you think that your boss might not appreciate the slightly revealing sweetheart neckline, or that he might appreciate it a little too much, the only thing that these dresses need is the addition of a cardigan. 1950's inspirations are everywhere in fashion, and there is nothing classier than a cute, and fitted cardi. There are some super cute ones out there adorned with jewel accents and lace that would totally change the look of a strapless bridesmaids dress, and it will keep you warm and toasty until the merry drinks kick it. ;)

Another way to add an extra element and texture to a former bridal party frock is adding some great tights. Add a brightly colored pair with a neutral dress, or a lace pattern with an LBD. Make your look as funky and festive as you are.

All of these Lazaro gowns would be super cute paired with a cashmere cardigan, lace leggings...or both!!

Style it YOUR way.
It's perfectly proper for a bride to request that her party wear specific jewelry to complete the look that she is going for on her big day, but if you want to break out your biggest and baddest statement pieces, then do it! You will be shocked how much this will change the whole feel of the ensemble.
These Kendra Scott pieces would make a great statement with any open neckline dress.

Here is your chance. Did you think that the best way to accentuate the one shoulder neckline would have been with a cool fishtail braid off to the side?? Well, just do it then. Give it your own flavor, and wear it proud.

Let's be real, there will always be those dresses that you could not even fathom wearing again...whether it be the style, cut, or color.But, with that being said, many gowns have been created with the best fabric, boning and classic style that deserve to be incorporated into a stylish wardrobe. With a couple of personal touches and creative collaborations, you could have a new go-to look!

Happy Holidays!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Friday, December 2, 2011

Pronovias Hits the Showroom Floor!!

What would be the best way to decorate our newly renovated boutique for the Holidays...????
Lace, stones, crystal and FEATHERS....all in the pristine package of an amazing Pronovias Bridal Collection!!

We are beyond thrilled to bring the world's leading bridal house back to Austin, and cannot wait to see these unbelievable designs on our gorgeous brides!! We will be debuting an impressive selection of gowns from the Costura, Dreams , and Fashion collections.

Serendipity continuously strives to bring the BEST and most diverse selection of bridal gowns and bridesmaids dresses to the greater Austin and Central Texas area, and we know that Pronovias is a fashion forward, and sought after designer that will fit perfectly into our highly acclaimed "Top 50" bridal boutique.

Check out Serendipity's Pronovias catalog on pinterest to browse a selection of gowns that are in the salon.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Holidays AND Ordering a Bridal Gown

Tis the Season.......Holiday shopping, parties, and family....These things can all seem daunting by themselves, but in addition to all of these festive activities, your wedding task list is still needing to be attended to.
Our newest member of the Serendipty Bridal family, Pronovias

Many brides are wanting to just get through this busy season before placing the order for their wedding gown, but what needs to be taken into consideration is that bridal factories in general shut down a week for Christmas, and a week for New Years, per labor laws. This is two weeks additional to add to the shipping lead time.

Watters Bridal

Overall, brides need to allow for 4-6 months for a custom bridal gown to arrive, and around 2 months for alterations. This is standard. So, if you are a bride that has their dream dress out there just waiting to be ordered because of extra holiday stress, a few pounds, or whatever the reason might be.....wait no longer! Come January, bridal salons are slammed with brides that received a shiny rock for the Holidays and New Years. So, ask the expert consultants for their assistance, and give yourself a big check mark for this big "To-do", then go have some champagne to celebrate!!

Jim Hjelm Bridal

Monday, November 28, 2011

Serendipity Bridal Gets Pinned!!

Ok. So, I have been totally bitten by the PINTEREST bug that is going around, and I am loving every second of it!!

Pinterest is a virtual pin board that allows you to create your own categorized scrap book of sorts online. This is such a fantastic tools for brides to find inspiration and ideas for their wedding. Our most popular pages have been updated with "pin it" icons to make it that much easier to use our published photos on your own personal boards. As new blogs are posted, new pins will be added, so keep a look out, and be sure to follow our own pinterest board!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

AMA Awards Fashion

Metallics made their presence at last night's AMA Awards! Sparkly silver, gray and golden hues filled the red carpet, and I loved it! It was a combination of retro and rock and roll with some of the coolest hair styles we have seen in a while. Many of which would work great for a bridal!

Braids are BIG!
Bridal braids are amazing styles to compliment any gown. The placement of a fantastic headpiece or flowers within the 'do creates an opportunity to individualize the look, and capture the style that reflects your big day. Here are some of my favorites...

I love the larger than life headpiece that Katy Perry wore. This is such an elegant way to play up a classic up do.

The big, bouncy curls made their appearance again, playing up the retro glam vibe.

This is a look that is coming back in bridal as well. Many times brides feel as though they have to wear their hair up, but that is not the case.....if the weather is right and your hair can with hold the style, then go for it! These celebrity brides did...

Vanessa Minnillo obviously loves this look as well!

Now for my favorite look of the night.... Once again, Taylor Swift stole the show for me!
I love, love, love the pairing of the unexpected green earring. This simple addition adds interest and a pop of color.

Check out these emerald colored Kendra Scott earrings.....gorgeous!!