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January 2014 - New Orleans Weddings - Reception, Venue & Planning

Watch: Anna Maijer ~ Ulla Maija’s Fall 2014 Bridal Runway Show

 Bridal Fashion Week, Fall 2014 Bridal Runway, Wedding Dresses  Comments Off on Watch: Anna Maijer ~ Ulla Maija’s Fall 2014 Bridal Runway Show
Jan 312014

Anna Maier ~ Ulla Maija's Fall 2014 collection played off the designer's signature mix of feminine silhouettes and traditional bridal fabrics. "With this collection I imagined timeless beauty and sensuality," the designer says. "I imagined a breadth of finishes that could be only realized across many fabrics. I wanted the depth and complexity that could only be found mixing materials and techniques."

That philosophy is clear in the gorgeous collection that walked the Fall 2014 bridal runway. The show, which featured a dazzling combination of luxurious silks and lace, kicked off with a gown that echoed notes of Kate Middleton's iconic Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen wedding dress. The lace long sleeves and high neck were utterly Victorian, and yet so very of-the-moment.

In additional looks, we saw all types of sheaths—some with lace illusion fabric, some with V-necks, some with intricate scalloped hems, and still others with contemporary cap sleeves. The multiple styles showed the versatility of a classic sheath.

Other standouts included an A-line dress with embellished bodice and waist bow and a stunning lace one-shoulder sleeve. Floral accents and many strapless necklines made each and every dress shine.

Watch the exciting collection walk the runway in our exclusive video above and don't forget to browse Anna Maier ~ Ulla Maija's Fall 2014 wedding dress collection in our slideshow.

For more front-row photos and exclusive behind-the-scenes coverage of Bridal Fashion Week, follow Brides on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google +.

Are Lana Del Rey and Barrie-James O’Neill Really Engaged?

 Celebrity, Celebrity Weddings, Engagement  Comments Off on Are Lana Del Rey and Barrie-James O’Neill Really Engaged?
Jan 312014
Lana Del Rey Engaged

Photo: Getty Images

"Summertime Sadness" singer Lana Del Rey is engaged to boyfriend (and Kassidy singer/guitarist) of more than two years Barrie-James O'Neill, US Weekly is reporting.

See more: Which Celebrity Couple is Getting Married Next?

And, as it turns out, the engagement might not even be all that recent! Although Del Rey's reps have neither confirmed nor denied the reports, multiple sources close to the couple told the magazine that O'Neill popped the big question sometime this past summer.

While a secret engagement is certainly surprising news, we can't say that Del Ray's latest relationship development is completely unexpected: Rumors began flurrying this past July when the lovestruck pair were spotted looking at homes together in Los Angeles. Plus, while Del Rey and O'Neill were house hunting, the "Young and Beautiful" songstress was also seen sporting a sparkly diamond ring on that finger (you can see a shot of the ring, here, at Daily Mail). It's about time the whisperings were confirmed!

While we wait for the official confirmation of Del Rey's engagement, we'll indulge in some speculation about what kind of wedding dress the glamorous singer, who's known for her vintage clothing and bohemian style, might choose to wear.

See more: Celebrities in Wedding-Worthy White Dresses: Jennifer Lawrence, Margot Robbie, and Robin Wright

We envision her wedding day look going one of two ways. The first: Full-on bohemian goddess, with flared lace sleeves, a bias-cut silhouette, minimal accessories, and a to-die-for flower crown.

These Delphine Manivet and Victoria Kyriades Fall 2014 looks, below, would be perfect for Del Rey.

Delphine Manivet Lana Del Rey Wedding Dress Pick

Photo: Steve Eichner

Victoria Kyriakides Lana Del Rey Wedding Dress Pick

Photo: Rodin Banica

Our second choice: retro-glam, involving a silky sheath with subtle crystal detailing, a curled faux-baub and a bold red lip.

Here are a few gowns—the first from Jenny Packham's Fall 2014 collection, the second, from Maggie Sottero's Fall 2013 collection—that might just work for the "Born to Die" singer:

Jenny Packham Lana del Rey Wedding Dress Pick

Photo: Mateo Volta/ImaxTree.com

Maggie Sottero Lana Del Rey Wedding Dress Pick

Photo: John Aquino

Congrats to the happy couple! We can't wait to see all of the wedding details unfold.

Jan 312014

From a French garden-inspired wedding to a glam wedding hairstyle tutorial, we round up some of our favorite blog posts from all over the web.

From escort cards tied to baguettes to trés chic polka dot bridesmaid dresses to a Maypole ceremony backdrop, this intimate French countryside-inspired wedding didn't overlook a single stunning detail. (And with only 80 guests, the bride and groom didn't break the bank!) —100 Layer Cake

Shedding for the wedding? Reach your weight loss goal with these expert slim-down tips. —Brides.com

We're in awe of this glamorous hairstyle that you can do yourself! Get vintage-inspired waves and a modern twist on the chignon in a few simple steps. —Green Wedding Shoes

Don't forget the rehearsal dinner! Here, a few helpful tips on what to wear (and how to deal with your future in-laws). —Brides.com

Asking guests to jet off to the tropics for your destination wedding? They won't be able to resist a little sun-and-sand if you ask them to RSVP with this beautiful island-inspired invitation suite. —Oh So Beautiful Paper

The red carpet is one of our favorite places to spot up-and-coming wedding hairstyle ideas, and these 13 gorgeous looks worn by Jennifer Lawrence, Keri Washington, Jessica Chastain, and more take the cake. —Brides.com

Valentine's Day is a few weeks away! If you're looking to find a fun and super sweet gift for your honey, this gift guide for cool couples is the perfect place to start. —Brit & Co.

Still searching for "something old"? Instead of opting for an old object, incorporate a quirky, vintage wedding tradition. —Brides.com

Pass this story, featuring 50 different bridal shower theme ideas, to whomever is hosting and you'll make her week—promise. —POPSUGAR

Laugh it off! Here are four common wedding mishaps that really aren't the end of the world. —Brides.com

It’s Chinese New Year! What the Year of the Horse Means for Your Wedding

 Married Life, Relationships, Sarah Jio  Comments Off on It’s Chinese New Year! What the Year of the Horse Means for Your Wedding
Jan 312014
After Party Wedding Guide

Photo: Getty Images

Today, January 31, kicks off the first new moon of the year and the beginning of the Chinese New Year. This year? It's out with the Year of the Water Snake, and in with the Year of the Horse. Whether you subscribe to the thinking of the ancient Chinese calendar or not, keep reading to learn what the year ahead holds—especially if you have a wedding on the calendar in the months ahead!

According to legend: To avoid bad luck, wear red this year, and often. (And, to take the superstition to an even deeper level, wearing something red that has been given to you by someone else is even better.)
What it means for your wedding: Red bridesmaid dresses, red roses, or maybe red lingerie for the wedding night? Other so-called lucky colors for the year of the horse: green and purple.

According to legend: Lucky flowers for the year of the horse are giant taro and jasmine.
What it means for your wedding: Good luck sourcing giant taro, but a sprig of jasmine in your bouquet would smell amazing!

According to legend: Some Chinese zodiac experts say that people tend to be more stubborn in the Year of the Horse, holding firm to their principles.
What it means for your wedding: Decision-making might be a little harder when no one is inclined to compromise! One the other hand, now you've got a great excuse for not budging when your mother-in-law suggests her favorite venue for the reception.

See more: Laugh It Off: 4 Wedding Mishaps That Aren't the End of the World

According to legend: If you were born in a Year of the Horse, you are said to be more compatible with partners who were born in the years of the tiger, goat or dog, and not so compatible with those born in the years of the rat, ox, rabbit, or other horses.
What it means for your wedding: Well, grin if you're compatible, and snicker if you're not. (And maybe wear some extra red!)

Engagement Rings Under $1,500 That’ll Make You Swoon

 Engagement Rings  Comments Off on Engagement Rings Under $1,500 That’ll Make You Swoon
Jan 312014
Affordable Engagement Rings Under $1,500

Photo: Courtesy of Anna Sheffield

You want a gorgeous engagement ring—but not one that will drain your fiancé's bank account. (After all, you'll likely be combining your finances pretty soon!) And while diamonds may be a girl's best friend, there are plenty of engagement ring options—diamond center stone or not—that are stunning and affordable. (Hint: If you crave the sparkle of a clear stone, consider a white sapphire, which is far less expensive than a diamond!)

From a unique metal center stone to an etched crystal and a gold claw-set emerald, we've rounded up 24 gorgeous, engagement-worthy baubles that won't break his bank. Give these beauties a hand...

See more sparkly engagement rings under $1,500 in the complete slideshow.

How to Feel Happier in 20 Seconds (Really!)

 Happy Bride, Relationships, Sarah Jio, Wellness  Comments Off on How to Feel Happier in 20 Seconds (Really!)
Jan 312014
20 Second Happiness Boost For Brides

Photo: Getty Images

Say you've had a hard week. Drama with your mom over the bridesmaid dresses, and the photographer you really wanted just happens to be booked the day of your wedding. And you and your best friend (ex maid of honor?) just had a mega fight. Here's what you do: Find your fiancé and hug him—as long and hard as you can.

Sure, hugs are a sweet way to show your affection, but there's an even better reason to lock arms with your love: recent studies have linked hugging with a serious, and measurable, boost of happiness.

Here's the trick, though: for hugging to release the dose of happiness-boosting oxytocin that you need, a side hug, or quick pat on the back just won't do. Experts say that you really should hold that pose for at least twenty seconds. May we suggest: the before-work and after-work hug; the bedtime hug; and the on-the-cereal-aisle-at-the-grocery store hug.

See more: 3 Ways to Have a Hotter Relationship With Your Husband

What's so great about oxytocin? According to a slew of research, this so-called "cuddle" or "feel-good" hormone is credited with a long list of benefits. Studies have shown that it can make us feel happier, more outgoing, closer to the ones we love, more loyal, less forgetful, and (shy brides look away now!) more likely to orgasm during sex. Wow, right?

Emma Roberts and Evan Peters: It Wasn’t Love at First Sight!

 Celebrity, Celebrity Weddings  Comments Off on Emma Roberts and Evan Peters: It Wasn’t Love at First Sight!
Jan 312014
Emma Roberts Evan Peters engaged

Photo: Getty Images

Engaged American Horror Story: Coven co-stars Emma Roberts and Evan Peters definitely make an adorable couple. But during an appearance on Chelsea Lately, Roberts revealed that she met her fiancé long before they shared the screen on the hit FX show—and that she didn;t make the best first impression.

Roberts and Peters first met while filming the upcoming independent movie Adult World, and she says "On set, I was like 'Oh yeah, we're totally going to date,' and I would try to flirt with him, which ended up looking like I had something in my eye," she laughingly told Handler. "He literally didn't speak to me the entire movie, he thought I was so weird."

See more: Which Celebrity Couple Is Getting Married Next?

Her lackluster flirting skills were compounded by the fact that her Adult World character sported a less-than-flattering look. "I have no makeup on, it looks like I cut my own hair off," she said of her character, a poet who works at an adult bookstore. "I was not exactly looking cute to get a man."

Is Roberts just downplaying her natural charm and beauty? Because while she thought she was repelling her dream guy that whole time, she clearly grabbed Peters' attention. He started texting her, and they began dating. And before long, she joined the third season of American Horror Story, which Peters has been on since the first season.

See more: Our Favorite Celebrity Engagement Rings

The rest, as they say, is Hollywood romantic history. After more than a year of dating, Peters proposed to Roberts in New York City over the holidays. Extra reported that he popped the question with a gold, pink diamond engagement ring.

Now that she's happily discussing her engagement, we can't wait to hear some wedding plans, as well. How cute would a Halloween wedding, complete with romantic dark details, be for the horror show couple?

Is the “Kids-Only VIP Room” Trend Right for Your Wedding?

 Kids, Wedding Guests  Comments Off on Is the “Kids-Only VIP Room” Trend Right for Your Wedding?
Jan 312014

Photo: Anna Palma

Should you have an adults-only affair—or invite kids to your wedding? It's a question almost every couple grapples with at some point in their wedding planning. Whether you want to give them a spot at the reception or have them stay home with a sitter, it's a nice gesture (and one that will be seriously appreciated!) to find a way to accommodate the children of your wedding guests. Here, two ideas that will be fun for the little ones and their parents.

Luckily for those who want to invite kids to their event, one of the hottest wedding trends right now is a reception-within-a-reception just for kids. If you've got the budget for it, it's a total win-win—the tykes will have the time of their lives, while their parents will be free to party sans guilt.

"For one winter wedding, I hired Corporate Kids Events to make a separate tent look like an ice cave," says Annette Garcia Kerslake of Simply Natural Events, in L.A. "They tricked it out with PlayStations and craft projects—kids were building igloos out of sugar cubes!" (Cost for similar parties: $10 to $30 per child per hour.) Elegant Event Sitters also organizes elaborate kiddie bashes; highlights include superhero cape-making, sand-art stations, and a truck outfitted with Xboxes. (The "Super Sitter" package is $1,500 and covers two to three sitters for up to 10 kids for four hours, including dinner and supplies.)

But if you're going the adults-only route, arranging off-premises babysitting is a considerate option that will smooth the way for parents—especially out-of-town guests. Do a Google search for local babysitter-referral services; they can connect you with caretakers who are CPR-certified and have passed background checks. Set up a playroom in a hotel suite close to the reception site, or, if you have a friend who's willing, in a nearby (and child-proofed) home.

And if kids are invited to your reception, but you can't spring for a separate event for them, draft a local sitter to man the kids' table (typical rate: $15 to $20 per hour). This way, your guests can party worry-free (and you can save them and yourself some money by having one sitter watch the group).

Who Sits at the Head Table During the Wedding Reception?

 Etiquette, Wedding Etiquette, Wedding Receptions  Comments Off on Who Sits at the Head Table During the Wedding Reception?
Jan 312014
head table seating

Photo: Jose Villa

If you've decided to have a head table at your wedding reception, consult our simple seating guide to figure out who sits where!

Who sits at the head table?

Many couples decide to skip the "sweetheart" table (a small table set up for just the bride and groom at the reception) in favor of a long rectangular head table or round table at the focal point of the room. Other couples choose to have no head table at all and sit with family members instead. No matter which configuration you choose, the bride and groom should still face the room and their table is usually set apart from the others by some type of special decoration, such as flowers (sometimes incorporating the bride's and bridesmaids' bouquets placed in simple vases) or personalized signs hung on the bride's and groom's chairs.

At the head table, the bride traditionally sits at the groom's right, with the maid of honor on his left and the best man on the bride's right. The rest of the party follows suit in an alternating male/female pattern. You may include child attendants at the head table, too, but if they are young, they may feel more comfortable seated with their parents. Back in the day, spouses and significant others were relegated to different tables, but this tradition is now generally ignored. If you can only fit the best man and maid of honor along with their significant others at your table, then seat remaining attendants and their "plus ones" at another table.

Real Proposal Story: A Seaside Engagement in Coastal Maine

 Engagement, Proposals  Comments Off on Real Proposal Story: A Seaside Engagement in Coastal Maine
Jan 312014

First comes love, then comes marriage. But before the joy of wedding planning begins comes the biggest, happiest question of all: Will you marry me? Thanks to HowHeAsked, we found some real, romantic, and ridiculously creative proposal stories that will get you inspired, tearing up, or both!

Blondes may have more fun, but being a natural redhead helped Kristin snare her future husband, Dustin. The two met at a pharmacy student bar night in Manchester, New Hampshire; they made each other's acquaintance after Dustin spotted Kristin in the crowd, and he sent her a friend request on Facebook that night.

See more: Design Your Dream Engagement Ring

Facebook messaging led to a date to go for a walk on a nearby running trail. That date sealed the deal for Kristin: "I will never forget how easy Dustin was to talk to, he made me laugh and I knew there was something between us," she says. "After that night we were inseparable; we spent our free time together sharing secrets, telling stories and getting to know everything there was to know about each other."

By the time Dustin decided to propose to Kristin a few years later, he had some specific ideas in mind. He wanted to involve her best friend, Hailey, who is also a photographer. He also wanted to pop the question while Kristin visited her family in Maine during time off from class. The only thing that stood in the way was her weekend job—but Dustin contacted Kristin's boss and got him in on the plan.

"When my boss notified me that she had given my shift to a classmate, I was so excited I didn't even question it," Kristin says. "I asked Dustin if he would come with me to Maine since we both had the weekend off. Hailey recently asked me to do a photo shoot and the weekend would be the perfect opportunity to do it."

See more: Over-the-Top Places to Get Engaged

Little did Kristin know, her "everything falling into place" weekend was not by accident! They set off for Maine with Kristin completely unaware of her love's big plans.

Once there, Kristin and Dustin made time for a photo shoot, taking some cozy pictures on the beach before Hailey instructed them to stroll down the beach. Dustin's heart skipped a beat; 'Stroll' was the code word for proposal time. He held Kristin's hand as they made their way down the beach, laughing and joking the whole way.

"That's when I stopped and told Kristin I loved her and I wanted to spend my life with her," Dustin says. "I pulled the ring from my pocket, lowered to one knee and asked my soul mate to marry me. I won't ever forget the look in her eyes when I proposed to her, it was a moment of excitement, shock, happiness and love."

Kristin said yes, the two celebrated, and they finished up their joyous photo shoot!

Our Takeaways

1. Who's the boss: Sometimes, you have to get more than friends and family in on the plan in order to make a surprise engagement happen! We love the fact that Kristin had an understanding employer.

2. Friend or photo: When it comes to proposals, having a photographically talented friend always comes in handy. Dustin and Kristin got great pictures, and Kristin wasn't at all suspicious when instructed to get gussied up for a photo shoot.

3. A family vacation: Since Dustin popped the question on a trip to see Kristin's family, they all got to celebrate together after the big moment.

Click here to read more about Kristin and Dustin's engagement and don't forget to follow @HowHeAsked on Twitter!

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