Dream It Yourself (DIY) Bridal Expo by Caribbean BELLE
Saturday 8th September, 2018
Sunday 9th September, 2018
Radisson Hotel, Trinidad
TWO Full days
Looking for expert advice, give-aways, deals and discounts for your wedding? Also, want to try a few things yourself?
Come to Bridal and Fashion Expo 2018! Meet the best wedding professionals, engage in DIY Work-shops and enjoy our Fashion Show, Entertainment and Give-aways.
For more info, visit www.belleweddingexpo.com
Wedding festivities began with a Hindu marriage ceremony at the Lakshminarayan Temple in Freeport and a “slamming” party at home to celebrate. The couple was then ready for their next main event: a glitzy reception at the Magdalena Grand, Tobago.
They wanted an outdoor setting and a destination feel that would remain accessible to their guests, so it was the perfect option.
The effervescent Dana was the picture of elegance in an Oleg Cassini dress and Christian Louboutin shoes. She wore mother-of-pearl and white sapphire earrings, a Swarovski bracelet, and an adorable fascinator—handmade by Hanna Sebestova (available on Etsy).
After a delectable dinner, which included Chicken Scallopini and Grilled Pink Salmon with Chimichurri, guests danced under the star-lit night sky and enjoyed a breathtaking view of the ocean. A fireworks display brought the memorable evening to a close, but not before guests were treated to some after-party snacks: wings and corn soup!
Photos by Gary Jordan
Practical tips for the bride-to-be on delicate bridal party topics Of course it’s your big day, but remember that your friends are coming together because they love and support you.
The epic moments you spend with your closest girlfriends are sure to make it to your list of Top 10 Wedding Memories. You’ll laugh and recount stories about what happened at your bachelorette party, not to mention the last-minute wardrobe/hair/make-up malfunctions on the morning of the wedding!
Since your bridesmaids feature prominently at your wedding, you want them to make you look good. Their dresses, hair, shoes and jewelry must all come together to create a stunning package. Sounds easy? In reality, it never is.
Many brides-to-be have approached us about these details, so we spoke to a number of newlyweds and bridesmaids to come up with some tips for you.
Share your Dreams
The key here is to clarify your expectations of your bridesmaids, and allow them to do the same. You will, of course, want them to create a certain look and image together—so share that vision with your girls. It is important that they fall in love with your ideas too! If your dream is to have a Cinderella-themed wedding with your bridesmaids in fairy-like puffy pink dresses, ensure that your girls are on board with that.
Above all, keep the ‘princess’ attitude in check; of course it’s your big day, but remember that your friends are coming together because they love and support you.
Vary Style with Shape
Each of your bridesmaids has a unique body shape and size. It is not always easy to choose a single dress that will flatter every body type. Some girls may want to add sleeves, while some may want a longer hemline than the one you’ve chosen. There may even be a certain level of modesty that your girls are accustomed to and want to uphold. Our advice – be flexible! You want your girls not only looking beautiful, but feeling comfortable in their finery. When you are open to suggestions and feedback, you’ll find that many unnecessary negative sentiments and conflicts can easily be avoided.
Specific vs General
The brides covered in our Wedding Stories this issue varied in their approach to choosing bridesmaids’ dresses. One bride selected a specific dress from a supplier for her bridesmaids, while another picked a colour and asked her girls to wear any dress they loved, in that shade. Each approach has its pros and cons, so talk to your girls and see what’s most convenient and cost effective for them.
Traditionally, the bride took care of all these expenses. But don’t be alarmed. These days, there’s no set rule. First of all, be clear about your budget and realistically decide which items in your bridesmaids’ ensembles you can afford. Remember, it’s not only the dress; shoes, jewelry, hair and makeup are also costs to consider.
Recent brides advise that if you choose a dress that your bridesmaids can wear again and again, it’s not unfair that they pay for their own dress. However, do strongly consider sponsoring if it’s a once-in-a-lifetime statement piece that you have your heart set on.
Speak to each of your girls and see what they’re able and prepared to take care of. Some may be travelling from overseas to be part of your wedding, while others may be living on student budgets that do not allow for these expenses. Draw on your sense of practicality and ability to be understanding when making these important decisions.
Some brides prefer to keep it low-key and let their bridesmaids do their own hair and make-up, but it’s important to give some direction and styling tips to ensure that there will be no surprises. Other brides hire professional hairstylists and make-up artists to beautify their bridesmaids so that the hair and make-up looks will be the same for each bridesmaid. Styling elements such as jewellery and shoes should be coordinated in advance to achieve uniformity. Why not plan a relaxing ladies-only spa day just before the wedding? This will ensure that everyone is well-rested, glowing and photo-ready on your big day!
It’s no surprise that ladies are very particular about what they wear! From the bride to the wedding guests, everyone wants to look their splendid best. With a number of girls in your bridal party, expect a plethora of tastes, preferences and opinions. It’s impossible to please yourself and everyone else without hurting some feelings and bruising some egos.
A spirit of gratitude gives you the superpower to face all situations with poise and a clear focus on what’s truly important. It’s less about which shade of pink to go with, and more about the love, joy and harmony of being together.
Of course it’s your big day, but remember that your friends are coming together because they love and support you.
By Wedding Consultant, Nikki Hilaire
The ceremony (and reception) is running an hour (or two!) late? What do you do?
Identify the cause and remedy. For instance, if lateness is due to a missing but replaceable item (such as a ring pillow or bouquet) I’d grab a substitute from my emergency kit, and get the wedding started.
Otherwise, I’d inform vendors of the situation and enlist their cooperation in making changes to the programme. For example, a late wedding may necessitate serving dinner earlier and allowing speeches during the meal, or having the caterer serve hors d’oeuvres to waiting guests (if possible).
There is an interruption in water supply?
I make it a point to drive around the venue neighbourhood and map out the nearest automated teller machines and convenience stores. I also keep handy the phone numbers for water trucking services.
I discuss any potential water problems with the venue contact closer to the date and on the morning of the wedding. In the unlikely event that the venue is unable to meet water requirements on the day (think sinks running dry) I’d approach neighbours about the possibility of using their supply. There is also the option to purchase water by the gallon from the nearest convenience stores whilst waiting for water trucks to arrive.
It’s raining at your outdoor wedding?
You need to establish a back-up plan in advance. Consider reserving tent walls to be used if necessary; if the venue is not tented there should be at least one covered area.
I often change the reception schedule or program when this happens. For instance, if pelting rain forces guests to run for shelter, the “waiting” period can be turned into the “first dance” item followed by a soca dance party. Guests would be having such a good time that they may not notice that the banquet style dinner was turned into a casual buffet.
The entertainment does not show up?
I keep varied music discs in my car as back-up; the DJ usually does a sound check with me, or someone from my team, at least two hours prior to the reception, so that they can always transition if a musician does not show.
For instance, if your live saxophonist cancels, the DJ can substitute instrumental music, without guests even knowing that something went wrong. It’s all about having that relationship with your vendors.
a guide to creating an heirloom
Get it cleaned
Your gown should be professionally cleaned within several days (or weeks at most) after wear. If you will be off on your honeymoon, enlist someone to take it to your dry cleaner as soon as possible. Even if your dress appears clean after the wedding, spills from alcoholic beverages or soda can turn brown with time and become more difficult to remove. Body oils may also cause the dress lining to turn brittle eventually. Tip: Not all dry cleaners are the same. Check with your local bridal shops to find out which they recommend.
Have you dry cleaner WET CLEAN your gown; that is, clean with water and mild detergents. This will prevent any damage to the beadwork or sequins by chemicals used in traditional dry cleaning. Wet-cleaning also ensures that invisible stains from body oils, soda or alcohol are removed. Once the dress has been well rinsed, no chemicals or residue should be left. Package well
Before you send your gown to be cleaned, you should:
- Know what fabric your dress is made of; silks are notoriously difficult to have cleaned.
- Check to see if there are cleaning instructions on the dress label. These may read: Dry Clean Only or Professional Wet-Cleaning Recommended
- Identify any visible stains or dirt on the dress for your dry cleaner’s attention.
- Note whether your dress has any sequins or beads that may need protecting and whether they are glued or sewed on. Embellishments that are glued on are more prone to coming off during the cleaning process.
Store your gown in a way that will protect and preserve it.
One of the absolute worst ways to store your wedding gown is in the plastic bag from your dry cleaner or a plastic storage bag. Most plastics will give off chemical fumes that can cause your gown to become discolored over time. Plastics are also very good at sealing in moisture from excess humidity, which can lead to the growth of mold and mildew.
If your wedding gown has covered metal buttons, pins or sponge shoulder pads or padding, these should be removed and stored separately. These items can break down at different rates and release chemicals that may damage your gown.
If you’re going to hang your dress in a closet, use a plastic or padded hanger; if you use the wooden or wire ones, the weight of the dress can cause the fabric to stretch and distort.
It is recommended that the gowns be packed with white acid-free or pH-neutral tissue paper and boxes. Ordinary paper contains acid which can literally scorch your gown. Packaging in the box and using the tissue paper will also allow the gown to ‘breathe’ and get rid of excess moisture. Estimated cost of box, TT$350.00; cost of 10 sheets of tissue TT$20.00.
The tissue is rolled up and stuffed inside the bodice and sleeves of the gown to prevent wrinkles and preserve the shape. It’s best to avoid folding if possible as folds can become permanent with time and weaken the fabric. If you do fold your gown, ensure the radius of the curve is as large as possible to avoid sharp creases.
A dark, cool, dry place.
Store your gown, either hanging or boxed, in cool, dry areas, free from drastic temperature changes. Select an area with adequate air circulation, but away from light. Interior closets that meet the temperature and circulation requirements can be ideal.
Note: Even with proper treatment, some garments will turn yellow with age. This is typical with the ageing of silk and wool and is considered the ‘patina of age’.
Here’s what we’ve spotted.
- Square, layered, ribbon-banded cake with floral detail.
- Slipper in sand initialled cake for beach or cruise wedding.
- Lace designed cupcakes. Lace detail is the new trend for 2013, with cupcakes or cake pops remaining popular choices.
- Soft coral and green are ideal colour choices for 2013.
- Floral adornment in coral for modern and stunning effect.
- Dress inspired, pleated design.
- Elegant five-layered fruit cake with pearl and floral detail.
Diana and Ron said “I Do” in Nassau, Bahamas.
The Bride answers your most pressing questions:
CB: Why did you choose a destination wedding? What were your main considerations?
Diana: We wanted a non-fuss, simple, intimate ceremony, especially since we wrote our own vows; the thought of a crowd of people staring at us at such a sacred moment didn’t seem very romantic.
A beach setting was also high on the agenda (sand between our toes) and since we were honeymooning in the Bahamas, we thought why not have a wedding-moon; after all the Bahamas does have some of the most amazing beaches.
CB: Why did you choose Sandals?
Diana: All-inclusive and no children allowed – what could be better? Sandals took the worry and hassle out of planning the wedding. We merely informed them of our preferences for the day. Everything you could possibly need for a wedding can be provided: the bouquet, groom’s boutonniere, cake, champagne, minister, photography and even the DJ. You can also access a glamour team to help you look extra special.
We’d considered both St Lucia and the Bahamas, but decided on the Bahamas mainly because the resort had an offshore island also equipped with a pool, restaurant and bar – which was great for the honeymoon! You had access to the offshore resort plus the main resort.
CB: Where did you get your dress?
Diana: The resort also supplies a collection of wedding dresses. However, I found my dress at Megans in Trincity Mall, Trinidad.
CB: Can you describe the sequence of events on the day?
Diana: We had a morning ceremony on the beach (several locations are available), after which we had our first dance on the sand (which was magical; there were no piercing eyes staring at us to make things awkward), followed by an elaborate photo-shoot throughout the compound, with the sticking of the cake as the finale.
CB: Would you do anything differently?
Diana: The weather was a little too cold for my liking (we got there on March 22nd) – if I had to do anything differently I would have planned it one month later.
CB: What were the highlights of the honeymoon?
Diana: We’re an outgoing and adventurous couple so relaxation alone would never satisfy us, though we did a lot of that. We needed an adrenaline fix, which we got with parasailing. Every time we travel we try to do something we never did before.