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A Blog for the Discerning Bride

Archive for September, 2009

Pocketful of Sunshine
categories: bridal fashions, health and beauty

I’ve always been curious about “spray tans” but I never had the nerve to try one. Who hasn’t ventured into self tanner world, only to emerge looking like one of Willy Wonka’s Oompa-Loompas?

When I heard about Kelly Richardson’s business, Sonoma Tanning, and saw her lovely image gallery, I decided to rethink.

Just ten minutes with Kelly and I had a perfectly bronzed and natural tan that lasted just over a week. No orange, no streaking, no sun damage and just enough in the tan line department to make it look like I spent a week in Hawaii.


I’m now thinking of hosting a tanning party for my girlfriends. We could all emerge from Kelly’s black portable cabana with a suberb glow, without even breaking a sweat. Kelly says most brides get their tans two days before their weddings for the optimal glow.

Check out the pics of her work–so natural! Strapless gowns are no problem, either, as swimsuits are optional in the ultra-private cabana.

If you decide to try the self tanner route on your own, you should know about a South Seas product called Uh-Oh. It’s an uber exfoliator that sloughs away the streaks and mistakes we inevitably make when it’s a DIY tan.

Though I bet they have never met, I actually have both Kelly and makeup artist Corinna Cooke to thank for the best-looking tan of my life.

Corinna introduced me to the airbrush technique when she taught me and our publisher, Fran Samuel, about airbrush makeup (which rocks, btw). Sonoma Tanning’s technique is similar, although Kelly uses a much larger compressor for broader strokes with the tanning product, which is based on fruit, aloe and water.

Image courtesy of Kim and Niki Photography 2009.

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Made for the shade
categories: fabulous reception sites, for your ceremony, reception ideas, what's hot in rentals

Most times of the year, outdoor Arizona weddings require a high SPF or a smashingly wonderful tent. Ornate, opulently embellished with tassels–the tents by Raj Tents are simply out of this world.

Check out this romantic blue enclosure which set the scene for Rachel Whalen and Ted Schlosser’s ceremony at FireSky Resort and Spa. The white lounge furnishings by Kool Party Rentals offered comfort and style in one swanky setting.

Raj Tent

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Haute couture headpieces
categories: bridal fashions

Feathers are everywhere this year—from floral arrangements and bouquets to headpieces, these natural flourishes offer a stylish and interesting design element to your wedding.

We at Bride & Groom are always on the lookout for the newest products for the savvy bride, and we nearly fell out of our chairs when we saw this smashing collection of hair adornments from JoomiNYC.

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The collection includes fascinator hats, headbands and jeweled hair brooches, and feature romantic details including sexy French lace and netting, Japanese satin ribbon, Indian beading and Swarovski crystals, and of course, feathers.  The collection boasts bride-worthy hues ranging from snow white to antique white to shimmering silver.

Our trendspotters weren’t surprised at all to see feathers in this fabulous New York collection. Available to the Arizona bride online at

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Huge Lips, Skinny Hips
categories: health and beauty

Hot Lips Skinny Hips by Purple Lab

No joke, that is the name of the lip gloss that we were invited to try over the summer.  We love beauty products and we’ll go out on a limb for our readers—even if the names are a little funny.

Here’s what we found out about this one. “Huge Lips” refers to the lip-plumper made from Vitamin B3, which stimulates blood flow to the lips (no burning like some of the those chili-pepper products). The “Skinny Hips” part is the most interesting: this lip gloss is formulated with hoodia gordonii extract, a natural appetite suppressant.

We had to try this to believe it. It’s a great lip gloss, leaving your lips silky smooth. The lip plumper is just enough with no sting. The appetite suppressant seems to work too. Then again maybe we feel so pretty we don’t want to smudge or lipstick by letting something pass over our lips.

It has been reported that women consume an average of 9lbs of lipstick in a lifetime, so it’s a good thing that this lipgloss has a nice citrusy flavor too!

Huge lips, skinny hips is a product of Purple Lab.

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Asian themes are hot!
categories: floral inspiration, reception ideas, trends in catering, what's hot in rentals

At the Phoenix National Association of Catering Executives (NACE) Event Elements competition this summer, the Tokyo-themed tabletop designs were unbelievably gorgeous.

Check out first place and people’s choice winning design by Cicely Rocha-Miller of Life Design Event Planning. Love the fun layered linens and frilly chair covers. And notice how the spectacular floral display doesn’t have to block your view of your tablemates. We covered Cicely’s own wedding a couple of years ago, and we’ve watched over the years as her talent grows and grows.

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Now for a different take on Tokyo, we turn to Brady’s award-winning style (2nd place at NACE Event Elements, btw). The fab bamboo structure is eye-catching in its own right, but we are in love with the orchids as they wind their way down to a splashy display at the base. The sumptuous linens are a prefect complement to the Asian tableware in red, black and white. And how about those menus?

Bradys Event Elements

One last word on the Tokyo piece of the competition and we’ll stop blathering and go get some sushi. Don’t you just love this cake by Let Them Eat Cake? Fabulous!

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All photography by our great friend Stuart Thurlkill at Eyes2See.

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