December 27, 2008

Running Your Fingers Through Your Hair

Would love to do an Etsy post on the goodies bought for friends and family but since I won't be seeing everyone until the new year, I'll tie you over with this awesome new find by .: dkdesignshawaii :. We've focused on them before but this new accessory is too much fun not to share ...



December 25, 2008

Here In This Snowglobe Perfect Night



HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL FROM MOMENTS THAT SHINE!

Here's wishing all of you a fabulous and safe holiday season surrounded by loved ones :)


December 24, 2008

Party Like It's 1999!

We're published again! As you may have noticed by Kelly's post, both she and I were published in .: The Local Biz Magazine :. recently. We would have loved to share a bit earlier so things were in time for the holidays but such is the publishing world. Oh well, consider it an extra head start for 2009!



December 23, 2008

December 22, 2008

When I Dance They Call Me Macarena



Susan,

Every D.J. my fiancé and I have looked at seems too cheesy for our taste. How can we find someone that won’t play the Macarena?!

Thanks,

Cheryl


Dear Cheryl,

Ah, the D.J. search. Let me start this answer by saying my advice is NOT just for D.J.s and by no means am I picking on them. I’ve worked with MANY gems at weddings so I know they’re not all cheesy. Unfortunately a slim few just propel the stereotype. But since your question was so specific, I’ll use them as my example but my thoughts should actually be applied to all vendors you look at for your event.

First of all, make sure you meet with who you’re looking at. From your question I’m not sure if you’re just checking websites or if you’re scheduling times to chat. Please make sure you meet with your vendors (at the very LEAST by phone) before booking them.

To cut down on the cheese-factor with D.Js or the prices in photography, think outside the box. If you’re looking at vendors who bill themselves as wedding professionals only or advertise just in the wedding market, you’re limiting yourself. Google is your friend during your planning stages. Use it. Try typing in something like “Ontario D.J. listing” and see what pops up. You may find an association or two where all kinds of D.J.s are at the forefront.

Another favourite tool of mine is .: TSEvents :.

By going to their website you will find incredibly professional vendors who know weddings but don’t limit themselves to them. Try it!

And after you book your D.J., make sure you put the Macarena on the Do Not Play list you’re providing him or her ☺

Happy Holidays,

Susan


Keep Reading ...

December 19, 2008

Bring You Flowers For Your Hair



Many many thanks to Mirella at .: Rainflower Company :. for the fabulous interview she's put up of me on her blog! I was honoured to be asked and all excited to see it go live! Please take a gander over.: here :. to view it and make sure you check out all of her other awesome goodies while you're there.

I'm definitely in good company with the interview ... look in the archives and you'll see our guest blogger Vivian there, too! :)


Beauuuuuuuutiful ...

For Friday Footwear I was going to post some pics of bridal-ish snow boots. But while researching I stumbled upon these and HAD to show them ...



Can you say, 'drool'? You can find these boots .: over here :. but be forewarned ... rather expensive ;)

The description on the website alone makes me want them!
Rossorosa's charming and comfy short boots in eco-leather are following all the right trends this season - slick patent sheen, shrunken height, and sturdy, walkable heel. If that wasn't enough to hook you, their polka dot interior and detachable plaid rosette are the fun and irresistable finishing touches. Gift box included, Made in Italy



I Follow Footprints Through the Snow



This week's Etsy post comes courtesy of some new clients at Moments That Shine! They gave us the head's up of this truly amazing artist and we would love to highlight just her. .: MichelleProsek's Etsy Studio is located here :. She was kind enough to send along a bio so instead of babbling on, I'm just going to let her speak and include some eye candy for you ...


Michelle Prosek – Starfire Studios
381 Moxley Rd.
Greensville, ON
L9H 5L4
(905) 627-2133
www.starfirestudios.ca
www.décor-m.ca




Artist Biography:
With her unusual mixed education grounded in genetics but embellished by a long history in the arts, Michelle Prosek expresses her interest in nature through her sculptural glasswork. While some of her designs are created as sculptural jewellery designed to be worn as an expression of the inner nature of the wearer, others are created to bring nature into the home with vibrant style.
All of her work has a running theme of botanical and earth motifs, which reflect the organic nature of glass itself. Constantly exploring the boundaries of what glass can do, Michelle has developed new techniques for creating kiln-fired art that make her work unique in its field.



Artist Statement:
I am inspired by the wide range of functional and textural properties glass has to offer as an artistic medium, so I am always experimenting with new ideas and pushing the boundaries of what glass can do. I love referring to nature for my inspirations because I feel a connection between life and the dynamic flow of working with glass. At any stage in the creative process it can reflect my moods and desires as I explore its organic connection to my intended designs.



I personally cut, carve, fuse and shape every single piece of glass to ensure that they are all one of a kind works of art. Each finished work can take up to 90 hours to complete. I am constantly striving to create new techniques and methods for working with kiln-fired glass that extend beyond the traditional concepts of the medium.




Be sure to check out all of Michelle's sites ... .: this one :. in particular has fabulous jewellery!

Keep Reading ...

December 15, 2008

Let It Snow!


Hi Susan,

My boyfriend recently popped the question but we’ve already hit a roadblock. We’re talking about the time of year to get married and having troubles. Both of us love the winter and snow but we know weddings aren’t usually held at this time of year.

Any advice?

Thanks,

Josie



Congratulations Josie! Roadblocks aside, this really is an exciting time for you and your fiancé … yes fiancé … try to enjoy it ☺

Winter wedding, eh? Yes, typically weddings are held in warmer months but by no means does that mean you have to rule out the snow all together. Plenty of people have gorgeous weddings at this time of year and there aren’t problems. And when you think about it, Mother Nature can mess up the best of plans at any time of year (remember the blackout?).

Here are the two things you should do.

First, prioritize. Figure out the reason(s) why you want a wedding in the cold months then think about the possible hazards (storm with guests not being able to attend being the biggest). If you can live with the thought of some things missing, your love for snow will likely outweigh the problems.



Second, have a back-up plan. If you choose a venue out of the way, have a shuttle on call to take guests back and forth. Ensure your venue has a back-up generator in case of a power outage. Have hotel rooms close by for everyone. You get the picture.

There’s snow reason (hehehe) why you shouldn’t plan a day around boots, blustery temps and white all around!

Cheers,

Susan



Keep Reading ...

December 12, 2008

Steppin Out



Holy cool, Batman!!!

I stumbled across this picture when looking for something funky for this week's Friday Footwear. Inspired by shoes of the Celts and Romans,
Ingrid Wendt, creator of .: The Original Medieval Moccasins :., takes leather to a whole new level! Check out the website and have fun with this eye candy!


December 11, 2008

Day After Day I Keep Hangin' Round

It's a bit late for this year but how about 2009?! Here are some incredible advent calendars on Etsy that I wanted to share with all of you ...

This is actually my favourite of the week. I'm mixing things up by starting with it ;) It's by .: nouveaudesigns :. I love it because of simplicity.



Next up is this gem by .: designstash :. The boa is awesome!!!



This muffin tray advent calendar is all magnet based. .: AllThingsArtsy :. suggests placing surprises under each day!



.: Pearl & Pirate :. has put together a felt stocking for every day in December before Christmas. Fill them with treats or use simply as decor!



And the mother of all advent calendars? Check out this one by .: scrapcolors :. It's absolutely incredible!!!



During the holiday season I remember always having a special calendar as a child. It's a tradition I want to keep for generations in my family!


December 10, 2008


I have been a very, very bad blogger. Please forgive me. But it's all for a good reasons! 2009 is shaping up to be a very busy year for decor and we've got a bunch of things on the go and they're all good news for all fabulous brides!


For 2009, Vivian's Decorations & Designs will be chic-er than ever (yes, I made that word up) We've decided to leave the invitation design to the ever so fabulous Susan and venture into flowers, silk and fresh to help make your wedding planning and life easier. We'll be working with Mirella from Rainflower Company to provide you with the great decor, beautiful flowers, reasonable pricing and the best in customer service!

We'll also be launching our luxury line of decor for the everyday bride - Luxury Brown. The decor elements will be feathers , luxurious fabrics (satins, taffeta, embroidered organza etc), "diamonds" and more. Whole packages will be available, or if you want just a touch of luxury, items like ostrich feather centrepieces will be available

In January, we'll also be launching our new website! Yaaay!

We'll also be continuing our Top 5 things you can cut from your decor tips, so stay tuned!


Moisturizer!



In today's cosmetic-pharmaceutical world, commonly referred to as Cosmeceutical, there are hybrid moisturizers for every skin challenge. Cosmeceutical companies say that In contrast to cosmetic skin care products, which work to beautify the skin, cosmeceuticals will alter the structure of your skin and how it functions. 



A basic cosmetic skin care moisturizer will hydrate, come with a built-in sunscreen or a hint of color if that's all you need. While other, more advanced cosmeceuticals will exfoliate, smooth fine lines, or reverse the signs of aging. Some contain lightening ingredients that fade age spots, and even out skin tone. Others firm the skin, promote cellular renewal, or contain the same natural extracts, vitamins and minerals that we put in our bodies.



With so many formulas addressing so many issues, where do you start? 



First and foremost, select your moisturizer (s) based on your skin's type.....dry or dehydrated, normal, combination, or oily. As mentioned last month, texture is key to comfort so pay particular attention to the consistency of your moisturizer. And remember, the oilier the skin,choose more lightweight and fluid formulas , and the dryer the skin, opt for more rich and creamy textures.





Then factor in your chronological age PLUS your skin's estimated age. The oilier the skin, the slower the natural aging process and the drier the skin, the faster the natural aging process. Minus a few years if you're oily and add a few if you're dry. And, if you've had considerable sun exposure over the years, add much more since the suns harmful rays are responsible for 90% of our skins pre-mature aging process.





Once you determine skin type and age, you can then begin to look more closely at what you really want to address. A skin 25 years and under with no sun damage may focus on a regime with anti-bacterial ingredients and opt for moisturizers that regulate oil and water. While a more mature skin 45 years + with sun exposure may find herself on a layering program with products to fade broken capillaries, age spots or hyper pigmentation. 



Look closely to assess things like your skin's all over tone. How even is it.....is there sun damage, redness or discoloration? Is the texture of the skin thick and rough or is it soft and spongy? Are there new or existing fine lines.....where are they located and how deep are they? And visually, does the skin look translucent or transparent? These factors and more play a major role in your buying decision so it's important to determine your challenges in advance.





Other issues women face are budget, time they have to spend on themselves and getting the best bang for their buck in terms of simplicity and functionality. For this you want to seek the advice of a skin care expert or retail beauty consultant. They have extensive product knowledge and can save you time, money and energy with their recommendations. Help them help you by being prepared with a wish list of what YOUR particular concerns are. The more aware and educated you are about your skin and it's condition, the more the consultant can assist. 



And finally, whenever possible, touch, smell and try the moisturizer before you buy it. I am a firm believer that all beauty products really are kinesthetic and must be experienced first!


December 9, 2008

Oh the weather outside is frightful

But the fire of my stove is delightful. So in light of the impending transit strike in my city and the desire to cocoon at home with good food since it's all snowy and wintery out there at the moment, I thought I'd share a few of my favourite recipes with you. Maybe I'll make this a regular thing for me in this space, if Susan doesn't mind? since I'm as much a cook as she is an Etsy shopper.

And let's face it ... food is a huge part of a wedding.

MM loves to eat and is very happy about his lot in life as my future husband, since I enjoy cooking but am not fussy about it. Must be the former farm girl in me - my favourite meal is still a good rare roast beef, with mashed potatoes, green beans with butter and almonds and an apple cobbler/crisp for dessert.

Speaking of Apple Cobbler, my grandma's recipe is the one I make and I've had it up on Recipezaar for ages. It always gets good reviews and I love that darn appley-cinnamony-oatmeal goodness so darn much!

My favourite cooking blog is over at 101 Cookbooks.com. What I like about this blogger is that she's vegetarian, offers vegan options, but isn't preachy about, and her recipes feel homey, almost vintage. Like this week's post about Caramelized Onion Dip. She's updated the classic dip that my mom served to people made from Lipton Soup Mix.

I could see serving this at the wedding. Heck I had originally thought about using my own recipes for the wedding. serving classic roast beef and a fancier version of my own cobbler (with vanilla bean baked in and freshly grated cinnamon). But that was back when it was a fall event. Now I'll have to think about what I want for a spring shindig. Yummy!


Rain Down On Me



I was lucky enough to receive a note from the fabulous people at .: Rainflower Company :. the other day. Mirella takes ordinary flowers and makes extraordinary pieces of art out of them ... and she's put together a contest you may be interested in!




Here are the details straight from her site:


Rainflower Company is in the spirit of giving, and has put together an amazing contest for one super lucky couple! We are giving away up to $1000 value in Fabulous Fresh Fleurs for your wedding day! Pretty Fabulous!!! What do you have to do to win? Just tell us why you should win in 150 words or less of course, and please include a picture of the happy couple. If you or someone you know is getting married in Toronto or the GTA between the months of March and December 2009, you are eligible to win! Please visit www.rainflowercompany.com and click on the contest button and fill out the form with all of the required information to enter! Contestants will be judged on several criteria, including creativity, wedding theme, location, and overall how badly you want this. So don’t hold back, let your creativity bloom and have some fun with this!
(The lucky winning couple must be willing to have their photos published on The Blog, Newsletters and any other press/media coverage.)
*Contest closes January 30th, 2009 with the winner being announced February 2nd, 2009. Good luck to all participants and we can’t wait to see your submissions!

Check out some of her work!








Keep Reading ...

December 8, 2008

Pairing Up and Joining Hands



This question is actually adapted from a meeting I recently had with a lovely woman. In case any of you have been wondering the same thing, I thought I would share it.

Susan,

People at work and a few friends are making fun of me because I’m looking into getting my wedding invitations already (wedding is mid-July). Am I doing this too early?

Thanks,

S




Absolutely not.

Yes, you could do with waiting until closer to the date to get everything done but there’s no reason at all why you shouldn’t right now. Let me break it down for you …
Most people take about six months from start to RSVP return for their invitations. Sure, you have more time than that but for the naysayers around you, remind them of these things:



Mid-December and first part of January = holiday craziness. Don’t even pretend you’re going to get a lot done at this time.

When we thaw out of the snow (or warm up … whatever Mother Nature decides to do with us this winter), you are going to have so many other things to do than worry about invites … and possibly the wedding. You may have spring fever!



The design process itself is fun and you may want to start as soon as you can. If you know your colours aren’t changing, where’s the harm in getting started early? What you may want to hold off on (let’s say until April) is printing. That’s just in case any details change at the last minute. With my company, depending on the job, printing and assembling will take between two and four weeks.

Invites should go out as early as possible for you to beat the summer rush (might I suggest early to mid-May?). Remember you’re allowing for Canada Post twice (your mailing and then your guests mailing back the RSVPs). Within Canada, give it two weeks each way to be safe.

Your RSVP return date should be roughly a month before your wedding (early to mid-June) so that works out perfectly. You’re giving Canada Post the delivery time and your guests a couple of weeks to reply.

Looking back on all of those things, you’re right on track! Let everyone know a professional said so ;)

Cheers,

Susan




Keep Reading ...

Late summer wedding- September 2008, Toronto

Jess- I posted a while back about a wedding in September here in Toronto, showing a little behind the scenes- well, today I received by mail a lovely thank you from the bride along with a cd of flower themed pictures from the day that I though I’d share Here is the gorgeous bridal party- The bride chose an unusual bridesmaids dress colour , that allowed us to bring in some coppery red details with the flowers


Take a look at the centerpieces all set up



I should mention these photos were taken by Brooke and Eric Lagstein for BE creative Photography, based in Wyckoff, NJ.


December 5, 2008

What I Like About You

This Friday's Footwear is a bit of a continuation from a couple weeks ago. It's also a bit of an Etsy continuation. I found all of these shoes there which was nice and easy ;)

If you have a pair of shoes that are kind of blah, a great idea is to paint them (or have someone do it for you!). Check out these designs ...