Bridesmaid (Un)Dress of the Week: Dahlia Peplum Top

best bridesmaid dresses

 

The “bridesmaid dress of the week” is, technically, not a dress at all but a chance to go a wee bit outside of the box and pick separates for your gal pals instead.

I recently stumbled upon my latest clothing obsession while looking for a dress to wear to a friend’s wedding. Lately I’ve found it harder and harder to find a dress to wear TO a wedding than to find a wedding dress, which is why I got super excited when I saw the Dahlia Peplum top hanging by it’s lonesome at Anthropologie a couple of weeks ago after a full weekend of unsuccessful dress hunting. As soon as I tried it on I was hooked, and ended up happily pairing it with a simple black pencil skirt and chunky gold earrings and shoes (much like the picture, below)  for the wedding this past weekend.

I think you could easily go the same route for your bridesmaids this spring/summer. Why not pair a dramatic top, like the Dahlia Peplum one, below, with a pink, beige, yellow or even a teal pencil skirt for a fun and different look? What’s great about having your bridesmaids buy separates is that they can easily wear it again (this top would look great with rolled up boyfriend jeans and heels). Trust me, they’ll thank you!

dahlia peplum top

Anthropologie’s Dahlia Peplum Top, $178

 

Screen Shot 2014-04-07 at 10.13.50 PM

 

TopShop Pink Tweed Pencil Skirt, $84

 

 

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Do You Have to Give a Wedding Shower Gift? And Other Gift-Giving Questions

wedding gifts what to give

While wedding gift questions might be more related to giving, knowing that some of your guests might not be 100% sure when it comes to gift-giving etiquette is enough reason for YOU to know how it’s all supposed to work as well.

I have to say that I, personally, am a stickler for not only GIVING wedding gifts, but for expecting a ‘Thank You’ note in return. There might be some people out there that don’t believe in giving wedding gifts (especially if they’re spending a bit of money getting to or being in one), but I fully believe that a “gift” does not have to be extravagant, and can be instead a small token of congratulations to the bride and groom. Even a simple card is better than no gift at all.

Given the general confusion around wedding gift-giving (and receiving), I thought I’d answer a few questions, below.

 

Do you have to give a gift if you’re invited to the wedding but are unable to attend? Yes! It’s customary to give a gift if you’re invited to the wedding ceremony and/or reception. However, if you’re only invited to a belated reception, you are off the hook when it comes to giving a gift.

If it’s a destination wedding, do you still have to give a gift? Yes! While etiquette says you should still give a gift despite having to spend money on transportation, lodging and the like, you can let your wedding costs play a factor in deciding HOW MUCH to spend on a gift. If you’re going to the wedding and spending a lot of money to get there, you can absolutely spend less on a gift…but you should still get one.

Do you have to give a wedding shower AND wedding gift? Yes! If you attend a shower you should give a gift, but if you are unable to attend you do not have to. If there are multiple showers, it’s customary to give a gift at the first shower and not the subsequent ones. Since not every guest might have been invited to each shower, if you’re a bride you might say something along the lines of “Lisa gave me a fabulous slow-cooker a couple weeks ago” while opening gifts so as not to leave the gift-giver out.

Are gifts expected at a second wedding? If you are a repeat guest at a wedding for the bride or groom, a gift is not expected. In fact, couples getting married for the second time often tell their guests not to bring gifts, in which case it’s totally up to the guest if they want to bring one.

What if the wedding never happens? Nobody wants to think about this one, but it sadly happens more than you think. While some etiquette experts recommend you wait until after the wedding happens to open any gifts, I don’t know how realistic that is. You should return any unused/unopened gifts if you can, however, and if you are unable because they are already used, you should write a note apologizing for being unable to send a gift back. Do not ask them how much it was or bring up reimbursing them for their trouble…you don’t want to bring money into it.

When should you send your gift? The sooner the better. While old-school etiquette says you have up to a year to send a wedding gift, you should ideally send one before the wedding. If not, send one no later than three months after.

Click here for tips on How to Write the Perfect Thank You Note.

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H&M’s $99 Wedding Dress is Here!

how much do wedding dresses cost

If you’re started your wedding dress search, you know just how expensive they can be. It’s not surprising to find dresses ranging from $2,000 all the way to $10,000 and above. While lines like J. Crew and David’s Bridal (with designers like Vera Wang and Zac Posen offering inexpensive versions of their designs), you’re still looking at $500 plus.

Leave it to fast fashion company H&M to offer up one of these least expensive wedding dresses yet. On Friday the Swedish retail chain unveiled a $99 wedding dress (pictured below). How’s that for a bargain?

H&M’s wedding dress,  featuring a gathered waist and embellished neckline, will be available online and in stores later this month. While it might not be the most beautiful dress you’ve ever seen, the price tag could be a promise of more to come.

h&m wedding dress

 

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Mary-Kate Olsen’s Vintage Engagement Ring Is…WOW

mary kate olsen engagement ring cartier vintage

 

Mary-Kate Olsen flashed what looked to be a HUGE engagement ring during Paris Fashion Week, sparking rumors that she is in fact engaged to her boyfriend of nearly two years, Olivier Sarkozy.

Olsen, 27, has yet to confirm that she is engaged to Nicolas, 44 (who is former French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s half-brother), but we’re guessing she said ‘Yes!’ as soon as she saw this gorgeous vintage ring.

mary kate olsen vintage engagement ring cartier sarkosky

Style Caster did some research and discovered the ring is vintage Cartier from 1953. They also discovered that it was bought at a Sotheby’s auction for $81,000 on February 6 (Sotheby’s would not confirm the buyer). According to Style Caster, the ring is a four carat, center European-cut diamond framed by 16 sapphires. The petals are set with single-cut diamonds.

As my husband just said when I showed him a picture of the ring, “Oh. That is nice.”

Indeed.

What do you think of Mary-Kate’s new vintage ring?

 

 

 

 

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