Tuesday, September 28, 2010

We've Moved!

Check out our brand new blog and webiste at www.pinkrhapsodydesigns.com !

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

It's a Nice Day for a Red Wedding -by Shari

I love red as an accent colour for weddings.  It looks classic, elegant, and modern at the same time, and looks great on bridesmaids of all shapes and sizes and with all skin tones.
Bridesmaids Dresses
Many times I've stated that bridesmaids shouldn't be dressed in the most vibrant hue of the colour palette, but I think red bridesmaids dresses are an exception and are amongst the prettiest I've seen.  Dresses in all styles and fabrics look great in all shades of red.  Also, vibrant shades of red look great against all skin tones, and I'm sure bridesmaids would love wearing the dress again.

Ties and Vests

When dressing the groomsmen in red, it is best to keep the tie and the vest the same colour.  The only vest colour a red tie should be paired with is black or a very dark charcoal or grey.  Against a white dress shirt, a red tie is already going to pop, and a white or light coloured vest only draws the eye more to the floating tie and away from the man's face.  Black, grey, or the same hue of red will soften the look.
Coordinating Bridesmaids and Groomsmen Wearing Red
While all hues and shades of red look fantastic in dress form, in vest/tie form, the darkest hues look the most classic.  However, if you are set on having your bridesmaids in a bright red colour and want your groomsmen to match, finding the same shade of hue for all fabrics is the key to creating a cohesive picture.

When working with different fabrics and different distributers, red can be a difficult colour to coordinate, since there are so many variants on the shade.  When pairing red bridesmaids dresses with groomsmen's attire, consider the colour of the bridesmaids dresses: is it closer to purple, orange, or somewhere in the middle?  Compare the bridesmaids dresses below.  My perception is that the ones closer to the top have more purple in them, and working on way down, we gradually move closer to the colour orange.  They are paired with a coordinating tie and vest.
Alfred Angelo, Satin, "Claret"

Men's Wearhouse, "Primetime Wine"

Watters & Watters, Dupioni Silk, "Ruby"

Freeman Formals, "Crimson"

Jamines, Taffeta, "New Red"

After Six, Rapture, "Flame"
After Six, Taffeta, "Royal Red"

After Six, Iridescent Taffeta, "Royal Red"

Alexia, Satin/Chiffon, "Sierra"
Moores, Deluxe Satin, "Red"

Getting the hues right
To see how two different shades of red go together, let's pair a bridesmaids dress that has a purplish hue with a vest that has an orange hue:

It's quite noticeable that the dress has more purple hues than the vest and tie.  Add a few extra bridesmaids and groomsmen, and the difference is even more noticeable.

Now, let's pair two colours that are the same shade but not the same hue:

Even though the vest is a shade darker than the dress, because they are the same hue of red (one isn't more towards purple or orange), they still create a unified look.

It's important that, when choosing the shades for the bridesmaids dresses and for the men's attire, real-life swatches are seen.  I did this this colour coordinating relying on my computer screen, but if I were actually planning a wedding, I would go to each retailer and ask for samples.

Many hues of red are also closer to pink than purple or orange, so consider that as a factor as well!

More on designing a red wedding in later posts!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

How to Avoid Hosting a Tacky Wedding -by Shari

Want to host a classy affair?  Avoid doing these things at all cost!

-Do not allow your bartenders to serve alcohol in bottles or cans.  Spring for the glasses.

-Spring for REAL glasses, not paper or styrofoam.

The dreaded sea of turquoise
-Make the brightest colour in your palette your accent colour and avoid using it on bridesmaids dresses, groomsmen's vests, and table cloths; instead, use this colour for the napkins, favours, flowers, etc.  If you must feature the brightest colour more, choose either the bridesmaids dresses, the groomsmen's vests, OR the table clothes, not all three; your photographs will look like you got married in a sea of turquoise.
(Neutrals: Brown, white, black, grey, and variations of these colours)

-Do not allow the groom's head and hands to travel up the bride's dress, no matter what he's reaching for.  I don't think Grandma would be okay watching this debacle at any other family event, so why is it okay at the wedding?

The Phantom finally weds Christine
-Resist the temptation to rent a dry ice or fog machine.  This isn't your grade 9 Much Music Video Dance Party, people.  If there are no platforms to dance on, fog isn't warranted.

-Rent a nice podium, or make sure your venue has one.  Like chairs (see below), don't allow anyone to wrap it in a white bedsheet.

-Avoid chair covers.  Ensure your venue has nice chairs that match your colour and decor, or rent plain white chairs.  If you MUST use chair covers, make sure the fabric is not satin, to prevent your chairs from looking like they're wearing nighties.

This chair is ready for bed.
This chair is ready for business.

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Porter-Jackman Wedding featured in Wedding Bells Magazine!

Also see our online article!

Top TV Weddings -by Shari

With each passing year, it seems that more and more television is devoted to real-life weddings.  After watching another disappointing hour of Slice, I decided to revisit a time when personal wedding budgets weren't posted on TV for the whole country to see, and when your mother had an issue with your wedding dress, she didn't get to announce it for all TLC viewers to analyze.  While non-reality TV weddings are scripted, they somehow seem less-so than any episode of "Rich Bride, Poor Bride", and I think we can learn a lot from the writers and designers of these wedding episodes.

Ross and Emily, Friends
-Pair silver and red.
-For a formal evening wedding, dress the men in cutaway jackets with ascot ties.

-Choose the neutral colour for the men's clothing accessories (here, the vests and ties are silver).
-Put your bridesmaids in red dresses with spaghetti straps and a slight cowell neck.
-Pair your dress with a rounded shrug (but make sure not to add a veil as well).
-Keep the lines of the bridal gown close to the body if you are petite like Emily.
-Chose a meaningful location and adorn it with flowers and candles.


-Allow your mother-in-law to wear a fire hazard with all the candles around.
-Serve steak at a standing reception (thanks Jack Geller!)
-Allow smoking in common areas.

Maria and Luis, Sesame Street

-Dress your bridesmaids in 1920's-inspired gowns that always look classic.
-Lighten a petite frame with a shorter hem at the front of the dress.
-Choose a dress with asymmetrical features to prevent a dated look.
-Get married and celebrate in a meaningful and familiar place.
-Get married at dusk.
-Host a street reception with musicians in the stairwells (check with fire codes first, and have a back-up plan in case of bad weather!).
-Have muppets on hand for genuine compliments as you walk down the aisle.


-Allow your veil to have any height at the back.
-Make your bouquet compete with a flower crown AND gloves AND a ruffled neckline.  Even in the 80's, this is too much.  Pick a focal point and stick with it.

Felicity and Gus, Road to Avonlea

-Wear a bridal gown with a classic square neckline and adorn it with a drop necklace.
-Choose a veil with a soft lace border that doesn't draw focus and place flowers on top toward the back of the head
-For an outdoor reception, dress the groom in light grey, skip the pocket square and have a large boutonniere to tie in the flowers outdoors.
-For a church ceremony followed by an outdoor reception, decorate both places with large (but moveable) flower arrangements.
-Have lots of shade and places to sit for an outdoor wedding (and always have a back-up; it rains even in Avonlea).


-Put your bridesmaids in hats for an indoors ceremony.
-Carry a bouquet bigger than your torso.

Miranda and Steve, Sex and the City

-As a red-head bride, choose an outdoor autumn setting.
-Feel free to break with tradition and, instead of wearing white, choose complimentary colours and fabrics for the setting and season.
-Pair a charcoal tux with a burgundy tie.
-Invite only your closest friends and family.
-Host a reception in a restaurant where the bride and groom can mingle and converse without being tied to one particular chair.
-Decorate the venue with ceiling-high flower arrangements.


-Clasp the bouquet as a couple as you say your vows.
-For an intimate and casual affair, skip the bouquet all-together.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

LOST -by Shari

I don't know what was worse: the series finale of Lost, or Emilie de Ravin's dress on Jimmy Kimmel.

Blogging has been sparse lately due to my overwhelming work schedule.  I have a lot of half-finished entries that will be posted as soon as possible!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

My Favourite Designers - by Donna

1.   Christian Dior:   Above sketch by Christian Dior.  See footnotes at bottom of page for copyright information.

When I think of the word glamorous I think of Christian Dior,  one of my all time favourite designers.   What makes the Dior name even more special to me is I actually once had a genuinely magical moment when I 'accidentally' tried on a Dior dress. (see upcoming article...My encounter with Dior)  Dior's history goes way back when he initially became famous after world war two when he introduced the concept of the hour glass silhouette.    Then Dior's first haute couture show in 1947,  solidified his standing in the fashion industry and selling his designs to famous American actresses followed.

Dior's collections include everything from his fashions of course,  to his line of cosmetics and accessories.   I love this quote that was published ten days after the untimely death of Christian Dior "The French newspaper Le Monde hailed him as a man who was “identified with good taste, the art of living and refined culture that epitomises Paris to the outside world”.     That quote pretty much sums up in one sentence,  the essence of who Dior really was.   Using his exquisite designs,  Dior shared everything he surrounded himself with in Paris to women who wanted to experience a little glimpse of that life themselves.   His powerful presence was evident then,  and still today several decades following his death it is still evident.   High end department stores and cosmetic boutiques all over the world,  daily welcome clients who stop in to purchase Dior items. 

I think it would be so interesting to use white and grey,  Christian Dior's favourite colours as a design concept for a wedding.   It would require just the right elements and if done in true Dior style the outcome would be ultra chic.

If you want to read further on the life of this extremely talented and fascinating designer please follow this link.

2.  Yves Saint Laurent.   Above sketch by Yves Saint Laurent.  See bottom of page for copyright information.

Another of my favourite fashion designers Yves Saint Laurent became the head designer at Christian Dior,  following Dior's death in 1957.   Mr. Saint Laurent was only twenty one years old at the time.    His amazing career spanned several decades and included his inventing pant suits,  bolero jackets and the women's tuxedo jacket just to name a few of his designs.   One of his biggest accomplishments was making ready to wear fashions acceptable.   The great thing about his designs is they always reflected the changing times.    And during the latter part of his career he became the first haute couture designer to broadcast a live fashion show on the internet.   The way he incorporated art in his designs and the huge amount of respect he had for women were just two reason why he gained fans in so many walks of life.  "Saint Laurent also played a huge role in changing how women dressed. He created the first tuxedo for women. Giving women a look that was traditionally associated with men was a statement for Saint Laurent in showing a power shift in gender. But being a "powerful" woman meant more to Saint Laurent than putting a woman into a man's suit. His sleek evening gowns emphasize the beauty of the female form."

Reading up on the life and exceptional career of Yves Saint Laurent made for some very interesting discoveries.   One of the most impressive things I learned was he had the rare ability to know what women wanted,  before they even knew it themselves.   That alone is an exceptional talent and one of the many reasons that I believe empowered him to stay around for as long as he did.

For more information on Yves Saint Laurent visit the website below.

3.  Chanel  - sketch by Karl Lagerfel for Chanel

As far back as I can remember the name Chanel has always been of great interest to me.   It all started when I was 14 years old and our local pharmacy gave out the tiniest little bottle of Chanel No. 5 perfume with any purchase.   It was the first real perfume I ever owned and that little bottle lasted me all through my high school years.   Still in my early teens I would buy an issue of Vogue,  and any ad or mention of the name Chanel would make my purchase all the more worth while.

The life of Coco Chanel is a fascinating and intriguing story.   It is truly a remarkable story that Chanel went from spending her childhood years as an orphan,  to becoming one of the most famous designers and business women of all time.     Not only was Coco Chanel known for her incredible designs,  it went much deeper than that.   She actually had a profound impact on changing the way women dressed.   Chanel was a leader in the movement of change and made it acceptable for women to leave behind the confining designs of the Edwardian period.   From her classic custom suits to her little black dress design everything with the Chanel label was highly valued in her time,  and still is to this day.   I don't think there is a person alive,  regardless of their interest in fashion or not,  that doesn't recognize the name Chanel.

If I could only own one piece of designer clothing it would be a Chanel suit.   For now I do consider it a privilege to own a pair of Chanel sunglasses,  my first ever real designer purchase.   I am currently searching for a Chanel bag and look forward to finding just the right one.

For information on Chanel, see the following website.

4.   Oscar de la Renta:  Above sketch by Oscar de la Renta

I love the above sketch of a wedding dress from Oscar de la Renta's new bridal capsule collection.   The design is a perfect representation of Mr. de la Renta's concept of brides which he describes in the following quote.  "The bride has a common dream - she wants to look her very best,  the most feminine, the most romantic and the most memorable."   Who wouldn't want a wedding dress designed by Oscar de la Renta.   His fashion shows are for obvious reasons hugely successful,  but it's his wedding dresses that usually steal the show.

What I find so interesting about Oscar de la Renta is the rich and varied history behind this man.  Born in the Dominican Republic to a woman who was from there and to a father who was Puerto Rican.   At eighteen years of age he moved to Spain where he studied art.   He soon realized his passion was actually in fashion and not long after he started sketching for fashion houses in Spain.   Not surprisingly he moved to Paris as a couture assistant.

In 1963 Oscar de la Renta moved to New York City,  already very famous by this time.   He continued working his way up to the top of the fashion industry and having his own label.   He is most famous for his ready to wear line.  "Launching his own line in 1965, he was the first designer to give American women couture quality off the rack. He's said he designs clothes for wearing, not for museums."   Oscar de la Renta designs everything from clothes, accessories for both women and men,  perfume and also has a line of furniture inspired from his homes in the Dominican Republic and America.

One of the many things I like about Oscar de la Renta is regardless of what style of clothes he designs he puts just as much passion into it.   For example his casual clothes are just that ..items such as denim pants and tank tops and then his next design can be his exquisite line of evening clothes that are very detailed and elaborately designed.   I admire that Mr. de la Renta wants every piece he designs to be as important as the next.   For more information on Oscar de la Renta and his line of fashions see the following website.

Bridal inspirations with fashions from the above designers.


Brides can get inspiration for their own dress by studying designs that aren't necessarily created as a wedding gown.   For example there are elements from the above couture dresses by Dior that would be  so glamourous for a wedding dress....in both the design style and use of the gorgeous fabric.

*Yves Saint Laurent

The above dresses from Yves Saint Laurent's 2002 Couture runway would be 
stunning for a formal wedding.  The elegant violet and plum gowns are great
inspirations for bridesmaid's dresses.
The pink gown I can visualize for the mother of the bride (with a little tailoring
so the cut is not quite as low).  
I am still searching for just the right bride's dress to go with this combination.


I love this white ruffled dress design by Chanel,  (dress in photo above silver dress) and think it would make a cute wedding dress for the right bride and the right wedding.  (minus the big hair bow).  And the above dress (again minus the hair bow) would be perfect for the mother of the bride,  for the same wedding. 

*Oscar de la Renta

Although the three gowns above all by Oscar de la Renta,  are not part of his bridal collection I think they would make fabulous wedding dresses.   I wonder if there will come a day where wearing wedding dresses in colours other than white will be popular?    Although there is nothing wrong with wearing white if that is what you want,  there is also nothing wrong with wearing a wedding dress that isn't white.   My daughter choose a pink dress for her wedding dress and I give her so much credit for stepping outside of the box and wearing something that she felt suited her.   And after seeing the way
my daughter looked in the gorgeous pink dress she choose for her wedding,  I can't imagine her in
anything else.

Footnotes to above images and quotes.
Image 1 and Quote:  http://designmuseum.org/design/christian-dior
Image 2:  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_pictures/7430568.stm
Quote re: Yves Saint Laurent

Image 3:
Image 4 and Quote:   http://www.stylelist.com/2010/01/17/oscar-de-la-renta-tells-stylelist-about-his-exclusive-new-weddin/
Quote 2 Oscar de la Renta:  http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/life/style/gloss/6936637.html
Photo credits:
*All bridal inspirations photographs from style.com