Posts in the 'wedding trends' Category

Real Bride Shannon: Trials and Triumphs with Trends

I’ve always been at odds with trends. There’s just something about looking like everyone else or having something that everyone wants that never really appealed to me. And trends? Well, there all over Weddingland.

I’ve always had a style that was fairly well accepted. Call it classic or timeless or whatever you like; I just feel pretty good about my ability to pull an ensemble together, fashion or otherwise.

But y’all, I didn’t know where to begin when this whole idea of a wedding got here (even though I’m super-happy it did)!

Almost immediately, I started checking out blogs and websites and signing up for ALLLLLL the newsletters. Gradually, I started coming up with a cohesive image of what I wanted the event to look like.

I knew I wanted navy blue for the menswear and that I didn’t want the whole thing to look too … girly (?), so I shied away from pinks and lavenders. Eventually I settled on coral and peach tones because, yay, complementary colors!

And then navy and coral were everywhere.


I started pinning and dog-earring magazines, and then the Wedding Industrial Complex (who now had all of my contact information) started getting me down. All of those newsletters had a lot to say about how I was making my decisions and I wasn’t particularly happy. In just under two months of wedding planning, this was my new attitude:

Screen shot 2015-04-21 at 1.53.54 PM

Undeterred by the banality of my selection, I soldiered on. I designed custom artwork for our wedding website. I sent out invitations to our engagement party that I put together in the color scheme. I kept looking at it and it all felt so trendy.

So. Many. Trends.

So. Many. Trends.

Far more importantly, it began to stop feeling like me, so I’m going to tell you a little secret …

It’s totally OK to change your mind!

The neat part for me was the fact that I came up with coral and navy on my own, but we changed our mind as a couple on our anniversary. Rather than buying me a bouquet, Woody took me to buy bunches of flowers so we could experiment a little with wedding decor in mind. The thing is, all those pretty peachy flowers I envisioned were missing from the selection. We started pulling shades of purple from the buckets until we had a big arm full. We headed back to his apartment to sip champagne and watch Doctor Who on DVR while we sat in the floor and played with flowers. It was heaven, as far as I’m concerned.


As we admired our work he noted that he really liked the burgundy lilies, and with the lighter purple roses, it looked really good with navy. We figured that the only coral anything we had bought was for pre-wedding festivities that had already happened and that chances were, no one would even remember, so just like that, we changed our wedding colors five months into a 16 month engagement.

Play with your own wedding palette at Magnet Street. It's fun!
Play with your own wedding palette at Magnet Street. It’s fun!

Even though our chosen colors weren’t dominating the Pinterest boards, there are still a whole lot of trends to muddle through. The first time I met you, I was showing off my DIY mercury glass bowls. Super trendy. Watercolor stationery and signage are having a moment in the bridal blogs. Don’t care. Stealing that idea. Watercolor is and has long been my favorite medium. Midcentury modern has been HUGE since Mad Men became a thing. I channeled Joan Holloway like a champ in our engagement pictures.

Engagement Session by Shaina Sheaff, Shaina Sheaff Photography, Denton, TX
Engagement Session by Shaina Sheaff Photography

The point is, don’t let the idea of a trend dominate your thinking, whether it’s following every one or working overtime to keep your big day cliche-free. When something is popular, it means it’s a hell of a lot easier to find in stores or as online tutorials. What you want and what you do should be a reflection of who you and your betrothed are as individuals and as a couple. No matter what you choose, it’s always going to be your unique and special day.

Have you been swayed one way or another by the popularity of something? How did you regroup? Let us know in the comments!

Sticker Shock: Average Cost of Weddings Flirts with $30K

I’ve been waiting for a new tally on the average cost of a wedding, but I don’t know if I was ready for this.


For 2012, the national average was $28,427. This past year? Yep, nosing right up to $30K — $29,858, to be specific. That’s a helluva jump and makes this Broke-Ass shudder.

Here is what the XO Group Inc., survey has to say about this “trend”:

Couples are spending more on their weddings than ever. Following the trend of growing budgets for the past two years, wedding budgets are at an all-time high with the average wedding cost hitting $29,858, the highest level ever. Less couples (20%) say the economy affected their wedding budget – a statistic that has continually decreased year over year, since reaching an all-time high of 34% in 2009. Wedding standards also continue to rise, in fact, about 1 in 8 couples (14%) spent more than $40,000 on their nuptials, and nearly 1 in 4 (24%) didn’t even have a budget.

You guys, this is just straight frightening. At least it is to me, a person of little to no disposable income, and I would imagine it would be about the same to you, BABs. According to our reader survey conducted at the end of 2013, about 42% of The Broke-Ass Bride readers have an annual household income of about $60,000 but 59% of BABs are budgeting $15,000 or less for your big day. That’s HUGE and savvy.

Now, Team Broke-Ass isn’t about to tell you to not spend the cash-money, if that’s what you really want to do. If so? Then, baby, have at it! Go wild! But if you’re on a budget, or are setting a budget for yourself because you’re also trying to buy a house/pay student loans/travel the world on a G6 (really, if this is the case, holler at me), then we’re really happy to help.

In addition to our ridiculous archives of real stories and snippets of advice on how and where to cut costs without sacrificing the overall vision of your day, we’ve added this great Resources for the Newly Engaged page, which gives you the lowdown on some of our favorite books that help keep purse strings and sanity intact, points you toward awesome registry sites that ha
ndle cash and gifts and hooks you up with places to set up free wed-sites.

Being a Broke-Ass Bride isn’t necessarily just about having very little skrilla to toss around; it’s also about being smart with your spending and making sure you’re making the right choices for you and your love. Because it’s not how much you spend, it’s about how you spend it!

So, BABs, how can we help you? Are you struggling with one aspect of your wedding day budget? Are you fighting to find ways to get your wedding day vision accomplished? We’re here, and we’re ready to help!


Liz’s Review: The Wedding World Of 2011

So, 2011 got out of here in a hurry, didn’t it? Yeah it did.

Did any of my predictions for 2011 come true? Well, I was totally wrong about email invitations – not so big. A lot of my brides met me half-way and had their guests RSVP online. This year was completely the rise and evolution of wedding websites, that was for sure. Online was huge in other wedding ways, though, and not just with my couples. Bridesmaids became virtual via the iPad, for crying out loud. I wonder if that would work with Day-of coordination? I’m kidding! Sort of. I was right about DIY and DIY you can buy, though. Those are turning out to be one of the main ways couples are saving money, by literally creating the weddings they want. has been really popular this year with my weddings, especially with calligraphy and invitations.

Purple was the big color with my crew this year. Lots and lots of purple. And lots and lots of photo booths.

Fondant frosting began to taste more like candy than caulk, so that was nice. My husband still refuses to eat it, but that just means more for me.

Inviting guests to join you half-way through the first-dance was cool. That worked. Small dance floors worked, too – four people look like 10 on a small dance floor, and no one likes to enter an empty store.

Never did see all the RSVPs of any wedding come back on time, though. Or everyone showing up at a wedding. Both are just life and circumstances, but I was still irritated on your behalf, you guys. And there was always left over cake. The hubby did not complain.

And a whole bunch of businesses got into Wedding World this year. Urban Outfitters, BHLDN (Who’s having a sale right now, BTW), Costco, Bed Bath and Beyond, Kate Spade, and, of all things, The Huffington Post!

Ooh, and of course, Marriage Equality hit New York State, which was a huge story this year!

2011 was also the year I accepted (ONLY) one exception to my aisle runner ban and built more chill time in between when hair and makeup is done and when you have to leave the hotel. I suggest you do the same.

What do I predict for 2012? I think there were some rough patches for group buying this year, but I think they’re gong to work it out, I really do. I’m giving up on virtual invites, because folks really like the elegance of the paper. Same reason why books and the post office will never die. I can’t wait to see how much further tech world is going to intersect with Wedding World. And like I said last year, someone is going to come up with something fantastic on January 2nd that’s going to blow us all away.

Happy New Year! And thank you so much for reading my posts this year, I really appreciate the support and the feedback, it’s been fantastic. Brides rule, y’all. So, what were some of the coolest things you saw in Wedding World 2011, and which ones are you going to or did you use in your own day? Let me know in the comments below!

See you at the end of the aisle,


{Up for Grabs} Giveaway Round-up!

Happy Hump Day, BABs! It’s time to announce our weekly giveaways – BUT FIRST – we wanted to draw your attention to two sweet giveaway opportunities over at Eco-Beautiful Weddings! You could win a Chevy Cruze for a week (ideal if you’re keeping it domestic on your honeymoon) OR you could win one of three beautiful gowns from The Cotton Bride! Huzzah!!! Ok, now it’s time to get down to our own  nitty gritty giveaway deets…

Your bridal bouquet may look glorious on your wedding day, but before your honeymoon’s even begun, it’ll start to wilt and fade away like a really bad metaphor. Perhaps you’d enjoy one of these beautiful origami bouquets from MyBohemianSummer instead?

My Bohemian Summer
We thought so. And you’re in luck, because this week’s giveaway is $50 worth of pretty origami goodies from Summer’s Etsy shop. Choose a beautiful bouquet just like this one, put it towards some sweet origami floral arrangements for your table settings, or pick out a few dozen paper crane wedding favors! Will origami be one of 2011’s biggest new wedding trends?! We’re putting our money on YES.

To enter to win, all you have to do is sign up for our newsletter. That’s right, if you get our newsletter in your inbox every week, you’re already entered to win! If you haven’t subscribed yet, simply sign up here!

Our next giveaway will be of special interest to all of our California brides – this week you can win a pair of tix to Pop, The Bridal Event, which takes place in Glendale, CA  at The Americana at Brand on Sunday, Feb 20th, from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m

Pop The Bridal Event

Pop has hand-selected some of the area’s finest caterers, florists, planners, and photogs to take part in their event, so of course, some of our favorite L.A. wedding vendors will be present! There’ll also be plenty of gorgeous wedding inspiration, bridal experts, a beauty lounge, killer deals, and tasty cake samples! It’s gonna be one classy shindig!

To enter, just leave a comment on this or any post on the blog this week!

When Trash Is Treasure

The photos are still trickling in and we couldn’t be more excited! This batch is from Richelle Dante, who we only shot with briefly, but she was very sweet and obviously has some hot talent – just look at these beauties!

Check out my fly birdcage veil, courtesy of Amy-Jo Tatum’s gorgeousness.

Runaway bride

You come to this engine often, baby?

The other day, we were driving along, just talking when Hunter suddenly smiled and softened. “What’s up?” I asked him.
It’s just that after all this time, I’m still falling deeper and deeper in love with you.

That’s what this last photo is to me.


Being Dirty Just Felt So Right….

You’ve been asking… I’ve been wishing…. we’ve all been waiting… and finally, my first “batch” of Trash the Dress pics were blogged

I’m really excited that these are the first we’re seeing, because it was with our favorite photographer of the day: the adorably sweet and fun Jordana Taylor Hazel of Hazelnut Photography!
Jordana and her similarly swoonable hubby Chris (aka her bad-ass assistant) found us late in the day, just as the sun was losing its shine.  But, Jordana came prepared with some fun flashy toys and fired away!  They were up for some really fierce and funky shots, and these are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the great time we all had.  I remember lots of giggling, squealing, and bouncing up and down… and that was just Chris and Hunter :)
We were so impressed by spending that hour with Jordana.  I highly recommend her to any couple for their big day, a boudoir session, or their own Trash the Dress shoot.  She’s funky and spirited, with a great eye and natural talent.  I hope to not only work with her again, but play with her as friends very soon!
Enough talk – let’s let these babies speak for themselves!

Big love under a big plane.
I call this one “my affair with the hair”
You wanna piece of my stealth bomber?
Gentlemen, start your engines!
Um, I have no words for the awesomeness of this photo.  
I got yer mile high club right here!
I’ll never “tire” of you, my love.



Well well well….. What a hot little couple we have here! But I must say, they look a bit familiar….

(click to enlarge. Care of Hazelnut Photography, aka my new bff Jordana – who we had the most fun shooting with)


Gettin’ Trashed – Wanna Join Me?

Ask and ye shall receive! The law of attraction is in full effect, yo!

The day after I posted about my longing to get down and dirty in a fluffy gown, I found out that the illustrious and talented Chris Austin (aka TTD guru of SoCal) is organizing a Trash-the-Dress Bash in late October! Lo and behold, he is still seeking models and photographers…. its on and poppin’ for me and my man! And it could be for you, too…..

(image source)

If you’re a photographer with an itch to build a TTD portfolio, or a bride-to-be with a dress to trash, here are the details:
Sunday, October 26
March Air Force Base Museum
4-7pm shooting time
$75 per photographer (limit 15)
No fee for models

Chris says: “We will be shooting at the March AFB museum, with full access to all the old planes, both military and civilian. Should make for a really cool set. We have the place from 4pm – 7pm, however we’ll have the brides and makeup artists arrive about 2:30pm to do makeup in the parking lot. We’ll have three hours to shoot (the museum closes at 4 so we have the place to ourselves). If you are interested, please send me your contact info through this contact page. Also include your address and cell phone number. Respond here if you have any questions or suggestions. Start thinking of costumes and props too… Think the movie “Catch Me if you Can” and Top Gun. Old travel trunks and suitcases, flight jackets, cool pilot sunglasses, etc.”

Awwwwww yeah. I cannot WAIT.

UPDATE 9/29/08 – the bash is full and no longer seeking models. Better luck next time – there always is a next time….


I Wanna Be Trashed!

I’m obsessed with Trash-the-Dress photo shoots. I think they’re such a beautiful, sensual, and exciting development in wedding photography and I luuuuurve them for their unexpected beauty, glamour and edge.

Trash-the-Dress sessions usually involve either beach or urban/industrial landscapes… They can be:

(image via weddingbee)


(image source)


(image source via weddingbee)

And then there’s THIS gem – tidbits of a breathtaking Japanese wedding with hints of dress trashing in the shower and on the beach:

Japan Trailer from StillMotion on Vimeo.

Ooooooh, StillMotion – you are a bewitching temptress!

Of course, I could never hang with using my ACTUAL dress – after my blood, sweat and tears are going into paying it off. But, I’d be completely down with buying a cheapie, off-the-rack or, even better, vintage dress to trash in the name of art. And self-fulfillment. Or is it narcissism? Let’s just call it art, shall we?

Seriously, how fun would it be to prance in the waves recreating your very own Calvin Klein ad?