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Lauren describes her New Year’s Eve wedding celebration in downtown Seattle.

The Scene: December 31, 2013, SODO Park in Seattle, WA

We knew a winter wedding was in our future, and with the hustle and bustle of the holiday season what better way to bring 2013 to an end than a New Year’s Eve wedding surrounded by all our family and friends. The warmth of SODO Park was perfect for this event. We wanted all 300 guests in one giant room so they could celebrate every moment with us.

We also wanted the overall feel of the night to be elegant and classic—from twinkly lights and wine bottles placed on tables to the sounds of Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong during cocktail hour. We also wanted the night to have the liveliness of a NYE party. Yes, dresses with sequins and sparkles were encouraged! Party hats were passed out, the music never slowed down and neither did the dancing.

Our Invitations: We took up the challenge of making our own invitations because we wanted something personal and one of a kind. The design was inspired by our love for champagne and, of course, the city that we love. We spent countless hours at our good friends’ house printing, cutting, gluing and folding each invitation piece by piece. One might think this was a little over the top, but to us they meant so much more in the end.

The Ceremony: We had Alex’s good friend Robert marry us. Neither one of us wanted a stranger to stand beside us and perform one of the most intimate ceremonies we would ever take part in. It was short, sweet and incredibly special.

My Dress: ‘Allie’ by Olia Zavozina

I went to only two boutiques to find my wedding gown. At the first one I was overwhelmed. I’m a very simple person: I don’t like to dig through racks, I don’t like to be overwhelmed and I’m very indecisive. My second stop was the Nordstrom Wedding Suite in Seattle. I immediately found the dress I had to have. I pulled a few others to try on, but my eye was on the Olia Zavozina ‘Allie’ Duchess Silk Trumpet Gown. It was everything I wanted: clean, sexy and classic. I felt comfortable and that mattered most.

My Wedding Stylist: Kerrene Buford, Nordstrom Downtown Seattle

My stylist, Kerrene, made everything incredibly easy for me. Having found my dress early on in the planning process, I was welcomed back many times to play dress-up and accessorize for the big day. Nordstrom is a one-stop shop for me and that’s what I love about it. From picking out my Vera Wang veil and Givenchy jewelry to finding the perfect sparkly gold kate spade flats, I always had someone there to help make my bridal dreams come true.

Photos by Kate Price Photography

Did you find your wedding gown at Nordstrom? We love a good wedding story! E-mail Nordstrom Wedding Stories for details on getting your wedding featured on our blog. And for more inspiration, make a complimentary appointment with a Wedding Stylist or browse our Wedding Suite.

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When it comes to choosing flowers, brides often think about the wedding theme, season and colors (and of course, the bouquet inspiration they’ve been gathering on Pinterest). But did you know you can also pick flowers based on their meanings?

From “floriography”–the communication of language and meaning through flowers–to floral astrology based on birth months, similar to birthstones (for example, June’s ‘birth flower’ is the rose), the symbolism of different blooms is rooted in history and still followed today.

Consider the background of floriography: In 19th century England, specific floral arrangements were used to send coded messages. A sender would pick symbolic flowers to express feelings to the recipient, which could not be spoken aloud in Victorian society. Sounds romantic, right? Following tradition, the flowers used in Duchess Kate’s wedding bouquet were each chosen based on their meanings related to happiness, love and friendship.

Even legendary designer and wedding guru Vera Wang says that the symbolism of flowers can create a very personal and meaningful experience for a bride; she listed the meanings of some well-known and popular flowers in her book, Vera Wang on Weddings:

Anemone: expectation; Baby’s breath: innocence, pure heart; Blue violet: faithfulness; Calla lily: beauty;
Camellia: gratitude; Daffodil: joy; Daisy: gentleness; Freesia: innocence; Gardenia: purity;
Heather: future fortune; Heliotrope: devotion, faithfulness; Iris: warmth of affection;
Lily: majesty; Lily of the valley: happiness; Orange blossom: purity, virginity; Orchid: rare beauty;
Rose (red): love; Rose (yellow); friendship; Rose (coral): desire; Rose (peach): modesty;
Rose (dark pink): thankfulness; Rose (pale pink): grace; Rose (orange): fascination;
Rose (white): innocence; Tulip: passion, love; Violet: modesty, faithfulness; Zinnia: affection

So what story will you tell with your wedding day bouquet? Tell us your ideas!

December 31, 2013

New Gowns from Vera Wang

Wedding dresses from Vera Wang’s Spring 2014 line are now hitting select Nordstrom Wedding Suites! This graphic, textured, black-and-white collection is nothing short of dramatic—perfect for a fashion-forward bride.

See the new styles below, and then swoon over more gowns from past seasons in our Vera Wang lookbook.

‘Mae’ (style 112414): Light ivory strapless stretch Mikado mermaid gown with hand-draped bodice and sculptural floral/pleated silk organza skirt with raffia accents

‘Miriam’ (style 112214): Light ivory and black sheer-back strapless gown with silk ottoman trapunto stitched bodice, silk satin-faced organza skirt and hand-draped accents

‘Mallory’ (style 112514): Ivory chantilly lace sleeveless V-neck soft mermaid gown with hand-appliquéd corded rose lace accents

‘Mira’ (style 112614): Light ivory and black sheer-back strapless mermaid gown with silk ottoman trapunto-stitched bodice and silk satin-faced organza skirt with tulle overlay

‘Marie’ (style 112314): Light ivory and black strapless gown with diamond-quilted bodice, hand-cut silk organza petal accents and hand-draped, satin-faced silk organza skirt

Make an appointment with a free Wedding Stylist to find your dream wedding dress today!

 

Three-dimensional flower designs, called rosettes, are sprouting up everywhere in the latest few seasons of wedding dresses. Typically attached (often by hand) to the fabric of a bodice or skirt, rosettes can be singular or repeating in a pattern, creating a visual and textural detail that sets a dress apart.

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Christian Siriano Wedding Dress Style 01-14010

We’ve selected a few of our favorite rosette-detailed dresses from our Wedding Suites to showcase here. Don’t miss the dainty petals on Roses by Reem Acra’s ‘Coral Bells,’ the dramatic textured skirt on Christian Siriano’s gown above or Vera Wang’s ‘Gabriella’ with a swirling skirt in the shape of big blooms. Fabulous florals, indeed!


Nouvelle Amsale Wedding Dress Style R101T


Vera Wang ‘Gabriella’ Wedding Dress


Roses by Reem Acra ‘Coral Bells’


Vera Wang ‘Erin’ Wedding Dress

And coming to select wedding suites this spring is Olia Zavozina’s all-over petal creation ‘Delia,’ worn by our Brideology blogger at her wedding in August!

See more wedding gowns—and work with a free wedding stylist to find your perfect style—by making an appointment at your nearest Wedding Suite!

November 22, 2013

Bright Red Inspiration

It’s officially mid-November and we’re getting into the holiday spirit! We’ve been seeing shades of red everywhere this time of year, and the version we’re really loving right now is true, bright red.

We’re inspired by the way this classic color appears in nature—as in red roses and fresh strawberries—and in weddings, such as Vera Wang’s red dress collection or a party of bright bridesmaids.

Whether you’re getting married around the holidays or you just love the eye-catching, happy color of love, check out our wedding ideas below. Think about dressing up a white wedding dress with a red shoe or statement necklace, or incorporate red into your beauty look with a bright lip or bold nails.

For more color palette ideas, check out our Pinterest boards or our posts on yellow, grey, berry or lavender weddings!

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Vera Wang | kate spade new york garden path necklace | garland via Style Me Pretty | red bridesmaids via Wedding Chicks | strawberry dessert via Tartelette | Halogen ‘Marla’ Pump | Badgley Mischka ‘Petal’ Pump | Jill Jill Stuart Silk Chiffon Dress | red lips via Wedding Chicks | bouquet via A Crimson Kiss | Kendra Scott ‘Selma’ Earrings | heart cake topper via Style Me Pretty

Tulle wedding dresses have a special place in our hearts. Maybe it’s the nostalgia of childhood ballet tutus, or perhaps it’s the idea of traditional princess-like gowns. Whatever the reason, we’re pretty sure we’re not alone in our love for this ethereal fabric!

Named after the French city of Tulle, the fabric first appeared in Parisian ballet costumes in the 18th century. Now very popular in wedding attire, tulle can be found in a stiff, structured form often used to add volume under skirts, or in a softer, gauzy form used for veils, illusion sleeves or straps, or as decorative top layers. For example, designers like Anne Barge and Rosa Clará use pleated or shirred tulle to give texture to bodices, while Vera Wang and Reem Acra create dimensional, layered skirts.

Find (and pin!) your favorite from the selections below, or browse our in-store wedding gowns and lookbooks for more ideas!

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Anne Barge ‘Aimee’


Jenny Yoo ‘Bella’


NOUVELLE Amsale Wedding Dress (#R105U)


Jenny Yoo ‘Hathaway’


Roses by Reem Acra ‘Ivy’


Rosa Clará ‘Bambu’ Wedding Dress with Jacket


Kelly Faetanini ‘Becky’


Vera Wang ‘Louisa’


Roses by Reem Acra ‘Laurel’

See more wedding gowns and work with a free wedding stylist to find your perfect style by making an appointment at your nearest Wedding Suite!

From demure to dramatic, ruffled details are a charming way to give texture to a wedding dress. Ruffles are often made of silk organza, a sheer fabric that varies in thickness and has a crisp trim to help it hold its shape. Depending on the cut and amount of fabric, ruffles can appear in voluminous layers or as light, feathery accents.

We’ve handpicked our favorite crinkly confections here. Find your favorite from the selections below, or browse our in-store wedding gowns for more ideas!

Love the look of a cupcake skirt? These four gowns are examples of wavy ruffles building into big shapes.


Rosa Clará ‘Cava’ Wedding Dress


Hayley Paige ‘Pearl’ Wedding Dress


Vera Wang ‘Erin’ Wedding Dress


Bliss Monique Lhuillier Wedding Dress Style BL1213

Looking for a more modern version? We love the gauzy accent strips on the two styles below.


Christian Siriano Wedding Dress Style 01-14015


Matthew Christopher ‘Dahlia’ Wedding Dress

Want an extreme look? Vera Wang may be the queen of major ruffles, with many of her gowns blooming into impressive skirts.


Vera Wang ‘Ethel’ Wedding Dress


Vera Wang ‘Gemma’ Wedding Dress


Vera Wang ‘Lindsey’ Wedding Dress

Prefer the little details? Look for airy accents like on the ‘Lou’ shrug by Caroline DeVillo or the simple ruffled peplum on Olia Zavozina’s ‘Britt’ dress.


Olia Zavozina ‘Britt’ Wedding Dress

Caroline DeVillo ‘Kate’ Wedding Dress with ‘Lou’ Shrug

See more wedding gowns and work with a free wedding stylist to find your perfect style by making an appointment at your nearest Wedding Suite!

We’re partnering with our friends at Vera Wang to bring you the inside scoop on the elaborate, iconic wedding gowns in her fall 2013 collection. Today we start with the lovely ‘Lisa’, a draped tulle and Chantilly lace-bodice ballgown. Hear the story behind the gown from Ms. Wang herself!

Throughout the fall 2013 collection, there are the invincible elements of an heirloom wedding gown—lace, beading and draping. And you can definitely see all three at work in Lisa.
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The bodice begins with a foundation of Chantilly lace, covered with a layer of embroidery work: a complicated but very soft, very subtle design in pearl and crystal. We call this cluster embroidery: it’s made up of little groupings of crystal and bead elements that present themselves as spangles and starbursts, rather than in a neat arrangement.

The embroidery is draped with a layer of fine, ruched tulle to obscure that sparkle a little and create a multitoned effect. I love this kind of veiling effect. The straps are also ruched tulle, which sets off the shoulders, making the bare skin look even more delicate.

There is a gathered tulle skirt, full of volume in the layers of tulle. The same cluster embroidery continues down into the drop-waist skirt, on the bride’s right side, just enough to give an accent and a bit of interest to the skirt.

Lisa is beautiful, youthful, almost innocent. It’s really a gown that celebrates time-honored tradition.

To see more Vera Wang gowns at Nordstrom, browse our lookbook. Make an appointment with a free Wedding Stylist to try on gowns at selected Nordstrom Wedding Suites.

One of our favorite weeks of the year is here! Bridal Fashion Week kicked off in New York City and we’re like kids in a candy store, so excited about all the newest gowns from our favorite designers. During this week, we attend runway shows and meet with designers to pick the wedding dresses we’ll carry in the Wedding Suite for the next season.

While we could talk for days about all the details, we also know a picture is worth a thousand words—so follow our fashion week journey through the photos below (with more to come this week!). You can also follow the action on Twitter @NordstromWed where our bridal director, Andrea Wasserman, is live tweeting throughout each day!

Mt. Rainier greets us along the way to the airport in Seattle.

At the hotel, laying out the week’s shoes. The flats will come in handy!

Central Park view from our hotel. We could get used to this!

First meeting with the lovely Kelly Faetanini, with a gorgeous lace back dress.

Next to the runway at Vera Wang. Seeing lots of black and white!

Buyer Sharon examines the Vera Wang gowns up close.

At Nicole Miller, checking out a favorite gown, now in lace!

Sharon and Lisa looking through options. Decisions, decisions!

Andrea and designer Heidi Elnora ending the night at dinner–in matching jean jackets.

Check back this week for more coverage of Bridal Fashion Week including our favorite new trends!

On our 7th day of gowns, we bring you something Vera exciting–how could we publish this series without showcasing our Vera Wang selection? With tulle for days, these statement ballgowns melt our hearts, and for the brides out there who love a fit-and-flare silhouette, we bring you some jaw-dropping options. The details here are unbelievable.

Images via Vera Unveiled.