Nordstrom Weddings

In her sixth Brideology installment, Cara discovers 12 ways to put together an eco-friendly wedding design scheme.

The other night, while I was asking my fiancé if he preferred the color mauve over amethyst, it hit me that I needed to take… a… step… back. Meaning that I needed to get out of Ridiculous Minute Detail Land and think about the bigger picture of the wedding again. So I pulled out a couple of lists that we made right after we got engaged: the his and hers versions of what is most important on our wedding day.

Doing this little exercise in the beginning was really fun—our columns of “important” and “not important” were nearly identical. Some were bigger themes, like honoring our families, being outdoors and having a really comfortable, intimate feel. Some were more lighthearted, like dancing to Michael Jackson, having a campfire and serving mini-grilled cheese sandwiches (yep, that was mine). I think revisiting these lists throughout the planning process will help us stay true to our vision.

One main thing that our lists shared was “eco-friendly.” I will admit that my fiancé is better about this than I am—I can be a bit lazy and would probably choose style over green. (He would probably choose to have a wedding with no electricity; maybe I need to add “electricity” to my important list just to be safe!) But I’m going to make a really big effort here, because when throwing a party for a large group of people, it can be really easy to be wasteful.

Thankfully, there are a lot of great resources for eco-friendly wedding tips, and more and more eco-friendly real weddings and styled photo shoots are popping up. I was especially drawn to this shoot from Jasmine Star—it’s GORGEOUS. The tables feature super-sustainable cork used for vases, vintage furniture is utilized, and the wooden cutting boards under the plates could double as favors. I love how literally green it is too: the use of potted plants really warms up the space. (Also loving the dip-dye dress and the fishtail braid. If only my hair would do that!)

I started pulling together a list of EASY ways to be green with the wedding. A few may break from tradition, but I like knowing that I’m doing my part! An added bonus is that many of these are budget-friendly as well.

1. Email save-the-dates: it’s paperless, plus you get quicker responses if you need RSVPs right away!

Postcard Wedding Invite | Vintage Door

2. Send short, sweet, recycled-paper invitations: ditch the six envelopes for a postcard or simpler package and include extra info on your website. It can still look chic—see the proof above!

3. Write the program on a chalkboard or other sign instead of using printed programs. Same goes for the menu! (Extra creativity points to the couple who used this vintage door!)

4. Focus on local, organic food: try to find a caterer who uses sustainably farmed food that travels the shortest possible distance to your plate. It’s often the best tasting, and it’s fun to show off the local cuisine of your area! For us, salmon is a must.

Farmer’s Market Flowers | Apples

5. Think about what’s in season, not only for food but flowers too! Look to your local farmer’s market to see what’s fresh. I’m hoping to get flowers from the market and make my own bouquets.

6. Reuse drinking glasses: have guests write their names on tags instead of using multiple different glasses through the evening. Small things make a big difference! (Extra points again if the seating card is used as the tag!)

7. Use natural decorations! Flower petals, seeds, lavender and compostable papers can take the place of confetti, balloons, plastic or anything that’s bound for the landfill.

8. Place herbs and potted plants on tables rather than cut flower arrangements. They last so much longer, and you can give them as favors or use them in your home. I also love the terrarium idea!

Potted Herbs | Terrarium

9. Go vintage! This is such a huge trend in weddings right now, but you must make sure you get true vintage items and not just new stuff made to look old! Visit flea markets or ask your family and friends what they already have. My parents have some major gems in their garage!

10. Give consumable favors. Think jams, honey, bread, coffee beans or seeds in containers that can be reused. Or think about a favor that can be regifted beyond your wedding. Spread the love!

Homemade Jam

11. If you’re using disposable place settings, consider these eco-friendly plates made from palm leaves. Personally, I love this look! (Also note the vintage linens and potted plants—check and check!)

Place Setting

12. Promote reuse after the wedding by donating or selling your décor items on Etsy, Craigslist or eBay to help future green brides!

I’m sure there are so many more! If you have any tips or tricks, comment below!

Until next time,


On the heels of announcing our newest collection of Nordstrom-exclusive wedding gowns—Roses by Reem Acra—we couldn’t think of anyone better to answer your bridal styling questions than the genius designer herself. Fans over at our Nordstrom Weddings Facebook page asked the questions, and Reem Acra has the answers!

What is the best fabric for a dress when it’s a beach wedding in tropical weather?
You have many options for a beach wedding or tropical weather: silk, chiffon and tulle are very good choices.

I feel like my gown’s bustier sits too high up (underarm level); how can I tell if the height is correct?
You will know if the gown is too high in the arm if it rubs on your arm when you move it. You should always feel comfortable.

Is a full-laced gown and a lace-lined veil too much?
It always depends on how it is worn and your own personality. If you can carry it off, you can look amazing. If you feel overwhelmed, it will show. Stick with what you feel is best for you.

Are veils even in style anymore?
Although veils seem to be traditional, you can have fun with your veil by being creative with how you style yourself. You can look at some of my veils—some cascade from the waist or the shoulder rather than the head.

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We’d like to give a shout-out and a big thank-you to Seattle Bride magazine for selecting us as the Best of Bride 2012 poll winner in  five categories.

Attendant Gifts
Bridal Accessories
Best Wardrobe Wrangler—Nordstrom Wedding Stylists
Formalwear for Men
Mother of the Bride

We’re honored. Our congratulations to all the winners and finalists! See the complete list over at Seattle Bride Best of 2012, and check out all that we have in store at our Wedding Suite.


As part of our exclusive launch of Roses by Reem Acra wedding gowns (now on their way to our Suites), we couldn’t think of anyone better to help introduce such a gorgeous collection than Abby Larson—founder and editor of the ultimate wedding blog, Style Me Pretty. Here’s a sneak peek from our soon-to-be-released photos from the shoot, with Abby looking like quite the blushing bride.

In late July, we’ll be officially sharing more Wedding Suite adventures featuring Abby as our Reem Acra model, with photos from a partnership with photographer Sal Cincotta and Snapknot (one of the best wedding photographer sites out there). Meanwhile, put the champagne on ice, because you’ll definitely want to toast this swoon-worthy celebration with us!


Are you a REVELer? Our Weddings Team just can’t stop raving about REVEL—it’s so much more than a blog, with uniquely curated, of-the-moment wedding styles. Not to mention, totally shop-able. Bonus!

We couldn’t resist asking the editors of REVEL to handpick some of their favorite pieces from our Wedding Suite to style a dream wedding, by occasion: Classic Affair & Fashionable Fête.

As usual, their selections are a wedding-day bull’s-eye. If you’re a bride-to-be (or lover of all things weddings, like us), REVEL is a must—from its super-sleek look to the smart navigation (you can now browse by color or item type).

Some of the most fashion-forward ladies turn into unabashed classicists when it comes to their big day. And others switch things up by throwing their own trendsetting party of a lifetime. Have a look at REVEL’s latest post, and tell us which type you are when it comes to your wedding: Are you a trendsetter all the way, or “fashionable by day, classic by wedding?”


A rose is a rose is a rose is a rose…unless it’s created by an internationally renowned bridal designer. We’re so excited to announce the newest addition to our Wedding Suites: Roses by Reem Acra.

“I had a lot of brides with smaller budgets come to me wanting to wear my dresses. Now I am able to reach more brides.” –Reem Acra, via WWD

We can’t resist sharing a preview of the gowns that will be coming in mid-June to all of our in-store Wedding Suite locations (with more six new styles arriving in November). They’re sophisticated, fresh and exquisite—all showcasing Acra’s signature attention to detail and aesthetic with intricate beading, embellishments and floating tulle skirts.

We think they’re all heavenly, but which would you choose to make your wedding-day dreams come true?


Andrea Wasserman, our National Bridal Director, shares her favorite trends (and behind-the-scenes snaps of buying appointments) coming this fall for bridal gowns and bridesmaid dresses.

Tulle. We noted a trend of featherweight skirts during our October trip to market and were thrilled to see it persist in a bigger way over this trip weekend. We saw tulle on bodices, skirts, exaggerated veils and often layered with lace or sequins. Heidi Elnora’s use of English netting as a tulle alternative was incredible for its airy nature, and Vera Wang’s use of layers and layers of draped tulle wowed us in shades of red. [Pictured: Vera Wang, at select Wedding Suites now]

Lace. From alençon to Chantilly and full to borders to appliqué, lace was the #1 trend in gowns, veils, jackets and reception dresses. Lace was an important part of every designer’s assortment, and we loved what Reem Acra and Amsale did with it. [Pictured: Theia, coming this fall]

Bows. We saw a feminine bow detail trending upward and will look for more of it next season. We’ve always loved the way Amsale adds excitement to the back of her gowns in this way and also took note of some sweet tiny bows at Reem Acra and Rosa Clara. [Pictured: NOUVELLE Amsale sketch, coming to all Wedding Suites in September]

Illusion. More than ever before, we noticed sheer necklines, sleeves and low cut backs that featured lace or appliqué. Lela Rose added to the drama with her exquisite hand beading in organic shapes that were inspired by the landscape of NYC parks. [Pictured: Sue Wong Illusion Bodice Lace Sheath Dress, available online this fall]

Peplum. We know this isn’t for every bride, but in a nod to the couture and ready-to-wear shapes of the season, we saw designers interpreting peplum in ways that were wearable and timeless. Length, shape, structure and fabrication varied, but everyone registered the importance of this ladylike look. [Pictured: Jill Stuart bridesmaid dress, coming this fall]


Let us help you find the look of your dreams with four curated boutiques to suit any wedding style.

A dash of old Hollywood and modern-day luxury: Classic Affair.

Trendsetting gowns and showstopping accessories: Fashionable Fête.

A touch of whimsy to complement your alfresco festivities: Garden Soirée.

Breezy gowns and comfy sandals for destination nuptials: Beach Party.


Our Weddings team just returned from the spring 2013 Bridal Market (think Fashion Week for weddings), and while they saw plenty of beautiful white gowns that would captivate any bride-to-be, one of their favorite things coming down the runways was all color: red.

A traditional color for Hindu brides representing good luck, red was especially popular at the Vera Wang show, with hues—from carmine to cabernet—that would make any wedding a true red-letter day.

Our National Bridal Director, Andrea Wasserman, was particularly taken with the above one-shouldered, ‘Dahlia’ mermaid gown, which will be available at Nordstrom in time for next spring. If you can’t wait that long, check out our Vera Wang Bridal lookbook, with gorgeous gowns available now at selected Wedding Suite locations.

And just for a little more eye candy, here are a few of the other Wang gowns that caught our eye on the bridal runway. Stunning.

Images: Dan Lecca via Vera Wang


Our National Bridal Director, Andrea Wasserman stopped by our Nordstrom Merrick Park Wedding Suite in Florida to share some of her bride and bridal party favorites with NBC Miami.

Browse all our wedding gowns and bridal lookbooks, and check out Andrea’s second segment on honeymoon attire essentials.

Last but not least, wedding beauty products and tips (including details about our exclusive partnership with Laura Mercier) from our Regional Beauty Director, Karen Delauro.