WILD AT HEART
Photography by Micah Cummings
Fashion Coordination and Styling by Kim Wadsworth
This darling duo announces the bride and groom. Ellie wears a ruffled bottom dress $56. by Isobella & Chloe. Noah wears roll-up cuff oxford shirt $42. by FORE!! Axel & Hudson. Madras shorts $30. by Mulberribush. Seersucker bow tie $25. by Urban Sunday. All from Cambria. “Here Comes the Bride” heart sign $45. Shabby chic fabric garland $55. Both from Tidal Bay Collections. Sweetheart rose flower girl wreath from Norfolk Wholesale Floral.
Adelaide (L) wears aqua dress of tulle skirting with butterfly and floral clip detail $156. by Moxie & Mabel. Silk headband with flower detail $17. by Petite Blossom. Pearl necklace $75. by Little Pearls for Little Girls. Pearl flats $63. by Joyfolie. Vivienne (R) wears yellow dress of tulle skirting with floral clip detail $148. by Moxie & Mabel. Silk headband $38. by Miss Ruby Sue. Colorful ballet flats $34. by Robeez. All from Cambria. Pink paper parasol $15.99 from Norfolk Wholesale Floral.
Emya wears a champagne and latte satin dress with puff sleeves and ivory skirt $196. by Bill Levkoff from Maya Couture. Flower clip $25.50. Floating pearl pendant necklace $54. by Little Pearls for Little Girls. Both from Cambria. Sweetheart rose flower girl ball from Norfolk Wholesale Floral.
Ann Randolph looks angelic in her “Petal” dress with tiered chiffon ruffle overlay $152. by Us Angels. Flower bloom accent $25.50. Both from Pure English. White silk rosette and baby’s breath wreath from Norfolk Wholesale Floral. Flower girl pail $20. from Tidal Bay Collections.
Shabby gets chic with vintage inspired design. Ann Randolph (R) wears “Paloma” pink pastel embroidered dress with floral detail $122. and pink capelet $64. by Moxie & Mabel. Ellie’s colorful frock (L) combines vintage charm and playful whimsy $122. by Moxie & Mabel. Both from Cambria. Flower girl pails $20. from Tidal Bay Collections.
Noah readies for the wedding wearing a tuxedo by Jims Formal Wear $79.99 from Maya Couture. Plaid necktie $23. by Urban Sunday from Cambria. Boutonniere by Norfolk Wholesale Floral. “Here Comes the Bride” sign $20. from Tidal Bay Collections.
Colorful ballet flats $34. by Robeez from Cambria. Ring bearer pillows $22. each from Tidal Bay Collections. Satin flower girl pail and multi rose flower girl ball by Norfolk Wholesale Floral.
Fashion Coordination and Styling: Kim Wadsworth | Wadsworth Style
Photographer: Micah Cummings | micahcummingsphotography.com
Grip and Prop Assistance: P.J. Cummings
Fashion Assistant Intern: Ginna Wilbanks
Props and Signage: Tidal Bay Collections | The Bride’s Corner
Models: Adelaide Cummings, Vivienne Cummings, Noah Jacob, Ellie Buffkin: Freelance. Ann Randolph Furr: Modelogic | Wilhelmina. Emya Shelton | Stevenson’s Modeling Agency
Floral Design: Norfolk Wholesale Floral
Location: Seashore State Park, Virginia Beach
Once upon a time there was a handsome prince named Matthew. Prince Matthew summoned his friends together for a birthday celebration, and unbeknownst to him, one of his guests brought along the future princess of his kingdom, Melissa. Their chance encounter that day was the beginning of a modern day fairy tale.
As enchanted as they were with each other, they also shared a love of whimsy and the simplicity of another time. This passion was displayed perfectly on their wedding day. Flowers were replaced with candy colored pinwheels – from the bridesmaids’ bouquets all the way down to the boutonnieres on the men’s lapels. The bride designed both of her wedding gowns as well as those of her court. Her first gown was a romantic French Alencon ivory lace gown with a champagne silk underlay. The keyhole back and sweeping train provided just the right amount of drama to match her polished chignon, custom birdcage veil and chandelier style earrings by Siman Tu. Red lips gave the perfect vintage touch. For the reception the look was more flirty. A knee-length dress of ivory pique with a V style neckline matched her bridesmaids.
Under a 10 foot archway adorned with pinwheels and white lights, the couple exchange handwritten vows with the help of the Melissa’s younger brother, JP. The completion of the nuptials was marked with a resounding high five, followed by a standing ovation from all 250 guests.
Chesapeake Bay Catering provided the perfect segue into a southern summer evening. They offered fresh cucumber or lemon water before a cocktail hour that featured mint juleps and fried green tomatoes. Such a display could only be followed by a reception fare of roast beef spring rolls, salmon and summer string beans, roast pork with mango salsa, cones of fried green beans and more. And as with any carnival or such production, the evening would not be complete without a sweet treat or two. French macaroons were displayed in the “Macaroom”, while Procecco and special martinis named after the bride and groom were offered in the “Bubbly Bar”.
The candlelit getaway in a pearl-colored vintage Rolls Royce was far from the end of this couple’s fairy tale. They plan to “find the hilarity in life and laugh with each other, and realize that even on the worst days to remember how much better they are together than they were alone.”
Lucky In Love
Good fortune is finding a shiny new penny heads up on the sidewalk. Luck is having good friends introduce you to the love of your life. Such is the case of Sommer and Rich. The Virginia Beach couple decided to let a little of it rub off on family and friends at a beautiful ceremony (officiated by the groom’s sister, Kim Williams), and reception at the Cavalier & Yacht Club. Black, white, blush and bling were the colors of the day, setting the tone for an elegant afternoon with just a touch of southern flair. Sommer was chic in her Romona Keveza silk shantung taffeta mermaid gown with peplum, and stunned in a sweep train and Erin Cole jeweled veil from Hannelore. The look was topped off by a beautiful bird cage veil by Mia Byrd from Pieces of Pemberly. The bridesmaids were in complimentary contrast, wearing black duponi silk dresses with a high-low hem from Pure English. Blush, white and pink peonies and blush Sahara roses injected just the right amount of softness to the event, while gardenias served as a touching reminder of the bride’s late grandfather, Horace Drew.
The bling came on to full display at the reception, from the “Bubbly Ever After” champagne bar to a custom sculpture from Ice Art. Personalized cornhole boards and wedding signs by Malaine McMath of Coastal Calligraphy brought things back down to earth, while instructors from Arthur Murray set the tone on the dance floor to tunes from The Deloreans and Colonial DJs.
At the end of the day, Sommer and Rich thanked their lucky stars for their families, each other, and an experienced wedding coordinator. A conga line led the way to the Truffle Shuttle party bus, where they set off on the first of many magical adventures as husband and wife.
Photography by Grant & Deb Photographers
Fashion Coordination and Styling by Kim Wadsworth
Southern belle beauty happens effortlessly at Westover, a colonial plantation rich in secret gardens, shaded lawns of tulip poplars, stunning views of the James River and a countryside manor rich in historic splendor.
Shot 1 Opening Shot
Silk organza ‘Kenzie’ ball gown with crystal beaded bodice and detachable beaded neckline $3,450 by Kelly Faetanini Shop.nordstrom.com Diamond 4.40ct ‘Inside Out’ hoop earrings 14K $8,500. Aquamarine and white/chocolate diamond ring 14K $4,373. Both from Madison Jewelers. Bouquet of stock, garden roses, ranunculus, hypericum, Dusty Miller and gardenias designed by Mary Hancock for Palette of Petals. Faux bois concrete chair by Diane Husson Designs newrelics.com
Camellia lace ‘Consuela’ short dress $360. by Watters from Pure English. Diamond earrings $1,995 by Charriol and diamond band $3,960 by Simon G. Both from Long Jewelers. Bouquet of garden roses, Queen Anne’s lace, lisanthus and pods designed by Marissa Digirolamo for Studio Posey.
Ravishing trumpet ‘Sofia’ gown of silk chiffon offers body-defining contour with floral lace overlay and sweetheart neckline. Price upon request by Matthew Christopher Shop.nordstrom.com Double veil with Alencon lace accent $199. by Pronovias from Maya Couture. Diamond pendant and 18K chain $3,395 by Charriol. Pear shape canary crystal earrings in 18K $2,150 by Judith Ripka. Diamond band $3,960 by Simon G.
All from Long Jewelers. Bouquet of stock, garden roses, ranunculus, hypericum, Dusty Miller and gardenias designed by Mary Hancock for Palette of Petals
Play up the glamour wearing ‘Ellie’ lace gown with jeweled shoulders accented with Swarovski crystals and keyhole neckline $1,586 by Maggie Sottero from Maya Couture.
Circle diamond earrings in 14K $1,999. Sapphire and 3.84ct diamond bracelet 18K $11,999. Stunning band of 1.75ct diamonds in 18K $10,599 by Elma Gil. All from
Madison Jewelers. Bouquet designed by Mary Hancock for Palette of Petals.
Strapless A-line gown features embellished lace motif on tulle with softly dipped neckline $1,397 by Maggie Sottero. ‘Gianna’ satin shoe $94. by Dyables. Both from Maya Couture. Silk organza and felted wrap $490 by Elizabeth Anyaa elizabethanyaa.com
Five strand 6.12ct diamond necklace $12,999. ‘Inside Out’ diamond 4.40ct hoop earrings $8,500. Aquamarine 2ct and diamond ring $4,373 by Le Vian. Vintage 1920 18K and ruby enamel pin $949 (on bouquet.) All jewelry from Madison Jewelers. Bouquet of Juliet garden roses, peonies, phlox and stock designed Mary Hancock for Palette of Petals. Birdcage cake designed by Incredible Edibles. Tea cup and silver stand from Le Marche.
Unique oyster hued mermaid gown with Venice lace overlay and sweetheart neckline includes satin ribbon belt with beaded and petal accent $1,998 by Justin Alexander from Maya Couture. Crystal ‘Spring’ comb $220 by Haute Bride from Pure English. Pear shape diamond 1.43ct pendant $4,599. Keshi pearl necklace (worn as a bracelet) $529. Diamond 1.76ct band $10,599 by Elma Gil. All from Madison Jewelers. Tablescape of crystal goblets and dinnerware by Bernadaud and Haviland. All from Le Marche. Tablescape designed by Lindsey Hocker thesimplyperfectevent.com
French lace strap ‘Diana’ gown with wide net skirting $2,690 paired with English net illusion one shoulder ‘Heli’ overlay $2,490. Both by Enzoani. Blush beaded ‘Viceroy’ comb $135. by Melissa Blue. All from Pure English. Diamond chandelier earrings $3.960 and diamond interlocking swirl bracelet $15,500. Both by Jenny Perl. Pearl and silver ring $695 by Dimodolo. All jewelry from Long Jewelers. Floral arrangement by Marissa Digirolamo for Studio Posey.
Camillia lace ‘Consuela’ long gown with full tulle skirting $2,290 by Watters. Ribbon trim veil. Both from Pure English. 18K white gold and diamond earrings $8,900 by Hearts on Fire. Bouquet of garden roses and Queen Anne’s lace designed by Marissa Digirolamo for Studio Posey.
Strap lace gown with open keyhole back with latte lining $2,590 by Marisa. Silk satin hand rolled floral sash (used as a head wrap) $420 by Monique Lhuillier. Both from Pure English. Mother of pearl, diamond and 18K gold earrings. $4,200 by Judith Ripka. Diamond band $3,960 by Simon G. Bouquet of garden roses, astilbe, scabiosa pods, stock and dusty miller designed by Mary Hancock of Palette of Petals. Wedding canopy of silk, felting, baroque pearls designed by Elizabeth Anyaa for Venue Arts. Custom designs and price on request. venuearts.com Bouquet designed by Palette of Petals.
Aquamarine 2ct and diamond ring $4,373 by Le Vian. Vintage 1920 18K and ruby enamel pin $949 (on bouquet.) Both from Madison Jewelers. Organza shawl designed by Elizabeth Anyaa. Bouquet of Juliet garden roses, peonies, phlox and stock designed Mary Hancock for Palette of Petals.
Fondant cake with lace from Shockley’s Sweet Shoppe shockleyssweetshop.com topped with sterling silver heart. Chicken wire cloche. Both from Le Marche.
Tablescape of Haviland Limoge china; lace table runner. All from Le Marche. Floral design by Studio Posey. Styling by Lindsey Hocker of Simply Perfect Events. thesimplyperfectevent.com
FASHION COORDINATION AND STYLING
Kim Wadsworth for Wadsworth Style | BridesMade
Grant & Deb Photographers
Cory Wright | Vision Quest Productions
LOCATION STYLIST | TABLESCAPES
Lindsey Hocker | Simply Perfect Events
INTERN | ASSISTANT TO KIM WADSWORTH
Katherine Benton | Gary Allen Hair and Skin Care Centre
Candice Rauch | Makeup by Candice
Palette of Petals
Julia Naismith and Ann Bladen Sisson | Modelogic Wilhelmina
We had the pleasure of experiencing Southern elegance at its best during our editorial shoot at Westover Plantation on the banks of the James River between Williamsburg and Richmond. This 18th century American home is rich in historical character with beautiful grounds and gardens. A location available for hosting intimate weddings for over 20 years, Westover offers a sweeping front lawn to the rivers edge, first floor of the Main House availability for receptions and special amenities for the bride and her bridal party. For more information about this historic plantation as your wedding venue visit westover-plantation.com or call Andrea Erda 804.922.7359.
The Southern Palate
By Ann Wright
Photos by Don Monteaux Photography
Old-fashioned southern food – but updated with new flourishes - is appearing on bridal menus. An informal sampling of some of the area’s top caterers and venues confirms that regional foods are a top choice for bridal couples. Many couples ask for seasonal ingredients, a sign of the growing awareness that locally-sourced fresh ingredients taste better than fruits and vegetables trucked cross country or frozen fish flown in from another hemisphere.
Virginia foods reinterpreted with a stylish new twist are the focal point at many wedding receptions, according to Louise Nagourney, founder of Cuisine & Company. “Couples want to share Virginia’s famed hospitality and special flavors with their guests. People who don’t know better equate southern food with country cooking but it can be so dressed up and sophisticated.” Louise suggests fried green tomatoes with a relish of red and yellow tomatoes and edamame; deviled eggs with minced radishes; or chopped shrimp and dill as deliciously perfect examples. “Couples are drawn to food with personal significance, things they remember from childhood.”
Jim Intili, catering manager of Norfolk Waterside Marriott, says, “Brides want to introduce out-of-town family and friends to the local cuisine. Crab cakes are really popular along with all sorts of comfort foods – but served in a fresh, new way. We’re seeing a big trend towards stations with heavy hors d’oeuvres and away from plated dinners.” He notes a shift to a relaxed style of serving that makes a wedding reception feel more like a party than a tightly scripted banquet.
Jodi Moore Newland, owner of Sweetwater Cuisine, applauds the new preference for chef stations over plated dinners or buffets. “Guests enjoy not being tied to their chairs and they get really excited about the greater variety of foods available to sample on small plates and at their own pace. They love having a lot of different flavors without that full feeling they sometimes get after plated meals.” A Sweetwater crowd-pleaser is a station with fresh biscuits, sausage gravy and a selection of jams and jellies.
Having serving stations scattered about the venue frees the bridal couple from the dreaded task of making seating charts. Guests sit wherever they want and get up when they’re ready to try another station. Stations offer mini meals such as tenderloin with roasted vegetables, barbecue with cole slaw and potato salad, or fried chicken and corn pudding served on small plates. The setup fosters interaction, encouraging guests to chat with each other as well as with the chef carving meat, making sushi or flipping omelets.
Bernadette Smith, catering manager at the Sheraton Virginia Beach Oceanfront, has been struck with the growing popularity of stations. “I formerly worked at a hotel in New Jersey and wedding receptions there were almost always formal seated dinners. The stations are definitely a more relaxed alternative and offer far more variety than plated dinners, which normally consist of a meat and two sides.” Smith also recommends butler-passed canapés and drinks so that all the guests don’t converge on the bar and stations at the same time.
The formal elegance of a seated dinner will never go out of style, according Marcy Telfer who owns Chef by Design Catering Co. with her husband Master Chef John Telfer. “I love a plated meal and not many caterers can do it well. A plated meal gives structure that helps a reception flow better. Even if a bride wants stations, I always recommend that the first course be plated. That gives guests something to eat right away and keeps long lines from forming at the stations.”
Pairings of a beverage and an appetizer are a new concept in wedding food and another weapon in Telfer’s arsenal to limit standing in line. “At a recent wedding, we passed small glasses of local beer accompanied by freshly made pretzels and a cheddar/ale dip. This, like drinks served from a tray, helps ease the inevitable crowd at the bar.”
The choice of venue may dictate the style of service. Susan Womack, catering manager at the historic Chamberlin in Hampton, says, “Our brides love the beauty and the elegance of the Chamberlin. The plated meal is the most elegant and that’s what they want.”
Long lines that slow down the reception have given buffets a bad rap. While the variety of foods is appealing, guests lined up in queues dampen the energy and throw off the timing. People at the end of the line are just sitting down to eat as the early birds finish their meal and start thinking about dessert.
“Playful, easy, romantic – those are the qualities all our bridal couples seem to want for their reception,” says Joan Bertucci, Director of Catering for Chesapeake Bay Catering. “Popular food bites include pistachio chicken ‘lollipops’ with mango coulis; fried doughnuts; and fried green beans with aioli served in paper cones.” Bertucci also recommends food carts that appear-and disappear- creating an unexpected culinary moment. “No one is too old to enjoy a delicious surprise and Chef Brian Bland is a master of it.”
While there is a widespread perception that plated meals are more expensive because of the wait staff needed to serve them, this is frequently offset by the increased food costs associated with stations. For a seated meal, the caterer is in control of the portion size and therefore the food costs. Stations require educated guesswork and having extra food to keep from running out – like long lines, a caterer’s nightmare.
The wedding cake retains its symbolic status, but the desire for variety and small portions is making inroads here as well. Small desserts in eye-popping displays entice guests to sample more than one. Like the rest of the menu, dessert is all about pleasing the guests. One way is with old-fashioned cooking elevated to an art form.
SCENE & HEARD
By Kim Wadsworth
With a sweeping view of the ocean, the Sheraton Virginia Beach Oceanfront Hotel is the perfect setting for a wedding ceremony and reception that embraces the look and feel of beachfront property. Celebrate your day in the completely renovated Ocean Grand Foyer banquet space and enjoy award-winning food prepared by Chef Kevin Sharkey, recipient of both a Chef’s Choice Award and recognized in the 2013 inaugural edition of Best Chefs in America. Choose from a menu created by a master and allow our dedicated Banquet Staff to take care of every detail for parties up to 400 people. Enjoy the completely remodeled hotel and its amenities including the Fusion Restaurant, lobby, lounge, guest rooms and suites. Parking is complimentary (includes valet and self) and oceanfront pool includes al fresco dining at the seasonal Cabanas Bistro on the boardwalk. To book your wedding visit sheratonvirginiabeach.com/weddingoverview or call 757.425.9000.
A VIEW FROM A ROLLS
Don’t be afraid to “Play with the Sharks.” We’re talking about Sand Shark Limos, offering a unique wedding experience with the most beautiful selection of Vintage Rolls Royce vehicles in the area and outstanding attention to detail. Owner John Clifton takes personal pride in creating a fleet of stunning vehicles for all occasions, including stretch limos and the Shark Party Bus. From the red carpet treatment, the traditional wedding ribbons around the ‘Flying Lady,” to crystal Rolls Royce champagne flutes; their licensed professional drivers provide an elegant arrival and departure for the wedded couple looking to capture that special moment. To learn more visit sandsharklimos.com or call 757.217.5899.
Wishing you could see how your wedding would look before the big day? Classy Covers & Classy Event Rentals creates mock set-ups in their studio for brides, ensuring that the look you’ve dreamed of is a reality. They offer a wide range of rental items including chair covers, sashes (each ironed and hung individually) and specialty table linens including crush, petal, pintuck, crinkle and more; as well as runners and overlays. Other rentals include lighting, centerpieces, dance floors and day of decorating service. For a wedding ceremony and reception that looks truly beautiful, visit classycovers.net or contact Karen Nichols at 757.478.3401 for pricing and information.
As a Virginia Finest company, Fresh Batch Jams is a family run business specializing in small batch gourmet jams and jellies homemade from their kitchen to your table. Each loving batch is made from just-picked naturally fresh fruits from local farms with no preservatives and hand-stirred. All jams are preservative-free, gluten-free with lower sugar. Use as a delicious addition to your Welcome Swag Bag or bridal shower remembrance. If planning a green event, country wedding or modern affair, Fresh Batch Jams are a unique departure from the usual wedding favor and can be personalized for your event. To learn more about this thoughtful and delicious idea, visit freshbatchjams.com or call Kim at 757.641.4425.
FEATHER YOUR NEST
Located in the historic Freemason area of downtown Norfolk, Serendip is in its eleventh year serving brides and grooms looking for splendid registry options and personalized service. Registered couples can choose from unique lines lines including as Vietri, Arte Italica and Michael Aram for their tabletop choices. Original art work includes paintings by Anne H. Nielson and Kathleen Westkaemper. This home emporium also features beautiful furnishings and gifts as well as lamps and mirrors to illuminate and reflect the way a couple chooses to ‘feather their nest’ together. Lovely complimentary gift wrap and local delivery are all a part of the service Serendip has to offer. Call for store hours 757.624.3920 or visit them online serendiplimited.com
CATERING TO YOUR NEEDS
For over 20 years, The Gourmet Gang has been successfully catering special events throughout the Tidewater Area. Offering three special event wedding packages, their full service catering team can also assist with design and setup. Specialty items include Bruschetta Bar, Antipasto Display, Canape Display, and Eastern Shore Raw Bar to name a few. The Gourmet Gang can cater at your favorite venue of choice, accommodating any palate, themed event or budget. Honored to be chosen as the First Place Winner of the 2013 Vow People’s Choice Award, these accomplished chefs and skilled coordinators are ready to create a custom tailored menu for any wedding event. View their packages and menu selections at gourmetgang.com or call 757.857.6100 X 1.
If it’s custom design you’re looking for, then Anna Akers of Lorak Jewelry & Gifts is delighted to work with you to create the perfect piece of jewelry that captures your vision. Focusing on the use of white and yellow gold, Anna incorporates both diamonds as well as other colored gemstones into her designs. Her elegant bridal collection features engagement rings and wedding bands, as well as matching necklaces and earrings ideal for a bride and her bridesmaids. Located in Monticello Arcade in downtown Norfolk, Lorak Jewelry & Gifts carries not only Anna Akers’ jewelry line but also a wide selection made by other unique designers; as well as costume jewelry, everyday silver, vermeil and solid gold items. Visit them on line at lorakjewelry.com or call for store information at 757.401.1307.
OF WHIMSY AND CHARM
Visit Cambria, a children’s boutique and be amazed at the whimsy and idyllic charm of some of the chicest children’s wedding wear in town. Owner Micah Cummings does double duty as the creative mastermind behind the store’s magical inventory and established photographer specializing in children, families and weddings under Micah Cummings Photography. After ‘testing out’ brands on her own four children, Micah has stocked her shop with unique gift items, whimsical clothing for both girls and boys, and european toys. Her “Aisle Style” for children is simply charming. For store hours visit micahcummingsphotography.com or call 757.431.0100
SUNFLOUR CATERING & CAKES
ON A BEAUTIFUL COURSE
With spectacular views overlooking the golf course and elegant ambiance throughout the clubhouse, Cypress Point Country Club has been beautifully renovated with inviting interiors of bright colors, making it the perfect showcase for an special wedding event both day or evening. Providing the perfect space and atmosphere to ensure your day is one to remember, their Banquet Menu features light and heavy hors d’oeuvres as well as plated or buffet style lunches and dinners. Their customized gourmet delights are available to satisfy the taste and style of any wedding event. At Cypress Point Country Club, exceptional service and a memorable event that will last a life time are their desired goals. For more information call 757.490.6300 or go to cypresspointgolf.com
There is one wine that has it all for both brides and caterers: Cupcake Vineyards. This delicious wine, crafted in 15 different varietals to match any celebratory occasion (yes, they even offer Red Velvet, Rose and Prosecco, to name a few) is adored by brides and is elegant yet affordable for all wedding celebrations. What’s more, Cupcake Vineyards now offers the ultimate wedding site for couples to plan their perfect event ( with Cupcake included!) For inspiration blogs, planning tools, real featured weddings and more visit cupcakeweddings.com
Designer | Fashion Expert | Star of “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Randy to the Rescue”
Mindful of his mission to "Educate, Elevate, and Empower" a bride to choose the perfect dress for her wedding day and to realize her own personal beauty, fashion and beauty guru Randy Fenoli continues to touch lives. After teaching himself to sew at the age of nine, winning prestigious awards for his achievements in bridal design at the Fashion Institute of Technology and consulting with thousands of brides a year, Randy has earned the title of ultimate and all-knowing source in the Bridal Industry.
Randy took time out of his busy schedule of motivating brides around the country and starring in TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Randy to the Rescue” to chat with Editor Kim Wadsworth about Randy Rules; purchasing the perfect gown; and how every bride can look and feel beautiful on her big day.
Kim Wadsworth: There is no doubt that you know the bridal gown industry intimately from the inside out after working in it for over 20 years. What is one of the most important pieces of advice about selecting a wedding gown that you share with brides?
Randy Fenoli: The most important thing to consider when deciding on your wedding gown is to ask yourself which gown makes you feel the most beautiful. When you look in the mirror, you should not be thinking, “This dress is beautiful.” You should be thinking, “I am beautiful.”
KW: What gave you a kick-start in the bridal gown business?
RF: When I was a student at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) I won a bridal design contest where one of the judges was Vivian Dessy-Diamond. Weeks before graduation, she phoned my dorm and offered me a job designing for The Diamond Collection with my name on the label. Just a few months after graduation my first collection was shown down the runway. That was the beginning of my 20 year career in bridal.
KW: How do you recommend brides approach purchasing a gown? What are some hard and fast rules about where to start?
RF: A bride should define her story and establish a plan. A bride needs to determine, ‘what type of bride do you want to be and what type of couple are you and your fiancé?’ After you know your story, establish a budget, decide on your venue, determine the season for your wedding, etc. The answers to these questions help establish your plan for choosing the perfect gown. Most importantly, keep an open mind. The perfect gown is out there for every woman, but limiting your options may keep you from finding it.
KW: Brides are frustrated by budgets and sticking with them. When tempted by more expensive gowns, how do you suggest they stay on track?
RF: A bride should craft her budget carefully and spend money on the things that are important to her. You should be flexible within your budget, but not with your budget. For example, if you have allotted a certain amount for a gown but find the gown of your dreams that is slightly over that budget, maybe you could cut some of the budget from the flowers, decorations or something else.There are a lot of ways to save money on weddings today. However, be careful or the only thing you will love in the end will be the price.
KW: I’m sure you have many cautionary tales about how things can go bad when choosing a wedding gown. What is one of your Randy Rules for indecisive or picky brides?
RF: I don’t believe brides can really be too picky unless they are asking for something that is unrealistic. For example, a bride looking for a real French lace gown for under a thousand dollars is being unrealistic. Real lace is fairly expensive. When I have a bride who is having trouble choosing between two gowns, I simply ask her which gown makes her feel the most beautiful. She will carry herself with confidence and will radiate beauty from within. A wedding gown is probably the most important garment that a woman will ever wear and probably the most money she will ever spend on a dress, so I feel a bride has the right to be a little fussy when choosing her gown.
KW: What are the hottest trends in wedding gowns for 2013?
RF: The trends I noticed the most were gowns with gorgeous, dramatic backs, straps and sleeves. There was a huge influence from The Great Gatsby movie. I saw gowns that looked like they stepped out of the 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and 50’s. Gowns with dimension, texture, ruffles and movement were everywhere! Bottom line, there is something for every bride out there!
KW: Is there a bridal gown style that is universally flattering?
RF: No. Every dress is cut differently and every person is shaped differently. I would not want to generalize and say that a certain style or silhouette looks flattering on everyone. It’s true that more people can wear an A-line silhouette and that a mermaid gown is more difficult to pull off. However, you also need to consider the neckline, waistline and details of the dress. You never know how a certain dress or silhouette will look on you until you’ve tried it on.
KW: Tell us about the inspiration behind your show “Randy to the Rescue” and what you hope brides will take away from it.
RF: So many brides contact me wishing they could come to New York for me to help them find the perfect gown. So I thought, if they can’t come to me, I will go to them. To accomplish this, I would bring the dresses to them via a semi-truck! I also wanted to show brides the “full-picture” of how they could complete their bridal-day look with hair, makeup and accessories. I call this their “Head to Hem” makeover. My mission with anything that I do is to elevate, educate and empower. I truly believe that every bride is beautiful and my hope is that these brides will walk away from this experience with the knowledge that they are beautiful.
KW: We know you are all about brides, so tell us what they can learn from your book, “It’s All About The Dress.”
RF: The very reason I wrote this book was to help guide a bride through the sometimes-daunting process of finding a gown. “It’s All About The Dress” educates the bride by giving her all the essential information she needs to be empowered to make the perfect gown choice without overwhelming her with too much information like so many books out there seem to do. I’m proud that the “models” I used in the book are real brides. The brides range in age from their 20’s to 60’s and in size from a size 2 to size 22. I wanted brides to realize you don’t have to be a runway model or in your 20’s to look beautiful on your wedding day.
KW: Why women? Why wedding dresses? What makes you so passionate about what you do?
RF: One of the most important, if not the most important, day in a woman’s life is her wedding day. To be able to share in this event and help a woman feel confident of her selection of gown and to help her feel beautiful is such a special thing. I am the luckiest man alive.
[ SAVE THE DATE to spend “An Evening with Randy Fenoli: Hello Beautiful Tour” on Friday October 18, 2013 at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott. See the ad in this issue or visit the event page for ticket information.]
Fine and Dandy
Photography by Echard Wheeler
Fashion Styling by Kim Wadsworth
Dangerous and dashing in a tuxedo $799.99 (purchase) and $189.99 (rental) from Men’s Wearhouse at MacArthur Center. Wristwatch $605. by T.W. Steel. Meteorite wedding band with 24K inlay $1,920. Matching cuff links with diamond accents $2,090. and tuxedo stud set $1,720. All designed by Jacob Albee from Hardy’s Jewellers. Billy ball and bear grass boutonniere with burlap by Black Iris Floral Events. “Mr & Mrs” champagne flutes $65. by Kate Spade from Nordstrom. Mystery woman wears fuchsia glitter heels $129.95 by Glint from Nordstrom. Her 9 ct. Aquamarine ring $12,620 and 18K diamond bracelet $5,500. Both from Hardy’s Jewellers.
The confident groom wears seersucker suit $295. jacket and $125. trousers by John W. Nordstrom. White dress shirt $65. by Nordstrom Smartcare. Pink polka dot silk bow tie $49.50 by Ike Behar. All from Nordstrom MacArthur Center. Watch $725. by T.W. Steel from Hardy’s Jewellers. Rose, button mum and freesia boutonniere and floral bouquet by Black Iris Floral Events.
He sports contemporary style wearong blue blazer $395. by Hart Schaffner & Marx. Mint striped button-down shirt $110. by Thomas Dean. Off-white trousers $69.50 by RALPH Ralph Lauren. Striped tie $39.50 by Roundtree & York. Pocket square $14.50 by Murano. All from Dillard’s MacArthur Center. Diamond and rutilated quartz cut by Munsteiner in 18k $4,520. Turquoise and silver ring $1,6. Serving tray by Michael Aram from Nordstrom. Uniquely designed boutonnieres by Black Iris Floral Events.
Fashion Coordination and Styling: Kim Wadsworth | Wadsworthstyle.com
Photography: Echard Wheeler | echardwheeler.com
Fashion Assistant Intern: Ginna Wilbanks
Menswear Style Consultants: James McKinney | Nordstrom; Dean Kershaw | Dillard’s MacArthur Center
Models: Jackson Breit; Kevin Ballard with Evie Mansfield; and Curtis Lehrmann with Darlene Stevenson
Mystery Woman: Ginna Wilbanks
Floral Design: Todd Wadsworth | Black Iris Floral Events
Nail Artistry: Viktoriya Shtivelman | VIP Nail Salon, Monticello Arcade
Location: Overlooking the breathtaking expanse of oceanfront, the Sheraton Virginia Beach Oceanfront Hotel deserves our thanks for the use of their newly renovated and exceptional facility and for their gracious hospitality. This idyllic beach wedding venue offers sumptuous ballrooms for celebrations; both indoor and outdoor ocean view dining; and complimentary accommodations for the bride and groom on their wedding night. For more information call 1.800.325.3535 or visit sheratonvirginiabeach.com.
WHERE IMAGE MEETS EMOTION
Weddings are an emotional experience.
When I say this, I know it’s easy to fixate on a favorite: the wave of joy between nearly-weds celebrating their engagement; elation when a bride and groom take that first walk down the aisle; or a send off that is nothing less than celebratory. The list of glimpsed moments that tug on our heartstrings is boundless.
Precisely the reason we offered our first photo contest, open to every professional photographer. Deciding on themed categories wasn’t easy. There are so many aspects of an engagement and wedding that matter and have meaning. We are thrilled to unveil the winners as well as those earning honorable mention. Equally exciting were our panel of distinctive judges: Grace Ormonde, the Editor in Chief of Grace Ormonde Wedding Style magazine; Jose Villa who is considered one of the top ten wedding photographers in the world; and Peter Hurley, a world-renown portrait and headshot photographer of celebrities and personalities.
Congratulations to those participants being recognized in The Image Issue.
Speaking of beautiful images, this issue is packed with editorial fun that covers the aisle style spectrum. Children love being in weddings and can’t help but be purely adorable in their wedding finery in Wild at Heart. Sartorially, grooms are making their presence known in chic style. Fine & Dandy shows there are myriad ways of looking good for their betrothed.
Creating an editorial on a plantation takes a village. We pulled out all the stops to create a fashion shoot at Westover that was stunning both inside as well as out. A strong sense of tradition and history was evident from the moment we arrived. Enjoy the nuances of beauty in Tradition Redux and share in our dream of a day spent somewhere in time.
Celebrate your love. There’s no better time to be a bride than now.
Editor in Chief
Find Kim on Pinterest.com/kimwadsworth and Pinterest.com/vowbride
By Kim Wadsworth
THE TURNSTILE OF TRENDS
“Deja-vu” often feels appropriate when it comes to viewing bridal fashions coming down the runway show after show. Don’t let all of that blur of tulle and lace fool you. On closer view, favored designers wowed us with distinctively refreshing styles infused with exciting interpretations that rarely disappointed. The lure of lace was in the forefront as an element experiencing a continued resurgence. In fact, it almost felt like a love affair.
Heidi Elnora went “Mod” this season with a collection filled with intricate lacy patterns, flirty organza ruffles, floral detailing and hand-screened Italian jacquard. Adored features included the LaLa Phillips lace box top that slipped easily over several offered silhouettes as a layered feature.
Layering chantilly and guipure, silk and vintage laces with flowers and delicate beaded details, Claire Pettibone threw it all into the mix, creating stunning textures for her heirloom collection. Using “Decoupage” (meaning “to cut” in French) as an old art reference for assembling and layering paper cutouts, she deftly created a visual feast of unique treatments that charmed us from entrance to exit.
For Spring 2014, Anne Barge was inspired by the couture and architectural romance of the past, including Parisian Couturier Pierre Balmain. Her silhouettes combined his sophisticated elegance with the soft pastels and sense of lightness of Impressionist painter Claude Monet, offering a classic timeless collection.
“ I’m trying to re-invent the use of lace,” said designer Kelly Faetanini at her Spring 2014 presentation. Referring to the “old world charm” of silver guipure, she embraced a modern take by re-embroidering it with silk satin ribbon to freshen things up. “I don’t want my ‘vintage look” to appear dated.” Even the soft effect of her chantilly lace silhouettes, in keeping with her “Midnight in Paris” inspiration, felt oh so chic and feminine.
Unique textures and timeless style appeared in Romona Keveza’s “Passage Through Time” Collection. Elegance and refinement blended easily, fusing the history of yesteryear- Victoriana to Hollywood Glamour; with the mystery of the Millennium and the Future. An adoring audience gave her high praise as offering one of the best shows during NY Bridal Fashion Week.