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How to Choose Mix-And-Match Dresses with Bella Bridesmaids

SylvieGil-0039 Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids | Photo: Sylvie Gil

We all have those free-spirited friends, reserved beauties or fiery fashionistas in our bridal party that we just can’t imagine saying “I do” without. One of our favorite ways that brides balance each of their bridesmaids’ different styles (and opinions) with their cohesive wedding look is through mix-and-match dresses. But experts and brides agree that pulling it off is a lot more challenging than it seems.

“Mix-and-match is really a look that takes a lot of effort to make it look effortless,” says Stephanie Wilkinson, co-owner of beloved Houston bridesmaids dress boutique, Bella Bridesmaids. We talked with Wilkinson, co-owner Natalie Taylor, and their team, about how to make the mix-and-match look more manageable. Here’s what they had to say:

Give Them Something to Work With — Though the team at Bella Bridesmaids are experts in selecting the best fit and style for each of your gals, Natalie Taylor, co-owner of Bella Bridesmaids’ Houston location, urges brides to have at least one solid idea of how she wants her girls to look before embarking on this mix-and-match journey. “It’s really helpful if they have at least a color or fabric nailed down and set in stone,” she says. “That’s what we can start with, and work from there.”

bridesmaids Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids | Photo: Minerva House 

Think Texture — When considering mix-and-match dresses, don’t limit yourself to just differing colors or style. Taylor advises brides not to be afraid of bringing in different textures! “Texture is what really makes a mix-and-match look successful,” she says. “When there is lace, and maybe some metallic or tulle, it looks purposeful and intentional.” 

Keep it Short… or Long — Color, texture and designs can differ from bridesmaid to bridesmaid, but Taylor warns that mixing floor-length dresses with cocktail dresses is a big no-no. “A high-low dress and a floor-length dress would probably be okay, but we would stay away from a short and a long,” she says.

Stick with a Designer — Bridesmaid dress designers typically use similar color tones and textures across their styles, which helps brides keep things cohesive. “A lot of the time we will stick with one designer,” Taylor says.  “Bridesmaids can still get that mix-and-match look with different necklines in the same shades of color.” One designer that Provost highly recommends for achieving a flawless mix-and-match look is the simple and refined Amsale.

View More: http://jessicagoldphotography.pass.us/diane--chris Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids | Photo: Jessica Gold Photography 

Trust the Process — Patience is key when selecting your mix-and-match dresses. The team at Bella Bridesmaids will guide you as you carefully select your options, but it does take time. “I start with one thing first, either a fabric or a color,” Taylor says. “I will pull one color and then move on to what our next shade would be. It’s a step-by-step process.”

Ready to start mixing up some mauve-toned pinks or gray-blue hues? Grab your gals and schedule an appointment with Bella Bridesmaids today. Hurry — their appointments book up fast! And make sure to let them know you found them on the Houston Wedding Blog. Happy shopping, loves!

Intimate Restaurant Wedding by Civic Photos

It’s a story as old as time: Bright-eyed, ambitious young intern meets seasoned company full-timer; water-cooler chat turns flirtatious; love ensues… (OK, we don’t really know about the water cooler part, but you get the picture!). Following a cozy proposal at home, over a home-cooked meal and wine, sweethearts Paola and Aaron made food and wine the center of their focus once again, with an elegant wedding for 35 guests, featuring an intimate church ceremony followed by a six-course French dinner at a favorite Houston restaurant. “Our wedding was meant to be a classic theme that would be beautiful years from now,” the bride tells us, and we have to say, “Yup, looks like you hit the mark perfectly!” We wish the newlyweds a lifetime of happiness, and invite YOU to enjoy their celebration, through these lovely pix, including gorgeous portraits at the historic Julia Ideson Library, from Civic Photos!

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Photos: Civic Photos | Portraits: Julia Ideson Library | Rings: Zadok Jewelers

The 8 Commandments of Achieving the Perfect Bridal Fit by MW Couture

Writer: Laura Furr Mericas

Minerva Wooldridge, founder of Houston’s MW Couture, puts an uncommon attention to detail and masterful skill into every wedding gown, mother of the bride dress, or flower girl smock that passes through her storefront. Having begun sewing at the age of 15, and quickly moving on to create custom wedding gowns from scratch, she is know throughout Houston and the U.S. as an alterations expert and exquisite designer who follows a strict set of rules to ensure that every bride leaves her store with the perfect fit. “My goal is to put my quality on display all the time,” she says. “You don’t take your dress from here unless you are 100 percent happy and satisfied.” We talked with Wooldridge about her rigorous regimen, known to her and her staff as “The Eight Commandments.”

Black, White & Blue Wedding at Crystal Ballroom at The Rice by Ever & Anon Photography Gown Alterations: MW Couture | Wedding Gown: Brickhouse Bridal | Photography: Ever & Anon Photography

1. There For You From the First Fitting — Wooldridge and her team strive to create the most welcoming and comfortable environment possible for brides trusting them with their signature look. One way that she does this is from the first phone call, reminding the bride to bring the slip, bra and shoes she will be wearing with the dress, so she can get the entire look right from the first fitting.

2. Dress With Care — Wooldridge also dresses the bride herself, paying special attention to every detail of the dress. She says that this helps them feel more confident, as she expertly sets the gown to each bride’s body.

3. Find the Vibe — “Sometimes having her describe the wedding is like I’m looking into a magic ball. It lets me know her personality,” Wooldridge says. By hearing more about the event, Wooldridge finds out if she should go more romantic, modern or elegant with the design and fitting.

4. Listen! — “The first time the bride comes in she might be very emotional,” Wooldridge says. She and her team listen to make sure they don’t miss any key elements brides mention, and answer all questions and concerns with confidence and empathy.

Black, White & Blue Wedding at Crystal Ballroom at The Rice by Ever & Anon Photography Gown Alterations: MW Couture | Wedding Gown: Brickhouse Bridal |Photography: Ever & Anon Photography

5. Talk it Out — Once alterations are underway, Wooldridge and her team go into great detail to explain all alterations that have been made and offer any further ideas they might have, leaving an open floor for the bride to address any other changes she would like made.  “Everything has a solution,” Wooldridge says. “I am trying to find the best solution so she can have a best dress that is personal and unique.”

6. Be Flexible, But Timely — The team at MW Couture is always conscious of brides’ timeframes and pride themselves on making achievable alterations within acceptable pickup dates.

7. Quality, Quality, Quality — Wooldridge insists that all alterations at MW Couture are “equal to or better than the original construction of the dress.” We can vouch for that!

8. Conclude with Gratitude — Lastly, Wooldridge thanks the bride for trusting the family at MW Couture with the most important garment for the most important day of her life. She wishes all wedding couples luck and lifetime of memories!

Ashleigh & Quinn-Brad Adcock Photography-Cadillac Bar-Isabella Invitations-Dream Bouquet-MW Couture-DJU-043 copy Alterations: MW Couture | Bridal Gown: Lillian West from Whittington Bridal | Photos: Brad Adcock Photography

There are few experts in the wedding business quite as professional and caring as Minerva and the team at MW Couture! Want to get your perfect fit? Schedule a consultation with MW Couture today!

Sophisticated Black, White & Gold Houston Wedding

Katie and Matt had many casual run-ins since high school, but it wasn’t until what turned out to be a special Christmas break when they reconnected at a mutual friend’s birthday party. “He asked me out to dinner the next day at a Mexican restaurant where we grew up, and the rest was history,” says Katie.

After 4 years of dating long distance, Katie moved to Austin to be with Matt. He suggested that they take a weekend trip to New Orleans since neither of them had been. Katie says, “He planned everything and found a great historic hotel in the heart of the French Quarter. We had a full day of exploring the city, and were getting ready to head to dinner. Matt suggested that we should walk around Jackson Square before going to the restaurant. He began talking about our future, and before I knew it he was on one knee asking me to marry him!”

Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-003 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-007 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-004 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-008 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-009

“Our wedding day was a dream… it was a romantic and intimate celebration with our friends and family. The ceremony was our favorite part—it was the beginning of our lives together and so special to be there in front of our loved ones. The historic charm, candles, and romantic white flowers made the ambiance timeless, classic and elegant,” says Katie.

Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-011 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-012 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-013 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-015 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-022 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-021 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-026 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-028 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-029 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-033 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-032 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-035 Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-038

Congrats to the newlyweds!

Katie & Matt-Binford Creative-Kristin Johnston Bridal-Brickhouse Bridal-HI-RES-037 Photos: Binford Creative | Baker: Cakes by Gina

5 Mouthwatering Wedding Menu Ideas From The Hometown Chef

We here at the Houston Wedding Blog are firm believers in the notion that wedding food should look 100% as fabulous as it tastes. Know who else shares our belief? The Hometown Chef, that’s who. And we’re soooo lucky that Tiffany Avila and her crew of culinary geniuses saw fit to share some of their most coveted small-bite creations with us…and y’all! Feast your eyes (and, if you’re lucky enough to attend a tasting or event hosted by this amazing Houston catering company, your palate) on these artful bites, tailor made for your wedding cocktail-and-hors-d’oeuvre hour or small-plates wedding reception.

HometownChef_ SignatureMeatballMenu_ Rathke Photography_HIRES

It’s a meatball…except it’s not like any meatball you’ve ever imagined. The funky bite of creamy gorgonzola. The sweet counter-balance of roasted beet. The gorgeous presentation, ready for you to pop right into your mouth. And ask for another. And another. And another.

HometownChef_ PulldPorkPlantainTostone2_ Rathke Photography_HIRES

One of the greatest achievements of “miniature” cuisine is being able to convey an entire world of flavor in one or two mouthfuls. Which is exactly what The Hometown Chef’s pulled-pork tostone does. Served on a crunchy plantain chip, topped with a tangy hint of lime, this small bite packs a big punch.

HometownChef_ PansearedPorkBellyHeirloomTomatoes_ Rathke Photography_HIRES

Balancing delicate food flavors and textures is one of The Hometown Chef’s greatest talents. Nowhere is this gift for edible equilibrium more evident than in its pan-seared pork belly, which is basically…everything: crisp, buttery, rich, savory, a little sweet, a little tangy and all good.

HometownChef_ Fish_ Rathke Photography_HIRES

Chilean sea bass is the rare fish that’s just right for a small bite (and equally lovely for a large plate). With its flaky texture and delicate flavor, it pairs gorgeously with a bright, tropical mango-pineapple salsa in a beautiful springtime wedding reception menu item. OK, fine, it’s awesome for fall weddings, too. And winter. And we wouldn’t mind tucking into some right about now.

HometownChef_ BraisedShortRibAvocadoandPistachio_ Rathke Photography_HIRES

We’ll leave you with another of The Hometown Chef’s signature “deconstructed” meatballs. And three little words: Pistachio. Avocado. Bacon. ‘Nuff said. Now quit your drooling, and give Tiffany and her team a call. They’d love to whip up a little wedding something just for you. And don’t forget to tell them you found them (and your happy place) on Weddings in Houston’s blog!

Photos: Rathke Photography | Catering: The Hometown Chef