Speaking of Trashing the Dress…

In preparation for an upcoming competition…
[The Wedding Whisperer and Sandra Johnson Boutique Photography are giving away a fantastic ‘Trash the Dress” photoshoot on the Classic Hits Morning Radio Show! Watch this space!!]
….I got to tag along while Becky got her dress trashed for the promo photos!

I’m always banging on about how Trash the Dress doesn’t mean you have to wreck your frock… well, this time was a little different:
Our intent is to create a tiny tad of drama – so… Becky got paintballed:image copyright Sandra Johnson
But the paint wasn’t even the worst of it!
After being splattered with fluorescent paint, image copyright Sandra Johnsonand then being instructed to pose demurely under a tree
[read: sit in the mud, in the rain, and smile!],

Becky’s coworkers
[oh so lovingly]
doused her with buckets of coloured water.
Have you noticed that it’s winter?  And did I mention it was raining?
So do you think it was warm water? oops. No, sorry bout that, Becks.
And did anyone bring a towel? Oh, um, no, sorry about that, too Becks…

image copyright Sandra Johnson

Yet she still smiled and laughed and just looked gorgeous, all the way through. Becky totally gets my vote for Nelson’s next top model!

This clip shows a little more of the process, see some more of the stunning photos [and what a good sport Becky was!].
You can get an idea of how cold it was when you spot me [around 1:30] in thermals, boots, hat and coat… and *I* was still cold!

If you’re inspired to give it a go,  just tell us how YOU would rock your frock, and you could win your own fabulous Trash the Dress photoshoot with Sandra Johnson Boutique Photography. Enter online at http://www.classichits.co.nz

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It didn’t rain. It POURED!

I was speaking with a bride today who assured me that she didn’t really need a wet-weather alternate for her beach wedding because the photographer had promised that it ‘never rains here in February’

Um. Sure. But sometimes it chucks down. In buckets.

If you’re planning an off-season wedding, or you’re looking at the forecast and Hurricane Murgatroyd is moving in fast, here’s some advice that you might find more useful than that photographer’s breezy assurance…

For the bride – make sure you’re able to stay warm and dry. Grab a Pashmina-type wrap in white or cream – something that can be tossed  into a soggy heap in the entryway and still look gorgeous.Ideally, plan to have 2 or 3 of them, so that you can discard the clammy, damp one for fresh halfway through the day. If you decide to use a wrap in your accent colours, do a test to make sure the colour won’t bleed onto your gown if it gets wet!

Make sure your bridesmaids are going to be warm enough too – they’re already wearing uncomfortable shoes and ugly gowns for your sake…

Don’t depend on borrowing a jacket – although your groom’s jacket will look cute on you, that option leaves him in the cold instead! If the suit is a rental, it’s only good for warmth not shelter from the rain – you’re free to ruin a jacket you own, but the penalties for saturating a dry-clean only hired suit should be taken into consideration!

A quick piece of advice for the groom:  While it’s a sweet idea for you [or the other blokes in the bridal party] to offer your umbrella/jacket/whatever to cold or wet guests,  save your gallantry for your bride, and perhaps your mother and new mother in law. Delegate everyone else’s care and shelter to your ushers, and at a pinch, your groomsmen.

Rain wreaks havoc on bridal trains, too, so pay careful attention to the swag of fabric you’re dragging through the muddy puddles.  If you have the option of looping up your train, do it every single time you step out a doorway! It might not be as elegant as you’d dreamed of, but it will surely beat the alternative, which won’t just look messy, it will be cold and uncomfortable to sit in for the rest of the evening.

Cold, wet feet are a certain cue for misery. If your gown is floor length, and the weather is cold, forego the strappy sandals  in favour of warm tights and waterproof shoes. At the very least, arrange to have a pair of gumboots for your photo shoot – standing on wet grass in heels will give you a definite sinking feeling!

Think about who needs an umbrella to be provided. While your guests will most likely provide their own, what about your bridal party guys and gals? Chances are they’re getting dressed away from home and might not have easy access to any umbrella, let alone a styley one! You should also make sure the drivers of your bridal cars have an umbrella, even if it’s just so that they can hold it over you while you get in and out of the vehicle!

People rushing in the wet mean slips and splashes at the very least – muddy legs or broken bones in the worst case. Careful preparation can slow everybody down and still keep them dry.

If you’re able to, offer an  ‘umbrella valet service’, with someone prepped to at least escort passengers from a drop-off point in front of the venue, or at least to shelter guests while they are getting out of cars and putting their own umbrellas up. Umbrella valeting works really well if the valet wears a waterproof coat,  carries one open umbrella and another furled, hands the open umbrella to the guest [or to the bridal party]  as they step out of their vehicle, while popping open the next one.

Try not to delegate that job to any of your vip guests – they will almost certainly end up wet – and keep your ‘real’ ushers dry and carrying out their duties indoors if at all possible.

I hope you get the blue skies and calm weather you’re dreaming of. And, if not, you’ve at least had a chance to come up with an excellent plan for success under grey and stormy skies!

Don’t forget, The Corner Store hires 20 matching umbrellas as a wet weather backup, it’s a nice peace of mind option!

Rain, rain, go away! Can’t you see, it’s a wedding day?

Rain, huh. What is it good for?

I was at a wedding this weekend. In all that rain. Thankfully, the couple had planned well, and the wet weather ended up being a footnote to their day. No-one ever hopes for rain on their wedding day. But if you get it, there can be bonuses:

Compared to the stifling heat of some mid-summer ceremonies, a soft rain can make a beautiful atmosphere – any sweaty palms will be from nerves, not heat. Your bouquets and corsages will last longer in a cool, moist environment.

Don’t  freak out about the wedding photos. You’ve hired a good, professional photographer, right? Well, they will have no problem making beautiful pictures in the rain. I’ve often heard photographers say that cloudy weather creates better pictures than full sun, so smile, and enjoy the weather – the results might end up surprising you.

No matter what the long-term forecast predicts, you should always leave room in your planning for wet weather plans.

If you are planning an outdoor wedding, you should be prepared with an option that provides shelter for guests, and yourselves, or a backup location if the weather forces you to move the ceremony inside.

If the weather has been bad in the weeks leading up to the wedding, the ground underfoot may be boggy, even if the skies are blue. Consider laying planking, or other flooring  to avoid having your venue end up as a mud pit. It may be a good idea to wait to put on your bridal shoes until arriving at the venue so that you don’t squelch your way down the aisle. And, I’ve always thought that gumboots are the ultimate bridal accessory!

For an indoor wedding, rain will be more of an annoyance than a real problem. The Corner Store offers a rental service for guest umbrellas, so that your ushers can escort guests safe and dry into the venue.

If it does end up raining on your wedding day, the best thing to do is grin and bear it. It may be disappointing, but, short of a cyclone, it shouldn’t be a disaster. Your guests will be taking their cue directly from you – if you’re not bothered by the weather, you give them permission to see the silver lining, too.

If people insist on being miserable along with the weather, just keep repeating “Rain on your wedding day, is good luck. It represents freshness, and good tidings for a fruitful, productive future.”

EDIT TO ADD – and if you’re worrying about the possiblity of rain, remember, The Corner Store has a big basket of matching, plain black rain umbrellas that you can hire for the weekend, just in case!

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