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Wedding Dress Trends of Spring 2017

Wedding Dress Trends of Spring 2017

Oh, my!  We’re not sure our grandmothers (or even our mothers) would approve of many of the wedding dress trends awaiting the brides of 2017!  Our fashion-conscious blushing brides who want to be fashion-forward at their nuptials may just have more reasons to blush next year.

The word is out – many designers have hopped on the “sexy” wagon, keen on revealing as much skin as possible in places traditionally covered by all that satin, while others are taking the opposite approach by covering places traditionally kept uncovered.  The bridal fashion world seems to be strutting in their own version of the yin and yang.

 

The “Bare” Essentials Trends

Plunging necklines and bare shoulders

While the traditional sweetheart neckline can certainly be cleavage revealing, next year’s designs are certainly pushing the envelope in that area – or “plunging” it, you might say.  The deep V-necks in some designs are at risk of becoming known by the next letter in the alphabet, X.  Talk about your neckline meeting your navel!  Time to dust off that Chest Workout Plan, ladies!

The off-the-shoulder bridal silhouette is not necessarily a newsflash, but it does seem like the cold shoulder trend will be heating up for 2017.  

 

Cut-outs

Ah, the peek-a-boo design!  Strategically placed cut-outs is another trend gaining momentum.  It is certainly a way for a bride to flaunt her best assets!  If you’re proud of your waist you worked so hard to get in shape since that ring went on your finger, cut outs just above the hips will show it off!  This almost structural design does have a certain edgy, modern vibe and depending on the dimensions of the bare spaces, can be eye-catching without becoming cold-catching.  

High-Low Gowns

And the skin-revealing trend continues from the top of the gown to the bottom with the high-low design.  While the thinner fabric on ready-to-wear dresses makes this popular design rather more soft-focus, the rich bridal materials on a wedding gown hikes up the theatricality of that look exponentially. But, if it’s your legs you want to show off to the world at your wedding, this is your pick. Hello, Victorian can-can girl!

 

The “Cover-Up” Trend

Was it a reaction against all that skin exposure or just a trickle-down effect from ready-to-wear fashion?  Whatever it was, capes of all shapes and sizes will be flowing down the aisle in 2017.  Think capelets, bomber jackets, boleros, ponchos and cloak-trains!  This trend is for the brides with a Supergirl fixation!

Menswear Elements

With “princess for a day” life-long visions occupying most brides’ fantasies, chances are that bridal pant suits are not going to be the hottest trend of 2017.  Still, women have worn trousers for many centuries now, so why not to the altar?  

Long Sleeves

Think long sleeves will say “matronly” and “conservative” as you glide down that aisle? Maybe it’s time to re-think that. Designs for 2017 have made ample use of illusion lace, 3-D floral embellishments and pops of peek-a-boo skin to turn the long sleeve into a sexy but sophisticated adornment.  And for that extra wow, you can always add an open back and a low neckline, right?  

 

 

Now the question is, to cover or to uncover? For that you have to think hard about what your best assets are and what you want to say with your bridal ensemble.  But you know what?  You can adapt all these trends to suit your own taste and style — it’s just a matter of how far you’re willing to go to push that envelope, right?  But “sexy” is definitely in for next spring’s brides!  Even with the “cover” approach, designers have ingeniously devised ways to still bare as much skin as possible!

The Bachelor's Nikki Ferrell and Tyler Vanloo Tie The Knot

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Don’t know about you, but we’ll take a bridal bouquet of gorgeous blush roses over a single red rose of the “maybe-I-love-you-maybe-I-don’t” variety any time!  And it seems like Nikki Ferrell, the former Bachelor contestant, is definitely our kind of girl.  She recently ditched the show’s single-rose giver Juan Pablo Galavis who sorta-kinda chose her as “the one”, and got hitched to a long-time friend, sales exec Tyler Vanloo.

 

The happy nuptials took place on October 8 in Kansas City, Missouri.  The Bachelor’s commitment-phobic star was definitely not invited, but fellow contestants Kelly Travis and Christy Hansen, and newlyweds Jade Roper and Tanner Tolbert, of the Bachelor in Paradise fame, were there to root for the happy couple.  And former Bachelorette star Andi Dorfman served as one of Nikki’s bridesmaids—all pretty in petal-pink dresses.The Bachelor Nation definitely had a presence at this romantic affair!

 

And what a wedding it was!  Three hundred guests watched the radiant couple exchange vows in a ceremony at John's United Methodist Church, and were wowed as the newly minted Mr. and Mrs.  Vanloo glided down the aisle, both picture-perfect.  

 

The main event:  the bride’s gown…

 

Nikki was a vision of classic —but with a modern twist —bridal beauty.   A strapless mermaid-style gown fit her to a T and did a great job of accentuating all the positives! Intricate lace patterns beautified the bodice of the gown, while her “fishtail” tantalized onlookers with a dramatic train.  What would a bride be without her train, the quintessential bridal brand mark? This one sure was something to behold. Long and billowy, it fanned out and trailed behind very princess-like from the old fairy tales. But, the dress was backless with a sweetheart neckline, putting her right back into the 21st century. Yes, the bride looked both classic and sizzling!

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All the lovely details…

 

The mermaid vibe of the gown was carried throughout the ensemble down to (or actually, up to) the hairstyle!  Nikki’s locks fell in soft waves but were kept off her beaming, can’t-stop-smiling, face by a loosely braided half-updo.  A Veronica Couture veil was gently perched to the back of the hair, and a Lindsay Marie Design Isadora flowery comb, glistening with Swarovski crystals, made sure that the bride’s locks shimmered but stayed in place.  

And what else from the sea did our mermaid wear?  Pearls, of course, in the form of earrings. But, in a bit of a “reality” digression from a true mermaid fashion, the bride did wear shoes.  Not that anyone probably noticed— the gown and train covered the happy bride all the way to the ground—but the shoes were white, open toed, high-heeled sandals, embellished with crystals.

It must have been a day of triumph and glory for the woman who by her own admission kissed a lot of frogs before she found her Prince Charming. No wonder she chose Taylor Swift’s “Lovestory” to accompany her down the aisle.  What did Swift say in her iconic song?  You'll be the prince and I'll be the princess, it’s a love story, baby, just say "Yes".  And so, they did. Congrats you two!

Fancy Nails and Engagement Ring Combos from Instagram

So you’ve just updated your Facebook status to “engaged.” Awesome. And now it’s time to show off that sparkly bauble on your finger, right? But, wait! Is your betrothed hand Instagram-selfie ready?  Does your manicure carry enough punch to really rock that rock and leave all of your followers gasping in wonder (and envy)?

 

Fancy nails can sure be an eyeball magnet, drawing everyone’s attention to a woman’s fingers and whatever bling she’s got on them. Nail art has literally gone through the roof in the last few years with all kinds of designs, colors, and shapes. Pinterest is positively abuzz with all the possible combinations and variations of fancy nails. Here are a few examples of how these avant-garde manicures work best with your engagement bling.

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A little goes a long way

What better hue to complement and enhance a diamond ring than glittery white? The metallic stripes on this quite classic manicure give the nails an extra oomph and jazz up the whole look. This nail design is especially stunning when you’re sporting a sparkling diamond-encrusted band-- can you say wowzers? Then all you need to worry about is choosing the perfect filter! #mrsfabulous!

 

 

Just a bit of accent will do the trick

For something easy and simple but still attention-grabbing, try a two-tone manicure, with the ring finger nail in accent paint.  This combo rocks with colored gems with halo settings.  Pick a nail color that complements the hue of your rock, but then set the ring a-gleam with glitter accent on the ring finger.  

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For something a bit more edgy, dress up that nail with a caviar manicure – it’s super-hot today!  

 

A French mani with a fancy twist  

If you’re a bonafide French manicure aficionado, give it an eye-catching twist with silver tipping — it goes so well with a diamond and a white gold band.  A girly pinky hue on the nail is so right for a wedding, and the splash of silver showcases the ring to a T!

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Give it dimension

For a slightly bigger splash, go for a 3D manicure!  Adorn your nails with a few glittery rhinestones, studs or pikes to complement a double halo sparkler.  

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If you want to push the envelope a bit further, combine the 3-D design with stiletto nails and tip art.  But to make it all work together, match the gem color with the hue of the nail art, and don’t go crazy on the rhinestone studs!

 

 

Go big or go home!

If you’re brash, bold chick and your ring is the size of Ohio, go all out like Nicki Minaj. Her nails are uber fancy!  Still, because her ring is humongous, they don’t overshadow it too much.  Nicki has thrown everything at her nails, including the kitchen sink: stiletto shape, 3D, different color for each nail, and tip design.  They don’t call her diva for nothing!

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You have so many options to beautify your nails!  From funky designs and glittery embellishments to unusual shapes that under certain circumstances, could render your fingers lethal weapons!  But when it comes to choosing a fancy manicure to set off your engagement ring, keep in mind the scale, glare and impact of the design. Your nails should highlight your love sparkler, not compete with it.  Too much razzmatazz on your fingers and your gorgeous ready-to-be-shown-off engagement ring runs the risk of becoming a “Where’s Waldo?” story!

Wedding Inspiration: Vintage Bridal Accessories

After you’ve picked a vintage inspired ring by Gottlieb & Sons, keep the theme going for all your bridal accessories. You’ll probably agree that when it comes to playing up that vintage feel in your wedding ensemble; accessories may just be more useful than – dare I say it – the gown.  Really! Unless you’re thoroughly versed in the fashion of each decade before the turn of the 20th century, it’s actually sometimes pretty hard to tell the difference between a contemporary bridal gown and one that’s specifically from, let’s say, the Art Deco era

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It’s largely the accessories that tell the story. And you’re in luck – there is a plethora of bridal accessories on the market that rock the vintage look.  Here are just a few gems that could have easily adorned the wedding ensemble of your favorite Jane Austen character or Downton Abbey’s Lady Mary, or Gatsby’s object of passion, Daisy.

 

 

Veil it vintage

Ahh, the romance and passion of Jane Austen’s world!  What woman would not like to be part of that era— at least for a few hours of perfect manners and Georgian society, before making a hasty retreat to her own 21st century thriving career and bustling life? This flowy, ethereal veil could have easily been draped over Austen’s Emma as she glided gracefully down the aisle to wed her beloved Knightley.  

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Crown me royal

No ties to royalty?  No problem.   Even if your blood is not even close to a blue hue, your wedding is a perfect occasion for you to don a crown or a tiara in public —without any snickers and curious looks.  Be a princess or an aristocratic lady (hello, Lady Mary) from years gone by at your nuptials with these most royal of marquees.  

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Head for the headband

Want to evoke the Flapper/Gatsby era with your bridal outfit?  Try a feathered or lace headband that will plant you squarely in the 1920s.   

Headband

But, if it’s that classic old Hollywood glamour that sets your heart a-patter, a jeweled band will make you look like one of those icon goddesses from the golden era of motion pictures.

 

 

Twist in a vine or a comb

For a look that whispers rather than shouts “vintage,” hair vines and combs are the way to go.  Slide a comb atop a bridal up-do or twist a flowery hair vine into a braided bun— it’s an understated yet elegant touch that delivers a vintage vibe without stealing the limelight from your gown.

 

Fascinate with a fascinator

But to really rock that vintage look, go for a fascinator.  It’s dramatic and bold and sexy.  There is probably not a single film from the 1930s in which the female star did not wear a fascinator.  And with this accessory, you’re not evoking just the 1930s — fascinators in one shape or another have been worn for centuries, so they are quintessentially vintage.

 

So, which era speaks to you?  Whichever it is, you’ve got plenty of choices in accessories to embody it as you sashay down the aisle.  But, remember, when the clock strikes 12 Midnight, you’ll have to put away these gorgeous time travel pieces, and return – gladly or regretfully — to the 21st century!

Top 6 Engagement Ring Trends of 2016

So you think he’s going to pop that question?  How exciting!  Is it too soon to start dreaming of that round, sparkly bauble that will come out of his pocket as he asks it?  Maybe, but let’s do it anyways.  And as you let your fancy roam free, keep in mind these 6 top trends for that symbol of love and commitment.

 

Trend #1:  Not your cookie-cut diamond cuts

Although round and princess style diamonds are still adorning many a betrothed hand, oval and marquise shapes are making a strong comeback. These lovely designs are also in the traditional and classic mode, but with a twist that makes the ring stand out from that madding crowd of solitaire princesses. And the extra bonus?  These gem shapes make a woman’s fingers look slimmer and longer.  Your hand will positively ooze slender gracefulness!

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Trend #2:  Color me dazzling!

Colored stones have definitely been on trend.  Maybe it was Kate Middleton, Penelope Cruz and Carey Mulligan who started it with their blue sapphire engagement stunners. Maybe it was Kelly Clarkson’s choice of yellow for her diamond.  Or maybe our favorite fashionista Sarah Jessica Parker/Carrie Bradshaw’s black diamond engagement ring opened the door wide to other options, color-wise. Who knows?  The fact is that these days colored stones are being chosen by brides-to-be en masse!

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Trend #3:  One halo, two halos… 

A big diamond surrounded by a circle of diamonds?  Count me in!  This iconic setting is back in demand.  Exuding luxe elegance, no wonder it’s back in style.  Want to take this design to the next level?  Go for two halos—double the pleasure, double the fun. Perfect for giving you that blingy diva look with a dash of spoiled princess.

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Trend #4:  Getting vintage-inspired

So maybe your man’s great-grandmother did not leave him an heirloom ring he can now proudly offer to you on his knee.  But, you can still get that vintage feel with a brand new ring styled with the aesthetics of the Victorian or art deco era.  Harken back to those romantic times with a design that’s rich in intricate detail.  It’s so true what they say—what’s old is new again.

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Trend #5:  Coming up roses

Just one quick look at Pinterest will tell you that the rose gold engagement ring is the cat’s meow for today’s brides-to-be. It’s is a perfect blend of vintage and modern.  This combination of gold and copper first became popular in the early 19th century, but went off the grid for a few decades.  

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Some have called out reality show and fashionista Lauren Conrad for re-introducing this pink-hued precious metal to modern styles.  And there just might be an ulterior motive for choosing rose gold. That feminine rosy shade works wonders to enhance a woman’s skin tone.

  

Trend #6:  Make it personal!

But among all these fabulous trends in engagement rings, the one that is probably the coolest is personalization.  It’s so about women being confident in their sense of style.  Anything goes, ladies, the sky is the limit!  Get creative— make the ring a reflection of your taste, and grab that chance to say to the world what you want to say about you and your guy with a ring that’s truly your own.

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These are exciting trends; don’t you think?  Good time to be a bride-to-be—especially if you’re into the out-of-the-box kind of thinking.  No need to follow just that simple solitaire diamond engagement ring mode.  There are many options out there to make your getting-hitched sparkler a one-of-a-kind dazzler. Now, the only snag is…has he popped that question yet?

Miranda Kerr's Second Diamond: The New Vs. Old

Here’s the dilemma.  Choosing between two stunning diamond rings is like being torn between two lovers.  Which one should we pick as the better one?  Ring #1 given by actor Orlando Bloom to Miranda Kerr in 2010, or ring #2 Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel recently slid on her finger? Both are quite stunning!  Still, on closer inspection, we believe that the caption “new and improved” belongs on the snap of the Spiegel ring. And here’s why.

The Bloom Ring

What We Love

Well, for starters, this ring is 4 carats of round diamonds! That kind of wattage gives off brilliance and dazzle to blind.  The floral design is also pretty and feminine.  This may be reaching, but was this arrangement intended as a special reference?  You know…bloom…flower.  We choose to think it was, and for that special meaning, we give it a couple of extra marks.  

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What We Don’t Love

The tab for this showy bauble was almost half a million dollars!  Now, the price tag is probably in line with a rock of this size, but that kind of exorbitance does not quite square with the Buddhist philosophy both Miranda and Orlando espoused at the time.  And it’s so stereotypically Hollywood!  Is this to judgy?  Maybe.  But that’s our job.

 

A bigger bee in our bonnet, however, is that the ring has a definite vintage feel. Nothing against a vintage-inspired design, but Miranda is so young and fresh, and known for being a super fashionista!  The flowery arrangement set in a gold band harkens back to the Victorian era and does not really reflect who she is.  

 

The Spiegel Ring

What We Love

Actually, pretty much everything.  The round center stone with tapered diamond baguettes set in a white gold design is sleek and modern.  And it so makes sense! The bride-to-be is very much a today’s girl, and the expectant groom is a co-founder of one of our most cutting-edge social media platforms.  This ring is definitely an apt reflection of who they are.

 

And extra credit is due for the restraint in the dollar outlay for this bauble.  Being a mogul, Spiegel could have matched or surpassed the Kim Kardashian engagement boulder price tag by far.  But by all accounts, he didn’t even bother coming close.  The center diamond is 2.5 carats and is just the right size with the reported cost being $75,000.  Granted, this price sticker is at least one digit too many for most common folks, but not for the CEO of Snapchat, right?  

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What We Don’t Love

Sorry, there is nothing we don’t love about the Spiegel ring.  Well, actually, maybe one thing.  The fact that it’s not been slipped on one of our fingers!  

 

 

Are we right about our choice?  We think so!  And perhaps the fact that the Bloom-Kerr marriage lasted only three years proves us right?  It’s possible that maybe—just maybe—this mismatch between the engagement ring and her personal style was a sign of things to come in the Bloom-Kerr relationship.  We’re just speculating, of course!  But assuming there’s some truth to that, we’re betting that the Spiegel-Kerr union will turn out to be much more lasting.

Chunky Wedding Rings: Is Bigger Better?

The short —but rather inconclusive— answer to this is question is:  not necessarily.  You want the symbol of your love and commitment to have some oomph and presence on your finger, right?  But if you’re dreaming of a celebrity-sized diamond rock – it just may be best to re-think that!

 

Ring trends from the La La land—should we follow?

If you’re a celebrity Instagram follower, you’ve probably been gob-smacked eyeing the diamonds on recently betrothed Hollywood stars.   Not too long ago, the winner of this battle of celebrity engagement bling was Kim Kardashian.  Her 15-carat-$8 million was a stunner. But then came Mariah Carey who trumped her with her 35-carat-$10 million engagement rock.  (Mariah was likely relieved that it was an anonymous buyer who spent $22 million at Sotheby’s New York sale last April for a 100-carat flawless diamond boulder. At least among Hollywood brides-to-be, she still reigns supreme, diamond-size-wise.)

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But stars, divas and high-profile celebrities need to shine in the limelight all the time, and huge, expensive diamond rings stir that media frenzy that feeds their brands and careers. So, unless you have a similar status and needs, let Mariah hold the winning title (at least for now) in that battle of celebrity engagement bling!

 

Why bigger is not always better…

 

For all it’s worth, jewelers agree that the “wow” effect of a diamond ring has very little to do with its size. What’s more important is a diamond’s color, clarity and design.  So there you are.

 

And just think about it.  That huge rock on your hand will snag your cashmere sweater.  It will get entangled in your other bling.  It will make running your hands through your man’s hair a painful rather than a romantic experience.  And it will probably cause snickers and whispers at the office.  Although your friends and co-workers will  “ooo” and “ahh” while ogling your chunky ring in front of you, it might be a different story behind your back.  The words “pretentious” and “ostentatious” might be bandied about.

  

Still, not all good things come in small packages…

 

Yes, of course, it’s a no brainer that it’s not the size of the engagement ring, it’s the love you have for one another that matters.  But, let’s face it — aesthetically speaking— a .25 carat diamond in a solitaire setting tends to look like a lonely pinhead on your finger.  

 

So, if affordability is a factor (and there is absolutely no shame in that), don’t obsess with having a diamond engagement ring.  Go for other more wallet-friendly gemstones.  An opal or a sapphire in a beautiful setting will deliver just as much of a wow factor as a diamond ring.  

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Listen (or not) to what an engagement ring study says…

And the survey says:  a big, expensive engagement ring just might lead to your worst nightmare.

 

A 2014 study from Emory University drew a correlation between the price (generally dictated by the size) of the engagement ring and the probability of divorce.  The study found that the higher the price, the more likely the couple divorced.  Still, the study also found that men who cheaped out on a ring (spent less than $500), also had high divorce rates.

 

So, it looks like science is saying that somewhere in the middle between the very big and the very small is the sweet spot for the engagement ring size.  You can take heed…or not.

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If diamonds have been your BFF, and your man can afford a bigger ring, go for it!  You have to love your engagement ring.  To each her own.

 

But a bigger engagement ring does not necessarily mean it is better.  It does not mean your love and commitment is deeper.  If you’re not into showstopper bling and the price point is a consideration, go smaller — without any misgivings.  

 

Michele Obama’s engagement ring was a modest 1-carat diamond and she and her hubby are still going as strong as ever after more than 20 years!  

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Best Beach Wedding Hairstyles from Pinterest

Aruba, Jamaica, ooh I want to take ya…Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama…

 

The Beach Boys had it so right!  Who does not love a sandy-sunny beach with that vast expanse of shimmering, blue water?  As a wedding venue it truly is romance personified.  But this nuptials setting does come with some concerns.  Elemental ones, mainly:  the possibility of wind, sandy gusts, and Poseidon forbid—high waves!

 

A bride’s hairstyle for the beach must of course be fashion forward, but it should also anticipate possible Mother Nature temper tantrums.  No point in having intricate, tight curls pinned up high bouffant style – that balmy, breezy air has a tendency to play havoc with any over-contrived hair do.  Plus, one strong wind wallop, and that carefully arranged coiffure shifts into an awkward configuration!  Ooops!  Cancel the photo ops!  

 

So what’s a fashion-conscious beach bride to do?  

 

Twisting and Braiding Against The Wind

 

Well, she can consult Pinterest about the latest bridal hair designs for a start.  And Pinterest says: it’s all about braids, twists, half up-dos and buns this year.  And that’s just fab, because these styles are so beach-appropriate—soft, and natural. And the best thing of all? The braiding acts a perfect shield for your tresses against any wind surprises.  Bring it on, Zephyrus! Huff and puff away!

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If your locks are on the shorter side, not to worry. A good stylist savvy about extensions, can do wonders with any hair lengths and types to create all kinds of braided marvels.

 

And the variations and permutations are endless:  from the standard three-strand style to the nostalgic milkmaid or retro fishtail to the more sophisticated French or Dutch braiding.

Pair it with a low bun to get that more polished sheen, a half up do for a more relaxed vibe, or a half-down for that young bride feel.  Whatever mix-and-match you choose, the braided-bride look will rock on the beach.

 

And if you’re a Game of Thrones-obsessed (and who isn’t?), this option has an added attraction.  Is there a maiden in that iconic show that does not have a woven and twisted mane? Not likely.  So, live out your own little Thrones fantasy at your dream beach wedding, at least hair-wise!

 

Loosen It Up

What’s the beach all about? The sun and kicking back.  And a looser hair style will make you appear more in tune with this setting.  Think your quintessential California girl.  That slightly messy, sexy, tousled type of up do is so on trend.  The wisps blowing in the breeze may make your first kiss as man and wife slightly shaggy, but so what?   Just laugh it off.  The style is so charming and custom-made for seaside nuptials

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Ride The Waves

But for that hands-down beachy look, go for waves.  So in sync with the ocean!  Oh, and practical!  Have you ever tried to maintain straight, sleek hair with the mist spraying off the water and humidity?  Impossible.  But the wavy texture will stand up to the climate.  And with flowers or marine-themed trinkets woven into the wreath on top of your wavy locks flowing and shimmering in the sun, you’ll look like a beach goddess or a mermaid (sans the tail, of course).  How divine!

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Absolutely—a seashore wedding can be super romantic and so boho.  But, the wind, humidity, sandy gusts, and rain, are the stuff of many nuptials-on-the-beach nightmare stories. So prepare your tresses for any tough punches Mother Nature may throw.  And with the help of these Pinterest ideas, do it without giving up your fashion flair.   

 

One more word to the wise, though: skip the veil. Chasing it down the shore in the middle of “I dos”, or having it fetched back to the bridal party by a man wearing only tight speedos, is probably a memory you can do without!