The Jewelry Box | November 2016
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Wedding Dress Problems: How Sexy is Too Sexy?


Theoretically, your wedding day is your own fabulous red-carpet affair, so if you want to strut down the aisle in the latest, barely-there bridal gown, it’s your prerogative, right?  

Maybe.  But realistically speaking, the perception of “too sexy” is in the eye of the beholder. So, if you don’t want the minister to blush through the ceremony and stammer delivering readings, while your aunts and uncles roll their eyes upwards for a possible explanation as to your bridal attire, you need to keep the “sexy” quotient to a balanced ratio. 


Private Placements

Nothing wrong with flashing a bit of what your mamma gave you at your red-carpet moment, but mimicking verbatim bare-it-all lingerie style get ups of the likes of Kim Kardashian, Beyoncé or Jennifer Lopez for your bridal gown may not go down so well with all the “dearly beloved gathered together in the sign of God … to join together this man and this woman in holy matrimony.” 

So, guideline numero uno — keep the more private parts private – at least for the ceremony.  Is your heart set on a bodycon gown with a deep plunging neckline and cutouts all over the place?  Fine, go for it.  But for some coverage at the altar consider an add-on piece, such as a stole or a cardigan or a veil —these pieces are easily discarded for that definitely more “loose” atmosphere of the reception!


To bosom or not to bosom

How much cleavage on display is appropriate for a wedding gown?  Well, if an infant in attendance is reaching towards you to be fed, you’ve gone too far.  If a friend who moonlights as an exotic dancer asks you to lend her your wedding dress, you’ve gone too far.

There is strapless and off the shoulder, and there is the deep plunging V neckline that reveals everything right down to the navel, or farther.  You can probably get away with that deep plunge if the exposed parts are visibly sheered over.  Sans sheer, you’re asking for a backlash.  Sans sheer and a side boob view, and you’re at risk of having your guests leave the ceremony shaking their heads in disbelief. 


Skin (over)exposure

If you want to hit that sweet spot in the sexy look—somewhere in the middle between the sweetly feminine and downright slutty—try and aim for a certain balance of both.  If you're going to do a deep plunging neckline, keep everything else simple, chic and PG.  And don’t make it more about the undergarments than the dress itself! 

Backless or barely-there backs (hello, Kim K!), are a current rave in bridal.   But keep in mind that it is your back that will be front and center for your guests.  So, if your back is exposed all the way to your tailbone, maybe you should consider a veil for the ceremony!


Add-ons and convertibles to the rescue

Today’s designers and brides are definitely opting for seductive —at the very least, or nearly X-rated—at the most— silhouettes, but at the risk of sounding like your grandmother, trendy and sexy doesn’t always mean appropriate for a wedding.  

So, if there is an issue with you wearing a barely-there gown you just absolutely adore for the ceremony, buy another more “decent” one and change into the sexy one for the reception.  Or cover up the over-exposed areas with some add-ons.  Another option is a convertible gown.   Might be fun to have a big traditional tulle skirt you can remove after the ceremony to reveal a sequined mini dress and your gorgeous legs! 

There is certainly nothing wrong with showing a little skin at your wedding.  Gowns with a bit of transparency in the lace to reveal the undergarments, minimal halter necks, and midriff-baring two-piece designs are ok.  But if your thigh-high-slit and super low-cut bustier gown leaves virtually nothing to the imagination, maybe it’s better to leave that one for the wedding night!

7 Proposal Ideas to Melt Her Heart

Are you planning to pop that fateful question to your girlfriend and are having nightmares about how to do it?   Take heart— no matter where it takes place or how it’s done, a marriage proposal by its very nature is romance personified, guaranteed to melt a woman’s heart!  That is assuming, of course, that the “proposer” and the “proposee” are on the same page with their feelings for each other!  But, at this stage of the game, you must be already pretty clued in, right?

Plan it right!

However, if you do want to make this auspicious occasion even more so, you need to think it through a bit.  There are literally hundreds of proposal scenario ideas floating around in the cyber world, ranging from the downright wacky and life-endangering (will your sweetheart actually hear you saying “will you marry me” while skydiving, snorkeling, or clinging to a precipitous mountain top?) to logistical ordeals costing you a down payment on your first home together.

Frankly, most women are less into the super creative adventure scenario than into “wow, he really knows me” approach when it comes to proposals.  So, think about what her personality and style is, her likes and dislikes, and what makes her bubble with excitement, and fashion your proposal setting accordingly.  

Here are some basic personality/proposal scenario categories to get you thinking…

The Traditional Girlfriend

Scenario:  An expensive, exclusive restaurant she’s always wanted to go to, with pre-arranged ring delivery by a white-gloved waiter, in a champagne glass or on a desert plate with that proverbial question inscribed in chocolate.  This is an old standby, but still one with great pedigree and effectiveness!



The Outgoing, Social Girlfriend

Scenario:  While out for a night of dancing, arrange with the DJ to pass you the mic so you can dedicate a song to her — her current favorite song or something from a romantic movie she loved —like Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On" from "Titanic" (although that may be a bit awkward, considering the fate of the lovers in the film).  Then at the end of the song, drop on your knee and propose on the dance floor.


The Outdoorsy/Nature Girlfriend

Scenario:  Do some research about the best spots in your locale — preferably ones that include breathtaking views with mountain peaks and romantic waterfalls.  Prepare a picnic basket that includes champagne and her favorite food.   Stealthily, place the ring under an interesting rock and point it out to her.  And you know the rest…



The Romantic Girlfriend

Re-enact a proposal scene from her favorite romantic movie or book.  Just be careful that your selection does not require some unrealizable setups!  Recreating 19th century England to propose to her as Mr. Darcy did to Elizabeth in Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, may be a bit unrealistic!

But, for instance, in The Wedding Singer Adam Sandler professes his love for Drew Barrymore by serenading her with a personalized song "Grow Old with You.”  If you’re musically inclined, a song written especially for your girlfriend to serve as a proposal will definitely melt her romantic heart! 



The Family Girlfriend

Scenario:  If you’re fairly sure about her “yes” and her family has a favorable outlook on you, proposing at the end of a family dinner will make her —and them —love you even more.  But, if you’re not that sure about either one or the other, don’t do it – it may prove to be a mighty awkward situation!



The Minimalist “No Fuss” Girlfriend

Scenario:  The spot you first met– that’s assuming you met somewhere appropriate and non-digital. But, if that’s the case, consider instead doing a night at home, cooking her favorite dishes (bonus points if you don’t cook, because of the special effort).  You may want to skip the dessert and later that night, slip the ring on her finger while she is sleeping.  Once she spots the sparkler, serve champagne and strawberries to celebrate!



The Adventurous Girlfriend

Scenario:  A vacation get-away in a warm climate.  Your options here are many!  From a walk on a dusky, deserted beach (the least risky, possibly the most romantic setting with the soft lapping of the waves and the twilight glow), to a knee drop at an ancient fountain or monument, to that “I’m glad I got travel insurance” option involving skydiving, snorkeling or a hot air balloon, if you must!


A marriage proposal is always romantic and memorable, as long as it involves a ring and an element of surprise, is centered around her favorite pastime or interest, and ideally executed a bended knee (still a treasured fantasy for most women!).   

Really, how much more romantic can it get than asking someone to be your partner for life, “for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part”?   Ok, so maybe not so much when it happens as she is holding that dreaded drugstore test stick signaling an awesome event in nine months, but even under these circumstances, it will remain a very poignant and memorable moment! 

Celebrity Brides: Best Bridal Accessories from our Favorite Starlets

Let me ask you something, ladies: if you’re looking for some wedding inspiration, are you going to remember some token necklace you saw on Facebook or Kim Kardashian’s? Our guess is the latter. So, if you want to find the right inspiration for your bridal bling, check out these wedding accessories from our favorite starlets….A little touch of something borrowed to make you shine even brighter.


The Flower Crown

Who says that flower crowns are only for Coachella and Snapchat filters?

Ashley Tisdale looks beautiful, carefree, and whimsical in her simple white and green flower crown. Instead of going traditional and letting your bouquet steal the floral spotlight, throw on a little something to make you look like a garden goddess.

This works even better for a ceremony or reception that’s outdoors, or even just for pictures like Ashley!


The New Tiara

Are flowers not your thing? Maybe diamonds are your best friend, so why not spring for the new tiara and mimic Kim’s dazzling headpiece. Just because we’re all Team Kimye now doesn’t mean that we can’t admire her accessories from her first wedding, right?

You’ll look like a modern princess with this diamond headpiece, which is great if you need to add a little sparkle to your special day.


The Lace Shoes

Sometimes a bride’s shoes are overlooked in weddings because of floor length dresses. But if you’re opting for something that gives a peek of your feet, or just want to show them off in photos, then it can be all about the shoes! No other accessories needed.

Whitney Port compliments her dress beautifully with a stunning pair of white floral shoes that give off the appearance of lace. This will especially work with a lace gown! Even if you’re not wearing a high-low dress, a perfect pair of heels like this will still make a difference.

They’re simple, they’re elegant, and they could be exactly what you need to strut down the aisle.


The Never-ending Veil

 “She looked like an angel.” Or a Victora Secret Angel!

Kate Grigorieva definitely lives up to her winged-title with her never-ending veil. Take a page out of her book and float down the aisle. You won’t need any other accessories! You’ll look like the picture of elegance and grace, and nobody will be able to take their eyes off of you (or your veil!) Imagine those wedding photos. Sorry, Victoria, but your secret’s out!


The Minimalist

Let your dress do the talking! All that you need on your wedding day is a beautiful dress, the love of your life, and a pair of stunning drop-earrings. This looks especially amazing with strapless dresses, as seen on Chrissy Teigen and Gabrielle Union. Stay classic. Go bare—show off those collarbones and don’t overdo it with the jewelry. Simplicity will always be in style.



You can glam up with a similar look with these magical tear drop clusters, featuring pear, marquise, and princess cut diamonds.


Add a little something special to your wedding day. You don’t have to be draped in pearls to compliment your perfect dress. These celebrity brides show how a little can go a long way. It all depends on you, your dress, and your dream for your wedding. Whether it’s a touch of florals, the right pair of shoes, or a classic earring, you’ll look radiant walking down the aisle with these starlet inspirations.


Best Engagement Ring Styles to Suit Your Finger Shape

Let’s be real-- we’ve all had an idea of our perfect wedding ring since we were young. And if not, then we’ve definitely considered it as we got older and “cooler”. Maybe it’s that oval cut that you saw in a bridal magazine last month. Maybe your favorite Instagram blogger has a princess cut, which you obsessively took ten screenshots of. Or, hey—maybe you were always rooting for Jackie and Michael in That ‘70s Show, so your jaw hit the floor when you saw Mila’s beautiful emerald cut.

But what looks good on one woman’s hand won’t necessarily fit yours. Everybody’s finger shape is different, and so, the design you want may not actually suit your hand. Don’t be worried though; your dream is not ruined! There’s a ring out there for every woman—you just have to find the right fit. And since you’ve already aced the hard part (getting the man), finding the ring style should be easy as saying “I do”.


If You Have Thick Fingers

It’s possible to make your fingers appear more slender with the right choice. The trick with thick fingers is to cover as much skin as possible. Choose broader diamond shapes, like the oval or emerald cut to make your fingers look slimmer. In terms of arrangement,  single-set diamonds tend to make thick fingers look wider, so why not try a trilogy engagement ring?


Why settle for one diamond when you could have three? Or, let’s get really crazy and choose a cluster of diamonds as shown beautifully by this engagement ring by Gottlieb & Sons.  The more the merrier, right? No complaining here!


If You Have Long Fingers

Well, you’ve been blessed! Most engagement ring styles work really well with long fingers. Aren’t you lucky?28779

If you want to go classic, then a round or princess cut will always look elegant on your hand. But, long fingers also have the amazing ability to support larger and more extravagant rings. We’re talking higher carat and colored, if you want. Think: Princess Diana, Beyonce, and Kim Kardashian levels of extravagant.


You’ll look Instagram-ready in almost anything! Just make sure that your nails are done!


If You Have Skinny Fingers

When choosing an engagement ring for slender fingers, the important thing is not to overpower them. So, even though you may think that a huge statement ring is what you want, you’ll realize that your hand may look lost underneath it.


It’s all about looking proportionate, but that doesn’t mean that you still can’t have a gorgeous ring! Smaller stones can help make your fingers appear wider, so why not go for that cushion, oval, or round cut? Speaking of which, can’t we all gush over Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds’ love story (and her oval ring)?


If You Have Small Fingers

If people often marvel over your petite hands, you’ll have to keep your ring proportions small. Even though you may lust after a statement ring that you saw on TV, you don’t want to overwhelm your dainty fingers with something massive!29734

The key is to elongate the appearance of the fingers. So, you do have quite a few options: oval, pear, round, princess, marquise, heart … See? Look at all of the radiant possibilities!



At the end of the day, every woman can find the perfect ring. Whether it be large and extravagant or delicate and classic, your ring will make everyone swoon if it fits your finger perfectly. Like the man, the right ring is out there-- you just have to be patient.

Memorable Engagement Rings from Romantic Movies

Ok, ladies, let’s get out the Kleenex— it’s going to be a tearful ride.  There are few scenes in movies that make us sob, whimper and weep more than those that involve a marriage proposal—especially if that moment is shared between two star-crossed lovers.  Somehow all the twists and turns of outrageous fortune endured —by both the lovers and the viewers—are made all worthwhile when finally, love is proclaimed and pledged forever.  We’re starting to tear up already….

And when that love is proclaimed and accepted, the ring is often brought out and slipped on the finger of the woman in the equation.  However, most of the time, the moment is so dramatic that the camera rarely pans to the hand being ringed – which is understandable from a directorial point of view.  But as much as we want to see the emotion and passion on the faces of the two characters, this thought also sometimes crosses our minds:  “I wonder what kind of ring he gave her…”  Right?

Let’s take a look at five ultra-romantic movies that titillate us with both scenarios.


Carrie and Mr. Big: Sex and the City 2

Carrie’s on-again-off-again love affair with Mr. Big, spanned many years of television episodes and one movie sequel before our quintessentially 21st century romantic heroine got that famous black diamond ring from Mr. Big—the today’s version of Jane Austen’s Mr. Darcy—in the second sequel.  Why a black diamond, Carrie asks?  “Because you’re not like anyone else,” he proclaims.  Sigh!

The ring is a stunner – it’ a 5 carat black diamond surrounded by 80 natural round white pave diamonds, all set in 18 karat white gold.  Unique and extraordinary, it seems also to have left a legacy – a trend toward non-traditional engagement rings kicked into second gear post-movie launch. You can find this trend, featuring black diamonds at Gottlieb & Sons.

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Rhett and Scarlett, Gone With The Wind

Gone with the Wind is considered by most cinephiles as the most beloved and popular film of all time.  Made in 1939, it is adapted from Margaret Mitchel’s best-selling Civil War and Reconstruction Period novel of no less than 1,037 pages!  So no wonder, many of the details in the novel were omitted from the cinematic version!  One of them was the ring that mesmerized-by-love, rogue with the heart of gold, Rhett Butler, gave to the spoiled-to-the-core, conniving but charming and feisty Scarlett.  2

As Ms. Mitchel describes in the book, "The ring Rhett brought back from England was large indeed, so large it embarrassed Scarlett to wear it….Oh, feedlededee, to quote Scarlet, what would this ring have actually looked like?  Maybe like this.



Edward and Bella, The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

By all accounts, the engagement ring Edward, the brooding vampire had given to his love-forever Bella in the novel was a challenge to create for the film.  The writer, Stephanie Meyer described it in the book as a delicate piece with an oval face “set with slanting rows of glittering round stones.”  

The cinematic version of the ring went through various configurations before it came close to its original design —but possibly not its dimensions— shots in the film show an oval, antique-looking pave setting bauble of gigantic proportions.  Find your dream Twilight-inspired ring by Gottlieb & Sons with this elegant Vintage inspired shared prong set double halo engagement ring with an oval center diamond.


Clare and Henry:  The Time Traveler’s Wife

When Henry DeTamble, a Chicago librarian with a paranormal genetic disorder that causes him to randomly time travel, slips a ring on the finger of his sleeping wife-in-the-past-and-future-but-not-in-the present, Clare Abshire, we are all taken by how gorgeous this bauble is.  Well, it would have to be quite an extraordinary rock to get her to marry him, right?  After all, the guy is gone gallivanting all over the time continuum all the time.

The ring is a substantial oval diamond set horizontally on the band—it’s…dare I say it…of timeless design! Discover a similar design with Gottlieb & Sons superb infinity twist shared prong set semi-mount engagement ring with a horizontal center diamond.



Rose and Jack:  Titanic

Ok, so maybe this ring from one of the biggest romantic movies ever, Titanic , did not pledge the two star-crossed lovers forever, but it sure played an important role in their fate, and resonated historically.  As Jack Dawson and Rose DeWitt Bukater fall in love, Rose wears a highly visible engagement ring from her haughty, elitist, dis-fiancé, Cal – and it becomes a symbol of the conflict brewing around them.  

Interestingly, a similar ring was found on the real Titanic’s wreckage, and inspired the cinematic version.  Set in a vaulted and tiered, deco style, silver stetting, it has a large central diamond flanked by baguette style diamonds on either side. Certainly, a very beautiful ring, but obviously, no match for Jack’s “King of the world” passion!


Live this classic dream with the Gottlieb & Sons version, featuring a stunning Square Emerald Cut diamond and two bullet shaped side diamonds.

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These great romantic films are definitely in the “chick-flick” category, so if you’ve set your sights on one of these rings and are planning to get your guy to watch the film in which the bauble makes an appearance (literally or figuratively) in order to give him some subtle hints, you might be out of luck!  But you can certainly try!  And if he does agree to watch the film with you, he must love you a lot, you lucky girl!

5 Bridal Fashion Cues from Eva Longoria

Love and friendship was the theme of Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria’s wedding to boyfriend Jose ‘Pepe’ Antonio Baston in Mexico last May.  Surrounded by a star-studded bevy of 200 of her closest friends and family, Eva basked in the glow of affection from every corner.  “The centerpiece of a wedding should be love,” she said in an interview.  And the reason she chose her BFF Victoria Beckham to design her wedding dress?  "I asked Victoria to do my dress because I wanted it to be special and made with love – and I knew Victoria would make it with love.”


And the former Spice Girl/Celebrity Designer definitely did pour all her love into making the dress, because Eva not only looked astonishing, but also so on point in every way.  And there are many fashion cues we can take away from studying this stunner.  


Petite brides, simpler frocks

Eva Langoria may be a big star, but her physical stature is just below the average for a woman – 5”2 inches.  The best looks for a petite woman are uncomplicated, clean-line cuts that help to create a body-lengthening illusion.  Puffy, fussy designs with much a-do about them tend to make smaller-stature women look rather boxy and stumpy.  A ball gown, for instance, would have swallowed up Eva!  And that’s why her simple, sheath-and-mermaid combo gown is a perfect choice.  After all, we want to see her, not just the dress!


If you got it, flaunt it

Eva Langoria is known for her incredible figure.  And although the gown was of simple design, it was figure-hugging with a glove-like fit!  Eva looked sexy in this fitted slim-line design with a sweetheart neckline and elegant straps.  The delicate material of the gown clung to her in all the right places!  


The “less-is-more” factor

Eva’s gown relies on its fabulous cut to make the statement, not dramatic embellishments.  There are no arrays of beads, sequins, lace or intricate 3D appliques, just the flawless flow of ingeniously draped material, all the way to the floor.  This is a perfect look for those brides-to-be who like the uncomplicated design and want to leave the wow-factor to elegant silhouettes.  


Accessories to fit the gown vibe

The clean, sophisticated look of Eva’s gown was enhanced by the elegant simplicity of her accessories.  She opted for only one dainty necklace to complete her look – and we’re betting that her jewellery box is filled to the brim with expensive, luxurious bling she could have adorned herself with!  


Of course, with her famous thick, glossy long hair she didn’t need many accessories.  But, her hairstyle was restrained and chic as well – just barrel type waves held back by a small hair accessory.  A bouquet of delicate Calla Lilies punched up the look.  Everything tied together so well!  A harmony of refinement and style.


Say it with fab fabric

What adds so much to her gown’s five-star, sumptuous vibe is its fabulous fabric – an eggshell white silk crepe.  Lightweight for easy draping and flow, it has a luxurious subtle sheen that gives the dress that fluid styling.  Great choice to create a look that is elegant, graceful and sophisticated.  


The role of time and place

Eva’s simple but elegant ensemble is a fitting reflection of who she is and where she chose to say “I do.”  By her own admission, this wedding wasn’t her “first rodeo” (we think it was her third, but who is counting!), so she just wanted “something sweet and simple and elegant” for her gown.   What Eva wants, Eva gets, right?  And that look was definitely delivered!  


Serendipitously—but more likely by design—Eva’s simple, vintage-inspired gown was also a perfect fit for the site of the wedding – a small Mexican town by a lake, replete with charming cobbled streets and well-preserved colonial buildings.  The bride looked like she was part of that enchanting country landscape!


You may not have a BFF who is a famous designer-celebrity, but you can certainly take a cue from Eva Langoria and entrust the making of your bridal gown to someone whose work you admire and who is passionate about making you look the best you can on your special day.  After that, it’s just a matter of following your vision, sticking to time-honored design maxims, and making sure everything about the ensemble harmonizes with the look and place—just like Eva Langoria did!

Wedding Inspiration: Best Instagram Bridal Looks


Instagram sure is a virtual kaleidoscope of bridal looks, but there are definitely a couple of major style themes at play among all these pics.  Showing skin, or creating the tantalizing illusion that skin is shown, ranks as numero uno. Our Instagram brides seem to want a little—and sometimes a lot —of “sexy” accompanying them to the altar!  Whether it’s cutouts, plunging necklines, drop shoulders, or sheer everything, bridal sensuality is in.

A contender theme in Instagram bridal looks is the abundance of rich details on the fabric that adds interest and dimension to the gowns.  Arrays of beads, sequins, lace and extraordinary 3D appliques, animate the wedding dresses like never before.  The florals and blooms are literally popping out of the material!   

Here are just a few of Instagram dress-spirations!


The Queen Bride

Doesn’t this bride look like she just stepped out of a painting depicting a queen after a coronation? The high crown is a bold statement, and it gives her a very regal vibe.  Wisely, she chose only a subtle choker as her bling—with the embellished bodice and the eye-catching crown, anything too chunky or glittery around her neck would have been too much visually. 


The off-the-shoulder design is a way to show some skin, but still remain queenly modest.  With the ball gown skirt just grazing the floor with its embroidered edging, this look is romantic and polished.  This one is for a fearless bride who wants to be a queen bee on her wedding day!


The Fairy Tale Princess Bride

What a dreamy look!  This is a dress Snow White could have easily worn to her wedding.  No doubt, all seven dwarfs would have approved—even Grumpy!


Thanks to the ingenious mega-use of 3D florals and sheers all over the bodice, sleeves and décolletage, this fantasy creation simply mesmerizes.  

The tiered skirt is a vision of cascading blooms, seemingly just barely attached to the tulle gown. Doesn’t it all create an ethereal impression?  You can just imagine the bride in this concoction not merely walking but floating down the aisle!


The Sophisticate Bride

Somehow this look manages to have both a vintage and contemporary feel.  That’s quite a feat! 

The plunging V-neckline and the figure hugging sheath design is definitely a today’s trend, but the belt and the intricate lace on the bodice and the sleeves harken back to the turn of the 20th century styling.  The long sleeve has been a craze since Kate Middleton’s 2011 wedding to Prince William—her regal dress featured long lace sleeves very similar to these. 


The “I’ve-Got-Great-Abs” Bride

The cropped top is not for everyone.  But for those brides-to-be who have sweated bullets at the gym toning the core, this design is a great way to show off what they have accomplished. 


Although it’s certainly a skin flashing ensemble, it’s little more than a sliver of the skin that’s on show.  And combined with the long traditional train, the gown still retains all the bridal respectability you can expect. 


The Flower Bride

Flower-power galore!  The bodice of this gown is amazing, with large, graphic florals and beads dominating the look. 


The neckline is deep, exposing as much of the cleavage as decently possible, but the flowers all over the place make it look so innocent.  The bodice is an example of another bridal trend, the use of blush in traditionally all-white wedding ensembles. 

With a simple hair style and a huge bouquet of wild flowers that seem to mesh with her dress, this bride looks like Artemis, the Greek goddess of nature!


The Peek-A-Boo Bride

We hope that the father of the bride approves of the dress! It may not be exactly what he would have chosen for his little girl— it’s pretty much the epitome of the “naked”, lingerie-style that is sweeping the bridal world! 


This see-through —but covered in critical places— gown with a deep plunging va-va-voom neckline, is at once simple and sexy. 

The father of the bride may have some reservations, but we’re pretty sure the groom will be wowed watching this bewitching creature walking down the aisle towards him!


While these Instagram brides still rely on many traditional elements of the wedding gown, it seems boudoir and lingerie-inspired designs and high tech 3-D appliques are having a major moment.  But in the end, the key is finding the right dress that accentuates your best assets.  Is the dress you’re thinking of getting figure-flattering, and does it make you feel great?  Then, it’s a keeper!

How to Choose a Wedding Dress for Your Body Type


Are you looking for that perfect dress for your upcoming nuptials?  And how many times have you heard this piece of advice: “Choose a dress silhouette that flatters your best features and hides the less desirable ones.” Probably a few!  Easier said than done, right? But here’s some good news. Once you’ve armed yourself with the knowledge of what body type you are and what dress silhouette best suits that body type, it is almost as easily done as said.


First thing, first – get to know your body type…

On this voyage of discovery, you’ll just need your trusty tape measure and a few minutes of your time. Take down the measurements of your bust, waist and hips – and no cheating!

So, are your bust and hip measurement almost the same and the waist not far behind? You’re in the “straight” body type category.  You’re probably athletic and have what’s referred to as a “boyish” figure.  

Are your hips larger than your bust?  You’re a “pear.”  If the reverse is true, you’re an “apple.”  Doesn’t this all sound tasty?  

If your measurements are in the hips > bust > waist formulation, you’re a “spoon.”  But, if your bust and hip dimensions are almost equal while your waist is much smaller, you have the “hourglass” body type (hello, Marilyn Monroe!).  


Finding the Right Gown for Your Silhouette


The Traditional Ball Gown

This design is most effective for all those brides-to-be in the “straight” body type category. The fitted bodice cinched at the waist, and the flaring full skirt will make you look curvier. The “hourglass,” the “spoon” and “pear” ladies will also look good in this classic line – the full skirt will both de-emphasize or emphasize the hips and thighs area—whichever ruse is required.  But, if you’re of petite stature, this cut is not the best choice – you’ll look all swallowed up by all this tulle!


The Wavy Mermaid

The Mermaid style just begs for the “hourglass” and the two fruit body type brides-to-be who want to show off their curves.  And your curves will certainly be eye-catching in this tapered, form-hugging skirt that follows the line of the hips and thighs, flaring out around the knee.  But, if you’re not comfortable in confining scales or tight clothing, swim away from this one!


Sheath (aka the Column)

A great look for the sleek, “straight” figures! This form outlining dress flows loosely, naturally creating the illusion of curves.  It also adds length to the body, so if you’re petite and trim, this is the ideal design for you.  But, if you’re a curvy “pear” or an “hourglass,” this one is to be avoided – the pears will look unbalanced, and the hourglass brides will end up looking boxy.


The Slinky Drop Waist  

If you have that hourglass figure or are apple-formed and have a trim core, the drop waist style is for you.  This design really hugs your waist and hips, flaring out slightly below the waistline around the hip area. The straight-type body types and spoons, however, beware!  This cut tends to make us seem even less curvy, and will accentuate the lower portion of the figure.  

The Trumpet

Hourglass brides-to-be who want a formfitting but not too cumbersome ensemble rejoice!  This straight-lined skirt flares from the knee toward the hem, forming a —yes, you guessed it, a trumpet shape!  

The All-Rounder A-line

The most versatile cut of all!  Pretty much good for all body types.  Narrow at the top, it extends out along the body in the shape of the letter “A”.  The fuller skirt and cinched waist will give curves to those of us lacking in that department, but will also de-emphasize the hips/thighs area if so required.  That’s the reason it’s one of the most popular skirt silhouettes!    

But, if you want to rock that sexy vibe as you strut down the aisle, this one may be a bit lacking in the sizzle factor!

Remember, these are only guidelines.  Your body type may not fit perfectly into any of the categories, but at the very least, it will hover around it.  

Ultimately, if you really have your heart set on a particular dress, there are no rules against choosing whatever you want. It’s how you feel wearing your dress that matters most!

How to Buy a Diamond: Looking at the 4 C's

You don’t need a degree in gemology to find that perfect diamond for the love of your life, although that would probably make your quest for this holy grail a snap!  Your mission is not rocket science, but it’s not a piece of cake either.  You want to get the best you can afford, and not sound like a total doofus talking to the sales rep.  The question is: what is the best?

A pricey (will she say “Yes”?) type of purchase like this needs some prior research.  And that’s what we’re here for.  So, ready to be enlightened?

The good news is that there is an actual system for diamond evaluation – it’s called the 4 Cs.  Each C refers to one of the diamond’s four most important characteristics—Color, Clarity, Cut and Carat—and each one’s quality is expressed in numerical and graded ratings.   The final value of a diamond is based on the combination of all four grading’s.  That makes sense, no?  A bit like your average student performance rating back in school....


C 1:  Color

Colorless diamonds are the most expensive because they are rare.  As with anything, rarity and demand carries a high price tag.

Most diamonds have tints of yellow or brown, and the color category is rated based on how much tint is present in the gem.   

Grades D-F:  diamond is colorless

Grades G-J:  diamond is near-colorless

Grades K-M:  diamond has some faint yellow tint

Grades N-R:  diamond has a very light yellow tint

Grades S-Z:  diamond is light yellow

Subtle differences in color can dramatically affect a diamond’s value. Two diamonds of the same clarity, weight, and cut can differ in value based on color alone. Even the slightest hint of color can make a dramatic difference in value.

Most stones in the D-G range will likely look very similar to you, but you may start to see a very slight tint at around the H grade.  

C2:  Clarity

I know you want to get a perfect diamond for your chosen one, but flawless diamonds are generally seen only in the movies or on the fingers of multi-billionaires.  Most diamonds have internal and external flaws (referred to as inclusions and blemishes) to one degree or another, which affect their clarity.  And it’s this degree that drives the rating of its characteristic.


The Centenary diamond is famous for being a perfect flawless diamond, both internally and externally

What are these flaws?  Well, blemishes include scratches and nicks on a diamond’s surface, and inclusions are whatever is trapped inside of the gem, such as another tiny diamond (and no, that’s not a value-added bonus), or other mineral crystals.   

Clarity grading is done under 10-power (10x) magnification.

FL — IF = Flawless 

(Only Oprah can probably afford a diamond of this grade.)

VVS1 — VVS2 = Very, Very Slightly Included. 

Internal flaws (inclusions) are very difficult to see by a professional grader under magnification.

VS1 — VS2 = Very Slightly Included. 

Diamonds have minor inclusions that are difficult to somewhat easy for a grader to see when viewed under 10x magnification. 

SI1 - SI2 = Slightly Included

Most SI2s are eye clean while almost all SI1s are eye clean. 

I1- I3 = Included

Inclusions easily visible to the naked eye.

The lower grade stones may not be the prettiest, but they can still morph into a dazzling rock under the fingers of a talented craftsman.  And that brings us to probably the most important characteristic of the diamond:  the Cut.


C3:  The Cut

The cut refers to how the diamond is shaped to allow for light to go through it and reflect back.  Basically, it’s the way light enters and exits a diamond. That light path is what gives the diamond its brilliance and dazzle – or as your sales rep will refer to as “fire.”  With a masterful cut even a yellow “frozen spit” rock can give off fire like Rihanna's diamond!  

In a well-cut diamond, light enters the top and exits the top, absorbing light and reflecting it back in “fireworks”. When a diamond is cut too shallow or too deep, the light disperses from the bottom and sides, making it look duller, darker and smaller. Yet, keep in mind that cut grades only apply to round diamonds.

We’re not going to get bogged down by the many mathematical algorithms that go into the proper precisions of the cut.  For your purposes, the grading certification for the cut should say “Ideal”, “Excellent” or “Very Good.”.  Or you can just rely on your eyes:  Does the diamond sparkle less than the others on the display? Does it look dark when you look into it?  Does it give off a “lifeless” impression?  Then it’s best to keep on searching.


C4:  Carat

Most people think that carat signifies the diamond’s brilliance and power as a gem, but it actually refers to its weight.  Carat is a unit of weight measurement. One carat weighs one-fifth of a gram (.20g) – about the weight of a paper clip.  Popular carat weights are ½ ct, ¾ ct, 1 ct., etc.

This category is a bit tricky, because you’d think that the bigger the carat the more valuable the diamond, right?  But that’s not always the case.  A big diamond poorly cut and with cloudy appearance will be less attractive and therefore less valuable than a small, well-cut diamond with very good clarity.  So “bigger is better” is not necessarily true in a diamond selection.  Still, given equal quality cut and clarity, a bigger diamond will certainly be more valuable.  It’s all relative.


In the end, the combination of all 4 Cs is what will determine the unofficial 5th C:  the cost. One more piece of advice.  The sales rep needs to show you documents showing the diamond’s authenticity and gradings.  Just remember, color tells you how close to the flawless standard the diamond is, clarity tells you how many imperfections it has, and carat tells you how big it is.  But, pay most attention to the “cut” – that is the deal-breaker!

6 Stunning Bridal Earring Looks from Pinterest

There is a school of thought that says it’s the bridal necklace that’s the star of the show, but we beg to differ.  Unless you have the neck of a swan, bold necklaces tend to crowd the décolletage-face area. So, in some cases, it’s better to forget the necklace, and draw attention to your radiant face with a pair of awesome earrings.  And the choices are plenty. From traditional to modern, subtle to bold, you can make any statement you want with these baubles. Get ready to replicate these gorgeous Pinterest looks with Gottlieb & Sons fine jewelry. Here are 6 gems from Pinterest we’d like to put in our own ears if we were about to glide to the altar!


Decadent Studs

What better way to bedazzle your face than a fine pair of studs that are dressed up with unique convertible earring jackets? These are quite chunky and ornate, so the hair style is kept very simple, and nothing glittery competes with them at the neckline. The look is sweet and charming, but with a touch of sophistication.  


Elegant Drops

These pieces look good enough to eat!  The drop design is a favorite among brides – it has a feminine and classic feel, and will go with any traditional dress. Take inspiration with precious black & white diamond earrings by Gottlieb & Sons. The black and white motif certainly offers an interesting and fabulous twist on conventional diamond earrings. Who’s ready to be unique?


Romantic Chandeliers

Show off your trendsetting style with a pair of chandelier earrings.   Long and elaborate, these dangling earrings are a bolder look.  Best with a long neck and strong earlobes! To achieve this look, go for all diamond chandelier earrings by Gottlieb & Sons. They feature a vine-like design that’s truly fit for a princess.


Magnificent Color

Bridal earrings don’t have to be only pearl and platinum. Color in wedding bling is so today! From ruby red to cobalt blue, splashes of color in a bride’s jewelry pulls a visual punch with an edgy feel.  And with impressive sapphire danglers by Gottlieb & Sons you’ll also be adding that proverbial “something blue” to your wedding ensemble!


Playfully Unique

Shoulder dusters speaks volumes about your modern style.  The funky design is a unique choice.  If you’re a traditional kind of girl, these may not be for you, but if your taste runs into the avant-garde, these will give you that look.  We see this pair by Gottlieb & Sons going well with a minimalist dress or even bridal trousers. Bonus?  You can easily wear these for other special occasions with your soon-to-be husband!


Modern Bride

While the trendy cuff earring design may be pushing the modern envelope for nuptials, this pair from Pinterest straddles a nice middle ground. The leafy design says traditional, but the cuffing around the ear says that the bride is a stylish, today’s woman.  Is this you? Gottlieb & Sons offers a similar concept with these lovely yet edgy pair of inside-out hoops, offering the ideal blend of glamor and trendiness. 


No matter what style of earrings you’ll choose for your wedding ensemble, keep in mind the proportions of your face (smaller face with smaller earrings) and the length of your neck (shorter neck, no danglers).  And go lightly on the other accessories, or your look will end being remembered as the battle of the bling!  But do wear them.  As Estee Lauder, the woman who gave us all those great cosmetics bearing her name, declared, “Trust and love are wonderful, but don’t forget the earrings!”