May 6, 2015

DIY Brides


Not your typical Bridal Salon.

I recently discovered a popular section of NYC known as the garment district. M&J is a shop in this area that sells trims, buttons and fabrics with a specialty bridal department.


It’s rare to waltz into a NYC bridal salon without an appointment!

On the day of my visit I stepped into a fabulous sample sale showcasing bridal accessories such as Gatsby inspired hats and other vintage pieces. Take a peek at a few of my favorites.


1920’s themed wedding, anyone?

By now, I am sure Brides-to-be are asking what M&J and trimming has to do with the big day?

Perhaps brides would like to border their aisle with pearls? They may even wish to drape fabric over the chairs at the ceremony. I also like the idea of embellishing tablecloths in the ballroom with a delicate lace trim.

I entered the trimming store for inspiration. The sash on my bridesmaids’ dresses could use a touch of sparkle. Although excited for my city adventure, I was wildly unprepared for M&J’s floor to ceiling walls of trimming.


Just half of one wall. Overwhelming, right?

Without realizing, I had become a DIY, “do it yourself,” kind of bride. I have always admired women who craft their own bridal decor, flower by flower. The mother of my dear friend Jamie designed and created a beautiful installation to sweeten and personalize her daughter’s wedding day.


A magnificent hand crafted focal point for the reception.

~Kristin Vining Photography~

The flowers were made of silk dupioni fabric sewn in “tubes,” stuffed with old newspaper and coiled into the shape of petals. The flowers were then pinned to insulation boards and covered in white fabric. Jamie and her husband, Drew, chose neutral, soft colors for both their ceremony and reception. For this statement piece, Jamie’s mom utilized a romantic combination of champagne, cream, silver and blush pink fabrics.

After constructing the installation, Jamie and her mother placed pins and brooches throughout the boards. The bride vividly remembers spending most of Thanksgiving, one week before her March wedding, assembling the entire piece with the help of mom and bridesmaids. Although this project was an enormous undertaking, it was a labor of love well worth every petal.

Before leaving the city, I decided to purchase a few yards of a rhinestone trim from M&J.


My choice is hidden somewhere on this wall!

I plan to sew the beaded fabric on each sash to create four belts that shimmer down the aisle. Truthfully, I may save the sewing for a professional. Although I’m far from creating a complex flower installation, my visit to M&J does bring in a “do it yourself” aspect to my wedding planning.


~Dedicated to my Southern sister, Jamie. You have made Savannah feel like home. I can’t wait to see you and Drew at the wedding! ~


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