Monday, December 28, 2009

Ahead of my time

So apparently the NYT just figured out that a palindrome date is happening soon (thank to my friend, D, for the link!).  Oh, Dr. Inan, you are about one year too late in the palindrome date discussion - blushing brides all over America (where the MMDDYYYY format is most dominant) figured it out about 3 nanoseconds after the rings were slipped onto their fingers.  Can you figure out the NYT's puzzle (linked above)?

01-02-2010, yeah baby!

Finishing Touches

Along with the pomanders and bouquet, I cranked out a clutch.  With my accessory budget dwindling from my schizophrenic shoe purchases, I was left with next to zilch for a clutch.  Do I need a clutch? No.  Do I want a clutch? Yes.  I plan on carrying a small point and shoot, my lipstick, my ID, some cash, and my Blackberry.  How else will I be able to twitter at the reception, while looking good and sipping champagne??? (JK, I may or may not actually sign on to twitter to update from my reception).

Anyways, I knew the look I wanted (slender and clean) and already had the material as leftover from the pomanders, so I started searching for a purse frame.  There were surprisingly few sources, but I found a frame that I thought would work from an Etsy seller.  I was at first concerned that it was shipping from overseas (sometimes I've had things that take a month to ship, etc), but the shop had an excellent track record.  Thai Supplies sent the frame right away and more quickly than some domestic sellers with whom I've worked.  Perfecto!

 Sourced from Thai Supplies Website
After playing with some of the extra fabric I had, I decided that I wanted to buy some blue fabric to line the inside.  The total cost for the blue taffeta was about $4.00.  I followed this tutorial from U Handbag's blog.  She has a ton of really great tips and tutorials for many different styles.  I made a pattern with some tissue paper and then cut out two satin pieces, two taffeta pieces, four interfacing pieces and two lace overlay pieces.

The sewing was extremely easy.  Even if you're not super talented and have a lead foot (insert photo of me sewing like a bat outta you know where), this project will turn out ok.

The part that was not so easy was gluing the material into the frame.  It's a bit messy and I thought I could have used two more hands.

If you're super OCD, the inside may bother you a little.  I'm pointing to the visible stitching that I had to do in order to close the bag.  If you're a super sneaky sewer, you probably could have done a better job than me at hiding the stitches.  For me, this worked just fine.

Another DIY accessory I will be wearing is my birdcage veil at the reception.  You've seen it in my hair trial pics (here, here, and here) and fitting pics and I promised a little more detail.  Others have done fantastic tutorials that you can follow (Mrs. Powder Puff), but if you're more organic and just play with craft items, I'll tell you my secrets for crafting a birdcage veil with fascinator.

I started by playing with some excess tulle from my cathedral veil while I was on the phone.  I was bunching it and re-bunching until I realized what I was doing with my hands and knew that I need to get out some needle and thread because inspiration had struck!

I tacked in a few quick stitches and then grabbed a silk flower from the pomander grab bag of extra materials.  It was quite large, so I took it apart and set aside the two largest layers from the bottom.  I tacked the remaining petals and the veil base together with another few stitches.  I fished out some feathers and picked through until I found ones that curled in interesting ways.  I hot glued those bad boys in between the layers.  Then I cut a circle of felt and made a few slices so that I could work a clip into it.  The finishing touch was a small rhinestone pin which I pinned on, rather than hot gluing so that I could reuse it in the future if I wished.

All told, I made way more accessories than I thought I would.  Luckily, I enjoyed the crafting.  With several of my friends in the throes of wedding planning, I'm secretly hoping that I'll get to unleash my inner artist some more over the next few months!

With those two projects out of the way, I'm completely finished with my accessories.  Are you still looking for your finishing touches? 

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Stitches, Feathers and Glue; A Flower for Me and You

Enough ho-hum!  Enough with the Murphster!  I just got a big W on my scoreboard in the series of Wedding vs. Palindrome Bride!  Amidst curling and flooding, I finished making my bouquet, bridesmaids' pomanders, and grandmothers' corsages.  If you remember the bouts that I made, you'll know that I'm a trigger happy DIY feather fiend.  The ladies of the wedding party will not be left out of the feathery, wintery goodness!

For my bouquet, I used white silk lillies for some va-va-voom, along with hand sewn flowers and vintage brooches.  I wrapped the dowel rod handle with some quilt lining to add extra width and comfort, then I secured silk ribbon with pearl headed corsage pins and hot glue.

I incorporated a marabou feather boa, weaving it around the larger feathers and using it as a filler.  You can see it a little bit better in this close up.  I love how it softens the overall look - I almost want to snuggle my bouquet!  The brooch below is a little something blue, the locket on the handle is the one with Pap Pap's photo, and you may recognize the feathered friend in the last detail shot.

Back when I thought that 6" was the perfect styrofoam ball size, I bought all the styrofoam for 5 Palindromaids pomanders and my bouquet.  Since I used one for mock up purposes, I could not exchange it when I returned to Michael's for 4" balls.  I don't know why, but the $4.99 that I already paid for the one 6" ball was really eating at me, so I decided to use it for my bouquet.  Looking at it now, I probably could have gone smaller, but I rationalized it back then by saying that my bouquet should be bigger than the Palindromaids' flowers.  For reference, I took a shot of me holding it.  In pajamas.  In the middle of the afternoon. 

Shall we play a little game of "I Spy?"  I spy a menu chalkboard wannabee.  I spy a card box in training.  I spy the 3rd Season of Gilmore Girls from Netflix.  I spy Christmas gifts for the Palindromaids that I never got in the mail.  I spy a hot glue gun.  I spy the Palindromaid pomanders.

I've had the pomanders hanging from my fold out kitchen table cabinets for over 3 months now.  They're permanent fixtures at this point, and I hope that I can pry the hangers off of the hook.

Each of the pomanders ended up having a little personality.  I wish I could take the credit for handcrafting the personality to each Palindromaid, but what happened was much more random.  I started out thinking that I would make all of the fabric flowers first and then affix them to the styrofoam.  In reality, I finished what I thought would be enough flowers, to find out that it was only half the amount of needed flowers.  So I would make batches here and there out of one kind of fabric at a time.  Then I would adhere them all to the same pomander because I felt like if I finished one whole one, that I would feel better.  Each pomander ended up with more of one kind of fabric flower.  After scrutinizing each pomander, and basing part of the decision on the ratio of the length of the ribbon handle to the height of the Palindromaid, I made assignments.

Palindromaid of Honor E has airy tulle flowers from the scraps of my veil project.

The only reason I ever finished the corsages was because I was stuck at home amidst flood waters with nothing much to do besides watch Gilmore Girls and hot glue feathers to more fabric flowers.

When I had decided on fabric flowers, I thought I was inventive and cool.  After seeing so many fresh flower alternatives around, now I know I'm just cool.  :)  For me, making my own flowers has been relaxing and rewarding.  That sounds trite, but when I focused on this project, other wedding stresses faded.  Do you have a wedding project that helped to melt away the stress?

Friday, December 25, 2009

Hair and Makeup Trial, Take Four, Five and Six

Or, How I Used Hot Rollers.  Or How Hair and Makeup Overtook My Shoe Nightmare.

Well color me pink and call me a hot roller.  After hair trials 1, 2, and 3,  I rolled and teased my way through 3 more trials at home.

As seen on the far left, I think I was the most successful at my first try. The waves on the right side of the picture are as close to my inspiration as I've gotten, but a large portion on the left side just didn't end up curling.  I also didn't have a drop of hairspray in my house (I don't remember the last time I used hairspray).  My second try in the middle was quasi-successful, but again, I didn't have hairspray and one roller rebelled.  My third try yesterday involved a bottle of Pantene Extra Hold and turned out the most dubious of all.  My besmirched face says it all.  I think the hairspray just ended up weighing down my hair. 

Ms. P continued to search for hair stylists while I experimented at home.  I think we've found a winner, but with only single digit days until the wedding and my dream stylist across the state, I'm going to have to brave it without a trial.  It's a gamble, but after seeing her online portfolio, I'm willing to throw the dice! 

Did you leave anything to chance on your Big Day?  Or do you think I'm off my rocker for committing without a trial?

PS: I did gain something from my trials at home - a perfect lip color! Maybelline's Superstay Lipcolor in Flame.  I put it on at 8:30 am on Christmas Eve, ate a Wawa Hoagie, moisturized twice with chapstick because I had left the stick in the trunk, remoisturized correctly before Church, and it stayed put for 12 hours.  Palindrome Bride got her red lipstick AND it won't kiss off!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Meet my friend, Murphy

Murphy is one devilish guy.  He has this personal law that he lives by, and it goes something like this: If it can go wrong, it will.  Murphy is like the kid you don't really want to play with because he breaks all your toys, but you just can't seem to hide from him.  It's like he finds you in the tree house, at the pool, on the playground.  He's got a knack for being in all the same places as you.

Murphy came in for unexpected visit.  He's like the 12th cousin twice removed from Cousin Eddie.  He's been staying with me for a while and doesn't have plans to leave.  This is a small piece of havoc he wrought in my life over the weekend:

I was driving to my 4th hair trial (story coming soon!) when I got trapped by a flash flood, blew a tire driving over a curb to avoid said flood, and then spent 4 hours in a 7-11 waiting for the flood waters to recede, all the while some large, intimidating men (whom the 7-11 employees guessed were strung out) tried to bust through the locked door.  And that is the short story.

(That's my poor little Corolla with the blown front tire and the missing hub cap!)
All of this to say, that with the wedding just days away now, I've come to terms with the fact that Murphy isn't leaving before then.  Things will continue to go wrong not the way I had planned.  My entire Saturday, and the major portions of each day since then, have been spent dealing with car issues instead of tying up last minute wedding loose ends.  As I learned on a couple of trips to the Pacific for conferences, the key trait to have when dealing with Murphy is flexibility - rolling with the punches.  Sometimes, life has a way of double crossing Murphy.  Something will go wrong, but in the end it turns out better than you could have planned it.  Sometimes though, it just gets so absurd, you have to laugh.  In that way, Murphy is double crossed again because you have a hilarious story to tell at dinner parties for the rest of your life.  So I say, "Bring it on, Murph!  Bring it!"

Do you have a Murphy or real cousin Eddie that will be attending your wedding?  How have you been dealing with unexpected snafus during the planning?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hair and Makeup Trial, Take Three

Yes, I was one of those those mean girls who would mock other multiple trial brides in my head.  They must be too picky or they must be bridezillas.  Now that I have a walked a mile in the shoes of a multiple trial bride, I apologize!  This has been an absurd experience at best and a frustrating one at worse.  If you missed my first two trials, catch up here and here, and then join me back here for the continuation.

I went into a salon to try a new stylist.  I decided to only show pictures of old hollywood actresses for hair inspiration.  The siren who keeps calling me is Lauren Bacall, so I repeatedly told the stylist that I loved her.

We talked about old movies.  We talked about being old souls.  We talked so much, that I really thought she got me.  She worked my hair in pin curls and I thought this was such a positive sign.  Then I showed her my makeup inspiration:

Ruby lips! Flawless skin! Nice brows! Brown eye makeup!  As I watched the makeup come together, I thought things were going fairly well.  We tried a few shades of red lipstick on my hand and I chose a more brown than pink shade.  However, when the pin curls came out and the stylist swept bangs over my forehead, I knew that we just missed the mark.  I explained that I didn't like that and all of the pictures I brought showed hair swept up and away from the face.  I pinched my hair showed her how I did it for my engagement pictures and how I want volume on top.  I really tried.  I went outside of my comfort zone.  Then I went home and I held back tears as I took these pictures:

It's all very pretty.  I've tried to see how they relate to my inspiration pictures.  To me, I look a little on the goth side because of the lining on the bottom of the eye.  I also look completely washed out with the flash (which is how most of my photographs will need to be taken).  I have a head full of hair that holds curl and will go as high as you want it to go, but for whatever reason, I have the distinct inability to properly communicate that I want exactly what the picture shows.  I sent the pictures around to Motherdrome, Ms. P, and the Palindromaids.  I received similar feedback from them.  So the search continues and the timeline gets shorter!

If you were me, would you settle for one of my previous looks or keep searching?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

One Hot Tip

If it were any hotter, I'd charge ya. 

Have Thank You cards ready to go early.

Having these bad boys at the ready, will save you heartache, pain, agony, ulcers, and appendicitis.  Ok, well maybe not appendicitis. 

If you plan on buying them, no problemo.  Just order a bunch (like the same number of invitations you ordered plus extras if you're having a shower) a few months out.  If you're a glutton for crafting punishment like me, then get those magic fingers a cuttin' and a stampin'!  Here, I've turned my kitchen table into a Thank You card workshop.  After stamping and arranging cards to dry all over the table, I promptly starting cursing that I had run out of horizontal drying surfaces.  "Dagnabbit!  I've stamped myself into a 2 foot square space and can't reach the bathroom!" 

For the showers, I created lots of blue stamped wonders on some deeply discounted Martha Stewart notecards.  I've learned that whenever I see blank notecards on sale to snatch them up.  I actually will use them and not just find them in a box after 2 more moves and wonder why I ever bought them in the first place.

I also made an assortment of black and white cards that match our wedding colors to use whenever I need a note.  The embellishments were all in the clearance section which I frequent every time I'm within 100 yards of a Michael's.  My sniffer has gotten really good at sniffing out the items in our wedding colors.

As we have received gifts, I have been sending Thank Yous so that the sender knows we have received the gift and appreciate their kind thoughts.  Though I know that we'll have plenty to write post wedding as well, having the notes made already will make the process a little easier.  Well, that and a bottle of wine. 

Do you have any Thank You card tips?  Did any preparations make your process easier?

Friday, December 18, 2009

Nervous and Excited?

 "The big day is coming up!  Are you nervous? Excited?"
At least once a day, if not multiple times in the same elevator ride, I am told the wedding is really close and asked about my emotional status.  At first, I was so happy that people remembered and were kind enough to ask.  I would nod enthusiastically or say that I was ready for it all to be over - which both seemed to be socially acceptable replies.  Then I started to really think about how I felt and those feelings have just grown stronger the past few days. 

I'm sad.  Even as I'm getting married and it's a happy occasion, it also means that I'm moving to a different state and leaving behind a pretty nice life that I've invested in a lot over the past two years.  I'm leaving good friends, a church that has ministered to me, an office that makes going to work fun.  I'm leaving my running route and the footbridge.  I'm leaving the familiar.  This has been a more difficult process than I anticipated.

I'm sober.  Some would call this nervous or tentative, but what I've really been feeling is sober about the weight of my decision to get married and all of its implications.  I'm pledging to marry another human.  To care for him when I don't feel like it, to love him when it's hard, to sacrifice and compromise for the good of us as a couple.  This is big and weighty - but also good and I feel ready.

I'm tired.  We've been planning the wedding for a year.  The future Mr. Palindrome has moved twice.  I've moved once and have a move coming up.  We've bought a house.  I graduated from graduate school.  The future Mr. Palindrome started graduate school.  There have been some family health issues recently.  I feel like I could sleep for a week.

I'm glad.  I'm looking forward to the dust settling, when I wake up sometime about two months from now.  When I wake up, I'll see my husband.  We'll drink some coffee.  He'll go to school.  I'll go to work.  Later, I'll tell him about my day.  Then I'll read in bed.  He'll turn off the lights when he's finished with homework.  So, yes, I'm excited, but not necessarily for the wedding.  I'm excited for my marriage to begin. 

You can't quite fit all of that into an elevator conversation, so I've been sorting these emotions out by talking to my wonderful friends.  I'm not sure what I thought I would feel, but some of these have taken me by surprise.  As you approach your wedding day, have any emotions been a surprise to you?  Are you nervous? excited?

Friday Finds - Raspberry Florals

I saw this beautiful halo and knew I had found the inspiration for this week's Friday Finds!  I'm loving the pink and red color combo.   TGIF!

Clockwise from Top L:
Sweetpea Fawn - Winter in Paris Halo
Hey Miemie - Strawberry Dream Cake Toppers
The Blooming South - White Point Gardens Wedding Ring Pillow
Mia Mallows - Gourmet Raspberry Marshmallows

Thursday, December 17, 2009

1 Aisle, 2 Aisle, Bride Aisle, Groom Aisle

Our beloved church in Norfolk presented us with an aisle conundrum.  The crux of the issue is that there are two aisles, neither centered.

I say it was a conundrum and call it an "issue," but really, I was never too perplexed about it.  Out of the 6 churches I've attended over the years, half of them did not have a center aisle.  I've seen a few workarounds at weddings (including moving the ceremony to churches with a center aisle), and I was confident that we could have the ceremony at our church without too much consternation.

One workaround I've seen is to shift the focus and seating to one side of the church.  This eliminates the two aisle problem by creating the illusion that there is one aisle.  At some of the bigger churches, I've seen the decorations go so far as to line the unused aisle in pipe and drape to hide the other space.  Honestly, I've never thought about it too much because the decorations have been beautiful and effectively staged the space to look natural.  Here's an example from my friend J's wedding at the church I grew up attending (from this camera angle, it's hard to tell the set up, but there's a whole third of the seating that is not being used to the far right):

Photograph by Andres Alonso

Since our guests will almost fill the sanctuary, we needed to come up with a plan that included both sides of the church.  We followed the advice of other two aisle couples and the basic gist of our processional/recessional is that I'll go down one aisle and we'll leave the other aisle as a married couple.  We have a few more complications though.  The bride's side and groom's side seating can only be accessed by their respective aisles without having to walk across the front of the church.  So my family will process down the bride's side and his family will process down the groom's side.  We also wanted to infuse a little Jewish tradition into the processional, so the future Mr. Palindrome will process with both of his parents down the groom's side.  If he was processing, we thought it'd be nice to have the groomsmen process as well.  We decided to have the groomsmen and the bridesmaids process simultaneously down their respective aisle sides.  The orchestration of the particular order in which everyone should process took a little thinking (take out your thinking caps!), and I hope that I was able to show it more clearly in the diagram below:

Since I made this diagram, my mom read that etiquette-wise the groom's grandparents are seated first.  I don't have a preference either way and since it's such an easy thing to accommodate, I thought I'd just make the switch.

Do you have a 2 aisle venue?  How are you using/ignoring the extra aisle?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

My New and Improved Look

As many of you know, I'm also blogging over at Weddingbee as Miss Lamb.  Since I donned the Lamb moniker, I've felt more and more of a connection to my alter ego.  I've already hinted at the changes for my wedding day look (here and here) and I'm finally ready to reveal it.  Before I do (hehehehe, there's a double meaning in that!), I want to show you what I would wear if I was having my wedding on a sheep farm: Louise Fairburn made her gown from her very own lambs' wool!

Sourced from The Daily Mail article cited above

Ok, now for the real deal.  I am aiming for a classic look with a 1940's movie star twist.  Starting at the top of my head, I'll be blinging out with vintage earrings.  I want big, retro curls and bright red lips.  And what would red lips be without cute, short red nails too?  I figure a little pop of color on the tips of the fingers will work nicely for some fun ring shots.  Instead of a faux fur wrap, I'll be fending off Old Man Winter with my bright red wool coat, similar to the one pictured (and a slightly less obvious nod to my Lamb roots!).  The bod will be sporting my lovely Detalle and a chapel length veil that I made.  Here's my inspiration board:

Top to Bottom, L-R:
Vintage Earrings from Fincara
Short nails painted red modeled by Taylor Swift
Old Hollywood Hair modeled by Isla Fisher
1960's Style Red Wool Coat
Geneva by Romantic Soles (how appropriate!)
Detalle by Pronovias
Chapel length veil at Encore Bridal

I didn't set out to add red to my look, but with all of the neutrals in the wedding, I think it'll be perfect! I'm so psyched to do an after picture for you all to see if I can nail this look!

Are you changing your look at the last minute?  Are there any parts of your look that you're questioning?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Here's the church, here's the steeple

Look inside and see all the decorations!  (Anyone else remember that little saying and accompanying motions that were a staple in my childhood Sunday School classes?)

Before the beginning of Advent, the committee that I chair at our church was responsible for decorating the sanctuary.  With the beautiful, clean lines and the serene green paint, we had an easy job.  Everyone pitched in to provide decorations and manpower.  I even brought the wine and cheese for a little snack break!

There are 5 large windows on each side of the church (on the lower level).  The arches are colored glass are already decorative, so we just spruced them with bay leave wreaths on every other window and then candles in every window.  The candles are covered with a hurricane and we added fresh cut magnolia branches from a member's yard.

Here's a close up of one window.  It was so simple, but gave just the right amount of warmth.  At the front of the sanctuary, one of the more creative ladies filled urns with wild berries, holly and other greenery.  Unfortunately the lighting was not very good, but in person, these arrangements looked organic and fresh!

I was particularly invested in the decorating since it will all be up through our wedding.  I love that the remnants of my favorite season will flavor the decorations at our wedding.  We freshened all the greenery this week by replacing the magnolia leaves with some evergreen trimmings and the front arrangements with rosemary bushes.  The additions to the decor that we will be making are a plethora of candles on the ledges of the choir loft and those romantic feather wreaths on the pews.

(Photo sent to me by Ms. Planner)
Ms. Planner finished 12 of them and we loved them so much, we decided to shoot for 12 more!  As you can see from the picture above, there is no center aisle at our church.  To accommodate using both aisles, we thought it'd be nice if we could decorate them both equally.

Mmmm - candlight, romance, feathers, my future Mr. Palindrome waiting at the end of the aisle.  Just a few short weeks until I see the vision come to life!

Is anyone else using holiday decorations in their decoration scheme?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

These are a few of my favorite things . . .

This is only one thing, singular, but it certainly is a favorite amongst many lovely shower gifts I received.  Palindromaid A outdid herself on the gift front.  I can usually count on her to get me beautiful jewelry, fun kitchen gadgets, and other little luxuries.  This gift is not only practical, but largely sentimental and just perfect for a shower (or for Christmas if you're still looking for gifts).  Behold:

Nothing says"Open me!" quite like the perfect wrapping job.  Too bad I tore into it and then had to recreate the perfection to snap the shot above.

Oh, why Hello!  What do we have here?  A book with a delicious hard cover.

And it stands open.  This will be important.

It's not just a book.  It's a collection recipes that Palindromaid A solicited from our friends and family.

The 3 ring binder is organized by food category and tabbed for convenience.

And get this!  Not only did she add the recipes, but she included pictures of the recipe giver with the recipe they donated!  Here I am with Allison of the trifle bowl fame.

And here's a recipe from Palindromaid A with a picture of us from this past spring.  I was really struck by how thoughtful it was to gather recipes for me and also by the professional quality of the book.  When she told me she was making a recipe book, I thought it would be 3x5 cards in a photo album - and I was thrilled because I've been hounding some of these people for their recipes for years!  Palindromaid A exceeded all of my expecations.  I'm really excited to order some extra recipe pages with the credits that were included with the gift.  If you're interested for any brides (or for that matter anyon who likes to cook!) in your life, or if you'd just like organize your own collection, check out the website at Taste Book.

Did you receive any gifts that exceeded your expectations?  Was it something innovative or sentimental?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Fit that was a Hit

My second fitting came up fast on me.  I was bee-boppin' along, minding my own business, when Bam!  My second fitting popped up in my Outlook reminders.  After the return of the shoe search and a delightful few days of Thanksgiving holiday, December was suddenly upon me.  I found myself uncharacteristically nervous about this fitting.  First, I was nervous that the dress wouldn't fit me.  Second, I was worried that the shoes I chose wouldn't match the feel of the gown.  Third, I was in stomach knots over the decision to wear the under part of my dress by itself for the recption.  With the added last minute stresses, I called in for reinforcements.  My friend, C (remember, I caught her bouquet?), stepped in as camera girl, ooh-er & aww-er, and all around opinion giver extraordinaire. 

Thankfully, all of my worries melted away when I slid her over my head and the chiffon layers swooshed to the ground.  I don't know how to describe it, but it just felt RIGHT. 

The seamstress expertly buttoned me up and gave me the insider's secret: "Start at the bottom."

The decadent piles of chiffon made me a little weak in the knees.  I loved the sound of it as I twirled on the riser and I could imagine the hush of the congregation as I swished down the aisle.

I spy with my little eye . . . something RED.  Mmm Hmmm.  They were perfect.  I'll still be revealing my look makeover all together, but I couldn't resist including this little peek.

I forgot to have her bustle the reception dress (calling it an underneath dress just doesn't do it justice - it's a beautiful heavy satin with smooth, clean lines), but I love how this pictures shows the fitting through the waist and the slight fit and flair skirt.  Would you call that a fit and flair?  With the outer chiffon layers, I suppose it's more of a drop waist.  By itself, I'm not really sure how to describe it.

Here, I tried on my birdcage veil again and I also threw on a ribbon belt.  I loved Mrs. Cowboy Boot's J. Crew version, and even found one in our colors.  It's on sale now, but when I first saw it for $35, I decided to try my hand at one using some ribbon I had around already.  After trying it on all together, C and I both thought it was fine, but almost detracted from the simple elegance of the gown.  Especially with the birdcage, I decided the belt was just a tad too much.  Palindromaid D scoured NYC for a ivory street pashmina, so I think I'd rather use that as an accessory.  It'll be much warmer than a ribbon belt too!
Were you reassured at your fitting?