Friday, February 29, 2008

Would you rock this frock?

My Mom always says "everything that's old, is new again". Never really paid much attention as I rummaged through her vintage oversize clutches,wideleg jeans and pants, safari jackets..and, well you get the picture. It's great stuff and still totally fashionably relevant.

Brides are following suit, either using their Mom's gown or visiting the co-signment or thrift shop, hoping to find "The One" or at least something to construct into the one. I can't tell you how many brides I know that have opted for a "vintage" or "old hollywood" gown or inspiration for their wedding (that would be moi). Bridal designers have taken heed, they have delved into the past and have created gowns that are stunning retro with a modern edge. I really love Jenny Packham. Her lovely creations scream "Hollywood Siren"

These are two looks that I absolutely love. Quite iconic indeed. Is it strange that they are on opposite ends of the spectrum and I would rock them BOTH!!??

Sidebar- How insane is it that Grace Kelly looks so chic and modern? It's like playing the game "Which one of these things don't belong here" or something like that.

Jenny Packham gown can be found here

Images of Bianca -

Images of Grace -

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Something blue

More than likely my "Something Blue" sans a blue diamond upgrade (a girl can dream), will be these absolutely beautiful shoes by Brian Atwood. In my shoe closet, he gets the top shelf right next to CL, my pet name for Christain Louboutin.

The white is lovely as well however, I believe if I purchased a white shoe, I would have it dyed anyway. So one less step to a fab shoe that I can wear well after the wedding.

And the guests wore white too

I have talked to many a bride that would absolutely *die* (their words, not mine) if one of their guests wore white to their wedding. Not until my Treasure put my yellow diamond stunner on my finger (still over the moon over that), did I ever wonder about this alleged faux pas. Now with all the fabulous details I've carefully crafted for our nuptuals, it never occured to me to wonder what our guests would wear. I've told everyone that would listen that it is a Black Tie affair. Think Cary Grant suave, Veronica Lake sexy. So I figure ok, adults are able to make that decision, no problemo.

I was expecting tuxes and a myriad of colored biggie, right? Wrong! Am I crazy..but I now want all the ladies to wear white or cream.. To me, it sounds decadant but probably more appealing to me, is that it wouldn't be traditional and we all know my take on "traditional". Or.. stay with me now.. have all the woman wear a shade of PINK!!! It would be a dream as my wedding colors are black and white, with a little bling (that's a color) and fushia. Every wedding mag editor will be clamouring for these's my fantasy anyway.

Isn't this look fun!

Sidebar: Don't you just LOVE this bout!!

This lovely event was produced by White Lilac. Visit them for chic inspiration.
The captivating photos taken by Kusha Alagband. Check out her site, it's filled with the most stunning photos. Every shot is magazine worthy!

Julie Hill from famed Elysium Productions has provided this for your viewing pleasure. The actual Arthouse Edit of this FAB WHITE WEDDING!!

Monday, February 25, 2008

So lovely

Atelier Aimee is having a sample sale February 27-28. If you're looking for a gown, visit their beautiful salon in New York. There you will try on the finest Italian creations; the most gorgeous fabrics, laces and beading, makes every style a work of art.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Flashing.... Lights....

I just love that song by Kanye! Which gave me the idea for today's pondering.. photography. As I plan THE soiree of all soirees that'll probably plan in my lifetime, I want to ensure that it's captured in a stunning, artistic, fashion-y way. So my hunt for the perfect photographer trudges on. It's been quite interesting, trying to find what style appeals to me most. I really love the shooters that think outside the box, the ones whom view the wedding as a editorial and capture it as if shooting for Grace Ormond, rather than Modern Bride. Although nothing is wrong with Modern Bride, it's just different.

I found this photographer last night, while trolling the 'net. She knocked my cashmere socks off. She is FAB-O-LICIOUS!! Even her name is fab - Jasmine Star.

The kicker is that she shot this wedding, actually it's a "Day After" shoot, (totally in love with that concept) after only one year of shooting weddings!!! That Jasmine Star has an impressive learning curve. You go!

[all photos-]

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Move over Grace

There's a new girl in town, from out of town, named WedLuxe. She's ultra fabulous with a capital "F".

Would you look at that cover!!! This magazine, which hails from Canada, is so yummy, I can barely stand it!! It just pulls you in with the cover and keeps you enthralled and at the end of your seat, til it's done. And like good "Sex and The City", keeps you coming back from more. What's even more divine, is that they have a treat called WedLuxe Presents "HD Online". I often return to these 'behind the scenes' vignettes to get my fix, while a new issue is being dutifully created. Even more awesome-er (yup, my word) is that the beyond talented and exclusive filmcrew that produce those vignettes, are also available for your nuptuals. They are considered one of the TOP 25 wedding videographers in the WORLD. Impressive. And if that's not enough to add them to your "Must Have" vendor list, the partner and co-founder is none other than the Editor-In-Chief, Angela Desveaux. Where's my fainting couch?

My favorite trailers are Modern Starlet, great inspiration for all you girls going for glamour for your wedding and Let Them Eat Cake, this is WedLuxe's take on throwing your own shower.

What's really intriguing to me is seeing all the behind the scenes action that it takes to bring a high fashion, high impact wedding magazine to your favorite bookstore, newstand or mailbox. I also adore the perspective; so fresh, so modern, so fashion, so FABULOUS! I tear into this publication just like I do my Vogue and that's serious business.

I'm captivated by WedLuxe.
She's my new BFF.

The photographer for this layout is Jeux De Rox. Check out his website, he's a genius. The texture you see in the photos are of his own creation. You can buy these textures and give your own photos the Jeux De Rox, piece de resistance.

[fainting couch - www.juniperimages]

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

For His Eyes Only

Boudoir photo sessions are increasingly popular with brides to be and yours truly has toyed with the idea. I can just imagine the immensely devilish grin those photos would inspire on our wedding day, I'd have my Maid of Honor delivery them right before the ceremony. It makes me giggle just thinking about it.

I really love Maggie's diva-esque sexiness in this photo. I'm definately looking to do something very Vogue-ish = sexy and fashionable. That chic turban is the coup de grace. LOVES IT!

I also love the reckless abandon that Nicole is giving in these photos.. The lighting, styling, makeup and hair is perfect!

Different vibes but equally FAB!


Sleek Seat

Today I was in wedding planning mode. Right now, I'm designing the look of the reception. I'm not a traditional type of bride by no stretch of the imagination and I'm always looking for something with a definate WOW factor. So my venue (to be revealed) is very glamourous yet with a nod to a vintage era. When I first laid eyes on the place, I was in LOVE. So I wanted to really showcase the venue in a way it hadn't been seen before. As I poured over all the albums from past weddings there, there were very definate things I knew I didn't want. The greatest offender of my eyes, are the ubiquitous covered chair with sash. Do. Not. Like. Period. But it worked out great as they have Chiavari chairs but seemed like something was missing. My vision included a very luxe look with layering of textures and color and continuity. So I searched for something exceptional and look at what I found!

It's couture eye candy, you get the shape of the chair with a fitted cover that just transforms the look. I am also delighted with the rhinestone accent on the back, totally on trend and in line with my wedding soiree. Yea!!!

Here are some other fabulous designs for your viewing pleasure. I love the fully dimensional designs of these looks.

This last look would be perfect for a destination wedding. So fab! I am in lust with the bench seating and the bursts of citrusy goodness of those florals. Such a fresh take on tropical and a wonderful departure from the fushia and pinks that are typically coupled with the azur color of the sea. Very ooh la la!


Monday, February 18, 2008

Magic Wand

I would be remiss to chat with you Lovelies, about all things fabulous, without mentioning some of my coveted makeup secrets. Because bridal makeup my specialty, I'm constantly editing my techniques, tools and cosmetic choices for optimal beauty, seamless color and complexion perfection.

Now we all know that beautiful makeup starts with great skincare. I have a whole arsenal of products that I use for different times of the month, (estrogen spikes can wreak havoc on your skin) and different times of the year. This is really important because the seasons have different affects on the skin. And using the same products all year 'round can be counter productive. Now as with everything, there is an exception to the rule. See I'm an avid exfoliator. It's paramount to getting rid of fine lines, having luminous skin and a dewy, youthful appearance. But sometimes using a product with microcrystals can be a little harsh, especially for certain times of the month. So my go to product is Ice Element's 2- Minute Miracle Exfoliating Gel. This stuff is AMAZING! I have to admit I was a little skeptical upon discovery but boy am I glad I gave it a try. This is without a doubt a product I can use all year around. I use this on my brides before doing anything else.

"This non-granular exfoliating gel offers exclusive technology to dramatically renew the look and feel of your skin. An intensive deep cleansing and beauty treatment with soothing Aloe Vera, natural botanical extracts and Hyaluronic acid (humectant). Gently exfoliates dead skin cells, removing dulling debris and excess oils. Rich in natural moisture to nourish new skin leaving it refreshed and vibrant. Great for dry skin and enlarged pores. Visible difference in just one use!"

The first time I used it, I followed the directions of course, smoothing the gel unto my skin and letting it set for a few seconds as it liquified. Once liquified, I began to rub my skin in a circular motion all over.. lo and behold.. little balls of dirt, dead skin, something ..looking like wet lint, was all over my face. Not a cute site but I felt I on was on to something. So I rinsed and patted my face dry with a paper towel. (I never use a face cloth, more on that in another post) And voila, the most moist, supple, luminous skin my I've experienced to date, outside of a professional facial. It was so much so that Treasure even noticed and you know, men hardly notice anything beauty related.

Ok, tangent over.. so the reason I sing the praises of this product and exfoliating in general, is so that you get the most perfect canvas to apply makeup. It is vital to obtain that "second skin" foundation application.

Now for my next secret, the foundation brush. But this is not just any brush, it is the holy grail for achieving complexion perfection. I use this brush for all my clients and the results are remarkable!! You see, I'm totally a Virgo (perfectionist) especially when it comes to my work, my artistry. Nothing incenses me more than when makeup needs to be re-touched, via photoshop. So it's always my goal to impart techniques to give my clients the most picture perfect skin, even thisclose up. My tool of choice is Tricia Sawyer's Foundation Brush. Not only is it THE BEST foundation brush but just look at it... it's ultra fabulous! Unlike any brush on the market. Not only is it chic but it has a nice weight and is made extremely well. It's luxury in your well manicured hands.

"Unlike flat brushes that streak across your face, my Foundation Brush has a unique shape which allows you to buff in your cream foundation for a more natural and flawless finish. The rounded tip allows you to follow the natural curves of your face."

With this brush, very, very little product is needed. Just pick up a little cream foundation (gives the best coverage and can easily be sheered down) and buff into skin. It's like MAGIC, dare I say like the erase tool in Photoshop. Yeah, it's THAT good. All of the blemishes and discoloration disappears yet your beautiful skin shows through. Now you can have your fairy godmother's magic wand right in your makeup bag!



Friday, February 15, 2008

The Sanctuary - Every woman needs one

I love to travel, especially to someplace tropical and serene. Living in a world that is fast paced, seeking instant gratification at the speed of sending a text, functioning on a caffeine drip, albeit a Skinny Cinnamon Dolce Latte, (as we girls have to maintain our fabulous figures), but a caffeine fix, nonetheless - one can easily lose perspective, be neglectful of oneself and/or others, become overwhelmed and stressed out, teetering on a Louboutin of the dreaded *cue doom music* UNFAB!!!

Enter the Sanctuary

"Expect grand sweeping spaces beyond your imagination, with your bedroom, living area and extravagantly sized private infinity edge pool gliding into one another to form an amazing platform floating in space, with the 4th wall missing entirely - the result is a stage-like setting from which to embrace the full glory - and infinite views - of St. Lucia's twin Pitons and the shimmering Caribbean Sea - a view you are not likely to ever forget."

Did you see that..."the 4th wall missing entirely"? You will wake up to an unobstructed view of paradise. This place is a dream... it will tantalize all your senses, you will be one with nature, without getting dirty, say like going camping. *bleh*

I am loving this place. It's the ultimate escape, for full and totally decompression and rejuvenation. Who doesn't need that!?! It's totally romantic yet I could also see it as a Fab retreat for girlfriends.

"The Jade Mountain resort suites are deliberately techno-free just like the rest of ANSE CHASTANET - there are no telephones, radio, or television."

Ummmm, yeah, I may need to bring the iPod with speakers... oh and the Blackberry, other than that, I'M GAME!


What in the fushia loveliness!?!?

Vintage glamour, all the rage right now. Pencil skirts, smart cardigans, delicate bow blouses and stilettos...sounds like my daily donnings. It's always appropriate, timeless and classic; perfect attire to take me through a busy day in The City. I've always been drawn to the ladylike glamour of the 50's. Every woman looked perfect in her tailored frocks, complete with dainty hats and gloves. When I see photos of my aunts from back in the day, I always tell them they were the "bizness" and have taken my style cues from them.

So fast forward to today when I saw this lovely hat aka "chapeau":

It stopped me in web-surfing tracks! I stared blankly, in a 50's Fabulous trance, as the hat beckoned me to purchase it. So lovely is this chapeau..the vibrant fushia color, the sheer fierce chic-ness of this hat gave me daydreams of me wearing it, lounging casually across the bed, flipping through Chanel and Her World .



Putting pretty front and center

I just have to start this post by saying Lipstick Jungle is as decadent as a champagne filled, chocolate covered strawberry! Last night's episode just confirmed that this show will be my new TV love, sorry Meerkat Manor!

Ok, back to the business at hand.. ah yes, putting pretty front and center. What is the first thing that alludes that you've been invited to a sumptuous soiree?? The invitation of course! That brings me to the part of the wedding planning that has been the least problematic. I knew from the first time I saw them they would be our invitations. They just scream F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S!!

I really love the designs of Bella Invites - Couture Event Stationery. My favorites are the Silk Pouches and Silk Box invitations. I love them so much, I can't decide which design I want to move forward with. Good thing the designs are couture, so my options are limitless. But I am leaning toward the Silk Box. Not only do they allude a certain glamourous chic-ness, they also double as a cute keepsake. It would look darling on any girls' vanity.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

I almost forgot

I have a gift for you my Fab Friends, shame on me for almost forgetting. Building my financial portfolio is of paramount importance to me, my plan is to retire young and travel the world in a leisurely fashion and pursue more humanitarian interests. So I was totally delighted when I received an email about my bff, Oprah, offering a free download of fiancial guru, Suze Orman's new book, "Women & Money: Owning the Power to Control Your Destiny." You can go to or get it direct here

It will be available until 8pm est tonight. It's also available in Spanish. Es muy fabulous!

Thanks Shilvy!

[info and photo -]

Wishing you lots of love and GIFTS!!

I'm a firm believer that love should be shown all through the year, whether in a relationship or not. For those in a relationship, you usually know the drill, the perfunctory flowers, candy, jewelry, either one or all in that scenario. Boooooor-ing! Don't get me wrong, I like all those things but life is full of variety and I'm a huge sampler!

Since I got engaged, (so exciting) something strange has happened to me. I feel more, dare I say, domesticated?!?!? WHAT IS THAT ABOUT?? Well, I'll tell you, evolution. Not only can I be a fashionista, hair and makeup maestro, a writer (more on my book later), an engineer, a genius (what?), a animal lover, a world traveler, a motivational speaker, an art director, a stylist and a connoisser of all things fabulous... I can also be a domestic GODDESS. Yup, I find myself shopping for kitchen, I mean, cook's appliances and utensils for the kitchen. Fab furniture findings for our home and tearing into Elle Decor for interior design ideas. Which is right on time because my darling Treasure (that's what we'll call the fiance from now on), gave me a beautiful V-Day card with this picture inside. The card was very touching and very sweet...making a point to tell me that this will be ours soon. I'm swooning!

Estates at Valhalla

Then after I dabbed the tear dangling off my faux lashes, yes, I'm giving that kinda sexy early in the morning, he presented me with my gifts. A mini waffle maker,

something that I alluded to in one of my many emails to him.. always capturing it at the end with a "p.s. I LOVE this..." My way of getting what I want without actually telling him. Isn't it the cutest?? I can't wait to use it!

And THESE!!!!!

I was really surprised because I hadn't "P.S. I love this..." these Manolos. He picked them out all by himself. I love the color. Trust that I will have these on with my mink lashes when he gets home from work.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Lipstick Jungle

This may be my newest television indulgence. Born from the genuis that created Sex In The City, this show is a saucy mix of fab women, wearing fab clothes doing fab things. The main characters include a Movie Exec, Editor in Chief and a Fashion Designer. I. LOVE. IT!!

The storyline is interesting and while the cast needs to gel a little more, it has good bones. I can't wait to tune in tomorrow night.. I may have to TiVo as I will have my own show to put on for the Valentine.

[image courtesy of]

Hello and Welcome!

I can't believe I finally did it, I started a blog. There's no turning back now.... my name is Zena and this is my soapbox for all things FABULOUS!! Well, at least to me anyway. I'm currently planning a wedding to my long time LOVE so there'll be ALOT of references to that as well. In addition to planning a wedding, building a fab life, I also own my own business, Red Carpet Bridal Beauty. It's the perfect "marriage" of my love of weddings and beauty. I enjoy creating magazine worthy brides by enhancing their natural beauty and having a couture approach to teasing out their wedding day hair and makeup visions. So I'll take you along on those experiences as well.

Thanks for visiting! I hope to see you again and feel free to bring a friend. I need to go and prepare for Valentine's Day.

[image courtesy of]