Tag Archives: bridedress

30 Wedding Dress Shopping Tips

Wedding season has started! Or rather, engagement season has started…which means gown shopping! Be it a big white Cinderella dress or a demure saree, the excitement is still the same!

Follow some of our shopping tips to make sure you not only get your dream dress, but to make sure you have as much fun as possible! It only happens once!!

1. A Wisely Chosen Entourage

‘I’ll come dress shopping with you!’ Will be something you hear a LOT during your time as an engaged lady and you’ll probably say yes to all of these requests. However choose wisely because as nice as it is to hear the ‘oohs’, ‘aahs’ and ‘oh my god you look fabulous!!’, it might better to hear a real opinion. You want to take the people who will be brutally honest with you. Your mum, your sister your bridesmaids…these are the people you want to take.

2. Give Yourself Enough Time

When to start dress shopping is crucial as you don’t want to start too early whereby seasons change and you like something new, but early enough to give yourself time. 8-10 months before your wedding should encompass both of these.

With a bespoke designer you have a little more flexibility. If you are getting your dress designed ask your designer how much time they need and factor this in.

3. Know Your Seasons

Know when the retail industry will go on sale. Do your research and you could save yourself a lot of money. The high street goes into markdown almost every 5-6 weeks, so take this into consideration. You don’t want to buy your dream dress only for it to go on sale the week after.

4. Remember New Collections

Not impressed by what’s out there? Don’t panic. As above, if you know your seasons, you know when the new collections come in, so it is ok, to go back to a store more than once to see if they have anything new. (Checking when this will be with the managers wouldn’t harm)

5. Bargains

There are SO many exhibitions, sample sales, shows, warehouse sales etc, that you could potentially find yourself busy every weekend. However you could potentially knock hundreds if not thousands off your dress. If you can handle the crowds, this could potentially be for you.

6. Weekday Appointments

Saturdays are the single most busy day in any bridal boutique. If you want in quickly, go for a weekday appointment. You’re likely to get better service and more focussed staff.

7. Be Inspired

If you are like me, you know exactly what you want and have done since you were 5. If you aren’t part of this craziness then start getting inspired. Get magazines, look at catwalks, get on Pinterest! Get a feel for what’s out there.

8. Be Open to Change

Like me you may know exactly what you want and have done since you were 5…but what if it doesn’t suit you. Be open to let your ideas go if they don’t work for you. Go in with an open mind and come out with a dress!

9. Take a Quick Terminology Lesson

Do you know your A-lines from your trumpets? If so well done! But seriously pattern talk is another language..brush up to make your life easier. (I’ll be writing a post on terminology next to help!)

10. Search Your Wardrobe

Take out your best dresses, your best and skirts..they’re your favourites for a reason. Try and decipher similarities in shape/ fabric/ colour to know what you like. You’re already one step ahead in this than you think.

11. Bring Your Knickers

If you’re planning on wearing a specific type of underwear, Spanx or otherwise, bring it with you to make sure you get the full picture.

12. Full Primp

Do your hair fully and face lightly, to the best of your ability for this. It will help you gain a better idea of what you will look like. You don’t want to realise you hate the straps of your dress on your wedding morning when your stylist puts your hair up!

13. Own Your Experience

There will be a lot of ‘I did this’ and ‘I did that’ and whilst some of it may be helpful you want to create your own experience with your own ideas. Hold your ground and remember its alllll about you!

14. Take a Seat

I say this in every fit session to every client…sit down in your outfit. It may be the perfect waist cinching corset dress whilst you stand up…but when you sit down it crushes your lungs, all the seams are coming undone and you can’t breathe. Probably not what you were going for..

15. Buy Now, Alter Later

If it fits you now..buy it! Every bride has weight loss plans and most brides lose weight without even trying, but as every boutique, designer, seamstress will tell you, it is easier to take a dress in than to take it out.

16. Size Does Not Matter

Bridal attire is always smaller than your average clothing. So don’t be offended if they hand you a size or two bigger than you are…and who cares about the size?! If it looks good then why worry! (and you could always cut the label out..)

17. Chatter, Chatter, Chatter

What you want and what your mouth thinks you want, may be two completely different things. You may say you want something simple and elegant..but actually you want a tulle filled giant princess ballgown. The best way for a designer to be able to give you dresses you’ll like is for them to get to know you, so go ahead…gossip to your heart’s content!

18. Take Some Music

Dancing is just as important as sitting down, take your best songs and dance to them in your dress. (It helps if your entourage do it with you..maybe even a few moves from a slow dance to check you won’t trip on your trails)

19. Take Photos

Pretty self explanatory here…take lots of photos. You probably won’t get to take the dress home with you because of alterations, cleaning etc..so you’ll need to lots of photos to continue the rest of your shopping. (And to remind you just how beautiful it is!)

20. You May Not Cry

Your dress is not unlike your future husband…did you burst into the tears the minute you saw him because you knew he was the one? Probably not. In the same way you probably won’t burst into tears because you’ve found the dress and it may take you a few tries but you will know it is the one for you. (But if you’re anything like me you’ll probably be crying before even entering the boutique…potentially even tearing up thinking about dresses.)

21. Try Everything On

Ask your consultant or designer to give you a few props; heels, veil, tiara etc. It may just seal the deal for you.

22. Budget

Be very clear and up front about your budget. It will help your designer make sure you are getting the very best of what you want and ensure your dress has all of the main design aspects you need. It also helps you not get too carried away.

23. Take Snacks

These appointments can and will take some time. Take stomach reinforcements…you do not want to be making these kind of decisions on an empty stomach..(remember what happens when you go to the supermarket hungry…)

24. Return Policy

If you reeeeealllly can’t make the decision but you cannot part with the dress, find out the return policy, spend some time with your potential dress and then make the decision.

25. Back Up

 Always plan a back up. Always.

Your dress may not arrive in time, the package could be detained by customs, the dog shredded the train, you spilt coffee on it….I could go on…but in the interest of perhaps not stressing you out, I won’t. The point remains that anything could happen to your dress so just make sure there is an alternative.

26. It is Just a Dress

I can’t believe I am saying this, but it is just a dress. Just clothing to get you through the most important day of your life; the day you marry the man you love (although if and when he utters these words to you himself, you may reconsider the future alliance).

27. There’s No Magic Number

You could try one dress, you could try 50 dresses, there is no perfect number…keep going until you find it or get it custom made.

28. Try it On

Even if you are getting your dress designed specially for you, try on something similar elsewhere – take all the best ideas and give them to your designer. This will help them create your perfect outfit.

29. Corsets are Quick

If you are short on time, go for a corset. They don’t need altering and look amazing! (you can also wear these more in life than you could a wedding dress)

30. Have Fun!

Its your wedding day, you’re shopping for it…could there be anything in the world more fun?! (rhetorical question)

Enjoy shopping!

.x.

The Aashni & Co Wedding Show

This time last week I was in the presence of Indian fashion royalty. Held at The Dorchester Ballroom, I was lucky enough to be invited to attend the Aashni & Co wedding show, featuring all of my favourite designers, possibly the most incredible floral displays I’ve seen to date and a bridal beauty demonstration. I was surrounded by the most gorgeous pieces and their creators! (To say I was excited would be a huge understatement)

The designers featured were: Anamika Khanna, Anushree Reddy, Arpita Mehta, Ashima-Leena, Elisha W, Jaipur Gems, Kotwara by Meera Muzaffar Ali, Manish Malhotra, Monisha Thahryamal, Nikasha, Pallavi Jaikishan, Rajesh Pratap Singh, Rimple and Harpreet Narula, Sabyasachi, Shehlaa, Sonali Gupta, Tarun Tahiliani and Varun Bahl. (I know…breathe..)

The day started fabulously with a much needed coffee en route to The Dorchester. As soon as I entered the ballroom, I was completely overwhelmed with the amount of elegance and glamour facing me. The whole show was decorated with absolutely stunning floral displays by Zita Elze, with an entrance display that was just magical.

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You see what I mean…

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I realised I was surrounded by some of the most incredible pieces I had literally ever seen!

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Shehla Khan

Manish Malhotra

Sabyasachi

Tarun Tahiliani

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Once this had all sunk in, I wandered into the exhibitors area and it was just so much more than I had ever imagined. The designers were in their own stalls, surrounded by their garments and freely talking to the public. It was endearing to see my idols humanised for a day!

Having found the ability to breathe again, I headed off to find and speak with the designers. Here are some quotes and pictures from the most amazing day.

I absolutely LOVE Anushree Reddy's work, the florals and prettiness poured into all of her designs, is something that has inspired me since her first collection.

I absolutely LOVE Anushree Reddy’s work, the florals and prettiness poured into all of her designs, is something that has inspired me since her first collection.

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Anushree Reddy: It is great to be able to be here and visit a city and meet the brides who buy my work. We need to experiment with different markets and you only learn by going there.

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Sabyasachi: I love helping young people, so when Aashni came into my store and told me I had to make a collection for her store I couldn’t say no. I was young and starting up once too, I like the confidence in young people.

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Photo credit – OneTimeFashionista

Manish Malhotra: My collection here today is basically bringing back the classic red. I like taking vintage and heritage culture and giving it a modernising nature, which is easy to wear and personality driven.

Another stunning banquet display

Tarun Tahiliani: My first show at the Dorchester was in 1995. It was the first show I ever did and it was one of the most beautiful, magical nights. When I heard the venue for this event was the Dorchester, I had to do it just to do something a little different. It is wonderful being here. I had no idea it would be such an incredible turnout. It has been wonderful speaking to brides and the audience here

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Aashni with her royal fashion entourage

Aamir Naveed and Ambreen hair and makeup demonstration

Aamir Naveed and Ambreen hair and makeup demonstration

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Tamara Al Gabbani; brand ambassador for Jaipur Gems mid interview

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Needless to say…I was a very happy me by the end of the day!!

Shop the designers at Aashni & Co

Happy Sunday

.x.

Why You Need a Wedding Planner

Every bride believes they can plan their wedding by themselves, and so does every Mother of the bride, every mother in law, every sister, every cousin, every aunt…(you see where I am going with this). The worst culprits of this thought process are Asian brides!

I’m sure many brides are capable of doing so, but my question is why would you, when there are people who dedicate their lives to this type of planning. I mean they REALLY love seating plans, guest lists, crockery arrangements and more, and they REALLY love doing it for everybody else!!
Seriously..I know because I am one of these creatures!

I am here to let you know why it is beneficial to have a wedding planner. Continue reading

When thinking about bridal make up, the keywords are natural, subtle, elegant and pretty. Red lipstick isn’t a first choice for a white wedding for the fear of looking overdone and vampy, however red lipstick is such a gorgeous way of creating a bridal look and can easily be used for a natural elegant look and any good bridal make up artist can do this for you.

Red lipstick is very vintage and 1920’s but we’re all about living past eras, especially in fashion and beauty, because well..

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Enough said.

Choosing a red lipstick that suits your skin tone is imperative. Here a few pointers in choosing the right shade.

Firstly there are different types of skin, cool and warm. Warm skin has yellow and golden undertones, whereas cool skin has pink and blue undertones. The quickest way to figure it out? Look at the veins on your inner wrist in natural light: if they look green you have warm skin, and if they look blue, you have cool skin.

Warm Skin Tones
For warm complexions use orangey reds, tomato reds, reds with a golden base or tawny reds

Cool Skin Tones
For cool complexions use pink reds, berry reds, reds with a blue undertone like plums

For all skin tones a REAL red would work- think post box red.

Now that we have skin tones covered we move to skin colours..

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(picture sourced from The Beauty Department)

Porcelain Skin
Cool undertoned reds generally speaking look the best with this type of skin, however for a statement look use a warm red.

Fair Skin
Fair skin in general should use a cooler red, hints of plum work wonders. Again using a warm red creates a bold look.

Bisque Skin
This warm skinned colour suits a cooler look, think light berry to create your look.

Beige Skin
Yellow undertones in this skin prefer a warm red , golden undertoned to set off the colour in your skin. A cool red in this case add drama.

Olive Skin
A warm red with a green or brown undertone look amazing with olive skin, think autumn reds and you have your perfect match.

Tawny Skin
A warm brown red is more suited to you than a berry gold red, but with this skin a cool colour can sometimes create more of a match. For tawny skin I would suggest trialling a few and then taking photos. The photos will tell you which suits you.

Caramel Skin
Orange reds are PERFECT for caramel skin, probably the only skin colour to REALLY be able to carry an orange undertoned red.

Dark Skin
Go deep! go for a deep dark maroon, these colours suit without looking scary (as they would on a fairer skin colour.

I will leave you with some of my favourite red lip looks..

.x.

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Zuhair Murad!

Zuhair Murad is one of my favourite designers and one of my biggest inspirations as a bridal designer. He creates this amazing East-West fusion in gowns; the same foundation that underpins my own designs, within his bridal wear, Haute couture and ready to wear collections. His Lebanese foundation mixed with his fantasy sketching has led him to be one of the most talented designers today.

Haute Couture

I love his haute couture because this is what we are drawn towards when deciding outfits for our receptions. This is where we can wear the most gorgeous Indian – Western fusion gown known to man!

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This Chiffon high neck makes the perfect reception gown – the beading is a very Eastern style of beading found on sarees and lenghas. Chiffon is a very classy and bridal fabric which makes an appearance in a lot of ZM collections. (Good choice!)

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This embellishment and embroidery is perfect for an Indian fusion outfit

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This type of dress in colours! Just shows how perfect it would be to match your colour schemes!

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Bridal Collections

Using the most amazing fabrics and silhouettes he has created a fantasy land with embroidery and embellishment fit for a princess! Here are a few of my favourites from his AW14 collection

New Picture (9) Genuinely my favourite dress of all time!

New Picture (8) New Picture (6) This is the kind of embroidery that makes me want to cry at how perfect it is!

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With saree gowns coming into their own this year and only growing as a trend into next, these kind of dresses are to arrive on the horizon in multitudes! And I cannot wait!

Leaving you all with some of my favourite images from ZM collections to date….enjoy!

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You can see why I am so inspired!! To the drawing board!!!

Happy Reading!

Featuring : ZuhairMurad and various Pinterest users (seriously guys get on Pinterest)

.x.

To be on Trend – Fall ’14 Part 2

 And for part two only the BEST colour – PINK! No..HOT Pink!!!

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 This is one of the easiest colours to be able to wear within your bridal attire – not only is it gorgeous, but the colour is so complimentary to Red, Green and Cream it could almost just replace the Red.

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This is gorgeous because, although the main colour is pink, the highlights of red make it an amazing alternative for a bridal outfit.

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Not your traditional conventional bridal attire, but how AMAZING! the velvet and the flower veins have a Snow White-esque feel and with a slight tweaking of colour – you could be the trendiest Disney bride ever!

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This beautiful hot pink and gold brocade lengha would be ideal. Perhaps changing the Dupatta colour to have a gold/ cream base or adding a cream border, would make this more bridal and more traditional. But if you love the pink…you go for it!

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This is a Pagli creation which is simply stunning. Simple enough to carry the hot pink, yet heavy enough to be considered bridal. Your secondary dupatta would need to be Cream/ Gold to be able to carry this.

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I am absolutely in love with this! The pink has a blue undertone to it which I think makes me love it more! Perfectly simple, perfectly bridal! IF you wanted to feel that little bit more special – throwing some rhinestones and jewels on to it would achieve that! (You can never have too many jewels right?!)

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This stunner is a Manish Malhotra  (as if it weren’t obvious). I am in love with the metallics on this outfit! such a nice replacement for gems and jewels. I don’t think I need to say anymore…

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I found this photo on Pinterest (yes I am obsessed with Pinterest) and couldn’t get over how gorgeous this design was. The Red features as the main bridal highlight however the pink borders make this style that little more pretty and that little more on trend! I just wish I knew the designer of it!

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This is a beautiful lengha to wear if you are going all out for colour – perhaps on a mehndi night or a sangeet. Adding a tulle underlay would make this that little bit more bridal.

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This is one of my favourites…Pink, Gold, cream AND jewels…how can you go wrong?! The fishtail style of skirt makes this that little bit more glam.  I would personally shorten the blouse so as not to cover the gorgeous skirt waist detail. Everything about this outfit screams yes!

To conclude our journey to the land of PINK, here is an outfit mixing a couple of the jewelled tones together: Mendhi night you say?

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LOVE!

Be Pink!

.x.

10 Gorgeous Veils

Ok so she loves more than 10 veils…but some are of the same ilk…so really it balances out!

I thought that following the news regarding Angelina Jolie’s (or is it Pitt’s now) veil, containing embroidered designs inspired by her children’s doodles, it would be apt to write a post on veils. She literally let her kids draw on her veil.

That she wore to her wedding.

Her ONE wedding.

(well not literally, a designer embroidered them on an amazing lace for her…but still).

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Yes…she did that…

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Now I am sure I will love my offspring….but there is not a chance in hell they would allowed to scribble on any part of my wedding.

In the many dreams I have about weddings (no really…you’d be surprised) I am always wearing different veils. Ranging from one gooorgeous Cathedral veil to maybe 3 or 4 different veils. (again, not kidding. I have a problem…no, there is no name for it yet).

I find it fascinating that we, as Asian brides, go as far as wearing an amazing fusion dress for our civil ceremonies, but a veil is seldom worn! They’re SO PRETTY and so much fun!! You can play hide and seek with them , you can pass them on to your children, you can use them as tablecloths (not that I ever would), you can take cheesy photos with them…the opportunities are just endless!

So here goes….my 10 most recent favourite veils. (Pics are click- through…so click through!)

Veil number 1- Simplicity is key

Veil with bow - colin cowie weddings

This gorgeous tulle veil, with a very simple bow and gem would be a gorgeous addition to any dress. The maker of this exact veil has closed up shop, however any dressmaker could do this for you, just print out the pic.

Veil Number 2 – All Over

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This charming all over bobble veil is created by Anna Campbell. She is an amazing Australian designer who uses beads, pearls, tulles and lace to create gorgeous pieces – this being exactly that.

Veil number 3 – Embroidered

Pronovias

I am always partial to a bit of embroidery and embellishment, and this Pronovias creation is no exception..the stunning floral design and the placement starting just under the cheekbone makes this veil flattering and GORGEOUS!

Veil number 4 – Vintage Treasure

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The name says it all. This vintage piece is an authentic Victorian HANDMADE (I KNOW!) delight. From around 1860’s and would probably retail at around £3000..not cheap. However, easily made today with new inventions, like machines, and computers for probably a sixteenth of the price. Drool away.

Veil Number 5 (and 6 – but not really 6) – Embellished

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These Etsy finds are my favourite type of veils, they are the ones I see myself wearing. The perfect fusion of Indian on tulle! (in the process of designing my own versions of these so watch this space!)

Veil Number 6 – Floral

I am in love with this stylemepretty veil…….3D flowers attached to your head?! I mean who wouldn’t! Really simple, really compliments the dress, but more than this it looks fun and pretty! Win for flowers!

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…it helps that the bride is drop dead gorgeous….sigh.

Veil Number 7- Indian

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Now this is actually just a saree draped over somebody’s head…(I know I had you fooled for a minute), however the idea behind this is going back to the whole fusion wedding. Imagine you are wearing your white dress (or any other colour for that matter) and you have found a serious dupatta, that matches perfectly, but it just needs to not be so heavy! Get this turned into a shoulder drop veil! So simple and so gorgeous! (IIII KNOW! Possibilities are endless with us Asians!)

Veil Number 8 – All Over Placement Embroidery

Twigs and Honey

This veil has placement embroidery all around the hem circ which would look amazing on a plain dress. Simple, elegant and really pretty! This was a Twigs and Honey find on Etsy…they have gorgeous accessories to go with your beautiful day.

Veil Number 9 – Bordered (No. Not Bored.)

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This absolutely blew my mind. The simplicity involved in creating this veil; a double turned hem or a sheer organza border. That’s it! Such an impactful piece and so so so pretty! Hayley Paige has some absolutely gorgeous pieces, simple and elegant.

Veil Number 10 – The Blusher

In my opinion, getting a blusher veil right is quite a task. There is usually too much embroidery for the length or absolutely nothing, I hadn’t come across any that made me think yessss…..until now..

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This gorgeous little Etsy shop has found the perfect mix! It is so CUTE! (personally not my style, because I don’t suit cute, but still beautiful!)

aaaand one for good luck

Veil Number 11 – Placed Lace

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This UrbanVeilsCouture find is incredible. I was always under the impression that you couldn’t have embroidery over the top of your head – that it would look slightly weird, however I had to eat my words when I stumbled upon this little Etsy number (yes Etsy really is the place to be).

Literally can’t help myself…seriously its like asking a kid to stop eating chocolate when there is nobody to supervise…

LASTLY…Veil Number 12 – JEWELS

the lace butterflies

You guessed it…ETSY; Thelacebutterflies. Seriously just wow. Imagine the sparkles!!! Amazing price, amazing handwriting….just gorgeous, not a lot else to say on this…they say a picture speaks a thousand words, and that is EXACTLY what is happening here!

aaaaaaand……..

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That concludes my top 10 veils (for this week anyway)….hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I did writing it!! Happy Veiling!

.x.