Monthly Archives: March 2011

Saturday Surprise: Etsy Treasury Lists

If you can’t already tell by the Etsy Virtual Wedding Show feature, I am a HUGE fan of Etsy. My favorites list is about a mile long and I am on it just about every day. So, you can imagine my glee when I discovered the Treasury List feature! I love this idea as it is sort of an Etsy filled inspiration board. Here are the first of my Etsy Treasury Lists:

Alice in Wonderland Tea Party
http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4d6a16978b9a6d91b51d93a6/wonderland-tea-party?index=0

Art Nouveau Beach Wedding
http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4d69f05e92a88eef42b3c328/art-nouveau-beach-wedding?index=1

April Fools
http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4d8d3bf2c3c28eefc54f3705/april-fools?index=0

Etsy Virtual Bridal Show: Jewelry

Welcome to the Etsy Virtual Bridal Show with links for readers to donate to Wish Upon a Wedding and For Japan With Love.

Wish Upon a Wedding is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization that provides weddings and vow renewals to couples facing terminal illness or other serious life-altering circumstances, regardless of sexual orientation. Often, couples facing such situations do not have the energy, time, money, or resources needed to plan their wedding. Our organization takes care of all the details, offering couples a chance to relax and enjoy a very special day while surrounded by the love of their closest family and friends.” -www.wishuponawedding.org

When I originally came up with this idea, it was solely to benefit Wish Upon a Wedding. However, given the recent disaster in Japan, I am aware that some viewers might want to donate their funds toward relief efforts. Well, thanks to Utterly Engaged and Ever Ours, the wedding and event blogging world is coming together to support For Japan With Love. “For Japan With Love has a direct link on the website to our fundraising page for ShelterBox. ShelterBox was one of THE first organizations asked by Japan to help and were on hand on the Saturday after the quake. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to a disaster but typically contains a disaster relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and purification equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items.” -http://www.utterlyengaged.com/please-help-for-japan-with-love-update/

No matter where you direct your donation, be it Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love, you will be making a difference in the lives of those facing life’s most difficult of circumstances. If you are unable to donate monetarily, your thoughts and prayers will truly touch the hearts and lives of those affected. I send my thoughts, prayers, and strength to those affected by such life altering circumstances.

Legalities:
While I am a volunteer with Wish Upon a Wedding and a participant with For Japan With Love, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love in any other capacity and is not an official representative of Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love. In addition, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Etsy or the vendors featured and is not an official representative of Etsy or of each of these vendors. I am simply a fan of these artists/vendors and a volunteer with a passion for what I do and for organizations I have chosen to donate my time and finances to. I have sought permission from each and every vendor featured to use their products and their photos. Please do not use these photos for personal gain or copy the designs presented. These products are the livelihood, passion, and intellectual property of each artist and to copy these items or to use them for person gain is both illegal and unethical.

Our first jewelry artisan is Sol Bijou. “My love of jewelry began when I was a child and through the years this love turned into a burning desire to create unique jewelry for beautiful women around the world. In 1996 I began crafting unique pieces for friends and family. The demand for my creations was so great that, in 2008, this hobby turned into my occupation.” “Maricel has been incredible to work with! Her pieces are amazing, and I am so grateful to have found her to make very special gifts for my bridesmaids! Thank you, Maricel, for your time and talent! I am so happy!”

Next, we have Kathi of Vintage Inspired Jewelry. Kathi says this about her work, “When I step Into my studio I am able to create pieces from my heart, my mind goes places that I’ve never been. I see colors and textures merging Into one and my little creations are born.” “I am so happy with the ring colors I chose for my bridesmaids. They all turned out beautiful. I love the size of the flower and the brass ring is pretty too. I am so excited to gift these to my wonderful bridesmaids. I had the girls choose their favorite color from a list I gave them, so they are all getting a different color. They will look perfect with beachy theme :)”

Here we have Beads Story, which features vintage inspired jewelry made from vintage bits and bobs. “Such an exquisite silver necklace! It will go with everything so looking forward to showing it off. Customer service is A-1! Happy to recommend this seller as there will be no disappointment here.”

QA Create is our next artisan who “specializes in niche artisan-made jewelry. We try to create jewelry with an edge and style, recycling lost and forgotten items into something fashionable.” “I LOVE them! I am giving them to my fiance for our wedding day – this way he can show a little bit of his own style. He loves Captain America. They look great!! Thank you!!”

Next we have Little Blue Studio. In reference to her art, Maria Louise says, “I am sure it’s genetic…if I do not make something every single day with my hands I will expire. I come from a family of building builders, Singer sew-ers and garden growers. Hands make magic.” “Maria is fabulous!!! I ordered 7 flower brooches for the bridesmaids in my wedding 2 matching headbands for the flower girls and a large flower for my hair and the whole process was a pleasure. Maria wanted to make sure I got exactly what I wanted and through great communication with samples and pictures, etc. along the way, she exceeded my expectations. THANK YOU!!!”

Here we have Renaissance Jewelry. “Renaissance Jewelry is new to Etsy, but we have been around for years. We manufacture titanium jewelry by hand at discounted prices to help you save!” “This is an absolutely gorgeous ring and we are so happy with our choice (it is my partner’s wedding ring). Even better in person!”

Next on the show is EDM Desgins. Ricky says, “You will find designs and jewelry pieces that touch the spirit of those with an appreciation for the lifestyle and old world adornments of the vintage eras. Influenced by my utmost respect for the brilliant and skilled craftsmanship of vintage watch movements, master artisans of yesteryear hand created these intricate and fascinating little worlds of synchronicity and artistic beauty. To be able to repurpose them and allow these mini landscapes of art find new life in today’s times gives me tremendous pleasure.” “Ricky at Edmdesigns was absolutely lovely to work with. He made me the most beautiful necklace for my wedding day and the staff was super friendly on updating me. I’ve never had a more accommodating seller and such a pleasant purchase. Thank you so very much!”

Our next artisan is Jewelry by Johan. Jewelry by Johan specializes in wedding bands made out of truly unique and stunning materials such as meteorite. “What a beautiful work of art. We couldn’t be happier with this unique and special purchase. Thanks a lot!”

Darcy George of True Rebel Clothing has this to say about her creations, “I have always had a passion for Paris and the Parisian look. I have designed a new jewelry, and Accessory line with the french country Parisian Theme. Hope you enjoy looking and buying as much as I have enjoyed creating.” One of her customers had this to say about her purchase: “Holy cow! I love this necklace! The seller put it in the mail immediately. Beautifully crafted! First day wearing it, and I’ve already received seven compliments. Can’t wait to order more things!”


After Dark Jewelry
creates handmade romantic Victorian jewelry, accessories for bride, bridesmaids, special occasion jewelry, wedding, custom, renaissance, and medieval inspired jewelery. “I have been passionately designing and crafting my own unique jewelry items since early childhood, slowly honing my creative style over a 20 year period. After Dark Jewelry is the culmination of a life-long dream: to develop an artistic business based on uplifting, inspiring and adorning the female form. My goal throughout the creative process is to encourage women to be bold, daring, and utterly extraordinary — to embrace their own unique qualities, both inside and out.” An After Dark customer says, “This is hands down the most beautiful necklace I have ever or will ever own. I am so glad you came into my life so that we could both share in each others beauty. I loved working with you and hope your life is magical, like the art you make. Thanks I love it and am proud to be its new owner. Happy walking girl.”

Next, we have Hengameh of Toranj Design. “I love to combine all my talents and abilities in my creations and I hope you see them as a piece of art not only a piece of jewelry. Art and fashion is my passion, my life & I thank you for the opportunity to do it every day” “I purchased “royal highness” a couple of weeks ago, wore it to a charity ball and received SO MANY compliments on it. Even Miss America stopped me to tell me that “Your dress is lovely, but I LOVE your necklace!” So thank you, thank you ToranjDesign! I’ll be shopping with you often!”

Yutal Jewelry Fusion is our next Etsy vendor. “With a view to fusion between east and west, old and new, traditional work-tools with technological innovations,diverse metals with semi-precious stones. Our creation is the result of two artists who live and create together,but grew up and were raised in different cultures. Diane was trained as a classical jeweler and formed a strong affinity for “Art Deco”, whereas Ehud is a scion of eight generations of Yemenite filigree jewelers.” “You are right. This is the most comfortable ring ever! I am wearing it as my alternative wedding band. It is so beautiful!”

Azure Treasures’ shop is approaching it’s third year on Etsy and is run by a stay at home mom who not only has beautiful designs available immediately in her shop, but also does custom work. “I love my necklace and earrings! They are perfect for my wedding day. Thanks so much!”

Now for the Bohemian bride, we have Gypsy Moon Designs. “Gypsy Moon Designs has been creating jewelry since 1994. I lived in the busy San Francisco Bay Area and longed for a slower more creative life. So I packed my bags and moved to the Land of Enchantment, New Mexico. The light of the high desert has this amazing golden glow, and the sky is so blue you feel like you can touch heaven. Under this sky I found the creativity I so longed for!” “My sweetheart and i LOVE these! the antiquing, the colors, the sun motif – can’t wait to wear them on the coast, but going to wear them now to carry that bit of sunshine with me everywhere. 🙂 Gypsymoondesigns is the perfect combo of professional – done to every exquisite detail – and person – she is simply the best! and takes care to exceed customer satisfaction every time. Etsy is lucky to have her!”

Finally, we have Ilan, Oded and Ev of Artisan Look have this to say about their work, “We dedicate ourselves to our creativity and skills through drawing, sculpting and handmade jewelry. We have developed techniques that resonate powerfully through our contemporary jewelry designs, with the craftsmanship and detail of old Yemeni and Middle Eastern cultures, creating a distinct look to each piece of jewelry. By working with sterling silver, gold and gemstones we create an unconventional mixture of contemporary and ethnic designs.” In addition to Artisan Look, they have other shops featuring their beautiful craft: Artisan Impact(sterling and mixed gold), Silver Crush (sterling silver), and Artisan Field (14K gold filled designs). “Wonderful wedding ring for husband-to-be! The rings are even more beautiful than imagined. Thank you so much!”

Etsy Virtual Bridal Show: Veils, Headpieces, and Hair Accessories

Welcome to the Etsy Virtual Bridal Show with links for readers to donate to Wish Upon a Wedding and For Japan With Love.

Wish Upon a Wedding is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization that provides weddings and vow renewals to couples facing terminal illness or other serious life-altering circumstances, regardless of sexual orientation. Often, couples facing such situations do not have the energy, time, money, or resources needed to plan their wedding. Our organization takes care of all the details, offering couples a chance to relax and enjoy a very special day while surrounded by the love of their closest family and friends.” -www.wishuponawedding.org

When I originally came up with this idea, it was solely to benefit Wish Upon a Wedding. However, given the recent disaster in Japan, I am aware that some viewers might want to donate their funds toward relief efforts. Well, thanks to Utterly Engaged and Ever Ours, the wedding and event blogging world is coming together to support For Japan With Love. “For Japan With Love has a direct link on the website to our fundraising page for ShelterBox. ShelterBox was one of THE first organizations asked by Japan to help and were on hand on the Saturday after the quake. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to a disaster but typically contains a disaster relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and purification equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items.” -http://www.utterlyengaged.com/please-help-for-japan-with-love-update/

No matter where you direct your donation, be it Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love, you will be making a difference in the lives of those facing life’s most difficult of circumstances. If you are unable to donate monetarily, your thoughts and prayers will truly touch the hearts and lives of those affected. I send my thoughts, prayers, and strength to those affected by such life altering circumstances.

Legalities:
While I am a volunteer with Wish Upon a Wedding and a participant with For Japan With Love, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love in any other capacity and is not an official representative of Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love. In addition, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Etsy or the vendors featured and is not an official representative of Etsy or of each of these vendors. I am simply a fan of these artists/vendors and a volunteer with a passion for what I do and for organizations I have chosen to donate my time and finances to. I have sought permission from each and every vendor featured to use their products and their photos. Please do not use these photos for personal gain or copy the designs presented. These products are the livelihood, passion, and intellectual property of each artist and to copy these items or to use them for person gain is both illegal and unethical.

Are you a veil bride or a fascinator bride? Do you like hats or headbands. Today’s show features veils (birdcage and traditional), fascinators, headbands, etc. Each post has a little bit about the vendor, actual feedback from one of the vendor’s customers, and then a slide show displaying the best of their wares. Each slide show is linked to the vendor’s Etsy shop via Slide.com.

Fascinating Creations has been in design work for over 35 years and in addition to the beautiful pieces available in the shop, also does custom design work. “The veil that Cindy created for me is absolutely perfect! She tailored it to meet my wants it and couldn’t have turned out better! I am so excited to wear it on my wedding day! Thank you, Cindy!” Be sure to check out the shop’s super fun colored petticoats.

Next, we have Bridal Wear which creates beautiful bridal hair accessories using vintage bits and bobs. “Since I love all things vintage or antique, I try to re-purpose as many old things as possible! I love using vintage earrings, charms, and brooches as embellishments. It turns all bridal accessories into bridal “heirlooms”!!” “Beautiful! I cannot wait to wear this down the aisle! Thank you for the fast service and the extra charm!”

Brenda’s Bridal Veils says, “I have been designing and customizing bridal veils for the Kansas City area since 1988. I started my career in fashion design and truly enjoy working with brides to find that perfect look. When I became a bride myself I created my own bridal veil and I realized that a veil plays a significant part in the overall look of the bride. I started my business “Brenda’s Bridal Veils” shortly after. To this day I love helping brides find the perfect wedding veil.” “Brenda is an absolute pleasure to work with, she made my fascinator and veil request seem so easy and she has wonderful ideas as well, very creative. I was completely happy with my purchase and I got so many lovely comments on the day. Thank you Brenda”

Here we have Artisans A GOGO, “I love creating stunning pieces and am always happy to make custom creations as well. If you do not see quite what you are looking for, send me an email and make a request.” “Thank you so much, happy with everything, the packaging is awesome! What a great way to ship them so they won’t get damaged, and makes them look fantastic as well. And also thank you for helping me organize it all and for just being lovely to buy from.”

Our next artisan is Art Willeau Headdresses. The bride who wears on of these creations is bold and daring. “One night at home, I started crafting. I made two beautiful, sparkling headbands just for fun. I brought them to work the next day & my friends went bananas! I decided to make more, and see what would come if it. I have always dreamed, since I was little, to make my own art & sell it. This all just smoothly happened after I made those first two. I vend locally around Seattle & proudly have my headdresses for sale in a few retail stores.” “The head dress is beautiful! This is my second peice from Art Willeau, and yes, they are not just functional performance costuming but works of art! Excited to see what else she comes up with.”

Leather Blossoms creates beautiful accessories, and jewelry out of leather. “Absolutely beautiful! Will go down a treat on my wedding day, can’t wait to show them off!”

Next on the show is Simple Beauty Veils. “I have been a seamstress for over 25 years, so rest assured that you will be receiving a beautiful, quality made veil that can become a family heirloom for years to come. All of my veils are custom made by me in my in home, and all are designed by me.” “Veil arrived in less than two weeks and looks beautiful. It was great to be able to customize a veil and I’m looking forward to wearing it at my wedding!”

Our next shop is, Be Something New. Jill has been designing and manufacturing Bridal veils and headpieces for over 25 years. Be Something New is her new line she started with her daughter. “Good communication! The headband arrived within a week! It is beautifully crafted, I am so glad I bought it!! Can’t wait to wear it on my wedding day! Thanks!”

Here we have Alisa Brides. Each veil is personally made by Alisa and she does do custom orders. “Only the finest quality products are used, such as French lace, Swarovski crystals, and silk thread and piping. All lace and piping is attached by invisible hand stitching. I don’t utilize harsh machine stitching or glue that are common in commercially produced veils.” “The veil was more than I could have ever imagined. She was so professional and understood exactly what I wanted. PERFECT.”

Next, we have Retro Vintage Weddings and Very Tres Chic. You might remember these shops from the Bridal dress and gown post. In addition to her beautiful wedding dresses, Paula also makes beautiful hair accessories. “I am so excited about the dress retro vintage made me! It is very well crafted with high quality fabric. I keep thinking that I received far more quality than what I paid for. It was a pleasure working with retro vintage to make the dress exactly the way I wanted it!”

Our final shop in this category, is Marisol Aparicio. “We take pride in making Bridal Veils with the most exquisite and romantic laces. We have a variety of traditional veils, Mantilla Veils and Birdcage Veils.” “Beautiful veil! absolutely love it! seller is very helpful and response quickly. definitely recommend getting your veil from her. thanks mirasol.”

My boyfriend is now my fiancee! So grate

My boyfriend is now my fiancee! So grateful for the time with my mother and that he was able to ask not only my dad, but my mom too.

Etsy Virtual Bridal Show- Gowns and Dresses

Welcome to the Etsy Virtual Bridal Show with links for readers to donate to Wish Upon a Wedding and For Japan With Love.

Wish Upon a Wedding is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization that provides weddings and vow renewals to couples facing terminal illness or other serious life-altering circumstances, regardless of sexual orientation. Often, couples facing such situations do not have the energy, time, money, or resources needed to plan their wedding. Our organization takes care of all the details, offering couples a chance to relax and enjoy a very special day while surrounded by the love of their closest family and friends.” -www.wishuponawedding.org

When I originally came up with this idea, it was solely to benefit Wish Upon a Wedding. However, given the recent disaster in Japan, I am aware that some viewers might want to donate their funds toward relief efforts. Well, thanks to Utterly Engaged and Ever Ours, the wedding and event blogging world is coming together to support For Japan With Love. “For Japan With Love has a direct link on the website to our fundraising page for ShelterBox. ShelterBox was one of THE first organizations asked by Japan to help and were on hand on the Saturday after the quake. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to a disaster but typically contains a disaster relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and purification equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items.” -http://www.utterlyengaged.com/please-help-for-japan-with-love-update/

In addition, I am participating (along with many other bloggers), in the Bloggers Day of Silence on Friday, March 18th where there will be no blog posts for that day to honor the memory of those who perished in the earthquake and subsequent tsunami and those displaced and devastated by the events that occurred in Japan. On that day I will light a candle at sunrise and will pray on the hour every hour until sunset. If you are another blogger reading this, I hope you will participate and spread the word.

No matter where you direct your donation, be it Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love, you will be making a difference in the lives of those facing life’s most difficult of circumstances. If you are unable to donate monetarily, your thoughts and prayers will truly touch the hearts and lives of those affected. I send my thoughts, prayers, and strength to those affected by such life altering circumstances.

Legalities:
While I am a volunteer with Wish Upon a Wedding and a participant with For Japan With Love, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love in any other capacity and is not an official representative of Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love. In addition, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Etsy or the vendors featured and is not an official representative of Etsy or of each of these vendors. I am simply a fan of these artists/vendors and a volunteer with a passion for what I do and for organizations I have chosen to donate my time and finances to. I have sought permission from each and every vendor featured to use their products and their photos. Please do not use these photos for personal gain or copy the designs presented. These products are the livelihood, passion, and intellectual property of each artist and to copy these items or to use them for person gain is both illegal and unethical.

We begin the show with the item many purchase or seek first when first becoming engaged, Bridal Gowns. Each post has a little bit about the vendor, actual feedback from one of the vendor’s customers, and then a slide show displaying the best of their wares. Each slide show is linked to the vendor’s Etsy shop via Slide.com.

Our first designer is Michi ofToccata. “Your dream wedding dress done just the way you’ve always envisioned it to be. Just send me a convo and I will show you how easy it is. I have been designing and creating exquisite wedding dresses for eighteen years now. Here at Toccata, exquisitely designed and handcrafted pieces marry the incredible couture experience online.” “ABSOLUTELY LOVE MY BOLERO! Will wear this with so much pride at my wedding. Michi was friendly, answered all my questions and has produced the most stunning bolero I have ever seen. THANK YOU!”

Next, we have Upoppy who’s favorite artist is Gustav Klimt. “I think that the dress speaks for itself–the talent, workmanship, attention to detail, pride that clearly went into making it. And although I had the pleasure of wearing this gorgeous dress to mark one of the best days of my life, what I will remember most about the dress itself is the process of working with someone so genuine, visionary, skilled, gracious and a true pleasure to communicate with. Designing this dress with Val was truly one of the most enjoyable and rewarding experiences I had during my wedding planning–this process makes the dress truly precious. All I can say is: imagine it and Val will work tirelessly, enthusiastically and mutually to make it real and beautiful.”

Here we have Ellana Couture. “We are a small group of designers dedicated to creating unique, elegant, and interesting ladies apparel that showcase the beauty of fabric, such as naturally luxurious silks and quality laces.” “I received the dress today and have to tell you that it is PERFECT! I mean GORGEOUS! Looks like it was custom made for me. The first time I tried it on was driving from the post office to my seamstress and I put it on and we both looked at it and decided that nothing whatsoever needed to be done. I am so impressed beyond words. The fabric is rich and the brooches are great too. Thank you for your expediency and craftsmanship, it is more lovely than I could have possibly imagined.”

Tova of Wedding Dress Fantasy has this to say about herself and her shop. “I’m a professional bridal gown designer and the owner of WeddingDressFantasy.com. My bridal salon, Couture De Bride, was voted BEST BRIDAL SALON in 2010’s “BEST OF BERGEN” in 201 Magazine. I create custom wedding dresses in over 50 colors. I work out of my bridal showroom in Teaneck, NJ where I design all of my gowns. On the lower level is my workroom where my dressmakers and I cut patterns and sew many fabulous wedding gowns for our beautiful brides…I love unique and non-traditional styles, so feel free to send me ideas of what you want. I can even create Medieval Wedding Dresses, Renaissance Wedding Dresses, Gothic Wedding Dresses, Pinup Wedding Dresses, Vintage Inspired Wedding Dresses, Tea Length Wedding Dresses and so much more.” “I love my wedding dress–it’s absolutely gorgeous! I can’t wait to wear it. Tova is exceptionally skilled and it’s clear she dedicated herself to creating this piece perfectly. I am so thankful that I found her.”

Our next artist takes us across the pond (at least for my US readers). Ruby Noir states that An English Affair is, “a collection of handmade design from U.K independent designers. The collection of beautiful knits, vintage and accessories are beautiful” “Not only is her product completely beautiful and professionally done, she goes way above and beyond to make her customers happy! Even though the mail system was backed up (and not in her control) she booked a special DHL delivery to ensure I got my bolero in time for a wedding I needed it for. I have never worked with someone so willing to make her customers so completely happy! I will definitely use her over and over again!”

Ieie’s Dress Shop has a great selection of traditional bridal gowns and a few not so traditional. She also can design and make a custom creation for you unlike any other. In addition to “I am here to create your perfect wedding gown! If you’re one of those brides who have fallen in love with 2 or more wedding gowns or simply can’t find anything in the stores, contact me to discuss a dress customized not only in your size, but also in design, to reflect your personal taste!” “This dress is absolutely beautiful! Wendy did such an amazing job and took photos along the process and kept me up to date with how she was, sometimes random “hellos” and completion and shipping information. ABSOLUTE DOLL!!! I loved working with Wendy and she really does have a special talent for bringing to life a photo or a recreation of an actual dress. I’ll be posting a photo soon (within a few weeks after the Ball) so please keep and eye out. I had a custom dress made to mirror (with Wendy’s touch) Camilla Belle’s YSL dress worn at the Metropolitan Opera Gala Premiere. Stunning!!!” Ieie is offering free domestic shipping: use the code KSRAVEN.

Our next artists are KMK Designs. “We are a mother daughter collaboration, based is Stillwater, MN with over 35 years experience who love creating alternative wear.” “The dress is amazing!!! It’s very flattering, gives me curves, and makes me look like I actually have a rear end.. which I sooo don’t. 😉 I love how the corset has a zipper.. it made it so much easier for me to try it on while I was by myself. The sleeves are gorgeous.. just the feel I was going for! And the way you re-purposed my mother’s wedding veil… breathtaking!!! I can’t thank you enough! I really took a leap of faith having a dress made across the county, but I made the right choice 100 times over. Thank you thank you thank you to everyone who laid hands on my dress!… Pictures will follow as I can manage to get them… And then again from the wedding in Scotland just as soon as possible. 🙂 ~Beth.”

Next on our show, Ting Bridal. “TingBridal is a US home based studio owned by myself, Ting, and my beautiful little sister Jojo, we focus on making dresses and accessories for brides who are looking for something a little more special and custom than what you can find from many bridal retailers. Many of our brides have a destination, outdoor, or some other non-traditional wedding, and they want the dress, jewelry, or vail to be just as special. We like to use organic and natural material, such as 100% silk, cotton, as well as vintage lace and fabric from vintage wedding gowns.” “Ting was a pleasure to work with. The dress is absolutely gorgeous, the perfect length, the perfect poofyness, the perfect balance of sexy and fun!!! Came wrapped up in a dress bag secured with a satin ribbon… it was almost too cute to open. The craftsmanship of the garment is fabulous, fits true to her sizing chart she provided, had the perfect thickness of built in padding/cups. I could go on and on about how wonderful this transaction was!!! I am so excited to wear this at my wedding this July!”

Next we have Cupid’s Arrow. Cupid’s Arrow features one of a kind vintage gowns and accessories and was recently launched to separate their growing Bridal Dept. away from their other Etsy shop: Lipstick Whiskey. “We are two sisters in law married to Brothers. We share a love of all things Vintage, especially wedding. Together we have worked to bring you the most beautiful Vintage pieces and hope to pass on a timeless tradition with the purchase of one of our unforgettable Gowns.”

Here we have La Costurera. “La Costurera specializes in Bespoke Bridal Gowns, Tailored Silk Suits, Evening & Prom Wear, Swarovski Crystal Tiaras, Fascinators & a range of individually designed jewelery as well as a new ’boutique’ range of clothing.” “This is a beautiful and well made lace jacket and my teenage daughter loves it! Great communication – seller is very responsive and easy to work with. Thanks again!”

Next, we have Sash Couture. “Sash Couture provides customers with the opportunity to design their own dresses and the chance to own an item of clothing that is truly unique and suited to their tastes. Shauna’s World was founded in July 2008 by the Austrian entrepreneur, Dagmar Klosenski and lounged into “SASH COUTURE” in 2010 with 2 new dressmakers on board: Beverly and Bonnie.” “After looking for months for a dress that would fit my casual and simple wedding day, I started looking on Etsy and found shaunasworld’s. I fell in love with their dresses and placed an order for my own. They were a pleasure to work with and everything was done in a timely manner! The dress is incredibly well made and fits perfectly. I love my dress! shaunasworld has created a beautiful and unique dress that will fit my day perfectly! Thank you!!”

Our next Etsy artist/shop is Natural Bridals. “Morgan Boszilkov is the designer and owner of the Natural Bridal Collection, a new line of eco-friendly designer wedding gowns and accessories. The dresses and accessories are handcrafted with love in the United States, and 5% of profits are donated to environmental causes. Morgan uses sustainable fabrics and strives to apply green and socially responsible principles to all aspects of her business.” Morgan’s designs have been seen on/in: Bride and Bloom Magazine, Get Married Magazine, Brides New York Magazine, Brides Atlanta Magazine, CNN, TLC – winner of “Who are you wearing?” show, TheKnot.com, Skirt!, Daily Candy, InStyle, Utterly Engaged, StyleMePretty, Brides Chicago, Brides Southern California, and Southern Distinctions. http://naturalbridals.com

Next, is Bound by Obsession. “I take exceptional pride in every stitch that goes in to my corsets and clothing. I have put decades of research in to the patterns and construction. Every piece of fabric that I will work with has been specifically selected and all of the materials that go in to the construction are of the highest possible standard.” “I wish there was a double-plus awesome rating on Etsy. When I almost couldn’t get something in time for a themed wedding, Susan really came through! Her design was beautiful, imaginative and on budget. And despite customs delays and the vagaries of the US postal service, I got it in time. It is everything I wanted and more – well made, beautiful quality fabrics, and fits perfect. I will be back again many times I am sure.”

Here we have Retro Vintage Weddings “featuring Wedding Dresses & Bridal Gowns, Jewels, Accessories, Headpieces & Veils, Gloves & Bouquets, all Original or Vintage from every era! Everything a Bride planning a Vintage Inspired Wedding will need!” “I consider each client my personal work of art! Along with her Bridal Boutique, Paula also functions as a Wedding Florist & Bridal Stylist.”

Glam House says, “Every bride deserves the best and it is our goal to deliver one of a kind designs to our stylish haute brides.” I included the sashes here instead of in the Accessories category, because the sash becomes an integral part of a wedding dress and can transform the dress itself. “Extremely fast response on my questions and extremely fast shipping!!!! It’s even more beautiful than the pictures. I can’t wait to wear it on my wedding day!”

Our next vendor is Alex Bridal who specializes in hand-made wedding boleros, wedding jackets, wedding wraps and wedding capes. “Amazing!! This matched my wedding dress so perfectly, can’t imagine wearing it without this bolero, so many compliments. Last minute miracle!!”

Here we have Angels Bridal Boutique by Angela Vaden. Angela is currently taking orders for August submissions. In addition to her Etsy boutique, Angela maintains a website that not only features her gowns, but her photography as well: http://www.angelsbridalandphotography.com/. “Positive” is not even close to the rating you deserve! I absolutely LOVE the dress, it’s perfect in every way! Thank you SOOO much. I’d highly recommend you to ANY bride!”

Finally, we have Very Tres Chic, another shop owned by Paula of Retro Vintage Weddings. “Paula was attentive and kind. I had a ton of questions about this dress and she ensured that I understood exactly what I was getting and under which conditions. When the dress arrived, it was packaged beautifully and with a ton of care, just as a wedding dress should be. The dress itself is exactly as shown and easily alterable to my specifications, exactly as Paula said it’d be. Paula’s attention to detail, and her desire to see a bride happy, is exactly the reason the bar is set so high for me now in terms of Etsy sellers. I hope everyone has as good an experience as I did.” Be sure to visit the shop for Paula’s beautiful accessories as well as dresses in color if you are wanting to wear something other than white: http://www.etsy.com/listing/54384874/sale-1920s-inspired-red-beaded-flapper.

Thank you so much for participating in the Bridal Gown portion of the show. Tomorrow, it will be veils, hats, and hair accessories. Again, if you are able, please make a donation to either Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love.

Wedding Wednesday: Announcing, The Etsy Virtual Bridal Show

A couple of months ago while perusing Etsy for unique wedding items, I had a light bulb moment. How can I as a planner showcase Etsy artists and vendors and raise money for a cause I truly believe in? How can I show my clients and potential clients that you don’t have to limit your wedding related purchases to what is offered to you in a typical salon? It hit me…a virtual bridal show! Not just a virtual bridal show, but one that provided readers with an opportunity to make someone’s wedding dreams happen!

Announcing the birth of my bambina, the Etsy Virtual Bridal Show with links for readers to donate to Wish Upon a Wedding. “Wish Upon a Wedding is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization that provides weddings and vow renewals to couples facing terminal illness or other serious life-altering circumstances, regardless of sexual orientation. Often, couples facing such situations do not have the energy, time, money, or resources needed to plan their wedding. Our organization takes care of all the details, offering couples a chance to relax and enjoy a very special day while surrounded by the love of their closest family and friends.” www.wishuponawedding.org

Now for the legal mumbo jumbo. While I am a volunteer with Wish Upon a Wedding, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Wish Upon a Wedding in any other way and is not an official representative of Wish Upon a Wedding. In addition, Parties by Kristen is not affiliated with Etsy or the vendors featured and is not an official representative of Etsy or of each of these vendors. I am simply a fan of these artists and a volunteer with a passion for what I do and for an organization I have chosen to donate my time and finances to. I have sought permission from each and every vendor featured to use their products and their photos. Please do not use these photos for personal gain. These products are the livelihood, passion, and intellectual property of each artist and to copy these items or to use them for person gain is both illegal and unethical.

You are not required to donate in order to view the show, but it would be nice if you are able to. The link provided for you to donate to Wish Upon a Wedding through is the official donation page of Wish Upon a Wedding. I do not receive any funds or credit as a result of this project and ask that should you chose to donate, please donate from your heart and know that a beautiful couple will receive their dream as a result of your generosity.

The actual show portion of this project will feature just about everything you need to have a beautiful wedding full of original items that are sure to be a hit. Items featured run the aesthetic spectrum from traditional to boho to goth. In addition, there are items for the couple on a budget to a couple where budget isn’t an issue.

This project has been a labor of love and I hope that you will not only enjoy the items and vendors presented, but will also feel led to help another couple facing difficult circumstances make their wedding dreams come true.

To donate to Wish Upon a Wedding, go to Wish Upon a Wedding’s secure PayPal link here or go to Wish Upon a Wedding’s home page and click on the donation link.

Given the recent disaster in Japan, I am aware that some viewers might want to donate their funds toward relief efforts. Well, thanks to Utterly Engaged and Ever Ours, the wedding and event world is coming together to support For Japan With Love. “For Japan With Love has a direct link on the website to our fundraising page for ShelterBox. ShelterBox was one of THE first organizations asked by Japan to help and were on hand on the Saturday after the quake. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to a disaster but typically contains a disaster relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and purification equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items.” -http://www.utterlyengaged.com/please-help-for-japan-with-love-update/

In addition, I am participating (along with many other bloggers), in the Bloggers Day of Silence on Friday, March 18th where there will be no blog posts for that day to honor the memory of those who perished in the earthquake and subsequent tsunami and those displaced and devastated by the events that occurred in Japan. On that day I will light a candle at sunrise and will pray on the hour every hour until sunset. If you are another blogger reading this, I hope you will participate and spread the word.

No matter where you direct your donation, be it Wish Upon a Wedding or For Japan With Love, you will be making a difference in the lives of those facing life’s most difficult of circumstances. If you are unable to donate monetarily, your thoughts and prayers will truly touch the heart and lives of those affected. I send my thoughts, prayers, and strength to those affected by such life altering circumstances.

Tips and Trends Tuesday 2: Animal Relief in Japan


Panda holds onto a policemans leg after the earthquake in japan. By: Zizi Yad

After seeing this picture posed on Facebook by a friend of mine, I knew I had to do a second post regarding donation to the disaster in Japan. Many times, animals are forgotten in the relief efforts post disaster. Here are some links to animal relief organization efforts in Japan.

Animal Refuge Kansai
Humane Society International
World Vets
American Humane Association