Shopper: Local Wedding Planners Dish on Trends, Tips

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Something old, something new, something borrowed . . . ah, the good old days, when a bride's necessities could be boiled down to a cheerful rhyme. Welcome to 2009, when that cutesy couplet has grown to epic proportions: something eco-friendly, something personalized, something exotic, something unexpected. It's enough to turn even the most calm and collected bride into someone deserving of a cameo on "Bridezillas."

Laura Weatherly, founder of D.C.-based wedding planning company Engaging Affairs, encourages clients to think outside the bridal box when making a to-do list for the big day. She and her two full-time consultants, Sara Muchnick and Amy Guthridge, say decidedly nontraditional touches are their calling cards: Think checkered cabs as getaway cars, receptions with doughnut carts and kitschy photo booths, plus a focus on locally sourced foods and "green" stationery.

On a recent afternoon amid the frothy, flouncy confections at Georgetown bridal salon Hitched, the three sat down to discuss their techniques and talk about this year's trends:

-- Holly E. Thomas

Wedding Wear

"After so many years of dresses being so plain and simple, I'm really excited about embellishments coming back," Weatherly says as she discusses bridal trends with Guthridge and Muchnick at Hitched. "The look is more architectural," she explains, pointing out gowns with pleating, sculptural necklines and oversize, abstract rosettes and feathers. "I call it the Carrie Bradshaw Effect."

Fancy Frocks

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