Monday, November 30, 2009

Designer Bridal Gown Blowout Sample Sale!

Sample Sale Event on Sunday, December 6th from 12pm to 3pm

Designer Bridal Gowns For As Low As $999 This Weekend Only!

Up to 75% off sample wedding gowns by Carolina Herrera, Melissa Sweet, Monique Lhuillier, Reem Acra, Platinum Collection and more!

Carine’s Bridal Atelier of Georgetown is hosting their annual end of year Sample Sale Event on Sunday, December 6th from 12pm to 3pm. Sample wedding gowns by top designers will be on sale for up to 75% off retail prices—a fantastic savings for brides! Gowns will be priced as low as $999 to $1899marked down from original retail prices of $3000-$9000. Gowns sold on a first come, first serve basis.

“Sample gowns are a great option for brides on a budget or on a short wedding timeline,” says Carine Krawiec, Owner of Carine’s Bridal Atelier. Sample dresses are in great condition and must be sold to make room for new gowns. Sample gowns are a bridal size 8 or 10 and can always be altered to fit a smaller body size. Carine’s Bridal Atelier offers custom alterations onsite in their Georgetown boutique.

Brides can preview a selection of sample sale gowns online at These gowns, plus MORE, will be priced to sell between $999 - $1899 at the Sample Sale Event.

Special Event Details

Date & Time: Sunday, December 6, 2009 (12pm–3pm)

Location: Carine’s Bridal Atelier, 1726 Wisconsin Ave NW, 2nd Fl., Washington, DC 20007

Phone: (202) 965-4696

Additional Important Information

  • Sale is first come, first serve
  • Line starts directly outside the boutique
  • No appointments taken
  • No merchandise hold policy
  • Designer labels include Angel Sanchez, Carolina Herrera, Junko Yoshioka, Karl Lagerfeld, Kenneth Pool, Melissa Sweet, Monique Lhuillier, Platinum Collection, Reem Acra, Rivini, Rosa Clara, St. Pucchi, and The Vineyard Collection
  • All shopping and “try-ons’s” are self-service
  • Sales consultants will be available to answer questions and provide assistance as needed
  • All gowns size 8 or 10
  • Entire boutique will serve as an open dressing room; brides welcome to try-on gowns anywhere there is available space
  • All brides are recommended to wear bras, lingerie, shorts, and underwear to try on gowns as entire boutique will become a dressing room
  • All sales are final (no returns allowed); gowns are sold “As-Is”
  • Cash and Mastercard, Visa, American Express accepted. NO Discover card. NO checks allowed.
  • Street parking is limited.

For More Information

Contact Carine’s Bridal Atelier by phone 202.965.4696 or email or visit

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

The ladies at Engaging Affairs wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving! We are so grateful for our amazing clients, our fabulous industry friends and our devoted blog readers. You all make it easy for us to love weddings and love our jobs.

The Thanksgiving montage above is courtesy of Manolo for the Brides and, aside from the paper squirrels (creepy), I'm loving it! Happy Turkey Day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Chic Comfort Food

Before we all head off to indulge in way too much Thanksgiving dinner, I thought it would be fun to visit the idea of comfort foods as elegant wedding fare. Some of my favorite wedding hors d'oeuvres are luxe versions of childhood favorites: mini grilled cheese sandwiches with shots of tomato soup, mac and cheese (I love DC caterer Occasions' version with lobster), pigs in blankets, french fries in paper cones, petite Philly cheesesteaks and sliders.

Mashed potato bars with do-it-yourself toppings have been big for years and we've done the same with risotto and grits. For one holiday wedding, we did a very popular sweet potato bar with yummy add-ins like candied pecans and caramelized onions.

And I love our own Sara's idea to serve breakfast for dinner at her wedding on Saturday (more about her amazing wedding later). The French toast station during cocktails was a huge hit and so yummy. Talk about comfort food!

So before you get caught up in the idea that you have to serve oh-so-elegant filet with a few artfully arranged stalks of asparagus think of the foods you truly love and crave. I'll bet your guests would love them, too!


Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Chalkboard Details from Etsy!

A couple of months ago when I was searching for the perfect chalkboard for my outdoor October wedding, I came across artist Garth Fouts on Etsy. I loved the fact that he would create a chalkboard for me to my specifications because I needed something huge! I ended up getting a 6 foot tall black chalkboard that Garth hinged for me (which made it so much easier to transport and you couldn't even tell once it was unfolded). It looked so cool at the wedding; everyone commented on it!

Since I have several brides who are schoolteachers, the idea of using chalkboards has come up again and again. When I mentioned this to Garth, he sent me some other chalkboard ideas he came up with for weddings. I love the idea of chalkboard place cards and chalkboard tags.

I adore the idea of hanging chalkboard tags off the backs of each chair for table numbers instead of the traditional number stand on the table. The place cards could be used for signs on buffets, dessert displays or favor tables. I've even gotten a bee in my bonnet about having a children's table with a chalkboard topper so the kids could draw while they eat.

What fun ideas can you come up with for these chalkboard details?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Oo la la! Oscar de la Renta Trunk Show at Hitched!

‘Tis the season for giving, and the Hitched gals have teamed up with one of the most spectacular designers to give you the greatest bridal gift of all ~ an Oscar de la Renta trunk show on Friday, December 4th and Saturday, December 5th!

As one of the most respected and established designers in the world, Oscar de la Renta is known for his use of exquisite detail and luxe fabrics. His stunning bridal collection is no exception and has received praise over and over again for its couture (yet classic) look and feel. These dresses are unlike anything you’ve seen and will be the perfect match for brides looking for a truly exquisite gown!

Since Hitched is one of only two dozen stores internationally to showcase the Oscar de la Renta bridal collection, this is one of their most anticipated trunk shows of the year. Be sure to book an appointment today by calling 202-333-6162 or emailing

Have fun!

We Have a Winner!

Thanks to everyone who entered our drawing for a copy of Laura's wedding planning book, "Stop! Don't Plan a Wedding Without this Book."

Congratulations to stigg100 for being the lucky winner. We hope this book helps her with her wedding planning. Attention stigg100: send us an email ( with your mailing address and we will pop the book out to you!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Made in the Shade: Vintage Wedding Umbrellas by Bella Umbrella

I've developed a slight obsession with the fabulous vintage umbrellas by Bella Umbrella (and the fact that you can rent these little numbers and have them shipped right to your door). As a wedding planner, I already have a trunk full of umbrellas (you have to be prepared!) but none are as swanky as Bella's. Each umbrella is an original from the 1930's to the 1950's and each is unique.

I love mixing and matching the colors and patterns for a whimsical feel.

Going tone-on-tone gives a more sophisticated look.

You don't need rain to use umbrellas at a wedding. They provide instant shade for outdoor summer ceremonies and are the perfect accessory for a fun portrait session. So bop on over to Bella and check out all the cool styles. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Sneak Peek {Kendall and Nick}

My wedding this past weekend was absolutely gorgeous and, although, I don't have all the photos yet, here are a few shots from the bride and groom's monument shoot between the ceremony and reception. I had been worried that it would get too dark for good shots but I love the deep indigo sky and the dramatic lighting of the monuments behind them. Thank you to Juan Carlos of Fotobriceno for sharing these beautiful images!

Stay tuned for more fabulous detail shots of this Fall-themed wedding at The Willard!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

New Year's Eve Weddings!

It may be a ways off from New Year's Eve but for those planning a wedding on this iconic evening, it is right around the corner. I am working on a fun eco-friendly wedding at The Hotel Monaco for the big night and can't wait! Here are some inspiring images to get you in a party mood.

Gotta love this uber-glam dress. Perfect for a dancing dress after the ceremony!

It's all about time on New Year's Eve!

Photos from top to bottom: Bella M Events, Grazier Photography, Grazier Photography, Jessica Claire Photography

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Amsale Trunk Show at Hitched!

Your best gals have been there for you through it all ~ so what better way to repay them than by outfitting them in fabulously chic, far from frumpy dresses to wear on your big day! Gather up your girls and come out for the Amsale Bridesmaid Trunk Show on Saturday, November 28th at Hitched.

With so many colors, fabrics, and styles to choose from, the Amsale bridesmaid collection features options that are appropriate for every type of wedding ~ from a garden party to a fancy hotel soiree.

At the trunk show, they'll be showcasing the brand new colors and styles from Amsale’s fun and sophisticated line of crinkle chiffon gowns, along with gorgeous new taffeta and jersey silhouettes.
As an added bonus, any Amsale bridesmaid dresses purchased that day will be 15% off (yup, bonus!).

To make an appointment, please call 202-333-6162, or email

Wedding Gown Sale!

13% Off Your Dream Gown At Carine’s Bridal Atelier, November 20th & 21st

Carine’s Bridal Atelier is celebrating the third anniversary of their bridal boutique by offering 13% off the retail price of every gown on Friday, November 20th and Saturday, November 21. The 13% savings is equivalent to the cost of alterations – it’s like receiving alterations for free. All viewings are by appointment only.

Carine’s Bridal Atelier opened its doors on Wisconsin Avenue in Georgetown in November 2006. Since, owner Carine Kraweic has sold high-end designer gowns by Monique Lhuillier, Carolina Herrera, and Angel Sanchez, among others, to brides in DC, Maryland, Virginia and beyond.

Carine and her staff are dedicated to tailoring bridal fashion to a bride’s body type, personality and destination. Carine's Bridal Atelier's mission is to provide brides with unparalleled customer service and a personalized experience.

Carine’s Bridal Atelier is located at 1726 Wisconsin Avenue, 2nd Flr, Washington, DC 20007. Phone: (202) 965-4696. Email:

Monday, November 16, 2009

A California Couple in DC

Stretching back to September, I have some catching on to do on my blogging. On September 13th, Allison Jackson and Tyler Woodman gathered friends and family for a raging party to celebrate their wedding. The couple, in from California, chose DC because Allison's parents live in the area and they wanted an all inclusive experience for their guests.

I wanted to create and event that was as refreshing as being out on the California Coast, but clearly knew my restraints in the DC grid. The ceremony was held at Western Presbyterian Church and was performed by an old friend of the bride's family. The ceremony had a personal feel as the string musicians played modern music and the bride's aunt performed for the group accompanied by a guitar.

Colors were key to create the right feel and Allison went with a sky blue and orange combination. The venue was a given- clean, modern and large to accommodate the party goers, the Ronald Reagan Building Atrium space was the clear choice. John Duffy of Yellow Door created multiple arrangements for the reception that complimented both the long rectangular and round tables guests were seated at in front of the dance floor.

New Monopoly started the evening off with the Queen classic, "You're My Best Friend" as the couple had their first dance as husband and wife. And the tunes didn't stop there. By the close of the evening, the guests were chanting for "One more song!" and the band obliged.

Adding to the fun of the evening was the photo booth provided by Poshbooth, complete with dress up gear and a candy bar so everyone could get their sugar hugh after dinner. This must be what fueled the dancing with the orange napkins on the guests heads.

The cake was one of my favorite parts. A funky, modern design created by Leslie at Fancy Cakes by Leslie was a focal point of the event. Special thanks to my other partners in crime that evening: Digital Lightning and Syzygy Events for the drape and lighting, Linder and Associates for the transportation for the weekend, Open Eye Media for the Videography and of course, the lovely Jenni Green of Studio Diana for the amazing photo coverage.


Old Hollywood Comes To D.C. {Wendy + Jason}

After 7 years of dating, Jason popped the question and Wendy said yes. From that point forward, Wendy had the task of making her vision a reality for her wedding. Wendy’s vision…to bring 1920’s Hollywood to her 2009 Washington, DC wedding. She chose the elegant Willard Hotel (thanks to Laurie at the hotel for all her help) as the setting for their wedding vows and the historic Washington restaurant, The Occidental Grill, as the setting for her reception.

Wendy's wedding gown was classic and evoked a sleek Hollywood glamor with her fabulous birdcage veil (our favorite) and her all red bouquet. Under a simple yet beautiful chuppah in the Willard Room, Wendy and Jason said their vows in front of about seventy friends and family. As they recessed out of their ceremony, guests blew bubbles which made the room look magical.

After the ceremony, guests were ushered next door to the Monument Room at the Occidental Grill for cocktails where they nibbled on delicious crab croquettes and chicken skewers, to name a few. The Monument Room, on the second floor, is covered with black and white photos of prominent figures of the past and has a dark wood bar and walls so you feel as if you are stepping back in time.

We brought in black linens, black chairs and red centerpieces, which transformed the room and gave it a sleek, supper club feel. Rentals were provided by Select Event Rentals. The beautiful centerpieces along with the flowers and chuppah for the ceremony were created by none other than the fabulous Christopher at Amaryllis.

Their black and white cake by Jennifer Winter had a simple yet striking design and added to the sophisticated and chic decor.

After the cocktail reception concluded, guests were ushered to their tables to begin the evening’s festivities. DJ Chris spun a perfect mix of Latin and American music and kept the guests dancing all night long. I've never seen guests swarm the dance floor even before the 1st course was served (both the photographer and I were both dragged onto the dance floor to join in)! Guests departed with custom candy bars in a chic black and white design.

Thank you to Michael Bonfigli Photography who captured all of the special moments of the evening and let us share them with you. And a special thanks to Wendy and Jason who let me share their amazing day!


P.S. Don't forget to enter our giveaway for a chance to win a signed wedding planning book! Just post a comment telling us that you'd love to win. Good luck!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Another Bridal Bubbly Giveaway!

Happy Friday everyone! It's time for more fun and free wedding goodies from Bridal Bubbly. Since we are all about wedding planning, we're offering a copy of "Stop! Don't Plan a Wedding Without This Book." This is my no-nonsense guide to planning a wedding without losing your mind. It's full of checklists and helpful tips. Kind of like a girlfriends' guide to wedding planning if your girlfriend had planned 500 weddings!

Just send us a message and you'll be in the running. We'll draw a name next Friday. Good luck, everyone!

Have a great weekend, and wish us luck. We have a couple of amazing weddings this weekend and our fingers are crossed for good weather!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Anna-Maier/Ulla-Maija Trunk Show {Hitched}

A personal favorite, Anna-Maier/Ulla-Maija, is showcasing at Hitched Friday, November 20th and Saturday, November 21st. For the discerning bride who wants a gown as unique and fabulous as she is.

From Hitched owners, Julia & Carin:

We are looking forward to having our favorite designers visit Hitched for the following trunk shows. Contact us at 202-333-6162 or to schedule an appointment.

Anna-Maier/Ulla Maija Trunk Show
Friday, November 20th and Saturday, November 21st

Amsale Bridesmaid Trunk Show
Saturday, November 28th

Oscar de la Renta Trunk Show
Friday, December 4th and Saturday, December 5th

Carine's Bridal Atelier Trunk Show and Anniversary Sale!

Be sure to check out the latest amazing trunk shows and celebrations at Carine's Bridal Atelier. Happy 3rd Anniversary to Carine and her amazing staff! Our brides love you guys!

Thursday, Nov 12 - Saturday, Nov 14
Junko Yoshioka Trunk Show
View the latest Fall 2010 and Spring 2010 Bridal Collections by Junko Yoshioka.
Save 12% off Thursday and Friday and save 10% off on Saturday on all Junko Yoshioka gowns purchased over the trunk show weekend. Japanese designer, Junko Yoshioka designs innovative contemporary gowns with the timeless elegance of haute couture. Her gowns are often seen on the red carpet on starlets such as Jessica Alba, Kathryn Heigl, Ana Paquin, Helen Hunt, Jamie Pressley among others.

Friday, Nov 20 - Saturday, Nov 21
Third Anniversary Sale
Celebrate Carine's Bridal Atelier's third anniversary of the store opening with 13% off your dream gown! This weekend only!

Carine's Bridal Atelier is open Monday-Friday from 11am-7pm and Saturdays from 11am-6pm. All viewings are by appointments only.

Location: 1726 Wisconsin Avenue, 2nd Flr. Washington, DC 20007. Phone: (202) 965-469.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Carolina Blue Wedding: Hillary & Tim

Hilary and Tim were about as lucky as a bride and groom can get. Their mid-September wedding day was absolutely perfect: gorgeous blue skies, mid 70s, not too hot but not too cool. The exact day you envision when you decide on a September wedding in D.C. Especially when you get married at the DAR with the Washington Monument as your backdrop!

And the blue skies were a perfect match for the shades of blue they had chosen for their wedding colors. Both the bride and groom attended UNC so Carolina blue was in abundance at the wedding. This wedding was near and dear to our own Alison's heart because she went to UNC so she was thrilled by the profusion of pale blue! Those who know me know that I favor a darker hue (some might call it "Duke" blue) but I have to admit the wedding colors were spectacular.

I started working with Hillary only a few months before her wedding but was immediately impressed by her organization. And that was before I met her mom! My heart sang when I saw that all of the wedding items the Mother of the Bride gave me were labeled and organized in boxes according to their use. Talk about wedding planner heaven! And on top of being super-organized, everyone (from the bride and groom to their families to the guests) was about as nice as humanly possible. Being a North Carolina girl myself, it was wonderful to be in a room brimming with Southern hospitality.

Everything on the wedding day went as perfectly as the weather. Thom from Dragonfly created the gorgeous floral decor while we set up for the ceremony. The bride got dressed upstairs in her stunning gown from Hitched. The ceremony featured a string quartet and solos from a family friend with a beautiful tenor voice.

After the ceremony, the bride and groom ran off to take photos with Babs Evangelista with Poetic Reality Produtions, a super-talented photographer they brought up from North Carolina. They even stopped and grabbed a hot dog from a street vendor before heading back to the party!

Guests went inside the O'Byrne Gallery for a lovely dinner by Capitol Catering, which was topped off by cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcakes. I have never seen a cupcake display cleared out so quickly. These guests loved cupcakes!

A guest writes a note to put in the antique birdcage that served as a "guest book."

After dinner, guests moved back out to the portico where they danced the rest of the evening away under the stars. The fabulous DJ Derrick from Bialek's Music provided both cocktail and reception music and set the perfect tone for the evening. It was truly a perfect September wedding in the city!

The bride and groom depart amid a flurry of bubbles!

Thanks to Babs for sharing her stunning images with us, and thanks to the amazing vendors who made the day flawless!