Violet Bells Bridal Blog
Bridgeport Art Center Summer Fashion Show June 13 2017
We Have Moved! December 17 2015
We are excited to announce we have recently moved to a new location in Chicago. Our Atelier/Showroom in the fashion design center of the Bridgeport Art Center is open. This new facility allows us to be in the vicinity of other creative minds and gives us a larger area for handiwork and to design.
SS 16 Look Book November 06 2015
In the early hours of October 29th, the Violet Bells team braved the cold weather to shoot the Spring/Summer 16 look book, just as the sun peeked over the lake. The book highlights the newest collection of accessories and introduces our Hepburn-esque dresses and sheer overlays. With the whimsy 1957 Funny Face theme in mind, our model Julianne pranced around in the tea length Audrey gown. Made of a silk-cotton blend, the Audrey gown is lightweight and fresh, boasting a vintage 1950's Pret-a-Porter feel for the budget conscious bride. The second dress carries a full and iconic Chantilly lace, hand appliquéd tulle mermaid skirt, detachable just below the knees, the gown body is a streamlined pencil dress; ensuring a classic dress with freedom for the bride. The look was shot downtown, on Chicago's historical lakefront, adding to the Retro-Era feel. Meanwhile in the garden, the sheer overlay functions much like a feminine robe, made entirely of tulle and adorned in Swarovski crystals and french Chantilly lace flower petals placed throughout the body. The lace neckline enhances the feminine silhouette, with a delicate raw edge extending from the collar bone to the back near the shoulder blade. The overlay is cinched at the bride's natural waistline and accented with a double faced silk satin ribbon. Each piece illustrates an attention to detail indicative of the Violet Bells touch, and leaves customization room for the bride. The SS 2016 Snow Petals Collection is set to be unveiled on the website mid-December, but for now please enjoy a sneak-peak of the Violet Bells SS 2016 look book.
Gilded and Swept October 22 2015When we think of the autumn bride, visions of cascading locks, gilded and swept, and crowns of foliage come to fruition. Besides tapping into our own 'pinterest-perfect' fall hair yearnings, we've compiled a list of the softest hairstyles to be swept into the bridal headdresses from the Violet Bells collection. Each of these pieces vows to enchant your guests, while you and your groom exchange yours.
Sweetest Day October 16 2015
Romantics, gather round because Sweetest Day is right around the corner and it’s not too late to make it special. Traditionally observed on the third Saturday in October, this year it will hit on October 17th, which is tomorrow. By it’s origin, Sweetest Day was originally created in 1922 with the purpose to show appreciation for those whom are often overlooked or forgotten. Hallmark holidays aside, we have to agree that’s a very sweet message. In this spirit we’ve prepared a few ideas that you can incorporate into your weekend. Each of these suggestions is relative to the Violet Bells showroom in Chicago, Illinois.
Weber Grill restaurants in Schaumberg is offering a dinner for two, Friday throughSunday. The special includes a first course salad, surf or turf, and a shared red velvet cake for dessert.
Coco Club Chicago is offering sweetest day specials and ladies may enjoy a free slice of chocolate cake!
Alliance Française de Chicago teaches a class on Sunday on crêpes. Featuring Julia Child’s Gateau de crêpes à la florentine, crêpes farcies et roulées, and crêpes flambées à la Normande. For French beginners, that’s spinach/mushroom, ham/cheese, and apples. (yummy!)
Balena wine dinner at enjoy a four-course dinner by chef Chris Pandel, with selected wine pairings each course from wine director Keith Whitten.
Odyssey although the weather looks like it may be chilly, I can imagine the fall colors on the water would be breathtaking. Odyssey offers their champagne dinner cruise lakeside Chicago.
Giordano's it’s a pretty safe bet women love pizza. Giordano’s will ship a pizza and heart shaped brownie as part of their Sweetest Day special on October 17th.
Chicago Horse and Carriage if you’ve always had your eye on the Chicago Horse and Carriage, and Chicago being infamously cold on valentines day, this Saturday may be an opportune time!October 14th through October 30th all rides over an hour receive a reserved time and a complimentary dozen roses or mixed bouquet! Note that they do ask that tickets are purchased online and not on site.
Municipal Bar and Dining Co. seemingly in perfect timing with the weekend’s chilly forecast, Municipal Bar and Dining Co. is holding a two day chili fest, with samples from all over Chicago. Tickets range from 10 to 30, and 40 dollars but offer four hour inclusive craft beer and mimosas, they will be airing the weekend’s sporting events as well; everybody wins!
Chop Shop in congruency with National Pasta Day, Chop Shop is showcasing pasta specials for as low as five dollars a pound!
The Hyatt is offering Sweetest day Specials through October 18th, enjoy a 60 minute couples massage from $150.
Riva on Navy Pier Chef Luigi Garcia will be cooking up Australian lobster tails, Alaskan King Crab, whole Dover Sole and more, on Saturday… reservation suggested.
Phil Stefani’s 437 Rush showing ‘extra special’ four course menu on Saturday.
Bengston’s Pumpkin Farm and Fall Fest for outdoor festivities we suggest Bengston’s Pumpkin Farm and Fall Fest, near Chicago, featuring live music and food outside.
If, you are staying in with your loved one there are many sweet treats you can bake to show your love. One of Violet Bells favorite is Cherry Pie in a shape of a heart.
Whether you make a grandiose gesture or choose to celebrate more personally, Violet bells wishes you the sweetest of days. We encourage you to set time aside to exchange a kind thought or care to someone who may need it, however many of these ideas are simply too sweet to resist!
To Have and To Hold When It Gets Cold October 02 2015
The season also gives room for more unique confetti. After your final walk down the aisle have dried flowers for your guests to toss. Not only does this make for a beautiful picture, it really ties into the rustic and vintage theme previously mentioned. Wrap the confetti bundles in music paper or parchment, even mason jars if it seems fitting.
In addition to the above suggestions Violet Bells has a collection of accessories that will, without a doubt, compliment the autumn theme and warm your groom's heart.
'I Do' Diligence September 17 2015
With the new bridal collection from Violet Bells' nearing its unveiling, this week we thought we'd focus on dress silhouettes. The Violet Bells collection is customizable, meaning our bride-to-be may choose the style and fit congruent to her figure. Although many women are aware of their body shape (thank you online quizzes), many are still unsure of the most flattering dress and cut for their figure. We have highlighted the silhouette types and cuts, so that every bride can glow in her gown. That way when the lights are hitting your dress for the night, you're the one lighting up the room.
Ball Gown: fitted at bodice, full skirt, great dramatic look on long & lean or pear shapes
A Line: Fitted at bodice, flowing to ground with unbroken line, resembles that of an uppercase A, very balancing, looks good on just about any frame
Modified A Line: Fitted through bodice to hips/upper thigh, then flows from that point, less dramatically and tighter to the body than the regular A line
Trumpet: Fits close to body the gradually flows at mid-thigh to floor, resembles a trumpet
Mermaid: Fitted through bodice, waist, hips, down to knee then flares
Sheath: Classic fit, close to body without waist, straight skirt, will contour against skin
A few other terms that may come up or should come up while you're searching for the dress:
Empire Waist: Tightest below bust line, elongates a petite frame
Drop Waist: Waist will be tightest just below natural waist, was made most prominent by the Coco Chanel
Remember that the Violet Bell's collection allows the bride to customize the top, whether be it sheer and tying at the back, a sweetheart neckline, or a cascading waist. Make sure your dress does your figure due diligence before you say 'I do.' Happy shopping!
Je t'aime Blue September 12 2015
and a silver sixpence in her shoe.
And something well-treasured at Violet Bells is tradition, in its most sophisticate praxis. Although we may not be exercising the poetic ditty to the extent of warding off bad juju, one could never underappreciate the value of a charm or trinket. And what bride doesn't love an extra dazzle of good luck during her betrothal? We've prepared a unique collection of Something Blue's for the Violet Bells' bride...
This delicate beaded Guipure Venetian lace garter is also embellished with Parisian clay flowers and baby sequins. A sister garter is featured along side for toss out in the new collection.
A fancifully cut garter pays respect to the Guipure Venice lace edge. To the right a Rhinestone trimmed garter, created with Alencon lace and detailed by delicate clay flowers made in Paris. The flowers lie in a bed of couture organza silk petals and leaves, with a hint of Chantilly lace for a special touch that is pleasing to the eye.
This veil, named Holi, crafted from Alencon lace, has a rawcut edge draping from the crown to midcalf. From there, the veil extends into a scalloped edge and is finished with lace applique and double-faced silk satin ribbon. Our whimsical Clementine gloves are made of Alencon lace. The raw edge and blue clay flowers give the gloves an airy and delicate touch... Extenuating the bride's hands and ring finger.
Each of these Violet Bells' signatures give a bride a feminine way to say bonne chance!
Diana August 14 2015
If a bride could embody grandeur in its finest form, Diana Mandusic was spot on. Not to my surprise, she looked absolutely stunning... She wears a double layered cathedral veil with a full crown. The veil showed off an opulence of Swarovski crystals heavily placed throughout both layers. Customized Swarovski crystals allow the depth and volume to resonate in your guests eyes... plus it's quite enchanting to see the subtle glimmer seemingly floating through the swept gown. We were delighted to see Diana, both a client and friend, looking so spectacular on her anticipated day.
The Quintessential Bride July 31 2015
Violet Bell's introduces pieces inspired by women's fashion during the Edwardian period, an era when the gowns embodied a sense of confidence, poise, feminine sophistication. The quintessential Edwardian lady wore a languid gown, accentuating the natural waistline, and flowing down the body. The hourglass bodice embodied the grandeur of the emancipated woman of the time.
The Violet Bells two-piece collection will emulate both the drama and opulence of the period, but with a refreshing and minimalististic approach. A two-piece dress allows for proper fit and freedom for the bride, to adjust as her evening unfolds. The bodice and gown of duchess silk satin forms the silhouette tailored to the midsection. Then Chantilly lace is thoughtfully placed with respect to the woman's figure- contouring the neckline, shoulders, waistline. The design would not be complete without the signature Violet Bell's adornment of hand-beaded freshwater pearls and crystals by Swarovski.
Bespoke Event! July 08 2015
Come be inspired by Cinderella & Swarovski crystals! This weekend and the next Violet Bells is hosting a Bespoke event. Work with the designer Janessa Ann to create your one of a kind finishing touches!
Grand Opening Event! June 09 2015
It has been a while since VB's has written a post, and with good reason. So much has been happening behind the scenes. As announced, we have officially moved into our very first showroom, and have been working our "pixie dust" magic to bring this space together. Offering a dreamy environment for our brides to have the most dazzling experience towards the end of there wedding collaborations. We are very much looking forward to working one on one with future brides on their finishing touches. With that said, we are inviting you to our Grand Opening Event! Come view our intimate space and get to know our design process.
Mr. Selfridge April 10 2015
A daughters Wedding
What did you think of Mr. Selfridge first daughters wedding? Amazing, right!?! I didn’t expect it to be anything less from perfect, being that Mr. Selfridge always strived for the extravagant.
Lustrous clusters of white lilies & the light as a feather like of ferns are the most stunning collaboration I have ever laid my eyes on. They are timeless in any setting.
Rosalie’s veil is like soft clouds of silk tulle and lace cascading down into a pool of more lace. I have been waiting for this moment, for this veil style to be featured on a historical drama. I think to myself, "yes! we are beginning to open up to this timeless bridal veil style". I can NOT wait to put this inspiration to use, VERY soon.
I am simply delighted with the brides maids dresses. They are designed in the most beautiful shade of violet, and the bridal gown is oh so sweet and elegant.
Mother & Daughter March 20 2015
Custom Headpiece for a friend and to follow down the yellow brick road for her baby girls’ newborn photoshoot. Who said your daughter needs to wait till she gets married. I am in awe with these photos of her baby girl Norah.
I am delighted and is the perfect time to whisper to you. Violet Bells is bringing to you a sister shop, a new collection of boho chick and baby everyday headpieces.
Filled with delicate lace hairbands and ethereal floral hair wreathes.
“The Pink Posey”
I was given the honor to create a headpiece for a friend. From the first time meeting Mollie through my husbands close friend Zachery. I was left with an impression of a fun, lovable, and laidback chick... After all she was heading to a Dave Matthew's Band Concert here in Chicago! I don't know what else could scream the very definition of (fun and laid-back) any better than that... Meeting with Mollie to collaborate was a very fun, no fuss, and enlightening experience... I had just finished a collection of Swarovski crystal lace flower hair wraps. I was excited to have someone try them on, and she was the perfect match! They were so beautiful on her, and fit her personality perfectly. From seeing a picture of her beautiful dress prior to the meet, I knew this collection of headpieces would fall into her bohemian sense of style. Plus she would like to use her extra lace from her dress to create the lace flowers. How divine.
Wedding Photographed by
Newborn Baby Photographed by
Heirloom Bridal Accessories March 13 2015
It is such an honor when a client comes to me and asks me to create a custom piece for them using a family heirloom. This type of project is one of my favorites - it holds sentimentality, spirit, and above all heart.
This piece was constructed using a mothers bridal veil. This very special veil was to be re-constructed, using the lace part of the crown as the leaves for a sweet floral headpiece. The flower was made from delicate veiling, adding a light, whimsical touch. I adorned a cluster of sparkling Swarovski crystals and pearls to the center of the flower, tying in the style of the original veil, and bringing it all together.
I simply adored working with this bride via email. She had depth to her style and was as sweet as can be. It was an honor and pleasure knowing this bride entrusted me with her mothers precious bridal veil, and I hope she loved the end result as much as I did!
Photos courtesy of Aubrey Greene Photography
Interested in a custom heirloom piece for your wedding? Contact me!
Charming 1920's Elopement March 06 2015
For the Summer vintage bride, look no further.
The scene of this sweet elopement is like stepping into a Southern 1920s dream. It was the hottest day of the Summer in Chicago. As we were finalizing all the details of the style shoot, we felt more like we were having a soiree in the Louisiana bayou, rather than creating a styled party in Illinois. The heat and the intimate setting definitely set the mood for the day.
We took a fresh approach to the 1920s. By adding shades of white, a hint of rose pink, and soft peach, we brought a feeling of allure - a fresh twist to the 1920s. The Chantilly lace cap veil - “The Mia veil” - ties the whole scene together. We also adorned the precious flower girl in a floral lace encrusted headband and dressed the sweet maid of honor in a delicate china silk floral headpiece & baby sequin sash. The bridal gown was also custom made for this timeless collaboration. The Chantilly lace veil and bridal gown were a match made in heaven.
We found the perfect setting located in the Prairie District neighborhood of Chicago. This area brings you back to a time of iron lamp posts, cobblestone lined roads, and iron gates surrounding a quaint park. In a one block radius there are two Museums - The Clarke House Museum, that survived the Chicago Fire, and The Glessner House. Just down the road, The Keith House served as the perfect backdrop (and a great space to host an intimate event!). The Keith House is an amazing space with a rich history. We even found a built in wooden bar that was the perfect back drop for our sweets table.
We wanted to create an atmosphere full of light, and an intimate ceremony with delicate details. Pistil and Vine's floral arrangements created a soft and lovely surrounding. The exquisite cake made by Luscious Layers Bakery was inspired by an architectural photo. A lot of our inspiration came from details of the Art Deco and Art Nouveau time periods. We were also greatly inspired by the movie movie, "The Great Gatsby," with Robert Redford and Mia Farrow. The film had a playful, light, and airy approach which we tried to capture also in our style shoot.
We hope you'll enjoy the spirited fun, beautiful atmosphere, and stunning details from this charming 1920's elopement styled shoot!
Photographer: Julia Franzosa Photography
Concept design / Set styling: Kristine Aletha Weddings
Concept design / Dresses and headpieces: Violet Bells
Props / Set styling: find Joy
Floral: Pistil and Vine
Cake and Sweets: Luscious Layers
Stationery: Sarah Drake Design
Bridesmaid Dress: Mignonette Bridal
Models: Dana Jacobsen (bride), Patrick Cunningham (groom) Jill Schwendeman (attendant)
A Custom Bridal Veil Creation February 27 2015
I love to work with brides to create beautiful, custom pieces for their special day. This is a story of one such bride.
This particular bride was a referred to Violet Bells from the lovely Diana’s Bridal located in Skokie, IL. I started working with the bride over email, getting ideas of her personality and what she was envisioning for her wedding day. After exchanging several emails, and doing some research, it was time to meet in person!
During our meeting, we looked through samples of all the beautiful materials and began to piece everything together. This is the moment when you as a bride get to feel like a princess. This is what makes my job so much fun! It leaves me feeling like a fairy godmother. Now I get to wave my wand! (Just kidding. I wish, right?!?)
Now it is time to cut, sew, and create the custom piece. Working from all the inspiration I've gathered and piecing together each conversation I've had with the bride, I fashion a wearable work of art. I am really more like the birds flying around a dress form, making this beautiful ball gown for Cinderella...draping, and cutting, and tying everything together to perfection. Can you see how much I love the design process???
Um, okay. Now back to being serious. This bridal veil consist of Swarovski crystals and MORE Swarovski crystals with a hint of pearls, creating a flow of randomly placed teeny tiny crystals to cascade in a ribbon edged effect. The sparkle from the light hitting each and every crystal is simply mesmerizing. You can't take your eyes off it!
I fell in love with this piece so much that I had to make this a part of the collection! This is one of the reasons I love working with brides. It opens up new possibilities I might not have thought of on my own. A true collaboration and work of art...beautiful!
Photographs courtesy of Ryan Timm Photography
I would love to work with you on a custom veil, too! Contact me for more information.
Rose Collection February 14 2015
Welcome to the new Violet Bells Website!
Happy Valentine’s Day, ladies!
Welcome to the launch of the all-new Violet Bells website! What better timing than the most romantic day of the year, right!?
I am delighted to debut our newest collection as well! Enjoy this sneak peek of the Rose Collection: Spring/Summer 2015.
The Rose Collection
Will you be Violet Bells Valentine???
Valentine's Special February 13 2015
Rose are red violets are blue sugar is sweet and so are you!
Valentine's Pinterest Promotion!
In honor of Valentine's day, we have a special treat just for you!
Pin the design you love from our new website, and email your pin to info.violetbells.com. Once we get your email, we will send you a discount code for 20% off a single item from Violet Bells! Be sure to send us your pin by 2/28 to be eligible!
Violet Bells xoxo
Romantic Winter Wedding February 10 2015
Come get lost in the thicket of white snow and gray aspens. Photographer Mathew Irving brings to you a magical winter wonderland. The way the light cascades through trees at Rocky Mountain Aspen grove is like a dream. Not to mention the real-life married couple is simply gorgeous! They are so lovely and sweet together.
Speaking of the models. Jamie is one our past brides, isn’t she lovely?!? I adore her in the Mia lace cap veil. She looks like a snow angel. Violet Bells is honored she decided to use her wedding veil for this stunning winter wedding styled shoot.
Photographer: Mathew Irving Photography | Apparel: Areve | Baroque Frames & Branch Card Holders: Kate Aspen | Tuxedo and Mens Attire: Komono | Location: Rocky Mountain National Park | Apparel: Rust and Roses | Shoes: Timberland | Veils and Headpieces: Violet Bells Bridal | Floral Designer: Whole Foods Market