The Personal Touch
Looking for custom jewelry at wholesale prices? Cortlandt Manor native Alana Norell Baum, who today lives in Manhattan, is delighted to help you design a one-of-a-kind engagement ring, coordinating wedding bands, or gifts for bridesmaids or groomsmen. She describes her style as “approachable simplicity” and uses lots of diamond and gemstone accents along with colorful patterned natural shells and woods. Solo for four years (but in the jewelry biz for more than 10), the graduate of the Gemological Institute of America works with diamond dealers and other jewelers in the Diamond District. Already her work has appeared nationally, on the Today show and on rachelraymag.com. Information: (212) 420-7027 or (914) 954-0364, or visit alananorell.com
Band of Bold
A simple, unadorned wedding band may work for some brides, but you may be on the hunt for something unique. You wear your wedding ring every day, after all. Consider these two rings, which give you more than just a symbolic reminder of your spouse. The first—made by Jessica and Brent Williams, named Fabuluster and available on Etsy—uses a patented process to reproduce an actual fingerprint on the inside or outside of a silver, gold, platinum, or palladium wedding band. (Talk about one-of-a-kind.) You might not be able to hold hands all day, but you can walk around with his fingerprint around your finger (prices start at $195 plus S&H; etsy.com/shop/fabuluster). Or, if you want to stealthily steal glances at your betrothed’s face, there’s the Cameo by RUX. On first glance, it looks like a regular wedding band with a few stylish ridges. But, if you look at it straight on from the side, the ridges actually form the silhouette of your beloved’s face, with a cameo-style outline of the forehead, nose, lips, and chin. Yes, the rings are really made using a photograph of your profile (prices start at $1,700; cameobyrux.com). Colorful resin bangle bracelets can be ordered to match ($350)
Takes the Cake (topper)
When you imagine a wedding cake, you inevitably think of the cake topper—the shining couple smiling down from the uppermost tier—right? Who are those people? Chances are, the out-of-the-box cake-topping couple bears no resemblance to you or the kind of wedding you’re trying to create. No longer. MilkTea cake toppers, available on Etsy, are fully customizable, matching (if you choose) the bride’s and groom’s attire, hairstyle and accessories, wedding color scheme—you can even add family members and pets. (Yes, there are finally cake toppers for brides with glasses and grooms with beards!) “I literally fell into making cake toppers,” says MilkTea founder/creator Brandi Thanaritiroj. “I had made one for my friend’s wedding back in May of last year and just liked creating them. I come from a heavy fashion background, and when the bad economy hit, our original business started to slow down, so I thought, ‘Why not give the wedding toppers a try on Etsy?’ It seemed to really take off.” Cake toppers start at $190 and can be found at etsy.com/shop/bthanari.
You practice your vows. You’ve tried and re-tried on the dress. How else can you make sure you’re totally prepared for the wedding? By picking up a Ms. & Mrs.’s Wedding Day Survival Kit. The metal suitcase comes with everything you could possibly need but might overlook otherwise: clear nail polish, extra deodorant, a sewing kit, stain remover, super glue, double-sided hem tape, extra earring backs, corsage pins, and even backup wedding bands. Or, be the best bride ever and get the chic mini versions as bridesmaids gifts, which come in cool metallic colors that’ll probably match their dresses ($49 for a full kit, $16 for minis; msandmrs.com).
Calorie-conscious shower or wedding guests will love these cute little cupcakes, redolent of vanilla and chocolate—they’re really soaps in disguise. Shop owner Marie Labropoulos makes her sweet-smelling concoctions out of an assortment of herbs, coconut, olive and macadamia nut oils, and other natural ingredients. Soaps can be purchased in cake or bar form, and take three to six weeks to make (they need to be aged like cheese and wine). Choose from scents such as coffee, cherry, and mint. Cupcakes are approximately $7 each (they’re sold by weight); bars, sold by the slice, typically run from $5 to $7. Wholesale discounts of up to 50 percent are available on orders of more than 20 soaps. Kalliste Organics (30 Garth Rd, Scarsdale, 914-574-5467, kallitsteshop.com).
Save-the-date cards, invitations and reply cards, ceremony program, menus, place cards, thank you notes—it all adds up to a ton of paper. But guests will happily recycle Bloomin Wedding stationery; it is all embedded with wildflower seeds. All recipients have to do is just plant, water, and they’ll receive a lovely reminder of your special day for years to come. There are 16 design suites, and a large array of type fonts and eco-friendly ink colors. “Everyone reports they’ve had good results with planting,” says Maria Cisneros, who sells the line at REcologie (1934 Palmer Ave, Larchmont 914-315-1535; recologieonline.com). She notes that prices for traditional stationery and Bloomin are similar, starting at $5 for an invite and envelope (for quantities of 50 to 75; discounts for larger numbers). For more information, visit bloomininvites.com.