To Wear White or Not to Wear White?? — That is the Question!

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 (featured bridal image — Marchesa)

Ahhhh, the ever-popular, age-old question, that is still heavily debated today — should you wear white to a wedding?!? Summertime is definitely “wedding season”! And thus, I’ve been asked/invited by Lover.ly to weigh in on this ongoing debate. Lover.ly is a one-stop shop for wedding planning. It’s a site where brides & grooms can search/find wedding ideas, hire people for their wedding, and make purchases.

Lover.ly polled their own team of experienced wedding editors & more than 250,000 Lover.ly readers. Needless to say, there was not an agreed upon verdict. But here is Fashion Nexus’ take on this great debate — NO!! I do not think you should wear white to a wedding and it comes down to 2 simplified reasons.

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(featured bridal image — Irina Shabayeva)

1) Do not detract attention from the bride — It’s the bride’s big day!!

From what I see, attending actual weddings & viewing bridal collections, white is most likely the color the bride will be in. It’s been a tradition for the longest time that no one else should then wear white to a wedding. Call it tradition, dress code etiquette, being respectful, but I still say don’t wear white. It’s not that someone is going to mistake you for the bride, but if the bride is the only one in white, plain & simple, she stands out.

It’s not likely a big deal if 1 or 2 guests happen to wear white. But think what would happen if this concept were to vanish. Twenty or thirty guests all of a sudden think it’s okay to wear white. It’s less likely the bride will still feel as special and be the focus on her big day.

The point is to not detract attention, right? If you are the only one, or 1 of 2 wearing white, people might start talking about it or the bride could become upset. This could all lead to unnecessary commotion and distractions from the event at hand — THE WEDDING! I would just say, why risk it? You don’t know who it might upset, a member of the wedding party, the bride, her family, etc. And you never know where or what these upset feelings and gossip might lead to.

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(featured bridal image — Monique Lhuillier)

If you are enjoying checking out some of my featured bridal images, definitely visit Lover.ly’s bridal gowns’ page & see what they have featured!

There is really no need to take this risk, which leads me to my 2nd reason —

2) Logic — You don’t need to wear white. It’s not like it is your only option!

There are so many events and holidays which call for limits as to what you should wear, specifically the color schemes. For a funeral, you should wear black. For Valentine’s Day, you should wear red. For Christmas, you should wear red or green. Or for the 4th of July, you should wear red, white, or blue. You might be attending an event or a party where preselected colors have been chosen.

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Bailey 44 tribal dress

But a wedding is completely different. It’s an event where color options are limitless with one bright line rule — DO NOT WEAR WHITE! And really it’s just all white that I feel is the essence of this rule. You could wear white as part of a print or if it’s not predominant in a color-blocked dress. But with all of the other color options and prints, there is no logical reason for someone to end up wearing a white dress. If you happen to have a white dress that you love, I’m sure there is another occasion on which you could wear that dress. If you are out shopping, it’s not like stores are packed to the brim with only white dresses — just pick something else!

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Paper Crown lace dress

 

Do you need some other ideas of what to wear as a guest? If so, check out Lover.ly’s specific page, featuring dress options for wedding guest attendees.

**Exception to this Rule!!**

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(featured image Elaya Vaughn Bridal)

With pretty much every rule, there is always an exception. I say you can wear white to a wedding if (a) the bride is not wearing white, or (b) you asked the bride and she said it was okay.

This is of course just my opinion, the Fashion Nexus take. But definitely let me know you think! Would you wear white? Why or why not?

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Carol Hannah bridal

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(Jenny Packham)

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(Vera Wang bridal)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Met Gala aka Met Ball 2014 — Best Looks

Each year there is a widely known fundraising gala that is put on for the benefit of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute — Costume Institute Gala aka Met Gala aka Met Ball. There are many names, but no matter which you choose, it doesn’t take away from the amazing looks that grace the gala’s red carpet & event each year. Many fashionistas, fashion bloggers, and those in the fashion industry eagerly wait to see red carpet looks from major award shows — Oscars, Grammys Emmys. But the Met Gala red carpet is also on this must-see list! I hereby dub it Fashion Prom and I’m very excited to put together my 1st best dressed list ever for this event! It’s been a few days since these stars walked the red carpet, but hey, I go as fast as I can — law school finals must come first!

So the opening exhibit for this year was “Charles James: Beyond Fashion.” Charles James was a major fashion designer in the 1950s; he is widely known for being America’s first couturier. He is all about old school glamor and fitting in with that genre, this year’s theme for the Met Gala was “White Tie & Diamonds.” As with any best dressed piece there are lots of images to look thru. As I was picking my faves I found myself picking between 2 extremes — all out/full on glam (going big!!) to a more reserved look, but still quite fitting to the theme of old-school/Hollywood glam. So my list is full of stand-out drama, but also quieter looks that are nonetheless elegant in their simplicity. Enjoy!

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KAROLINA KURKOVA

This look is bold, dramatic, and over-the-top, which I mean in a good way! This strapless navy sculptural Marchesa gown is just the sort of wearable art that I’m sure Charles James strove for when he was designing. The look is simply put, STUNNING — the hand-painted organza floral details to the satin organza material.

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Karolina probably didn’t need much to compliment the dress, but I guess she truly went with the mantra — “Go big or go home!” She decided to pair with her gown more than $1 million of Harry Winston diamonds — a 44-carat Guipure diamond necklace, queen diamond rings, & diamond earrings.  (image above from Karolina’s prep time while at The Mark Hotel)

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The more subtle, yet still elegant final touches for Karolina were with her choices for a lovely, chic up-do & clean, fresh makeup beauty look — Hair was by Bryce Scarlett & Makeup was by Steffi Willmann.

1399330204_suki-waterhouse-560                                        "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala - ArrivalsSUKI WATERHOUSE — Suki’s look was one of the 1st ones I saw and I immediately fell in love; I knew it would be at the top of my best dressed list! I was instantly mesmerized by this tiered tulle, custom Burberry gown with never-ending layers of silk organza. My hypnosis continued to her wonderful choices for jewelry to finish off her look, pieces by Anita Ko — 18k white gold diamond Fan earringss, Leaf ring, Feather ring, wave ring, and ear cuffs.

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blake-lively-435                       blake-lively-ryan-reynolds-gucci-met-gala-2014-02BLAKE LIVELY — If I had to pick someone who channeled the old school, Hollywood glam the best, it would have to be Blake. This champagne silk chiffon Gucci Premiere gown with a plunging neckline just had it all to bring back that timeless classiness and glam from the Charles James era. I loved that she went with some color for her jewelry pieces, all from Lorraine Schwartz — ruby swirl drop earrings & diamond rings.

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SARAH JESSICA PARKER

This is a gown so fabulous, yes, I had to share 3 images, showcasing it all from all sides! SJP was the gala co-chair so of course she had to pull out all of the stops & this gorgeous Oscar de la Renta gown with a black velvet bodice and ivory duchess satin skirt certainly met that goal!

The just as amazing accessories for SJP certainly didn’t disappoint either, the many lovely pieces of jewelry by Fred Leighton — 4k 19th century diamond drop earrings, a 19th century diamond & white enamel bracelet, & diamond, pearl circular brooches.

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And really, if you are going to walk around with a designer name prominently showcased on your look, it might as well be OSCAR DE LA RENTA!!

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ANNA KENDRICK There was a lot of black & white trending at the Met Gala, as just seen with SJP, but I didn’t mind seeing that repeating trend, especially when it looked so amazing as with Anna’s look. Anna’s black & white number was a silk faille J. Mendel gown with a draped bustier, cummerbund waist, & pleated train. It’s always a plus when a look is completed with just as stunning accessories, again such as with Anna’s choices — her black Rauwolf clutch and statement making diamond Graff necklace and earrings.
The stunning touches didn’t stop just yet though, what about her amazing beauty look — perfect black cat eye, soft light plum lips (Burt’s Bees tinted lip balm and lip gloss), & her modern French twist (use of Herbal Essences hairspray). This was all attributed by makeup stylist Sara Glick & hair extraordinaire Matthew Monzon.
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1399340460_amber-heard-560                                                             johnny-depp-amber-heard-met-ball-2014-02AMBER HEARD — I had the pleasure of working with and meeting Amber many years back, probably one of her 1st acting gigs. I am so happy for her success and just to see how her hard work and determination has really paid off. This includes being able to be a knockout on the red carpet as Amber has done with this nude Giambattista Valli Haute Couture embroidered gown. Her beauty look was just as stunning with this sculptured chic updo, created by Peter Butler.
Amber is channeling old-school glam and continues to do so, from head to toe, inclusive of her many Fred Leighton pieces — 19th century diamond pendant earrings, 19th century diamond cluster bracelet, & a pair of early 19th century diamond bracelets.

1399349771_idina-menzel-560       IDINA MENZEL
Black & white was a trend, but there was also quite a few flowing train looks for the Met Gala red carpet, and Idina’s look was certainly deserving a best dressed placement. This white Donna Karan Atelier gown with deconstructed flowers made of sequins, beads, and threadwork was dramatic and statement-making — GREAT PICK IDINA!!
163_3045_350                           kate-bosworth-2-290KATE BOSWORTH — Kate was definitely in the glam-zone for the night’s festivities. She looked classic in this salmon Stella McCartney gown with 2 midriff slashes and a back filled with spaghetti straps. It’s hard to not love a look that is so eye-catching, literally all of the details — gold Jimmy Choo Claire clutch and Aquazarra Firenze heels.
Let’s not also forget the glam jewelry to complete her look, pieces from Ana Khouri (Peacock pearl & diamond gold earrings, Stem gold & diamond necklace, and Petter gold and diamond bracelet), Vieri (Lily Love rose gold pink Tourmaline pave diamond ring), Sidney Garber (gold and diamond chain link ring), & Anna Sheffield.
Great work by Kate’s entire team — Peter Gray for hair, Kris Zero — stylist, & Gucci Westman — makeup artist.
hailee-steinfeld-435            hailee-steinfeld-2014-met-ball-red-carpet-02My best dressed list certainly has some trends, as did the Met Gala red carpet — black and white gowns, and also dresses you have to see from all sides! Hailee’s choice of this Prabal Gurung look with a button detailed back was very much fitting for her & the evening. She looked like a perfectly prim princess! But there was more than just the dress. We can’t forget the satin pink Charlotte Olympia heels & matching onyx and ivory diamond jewelry pieces from Van Cleef and Arpels.
Hailee had a great team to create this magical look — hair stylist Matthew Monzon who created her sleek chignon with use of Herbal Essences; makeup artist Matin Maulawizada, creating a clean nude lip & dramatic eye; & stylist Karla Welch.
hailee-steinfeld-2-435                             "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala - Arrivals
1399330704_chrissy-teigen-560                                       "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala - ArrivalsCHRISSY TEIGEN — Chrissy looked quite fit & trim in this custom halter column Ralph Lauren dress, which was covered in Swarovski crystals. Chrissy too was decked out in some major jewels, all by Lorraine Schwartz — all diamond pieces — fish cuff, bead cuff, natural pearl rings, and drop earrings.
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There are a few good men….

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DAVID BECKHAM

David looked handsome in his white shawl collar tuxedo jacket by Ralph Lauren Black Label, complete with a black bow tie!

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JOSHUA JACKSON — Josh looked like a Boss, pun intended since he is wearing an ivory BOSS made to measure tuxedo jacket, which featured a black lapel and matching black tuxedo pants. He also sported a white bow tie, going perfectly with the night’s theme.

1399399400_frank-ocean-560        FRANK OCEAN

Frank was a Met Gala performer, wearing a sleek Givenchy Haute Couture tuxe (in white) by Riccardo Tisci iwth a black bow tie. He accessorized with a sparkling pair of Jacob & Co. white diamond studs.

 

UTG Designers & Their Beach Party!!

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That’s right! This week on Under the Gunn, the designers started off at the beach! Of course you might think fun in the sun & let’s go surfin’ now, but……..naturally, the setting was just part of the challenge! This week, Tim Gunn, in his nifty flip flops/sandals, delved out the designer instructions for the ever-popular UNCONVENTIONAL challenge. The materials?? — All the decorations and beach items used to decorate for the beach party! The concept was to create a beach-inspired look perfect for the LA beach woman. It was a free-for-all with the run & grab for materials, so how did it all pan out???

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The designers were off to the workroom to begin their 1-day challenge. It was quickly time for the mentors’ round-up and we saw some early frustrations! Mondo & Sam were experiencing some difficulties. Sam was stuck in a rut, pretty much, and Mondo was urging him to go a different route. Nick too had to step up with his designers and was really doing a great job in handing out words of wisdom. Oscar had 2 looks, which Nick advised were not working, and so Oscar had to work with a change of design direction as well.

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The models soon thereafter came in for their fittings. It was quite a different vibe this week. Many designers were feeling out frustrations and as always, in a crunch for the time. But the mentors worked a bit differently; they left the designers to just work it all out. The morning of the runway quickly approached and a lot of craziness & doubts were still running rampant, leaving the viewers to wonder how the top & bottom would fall into place for the week!?!

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The judging panel was oddly enough a repeat from last week as Marchesa designer Georgina Chapman joined celebrity stylist Jen Rade, Marie Claire editor Zanna Roberts Rassi, well sans Zanna I guess, but also, designer Rachel Roy. Again nice to see Georgina since we missed her ever so much on PRAS!! So the materials this week were beach-y items. Tim was quick to remind the designers at the start to think outside the box, don’t be literal with the materials, and let their meanings transcend what they actually are. So what did this all mean for the finished products??? Let’s begin with the “safe zone”!!

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The designers started out the episode with a re-hash of the Anya/Nicholas debacle from last week. The designers were upset about the surprise accusations, but the mentors seemed to be all on team Anya, even Tim! I guess all is well that ends well because Anya’s team was safe & sound this week. There were definitely a lot of great looks this week, but I have to say, Blake’s look of woven table liners and straw decorations should not be forgotten. The less colorful items seemed to be on top, I guess with a more streamlined focus to construction and with that, Blake’s belted look certainly fit that bill. I think this is a major Blake come-back so wishing him luck for next week! SHOUT-OUTS to Francesca’s for the gold dangling earrings & multi-colored bracelet & Benefit Cosmetics for the golden eyes & lips for a, haha, Golden beauty look!

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Shan on the other hand I think should feel a bit lucky because with maybe 1 judge scoring differently, his beach umbrella & inflatable raft look could have been in the bottom. There was hardly any design concept here. It was also quite boring! Many of the top looks weren’t there because of a bold color or overly-dramatic sentiment, but were there because of innovative design-work & great construction, considering the materials used. But Shan’s look didn’t encompass any of this! SHOUT-OUT though to Blowpro for the lovely side-swept do of flowing beachy waves!

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Continuing with the bad news, let’s look at the actual bottom looks!

I was not sure who was going home this week for the bottom. I know who I wanted, but 2 designers I enjoy watching were here in the bottom, one being Natalia. She again worked with a braiding technique for her raffia & beach umbrella look, and I could see where she was aiming, just disappointed with a lack of time as she was so rushed. This look kind of reminded me of her 1st look of the season, a bit under-developed, a little short, but it had potential. I still see that with Natalia and unlike someone such as Shan this week, I at least appreciated her concept for some design! SHOUT-OUT to Blowpro for some more luscious flowing beach waves!

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With Natalia safe I was still on pins & needles, wondering if another designer fave of mine, Michelle, would be out this week?? Luckily….. No! However, the judges were still not in love with her brightly color-blocked look of inflatable rafts! With colors such as hot pink & bright sky blue, the look could go either way in a judge’s eye. Many past PR designers were known for looks of bright colors and off-the-wall prints, and were praised, ahem Mondo! Could it look a bit junior, a little too youthful, maybe, but I thought there were a few positives here. The fit was great and I appreciated some color in a sea of nudes & tans. I also liked the use of the colors in a color-blocked set-up, which is an ever-popular trend. I guess better luck next week to Michelle, but glad she is still here! SHOUT-OUT to Blowpro for a gorgeous straightened side-swept look!

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With Natalia & Michelle safe, that left Stephanie rounding out the bottom & ultimately going home. I never root for someone to go home, but Stephanie has yet to have a standout moment yet. With that said, Michelle has so it made more sense in my eyes that it was Stephanie’s time. She had a great idea with the “melting of leis” and it was certainly a look that inspired fun with popping colors. The differences for me, with this look and that of Michelle’s, was some issues with construction, fit, a less modern silhouette, and Stephanie’s was far more junior. SHOUT-OUT to Francesca’s for the nude sandal heels.

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It was great to see Oscar in the top again, especially after his rough start. His structured look of a beach mat and straw fans made my jaw drop; I was in awe!! I think that is the point with unconventional challenges, to make the mind wonder and I applaud Oscar for doing just that! The look was just so chic, clean lines, & superb construction considering he was using straw fans! SHOUT-OUTS to Blowpro for the retro beach look of golden waves; Francesca’s for the elegant golden hoop earrings; & Benefit Cosmetics for the bold & dramatic beauty look of a slight smoky eye & glistening nude lip.

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It had to have been a tough call this week for the top, but Oscar didn’t make top 2; Asha was the fortunate runner-up this week. I definitely was impressed with this textile printed look of straw decorations, woven table liners, palm leaves, & leis. It’s always nice to see a designer branch out, be innovative and that is what Asha did with creating her own print/textile. SHOUT-OUTS TO Benefit Cosmetics for the slight smoky eye & pop of color on the lip; & Francesca’s for maybe the fun printed clutch, gold necklace, & gold cuff (not sure if any of this Asha created, but I’m sure one of the 3 items is from Francesca’s!)

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But the big winner this week was the comeback kid, no more Mr. Safe, Sam! And I mean big as in he not only won for best look, the 5k, but also the random 1K Benefit Cosmetics gives out this season. This week, the prize was awarded for the look the judges thought was the most fun & free spirited, and that, along with the top look was Sam. This was again nice to see since he too had a rough beginning! But really the judges slacked a bit on adjudicating by letting Mondo pick the winner between his 2 designers. We’ve seen this as Anya has chosen twice now between who to send home. Big difference though in picking a winner versus who to eliminate — Mondo’s designer is still here and I can’t imagine this made Asha feel to great! But back to Sam for his well-deserved win….

His fit & flared look was created with the use of a bamboo beach mat, a beach chair, & a pineapple (check out the clutch!). This was definitely a fun look and perfect for any willing beach bunny! SHOUT-OUTS TO Blowpro for the side-swept loosely fit ponytail; & Francesca’s for the statement heels & cool shades!

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STAY TUNED FOR MORE UNDER THE GUNN NEXT WEEK!!