Nova McLaren – Bespoke Wedding Gown

Looking for an update from the new wedding dress designer Olivia Humphyres for Nova McLaren?  Would you consider a bespoke wedding gown? I recently did a question and answer session with her that will answer your questions better I.  She describes a wedding shoot she worked on.  Enjoy!

MK:  2016 has ended.   What were you been up to this past year?

O: I started off in the early spring meeting with my friend Katey from Waterford’s KLW Design Co. – she and a bunch on CT wedding vendors were working on a collaboration for a styled wedding shoot.  It was a celestial wedding shoot inspired by the Pantone colours of 2016: Serenity Blue and Rose Quartz.  Katey approached me to design a gown for the shoot.
MK: oh sounds like a delightful concept, what did you make?
O: I designed a dreamy serenity blue gown using french lace, silk organza and tulle with a latticed lace bodice and an airy flounced skirt – I had an idea that I wanted a very delicate version of a Daenerys Targaryen, (From ‘Game of Thones’), Gown!
MK: Beautiful! Where did you shoot?
O: We took some shots at the photographers studio near Hartford, then we relocated to a local beauty spot on a river where the light was dreamy!  And finally at a friend’s farm to shoot with her horse.

O: The shoot was debuted on Aisle Society which was so exciting and gave me lots of images to promote NOVA McLAREN!

MK: I love the photoshoot, the dress looked beautiful and blue is a choice I see for the bride who wants to truely encompass her ‘something blue’!
O: Yes!  The dress is actually available for purchase for $3500 – and it has a veil too, and it’s famous of course!
MK:  What else has been keeping you busy this year?
O:  I’ve been working with my 2017 brides, I met with them in early summer for their initial consolations – we swapped ideas so I could get a good feel of what they like and how they want to look, I took their measurements and I drew them original dress sketches which really got them excited!
MK:  Oh wow and do you discuss fabric details at this point too?
O: Absolutely!  My clients love looking at the different laces and love being able to play designer.  I saw them all at the end of summer with their first toile fitting (the cotton prototype) and now we’re almost ready to order fabric.
MK:  Sounds super exciting!  Summer was when you made your move here to Connecticut, how are you finding our corner of New England so far – does it remind you of home?
O: (laughs) Actually, yes! All the names are the same as back home in England, some of the pronunciations are a little different but I guess the revolution happened! We’re down in Madison on the shoreline and it’s beautiful, I love having more time here now I’ve resigned from my position as Pattern Maker at Christian Siriano.
MK:  He seems like such a nice guy!
O:  He is!  Really lovely and a great designer to work for, I enjoyed my time there a lot but I’m very happy to have more time to focus on NOVA McLAREN; designing and making beautiful dresses, meeting with new clients and promoting custom bridal wear by me!
MK:  That’s great Olivia!  I’m looking forward to hearing about the next phase of the dress process!
 Don’t worry, we’ll check in periodically with Olivia and see what’s she’s up to in 2017!  🙂  You can always visit her website at:

Fabulous Wedding Photographer

Every bride needs wedding pictures, how about booking a fabulous wedding photographer?

If you live in Southern New England, look no further.  My oldest daughter’s wedding photographer, Hannah Rachael Colt, has hung out her own shingle. (You can get the full details of all Hannah offers by clicking on the link below)

She’s adorable as well as being talented (see photos above).  And there is little she WON’T do to get the perfect shot! 🙂  See below…

And a little about Hannah, in her own words:

 “Almost 10 years ago, I picked up my first camera. The leather was worn, and the strap was frayed, but it just felt right. With the help of my older sister, herself a professional photographer, I learned everything I could, and eventually transitioned from that old-fashioned film camera to a modern, digital Nikon.

Starting out in a demanding industry at the young age of 18 was exciting and eye opening. I was fortunate to work as a second shooter with other photographers, under whose guidance I was able to learn the fundamentals of traditional photography. I also began to develop my own perspective. Having learned the rules – like never shooting into the sun (I do that), or not climbing trees to get the shot (shhh… I do that too) – I have found that sometimes I like to break them, because the perfect shot isn’t necessarily head-on, or taken from ground level! And now the light flares and soft colors you see in my work have become my signature style.”


Above and below are are two of my favorite shots from, Kathleen’s wedding.  The photo above showcases my two younger girls helping KK with her wedding shoes.  And perhaps my favorite of all..the picture below.  I think one would be hard-pressed to find a more romantic shot.

If you’re getting married soon in the New England area, check Hannah’s website!


Groom’s Gifts To Their Groomsmen



Groom’s Gifts to their groomsmen…Poor guys.  As we women know, they have a difficult time choosing gifts.  You would think it would be easy for them to select gifts for their best friends, but it isn’t.  Most men won’t ask for help, so you need to guide them.  And don’t let your groom get away with the old standbys: an engraved beer stein, a flask, etc.  I’ve selected a few cute, useful ideas for your viewing pleasure.  🙂

Love the bowties above.  They lend such a jaunty air.  Ladies, if you want some control over what the boys wear, suggest just such a gift to your groom.  Then you can help him select the attire to your specifications.  Same goes for the ties below.  And as a bonus, this package has something most men will enjoy, a good bottle.


Out of all the gift options on this post, the cufflinks below are my favorite; maybe because my husband loves cufflinks. He has a great collection, which are mainly gifts from me.  I like the option of gifting each groomsman a similar ‘thank you’ while having the ability to customize the choice.  Remember, though…the men’s shirts must have french cuffs in order to wear cufflinks.


Considering a ‘consumable gift’?  Nothing could be cuter than this “mini-bar”!  And while it would take a little time to shop for the mini bottles and then assemble the jars, the cost would be reasonable.


Still like a consumable gift, but not feeling the alcohol vibe?  Maybe wise.  No one wants tipsy groomsmen!  Consider the adorable boxed gift below.  As a Starbuck’s fan, this is right up my alley!


The pocket knives below are another thoughtful, and useful gift! My husband has quite a collection of them as well.  Just remember to allow time for personalization if you go this route, and don’t forget to leave the knife at home if you’re flying!  I would hate to see such a lovely keepsake left at  airport security.


Will You Have A Wedding Cake?

Will you have a wedding cake?  A surprising number of brides these days are opting out.  I have recently seen weddings pies, a dessert bar, smores, strawberry short cake, a chocolate bar, candy bar, the options are endless.



I think this is sad.  Yes, brides want to be different, but I hate to see some of our most cherished traditions vanish.  Am I a BIG fan of the wedding cake?  Yes, yes I am!  Just look at the delicacy above.  When I think of a wedding cake, I like to visualize it as an item of decoration, not just a tasty dessert.



I am a firm believer in ordering a cake much larger than you need to serve your guests.  There are a few reasons for this view.  1) the above mentioned cake as decoration option 2) your guests may want more than one slice – even consider choosing different flavored layers so your guests have a choice.  And don’t forget, a wedding cake serving is about the third of the size of a restaurant sized slice of cake.


Look at the beauty above!  Now this is really a work of art.  Am I saying to skip all other desserts in favor of only wedding cake?  NO!  Do remember, wedding cakes are NOT cheap, and neither are all those extra desserts.  It’s up to you and your groom, (and whomever is footing the bill for the reception), to decide if multiple desserts are where you wish to allocate your funds.



I love the sleekness of the cakes above and below.  They are quite modern. I image they looked lovely with the brides’ colors.


My dream cake is below.  Exquisite…  Considering a wedding cake for YOUR wedding?  Do you know how to cut a wedding cake?  Do you need to?  Probably not…but just in case, click on the link!  How to Cut a Wedding Cake

Will you save a piece of your cake to enjoy on your first wedding anniversary?  If so, you better do it correctly…or it won’t taste very good…  Click on the link to find out the best way to preserve a slice. How to Preserve Your Wedding Cake