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Category Archives: celebrity weddings

Sherri Shepherd’s wedding dress issues: Give yourself a break!

by SweetMidlife

Fresh off of her hilariously tacky turn as brazenly clueless Angie Jordan on “30 Rock,” “The View”‘s Sherri Shepherd has announced that she’s trying to get down to a size 2 for her wedding to Lamar Sally. And our question is…Why?

We know that everyone wants to be extra-hot for their wedding, and for a lot of us that means skinny. (Leslie, for one, has always said that if she is ever decapitated, the last thing her disembodied head says as it looks up at the rest of her body is “But do I look fat?”) And her body is her choice. But since she threw it out there, we think Sherri looks amazing right now, though, and have a couple of reasons why she thinks that she should cut herself some slack:

— Everyone is not meant to be a size 6, and from the looks of Sherri, she’s supposed to have some curves on her.

— Weddings are stressful enough without a self-imposed weight goal standing over your head taunting you like a piece of kamikaze cheesecake. And now that she’s put it out there, everyone is gonna be watching. Pressure! It’s not just a Billy Joel song anymore!

— Ask anyone who’s ever crashed dieted and gained it all back with only the photos and the memories of other people to serve as witness – It’s not fun.

Sherri – you’re gorgeous and brilliant and funny. You will be a beautiful bride whether you’re a six 2 or a size 12. If you get down to that size you want, we hope you’re healthy and happy. And if not…same goes.

Be good to you.

Love and wedding cake,

the Brides at 35


Indian destination weddings: Upscale twists on tradition

by SweetMidlife

To me, a small wedding means less than 50 guests; a large wedding is north of 150. But the other day, over drinks with my friend, upscale Indian wedding planner Amen Pawar-Larosa, she mentioned her “very small” Indian wedding in her native England, one of three nuptial celebrations she and husband Derek had.

“So how many people did you have at that one?” I asked.

“120,” Amen said casually, as if she was saying “Well, just me and Derek and my cousin Jerome.”

Clearly, we’re working with a different ruler when it comes to Indian weddings. This was particularly interesting to us at Bride At 35, because there’s an even greater expectation of marrying young in this culture than in the mainstream American one –  “It’s between 25 and 30, nothing older,” Amen says of the brides she helps with her wedding planning company, Pawar Inc.

So we like Amen’s concept because Pawar, Inc., like this blog, is about making tradition beautifully, uniquely your own – “To marry tradition and modern style,” she says. She got her start working for another planner who happened to book an Indian destination wedding – the bride met Amen and saw a kindred spirit, “which helped seal the deal.” After helping several similar brides, Amen decided to hang her own stylish shingle. She’s even seeing non-Indian brides, like singer Katy Perry, having Indian weddings, which she sees as not an appropriation of a culture but a celebration.

Here’s what you need to know:

— Amen wasn’t technically a Bride at 35, but given cultural equivalency, she might as well be – “To be married and have children by (the age of 28) is so expected,” she says. “My mum would get invited to so many weddings and wonder why I wasn’t getting married. She tried – ‘I have a nice guy coming to meet you!’ It was not happening.” Amen eventually married an Italian-Catholic New Yorker named Derek Larosa (They had three ceremonies: One with the Justice of the Peace, the Indian wedding in England and a blessing by Derek’s pastor in New York).

“We wanted it to be about us, but we saw how things were affecting our parents,” she says. “So we had these awesome parties and said ‘Do whatever you want to do.'”

— Why Indian destination weddings?: Well, why destination weddings, period? Brides want something beachy and probably warmer than their home town, both improving the scenery and cutting the guest list. Where the average guest list is somewhere around 300 for Indian weddings, Amen says, the destination weddings she’s seen host around 150. Although Miami has become a haven for these, Palm Beach, with its swanky hotels like the Breakers and the Four Seasons, “is a hidden gem that no one knows about,” she says. “The beauty of it is that is that you can cut down the guest list. The thing is, that these are well-to-do families, and they hear ‘The Breakers’ and bring the whole family. You think people aren’t going to come, but it’s a good assumption that more will than you think.” (Ain’t that the truth?)

— Many upscale hotels on Palm Beach have Indian chefs already in-house, “but nobody knows this,” Amen says. Well, they do now!

— Traditionally, if the wedding is held in the bride’s home town, it’s a several-day affair that includes an entire community, where the bride’s parents pay for everything. She says that the biggest adjustment has been trying to convince fathers that since “it’s not in their hometown, they don’t have to feed everyone for every meal the whole weekend.”

— Amen says  more and more of the weddings are keeping some traditions but bringing some new twists, like having one partner of a different religion or race,  decreasing the guest list and more – “A lot of these brides grew up in America. They love Louis Vuiton.The ceremony keeps the family element and blends those element with the latest, hipper styles.”

— I have never met an ethnic person who didn’t believe that their ethnicity is traditionally…tardy. Seriously, black people, Cubans, and apparently Indians have a self-recognized reputation for not starting things on time. Amen says that timeliness is the number one obstacle at the weddings that she’s planned – “Indian Standard Time!” she says, laughing. “Keeping everything on time is the priority. With hair and make-up being done I need everyone to be on time. I run a tight ship.”


Real wedding of the day: Hawaiian Elvis church nups in Louisiana!

by SweetMidlife

Here at Bride at 35, we’re a big fan of doing you. If you want Rockettes as bridesmaids, kick it out. If you want all of your attendants dressed as members of the combined casts of “The Love Boat” and “B.J. and the Bear,” you hire that monkey and have your brother start working on his Isaac the bartender “Right back atcha!” fingers.

And if you are rabid Elvis fans like this couple from Louisiana and your budget and your church will allow you to stage a “Blue Hawaii”-themed wedding with island-dressed attendants, a King impersonator crooning and peanut butter and banana cupcakes (SCORE!), we’re all about it.

We usually preface statements like that with “…as long as it’s tasteful,” but who’s to say what tasteful means? (Well, we are, but don’t quote us on that). We are sure that we did stuff at our weddings that some people would think were tacky (Say it isn’t so!) And according to those stuffy sites that annoyed us into starting this one in the first place, having an army of attendants and making a huge formal thing of our weddings at our age wasn’t expected.

So we say that if you can’t help falling in love, no use crying in the chapel! Put on your blue suede heels and head to the Heartbreak Hotel (which, incidentally, is the Memphis resort at Graceland where this couple is spending their honeymoon). We’re so happy for them! And although we know that nobody does newspaper stories on stuff like this unless someone thinks its at best different and at worst weird, we celebrate the funny-cool opportunity to present your love in the way that makes you happiest. If the church is cool with it, then everyone else should be.

Save us a cupcake!


TV Bride (Over) 35: Finn’s Mom on "Glee"

by SweetMidlife

Neither of us have children, so perhaps we can’t understand the urge to make every important thing un your life about your offspring. We get that your kids become your focus in almost every way. But should they hijack your wedding?

A huge sparkly nay, we say. Which is why, as much as we love “Glee,” and admire the stratospherically perfect voice of Kurt (Chris Colfer), we cannot condone the show’s recent wedding of Kurt’s dad to Finn’s mom, which took a beautiful older couple’s special day and turned it into a very bridal “Kids From Fame” special. Whose star was Kurt. And as adorable as he is, we think the bride gets to be the star of the day. Or the groom. But mostly the bride. (Don’t tell our husbands we said that.)

Yeah, yeah, we know the show’s called “Glee” and not “Loving Older Couple,” and that it’s a big fluffy fantasy where people burst into song, with instant accompaniment, six times an hour, in major production pieces on a Midwestern public school’s budget. So we’re not looking for stark reality here. But was it really necessary to have the Glee kids be the attendants, when this nice-seeming 40-something couple should probably, you know, have friends of their own? And for the focus to be on Kurt and his awesomeness? This reminds us of a wedding our aunt told us about, where the (older) bride basically had a special presentation for everyone she ever met, including a song for her dead father. We’re all for a production – Lynne’s groom sang him and his groomal (?) party down the aisle to Jackie Wilson’s “Your Love (Is Lifting Me Higher.” But it was awesome. And about, you know, Lynne’s love lifting him higher.

Also, we know that the “Glee” wedding was cast in the middle of a very, very important storyline about the bullying of gay students (in this case, Kurt), and that he needed to feel supported. But couldn’t they have written it so the kids and the family staged some sort of separate Kurt Appreciation Day – you know they love nothing more than the staging of events on that show – on a different day? To purposely write it so that the wedding had to be all about anybody but the bride and groom made me wish they hadn’t done the wedding at all.

We know, we know…Kurt’s now-stepmom is awesome and lovely and willing to make this day about her new family, including her new stepson. And that’s sweet and generous and blah blah blah IT’S HER DADBLAMED WEDDING. Just because you’re older and getting married for the second time doesn’t mean you have to surrender your spotlight completely. Maybe we’re just not that nice.

Yeah. That’s probably it. She did look pretty, though. And, at least, elsewhere in the episode, this got to happen.


Over-35 Bride of the Day

by SweetMidlife

The only part of this that isn’t just crazypants is how awesome Liza looks. At least she still has that. When that-era Michael Jackson is one of the most normal-looking people in your wedding party, well, that must have been a party.


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