What to Wear to Spring Weddings

Last week I stopped by Studio 512 to chat all about how to put together your latest look for one of my very favorite events: a wedding! Whether you shy away from bright colors or love to pop your boldest hues off each other when the warmer weather hits, I’m giving you easy styling tricks and techniques, so you can knock your outfits out of the park this wedding season.

Watch the video below to learn:

  • how to incorporate color into your spring wedding look no matter your comfort level with color

  • the perfect piece to wear if you love to dance at weddings

  • which metallic to choose to play into the colors of your unique outfit

  • how to carefully choose each piece of your outfit, so your look comes out stylish and effortlessly put together

  • the perfect detail that gives your look a sexy touch, without being too over the top for a wedding

  • what colors to pop off of your classic nude heels

  • how to play into the theme and location of your event using your outfit

  • how to enhance your look by popping one color off of another

Once you’ve watched the video, I would love to hear from you! Leave me a comment below and tell me how you’re going to get creative with your unique wedding look this spring.



Where To Shop For The Perfect Wedding Dress in Austin, Texas

I'm getting married on March 31st, so to say the very least, I've got weddings on the brain. 

One of the biggest challenges to finding the perfect wedding dress in knowing where to start. Bridal boutiques are as varied in price point, style and aesthetic as other boutiques, so it can be hard to find the one that's right for you and your style. 

Luckily, I'm doing the legwork for ya. 

Check out my top 5 picks of where to shop for your wedding dress. No matter your style or age, you're sure to find something at one of these gems that will make you feel beautiful on your big day. 


Walking into this store is like walking into a bridal fantasy. It's simple stunning -- wall-to-wall dresses hand-picked by the owner, Erica Janke, and manager, Kristen Arriola, that create a collection unmatched by any other shop in Austin. Designers include the best in bridal such as Martina Liana, Enzoani, Eddy K, Elizabeth Dye, Lotus Threads, Carmen Marc Valvo and Mikaella Bridal. 

If you get the chance to work with Kristen or Erica, you are a lucky gal, because no one knows bridal like these two, which is very helpful when you've never been shopping for a wedding dress before. 

Blush Bridal Lounge is closed Sundays and Mondays, and by appointment only, so make sure to give them a call ahead of time to book at (512) 407-9236. 

This shop is good for you if:

  • You want a luxurious bridal shopping experience
  • Price point isn't much of a factor in choosing your dress
  • You want the latest trends in bridal fashion
  • You want to customize the dress to your liking (often times their dresses can be ordered in a different color than is featured in store) 

Images via @BlushBridalLounge on Instagram


This isn't exactly a shop, but rather a custom bridal designer who is absolutely amazing at her work! While I didn't go custom, I worked with Kira to alter many parts of my dress: the bottom, top and back. 

images via @KiraKoutureATX Instagram

While some were for function (the bottom was too long) and some for fashion's sake (I brought down the top to give it a sexier look), she excelled at all the tasks I put in her hands. 

Kira has also made custom dresses for friends of mine, which have turned out beautifully. She is beyond creative, which means she'll help you explore what you want in a dress, so your vision comes to life through a dress that's perfect for you in every way. 

Custom dresses start at $1500, but honestly, that's pretty modest in the bridal world, so if you're looking to dabble in design, head to Kira! 

This shop is good for you if:

  • You have a very specific idea of what you want for your dress
  • You looked and looked and can't find the perfect dress
  • You have vision when it comes to your style
  • You want a dress that unique to you and only you  

bloom by blush

This boutique is exclusively for plus-size brides, which to say the very least, is amazing! Erica, the owner at Blush Bridal Lounge, also owns Bloom, so it's located in the same spot as Blush. 

One of the biggest issues with bridal shopping is that if you are plus-size, you often only get to hold up the samples to see how they might look, rather than try them on. This can make for a very disappointing shopping trip, but with Bloom, they have a plethora of dresses to try, so you can have a clear idea of how stunning you'll look on your big day.

Note*: They just moved both shops (as of 3/22/18) to 5501 N Lamar, so this is the perfect time to book an appointment and see the new digs! 

Designers like Stella York, Allure, Ashley & Justin, Callista Couture, Da Vinci, Hayley Paige and Moonlight Couture grace the walls of Bloom leaving you with so many beautiful, fashion-forward gowns to order from. 

This shop is good for you if:

  • You're between a size 16 and 26
  • You're looking to try on the dress of your dreams
  • You're looking for a designer gown that won't necessarily break the bank
  • You want a glamorous bridal shopping experience 


Now just hear me out on this one...

If you're a bride who's been married before or your wedding plans include escaping to Tulum or getting married in a chapel in Vegas, you may not want to go the traditional route.

Each woman's vision is different, which is why it's important to think outside of the box with where you shop for your wedding dress.

Neiman Marcus has a stellar collection of long and short cocktail dresses, and since it's spring, the colors out right now are light, bright and feminine -- perfect for an off the grid wedding. 

And one more thing... 

White is big this spring -- like HUGE! So if you still want to stick to white, but are looking for a short, less-formal wedding dress, this is also a great spot to stop into for a look.

No appointment necessary. Images via NeimanMarcus.com

This shop is good for you if:

  • You don't want a white wedding dress
  • You want a short wedding dress
  • You want something no one attending your wedding will expect
  • You want an off-the-rack gown

Second Summer Bride

Me after finding my favorite dress ever! 

Me after finding my favorite dress ever! 

This is where I got my dress, so I'm probably a bit biased, but honestly, Second Summer Bride is amazing! The shopping experience they provide is unmatched by any other boutique (bridal or not), I've ever been in to in my whole life. 

The women who works there are knowledgable, caring and genuinely listen to what you want, so that the dress you end up with makes you feel like a million bucks. 

The great thing about Second Summer Bride is that it's a bridal consignment shop, so the dresses are off the rack. You pick your dress, you pay for it, and you take it with you that same day.

A small percentage of the dresses are consigned by brides, but most of them come directly from the designer (overstock) or they're samples from larger bridal boutiques. 

Because it's a consignment shop, you're able to get dresses from some of the best designers in the bridal industry such as Hayley Paige, Justin Alexander, Lela Rose, Sally Eagle, Enaura, Val Stefanie and Jenny Packham. 

Second Summer is by appointment only and closed Sundays and Monday. To book, call them at (512) 419-9001, make sure to tell them Raquel sent you and ask to work with Natalie or Kara. You can thank me later. :) 

This shop is good for you if:

  • You don't have a ton to spend on a dress (dresses start at $500)
  • You don't have a clear idea of what you want and are open to exploring
  • You don't mind a dress that's been worn before
  • You like the satisfaction of walking out of the store with your dress in hand

What to Wear to Every Kind of Wedding in 2018

I've got weddings on the brain.

I'm getting married in March, so planning now consumes every waking moment of the day that I'm not at GIC.

Beyond my own upcoming nuptials, I'm also attending a handful of weddings this year. Each in a different state in a different part of the US, which means a different climate, culture, aesthetic and (I'm predicting) dress code.

It's impossible to know exactly what you're walking into when you go to a wedding, because in a $50+ billion dollar industry, the details and decor a couple can chose from are endless. 

Knowing each wedding is one of a kind makes it easy to slip into that style rut: "What do I wear?" followed by "I have nothing to wear!" and suddenly you're in a black (dress) hole.

SIDE NOTE* : You can kick ass in a black dress, but it needs to have spunk. Like these did at the Golden Globes. #timesup

But today, I want to talk color. 

Whether the invite says "anything goes" like a wedding I'm attending this spring or "cocktail attire" like my own nuptials, you can play with color, texture and pattern to create a truly unique and appropriate look. 

Here are 6 looks I've styled for 5 clients and how you can create them too. 

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right: 

1. Choose a luxurious fabric like velvet or silk to mimic the formality of the event.

2. Cocktail is right below black tie on the formal scale, so balance tradition elements (like Erica's broaches) with fresh accents (like her fringe earrings).

3. Bring energy to a neutral outfit with a bold lip color. Try pink for a zing in the spring and summer or candy apple red in the autumn and winter for a holiday feel. 

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right: 

1. Elegance is the name of the game with black tie weddings, so channel a softer-side of yourself through dreamy colors like cream and blush.

2. Pay attention to every detail. Each element of the outfit should work together seamlessly. For Jen's look, I styled this tulle skirt with a cropped jacket. Both pieces don't intersect or interrupt each other. Instead, they play off of one another.

3. Pop an outfit that consists of many light colors by adding one deeper color (like this wine earring below). It will leave people intrigued and inspired by your look.

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right: 

1. Think outside the dress when choosing what to wear for this occasion. Instead try a silky romper, structured jumpsuit or a simple work pant. 

2. Spruce up the pant by surrounding it with trendier pieces like this cold-shoulder silky top and layered necklaces. 

3. Dress up any of the above by finishing it with a pointed-toe patent leather pump. The pointed-toe will elongate your silhouette while the glossy look makes it more polished.

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right:

1. Make a subtle, yet memorable statement by trying a monochromatic look aka dressing in one color. 

2. Don't ever let your jacket be an afterthought. Choose a piece that works with the rest of your look like Melissa's peplum leather jacket. 

3. All eyes should be on the bride, so try a conservative 1" to 2" strappy, block heel for a look that is easy to dance in and keeps the outfit tasteful.

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right:

1. Play into the setting and occasion with big, bold florals. 

2. Don't be afraid to mix patterns to create a playful look. To mix, simply stick with one color scheme. For Gina's outfit, I've popped her b&w skirt off her b&w snake skin kitten heels.

3. Finish the look by matching the shape of your accessories with the shape of patterns in your clothing. The circular necklaces mimic the round movement in the flowers creating a put-together and whimsical look. 

The invitation says...


Tips for getting it right:

1. When anything goes, use the golden rule of fashion: It's better to be overdressed, than underdressed. You don't want to show up in jeans and be seated next to someone in a suit. Instead, embody the vibes of a wedding -- romantic and lovely. 

2. Lace and love fit together like PB&J, so it's the perfect fabric to wear to celebrate the happy couple. 

3. Your outfit should speak to your mood, so let the couple know you're party ready with a boho statement necklace like the one I styled on Joy. 

How To #WERKIT As A Wedding Guest

When you see an outfit on someone else that catches your eye, consider what that person is telling you about themselves. Maybe she's shy, which translates into soft, subtle colors. Maybe she needs more than just one cup of coffee to take on the world that day, so she's wearing red, the most energetic of colors.

Every day, we tell a story with what we wear. We get to choose the clothes we wear, like we pick the words we use to tell a story. Sometimes your style story is about more than just you --- it's part of a celebration, a life event or another special occasion.

Case and point…Wedding Season! How do you truly maintain your look (feel and look awesome at the big event) while still playing your role in another person’s big moment?

This particular occasion requires you to consider three things to create the perfect wedding guest look.

1. Consider the location of the wedding.

Practically speaking, of course you’ll want to make sure to account for the weather. But, go further than that --- think of the culture surrounding the location and embrace it!

If you’re headed to a beach wedding in Miami, add flare by wearing bright colors or a sun hat. If the wedding is at a lodge in Colorado, tell an earthy tale by weaving together neutrals in your outfit with layered jewelry with bright stones.

At The Beach

Raquel's picks for the best of season. 

Raquel's picks for the best of season. 

Click the dresses to shop. 

Click the dresses to shop. 

In the Wild


Headed to a dressy wedding in NYC? You can’t have too much sparkle. This is the perfect time to add to the festivity by glittering it up. Your style shows the couple that you care about the occasion and that you’re embracing the celebration.

2. Consider the level of formality.

It is always better to be overdressed than under-dressed. If you’re going to a black-tie event, you can pull out all stops and wear a floor-length gown with the attitude to match. Think of elegant, regal love. Think of structure, high-fashion, or stunning jewelry as inspiration.

Black Tie

An easy way to remember the rules of a semi-formal event: take a step down from gowns and a step up from sundresses. Harness the side of you that enjoys red-carpet looks and bring out your fierce side. Think of comfortable, energetic love. Think of geometric lines paired with softer lace, or unique necklines and striking accessories to inspire you.

If you’re going to a garden wedding, you can really hone in on the sweeter side of style. More than likely, this couple wanted more simplicity surrounding their wedding and wanted the focus to be on beauty found in nature, so don’t overdo it. Your outfit should reflect the romanticism and idealism that goes hand-in-hand with the celebration. Think of ethereal, transcendent love. Think of flowy florals, subtle colors or a messy braid as inspiration.

In the Garden

Raquel's picks for the best of season. 

Raquel's picks for the best of season. 

Click the dresses to shop. 

Click the dresses to shop. 

3.  Consider your style.

You will never feel like a million bucks if you are trying to dress just like someone else. Embrace the feeling you get when you see an outfit you are inspired by, hone in on that vibe, and emulate it.

When you go to a wedding you are not trying to take the spotlight away from the couple or their big day. In fact, you want to add to it! If you are feeling joyful because you look great, you’re going to embrace the celebration .

Style is created through the attitude you embody, not just the clothes your wear. Everyone has style. 

Need a little help with your style? We help you understand personal style, embrace the creativity that comes with it, and shape your style to represent you in all facets of your life. Want to learn exactly we do it? Let’s chat.

Emily Blanco is a freelance writer based in San Antonio, TX. She has studied creative writing, journalism, and has a degree in English Lit. She loves to blend snarky observations with helpful truths, encouraging people to love reading again! When she isn't being a complete book junkie, she loves to travel with her husband and pup, as well as explore local hidden gems. 

What to Wear for Weddings Galore

Repeat after me: "I will not wear the same boring thing to every wedding this year."

Wedding season is a funny one, because it's really not like any other occasion or seasonal event. Even my daily getup gets more thought than my wedding season one. For some reason, I am so distracted by gifts, travel, and agenda up until the day of the nuptials that picking any outfit is inevitably a last minute decision. No more.

This year is the year to find something you feel and look beautiful in. Now, to find that special something...There are a lot of factors to consider when putting together a look for a wedding.



The first is subtlety.

Be subtle, not too sexy, and as always, incredibly chic. This is probably the only non-work occasion where an outfit should be understated, because you never want to take attention away from the wedding dress and the bride. This rule applies to the dress, the jewelry and the shoes.

Having said that, your understated look may be someone else's over-the-top outfit. Stick to what you consider understated. Your style is your own, and even when toned down, you should still always be able to express it. 


Raquel Greer Gordian discusses how subtlety is important in order to avoid taking attention away from the bride.
Raquel Greer Gordian discusses how you can still stick to what you consider understated and express your personal style.

The second is comfort.

I worry about being comfortable for the duration of a wedding much more than any other occasion, even if it's just as long. Perhaps it's the dancing or the amount of food that I'm predicting I'll eat or perhaps it's both. Either way, comfort is important. If you also relish the fact that dancing and food are the best parts of a wedding, I would give your dress a test run. Pop on some music and dance in it at home.



The third is environment.

Weddings are so often indoor and outdoor, so picking the right fabric and layering pieces is key to staying warm enough or cool enough wherever you are. Terrain is also a factor to consider. This year I have a few weddings where they were very specific about wearing shoes to fit the outdoor venue. Even if it isn't mentioned to you, the venue needs to be on your radar. 


Raquel Greer Gordian discusses how the type of terrain the wedding will be in is important to consider when planning an outfit.
Raquel Greer Gordian discusses how the environment of the wedding determines the right fabric, layering pieces, and shoes to wear.

Now I would love to know! Was this helpful for your wedding season experience? Let me know in the comments below how you managed to mix-up your wedding season outfits this year!

Prep for the Last Bash of the Season: What to Wear to a Wedding

I was so excited to celebrate my fellow image consultant, Glenda Jean Soriano’s wedding this summer at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens. She was an exceptionally beautiful bride, and put together one hell of a wedding. It was sophisticated, playful and, of course, so romantic. Even the food was incredible (sometimes hard to come by at a wedding)! In honor of this very special occasion and the last weddings of summer, here's my:


TOP 5 TO DO’s for the BIG BASH:


Raquel Greer Gordian discusses how wearing the right heels can help spruce up your outfit while maintaining comfort and versatility.

1. Actually wear comfortable heels. I feel like this is something I always say to myself, but often times I pick something that I think will “wow.” I ultimately suffer. Spare yourself the agony and find something in between. For Saturday night, I picked a gold bootie from Steven by Steve Madden. It was won-der-ful!!! I was able to dance and keep my heels on, which is always convenient, when you have a 6’1” boyfriend to measure up to and pull around the floor.


My issue with heels tends to be that they are too narrow, not too high. If you prefer a shorter heel, go with a kitten heel with a pointed toe. A pointed toe will extend the leg, therefore, making you look taller and slimmer.


If you can stand high heels, I love Pour La Victoire. Their heels are wider than most, and they have an incredible variety of go-to pumps and closet classics that can go with anything from jeans to wedding cocktail attire to a business suit. 


2. Don’t forget your hankie! I’m a big crier at weddings, so I never leave home without one. My mother has a collection of vintage handkerchiefs, so she always taught me that it’s not only an essential part of your big bag of tricks aka your purse, but it’s a fun way to express your style. Like all parts of our wardrobe, they are a small detail that adds to a much bigger picture and makes a sophisticated, elegant, romantic statement. Ooh, the possibilities… https://www.etsy.com/shop/AllVintageHankies


3. Dress to the season that the wedding is taking place in. The bride and groom chose this time of the year for a reason, so it’s important to embrace their vision by embracing the season. Although it’s no longer necessary to do this in fashion (white is okay after labor day!), there is a good chance that a Fall wedding will include autumnal colors and a spring wedding will include spring brights or pastels.  When I think about dressing for a wedding, I think about the personality of the bride and being part of her larger vision. We all know we have an ideal color palette for ourselves, so it’s not necessary to step completely out of your comfort zone, but tailor a detail or two (cocktail ring, shoes, scarf…) to the particular wedding you’re attending. If you’re not sure what to expect, the invitation is a good indication what’s to come.


4. Prepare your entire look the night before the occasion. How many times have you said you’re going to do this, then 45 minutes before the wedding you’re steaming your dress? Well do it this time! A wedding is an occasion to celebrate, relax and, of course, party. When you’re ill-prepared and poorly put together, you don’t have as much fun as you would or feel as confident about your personal image. Personal image is representative of how we feel about ourselves and it’s important to always remember that. Taking care of each detail means you care. To take care of each detail, advanced preparation is necessary.


If you want to wear your hair down, think about if your usual product will work for the weather at the wedding. Will it be humid? If so, it’s best to take the time to blow dry sections of your hair rather than the whole mop. This way, it’s less likely to frizz.


If you want to wear your hair up, blow-drying is still incredibly important to create the perfect texture. Don’t use just any old rubber band or clip, either camouflage or accentuate a beautiful hair accessory.


For makeup, choose to accentuate lips or eyes, not both. Unless your make-up is subtle and classic all over, accentuating both eye and lip color will distract people and take away positive attention.  If you choose to do a dramatic eye or lip, make sure both the accentuated and subtle part of the look are meticulously executed.


5. Wear something that works for you, looks great, but isn’t your statement dress — or as Beyonce would call it, your ‘Freakum Dress’. It looks tacky to try to bring too much attention to yourself when it’s the bride’s day.


To avoid doing this, use primarily simpler patterns and one or two colors, or form-flattering (not fitting) clothing. There are many different messages that colors can send, but when you choose just one or two colors, people don’t feel ambushed by it. Rather, it appears pleasant and gracious at a wedding. You can wear red (along with every other color except white of course) to weddings, but if you choose red along with every other color, the dress cannot be body-conscious. It’s important to always dress to your body type, but there’s a clear difference between flattering your body type and wearing your clothes as a second skin. If you have to suck in, to zip it up, don’t wear it. If you have to routinely check if any body part is popping out, don’t wear it. And remember! Weddings are for eating, drinking, and being merry, so if it’s not comfortable before those crab cakes, it’s certainly not going to be comfortable after.


Now, I would love to hear from you! Comment below to tell me how you like to spruce up your look for a wedding!