Bridal Affairs

Angel of Hearts Weddings offers unique and comprehensive assistance to the discerning bride in planning her wedding with a full range of services tailored to her needs. Making magic is my passion.

Angel of Hearts Weddings--Watching Over Your Big Day!

Here is a place to share all things wedding! Please share your ideas with me.


Tuesday, September 30, 2008

KLEINFELD'S COMES TO THE MINNESOTA!

"LEDGENDARY BRIDAL SALON, KLEINFELD MANHATTAN, COMES TO MINNESOTA
Since 1941, hundreds of thousands of brides from all over the world have made the pilgrimage to Kleinfeld, the worlds leading destination for brides to be, offering the largest selection of exclusive designer bridal gowns anywhere… echoing the phrase “Everyone comes to Kleinfeld.” Now Kleinfeld is featuring Alita Graham, one of Kleinfeld’s most successful exclusive designer collections. Alita Graham for Kleinfeld Kollection is having a showing outside Manhattan at The Wedding Shoppe in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The full Alita Graham for Kleinfeld Kollection will be presented in true Kleinfeld style at The Wedding Shoppe. The architects and visual team that designed the 35,000 square foot Kleinfeld flagship have built a custom display to showcase the exclusive Kleinfeld Kollection. Lois and Jim Fritz, the owners of The Wedding Shoppe, have provided prime retail space to properly highlight the collection. Kleinfeld owners, Mara Urshel and Ronald Rothstein, carefully chose The Wedding Shoppe to carry the Alita Graham for Kleinfeld Kollection because they share the same business philosophy. “Lois and Jim believe in personal service, understand the art of alterations and are readily available to their brides just as we are,” says Ronald Rothstein. The gowns are made of 100% silk. They feature unique details such as original embroidery, pleated silk tulle, Swarovski crystals, and ribbon embroidered lace worthy of the Kleinfeld label. The collection caters to a broad range of brides from classic to modern and embraces all attitudes from romantic to dramatic. “The Alita Graham collection offers brides unique styles at a great price. Our brides are familiar with Kleinfeld and the show, Say Yes to the Dress. They are trilled to hear that Alita Graham for the Kleinfeld Kollection will be coming to Minnesota” says, Lois and Jim Fritz owners of The Wedding Shoppe. The Wedding Shoppe and Kleinfeld, both privately owned legends in the bridal industry, are two bridal retailers that have built their business servicing brides and their families with the most special attention and personalized service for generations. ‘We look forward to the marriage of The Wedding Shoppe and the Alita Graham for Kleinfeld Kollection,” says Mara Urshel. Press is invited to the premiere unveiling of the collection at The Wedding Shoppe on Wednesday, October 1, 2008 from 11am – 1pm featuring informal modeling, cake tasting and hors d’oeuvres. Bridal appointments will begin at 1:30pm. Kleinfeld owners and stars of TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress, Mara Urshel and Ronald Rothstein, and Kleinfeld fashion director, Randy Fenoli, will be at the premiere unveiling. About The Wedding Shoppe The Wedding Shoppe is a full service bridal salon that has been helping couples with their wedding plans since 1977. The Wedding Shoppe has received multiple national and local awards including: Best Place to Buy Bridal Gowns and Attendant’s Dresses by Minnesota Bride Magazine, 2008, Best of Weddings, by The Knot, 2008 and Outstanding Retailer of the Year, by The National Bridal Market Association, 2006. The Wedding Shoppe assists brides in all areas of wedding planning including bridal gowns, bridal party apparel, tuxedos, gifts, accessories and more.
"

So! All of your mid-western girls who are longing for a chance to see Kleinfeld's can get a taste of New York right in your own backyard!! Tell all your friends and go see what so many brides already know- Kleinfeld's is a "must see"! Meet the stars of the Say Yes To The Dress show and try on some beautiful gowns. Maybe you too will "say yes to the dress"!

Monday, September 29, 2008

" I NEVER THOUGHT...












... I would go that way." So said Janice when I asked her about the incredible Pnina Tornai dress she bought. "I feel like a girl!" Janice and Steve are getting married in June of next year at the Huntington Harbor Club and look at how happy she is in that cloud of a dress! Janice was so sweet when I spoke to her- a perfect lady and a really nice person. She waited a long time for Steve. And though he is battling cancer and in remission, Janice is sure that "it took me a long time to find him. He isn't going anywhere". Steve is a policeman and a real handsome guy. Janice is a bookeeper and a sweetheart of a bride! When she put on this dress " the look on his face said THAT'S THE DRESS!" Besides Steve, Janice's parents, her brother and his wife and their 2 children and her friend were in attendance while Dianne and Janice set about finding "the dress". As you can see, she is beautiful! Janice went to two other stores and tried on a few dresses, but when she went into Kleinfeld's, everyone was so nice and Janice felt very much at home. She told me "they are very classy people, not snobby, just very nice". After 6 dresses- 3 of which she liked, Janice thought the Pnina fit her personality. It was sophisticated and girly. She will make a stunning bride and I good wife to a very lucky guy!! Janice enjoyed being a part of Say Yes To The Dress. It was quite an experience to buy her wedding gown on TV. Good luck Janice ans Steve!!!





Sunday, September 28, 2008

AND NOW A WORD FROM YOUR SPONSOR

I AM SO SORRY, LADIES! For the last few days I have been buried in a huge event that has left me too drained for anything else! I promise I will be back tomorrow with the next installment of "Say Yes To The Dress" and the Kleinfeld Experience. Thank you for your patience!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

SHOW GIRLS

Let's meet some of the stars of "Say Yes To The Dress"! First, Elise and Joan- two wonderful ladies who manage the store and keep the staff on track. Elise, the director of sales, is a real presence among the staff and on the show. She knows what is going on at all times. From morning meeting when she gives everyone their appointments until the last bride leaves the store- Elise has it handled. I found her to be very warm and open. She welcomed me into the store and didn't get upset when I kept the sales staff beyond the time I was given! We chatted as if we had known each other a long time and swapped stories of past brides. She is truly a lovely lady.

Then there is Joan, the bridal manager! I have known Joan for several years, as we used to work together- both as managers for another bridal retailer. Joan always keeps her cool and takes everything in stride. She is unflappable! She works hard and never puts a bride on the back burner. Joan and I laughed about the old days and caught up on how much fun it is to work for Kleinfeld's and be on "Say Yes To The Dress". I can only imagine how much the sales staff enjoys having Joan on the floor. She could always make me laugh, even when things were really stressful! Thanks Elise and Joan for sharing and giving your time and that of your staff!

Debbie is very refined and respectful. She was open to the questions I asked and really gave me a feeling like she raised her hand for the interview. She has been with Kleinfeld's for 14 years. With a real estate and a cosmetology license, Debbie loves her job and wouldn't do anything else. She loves coming to work every day! We talked about the business and our jobs. Debbie and I share that passion that makes it easy to deal with whatever happens. This is a monumental time in a girl's life and there is lots of emotion, stress and confusion. If you love what you do, it is very rewarding! Debbie LOVES what she does! I had to ask about bridezilla- or momzilla or other disasters that happen in bridal salons. Debbie was very calm and told me she never takes sides and she never loses her composure. If she is faced with a difficult situation, she talks it down. She has the personality and the maturity to deal with a bad situation and turn it around. If she has a girl she isn't clicking with, she "shows the attitude girl an attitde dress". Debbie "catches more flies with honey"- and sometimes she does the stinging without anyone knowing she did it!! As for being on TV, " unexpected and exciting". The only thing she doesn't like about the show is that it makes it awkward for a girl to be honest about her budget. Debbie tries to ask when she has the bride alone, so that she can avoid upsetting someone. Being on the show only makes Debbie's task that much more interesting and exciting- especially when the bride finds "the dress". I asked Debbie what she loved and hated about her job. She loves "the good feeling I get when I help a bride find her dream dress" But, she doesn't like " getting overwhelmed with appointments and not being able to finish a sale or take a breath between brides". Debbie gets so excited talking about her job! If I was a bride, I would feel like I was buying my dress from an old friend! I felt like Debbie and were old friends after the interview. Thanks, Debbie- it was a real pleasure!!
Keasha is spunky, funny and very honest! She has a different approach than Debbie. Keasha had me laughing and really relating to her stories. She has been at Kleinfeld's for 6 years- and got hired after shopping for a gown for her cousin. Keasha has a fabulous sense of style and boundless energy! She relates to a bride on the bride's level and really tries to get into her head. When asked the question about what she loves and hates about her job she said, " I have 3 boys and these girls are like my daughters getting married". She hates it "when I don't find the dress". This team really feels their work! Keasha said "I take it home with me". Keasha's take on the show is this: " it's like a fairy tale" and " I love making the camera people crazy". But, she hates "being recognized". She has felt uncomfortable at times with the notoriety of being on TV every Friday night. How does Keasha deal with a difficult situation? She gives it right back and usually wins over the girl with her wit and her charm. However, she knows when she can't win and has, on occasion, given a bride to another consultant rather than make an unhappy customer. Keasha- I'd bring you my brides anytime! Thanks for making my hour with you so funny!
The store is always busy and everyone lends a hand where they can. There is no competitive undercurrent, only a family atmosphere with plenty of camaraderie and cooperation. These women are here because they want to be here. Keasha and Debbie are both part of the "million dollar club". They work hard and they work for the brides. They both told me that they love their bosses Ronnie and Mara and would leave if they left. They are loyal, lovely and left a lasting impression on me- FOR SURE!!
Tomorrow- The Brides!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

KLEINFELD'S- FROM THE TOP

I didn't get to speak to Ronnie Rothstein this trip, but he is, by all accounts a "great boss". He must be, because he has very loyal employees and a flawless operation at Kleinfeld's. From the moment you walk in the store, you feel the love and the dedication of this man's passion for brides. I would love the chance to meet him- maybe next time.




On the other hand, I did get to chat with Mara Urshel and she is one of the lovliest ladies I have ever had the pleasure of speaking with!! Mara worked for Saks for 20 years before taking on the incredible task of running Keinfeld's. Mara travels all over the world in search of gowns to dazzle brides from everywhere. From New York to Rome, Milan, Paris and London, Mara sees thousands of dresses every year in order to find the almost 2000 styles in the store. I asked her what she looks for when buying. "I try to cover all profiles" she told me, "from destination, to country garden, to over the top". There is a broad demographic in age, size and culture. Believe me, Mara has it all covered! The dresses range from $2000- the sky's the limit! Whatever your budget, there is a dress for you. I wanted to know about what Mara looks for in hiring a new employee- which she almost never has to do! "I look for enthusiasm, passion, a love of people and a thirst for learning about the industry and the gowns." " Someone who listens, has a presence". Of course, as I said, everyone moved to Manhatten with the store, so hiring is not one of her frequent tasks. Talking with the brides, getting on the floor and sharing information, helping the employees- even with their personal lives- those are some of her daily duties. "We are a big company, but a family company" " We have an open door policy". When I asked Mara about the show she said "when TLC approached us it was the right match. The show is a lot of fun and amazing for business". The crew is very low key and it is easy to forget they are there. Mara, like all the rest of the staff, really enjoys the show and the brides that they help. Thanks, Mara, for giving me your time and your insight. It was an extreme pleasure to speak with you and to visit your store.


Monday, September 22, 2008

THESE PAPER SCISSORS REALLY ROCK!

When it comes to drop dead gorgeous invitations, Rachel at Rock Paper Scissors really rocks! These are stunning and so unique! Visit her site and you will be hard pressed to pick one! See- I couldn't!!!
















































THE KLEINFELD EXPERIENCE

IN THE BEGINNING THERE WAS BROOKLYN...









THEN MANHATTEN
...















...AND, NOW
SAY YES TO THE DRESS



"Say Yes to the Dress is a new series that brings the viewer into the inner workings of the world's premier bridal salon, Kleinfeld Bridal. Located in Manhattan on a narrow street in Chelsea, who would expect that this three-window storefront opens up to over 30,000 square feet filled with taffeta, organza silk, and feathered creations. Part fashion show, part bridal story, part family therapy, we uncover the hurdles every staff member faces to make each bride completely satisfied on what may be the single most important day of their lives. Watch as a team of specialists guide brides through the process of selecting, fitting, altering and delivering each flawless dress in time for the perfect day. It's not a stress-free endeavor, but somehow by the final fitting Kleinfeld pulls all of the details together. Inside over 250 employees work to make every bride that walks through the door feel like she is worth a million. At the top, are co-owners Ronnie and Mara. In the world of high bridal fashion, one would expect the stuffy and standoffish attitude of an owner or two, but co-owners Ronnie and Mara run this business like a family. This is what the "Kleinfeld Experience" is all about. Treating every customer as if they were family, paying every attention to detail and making every bride feel like a star. Ultimately, this series is more than a simple story about a woman searching for the perfect dress, whatever the price. It's about the stories behind the story. The people, the personalities, the craftsmanship, the fine attention to detail, and the lengths to which staff members will go in order to make every girl that walks through the door enter a new stage of life with confidence and joy. Kleinfeld Bridal is truly a family; a family of 250 working under the guidance of Ronnie and Mara. This is the Kleinfeld Experience..."

What a fabulous store with a magnificent staff and a wonderful little show on Friday nights at 10 EST. I have had the amazing privilege of visiting Kleinfeld's and meeting the people on the show- the sales staff, the managers and Randy. I have also spoken to the owners of Kleinfeld's and three of the brides lucky enough to have chosen Kleinfeld's for their wedding gowns and chosen for the show. This week I will be filling you all in on the fun I had and the reasons you should all make the trip to New York. Brides from all over the world trave
l to Kleinfeld's for the incredible selection, the impeccable service and the warm and welcoming people that assist in every step of the process of "the dress"! You will feel like a princess, you will look like a dream and you will want to do it all again after you have chosen your wedding dress from the the best place in the world! Tune in every day this week for more and tune in on Friday nights for the "Say Yes To The Dress" show on TLC.

Photos Courtesy of Kleinfeld's





Sunday, September 21, 2008

SAY YES TO KLEINFELD'S


I am SO excited! For the last two weeks I have been interviewing and visiting the "Say Yes To The Dress" consultants, brides and the owners of Kleinfeld's. This week I will be sharing what I learned and how much fun these wonderful people are! Please tune in every day this week for a new installment of my adventure at Kleinfeld's!

MY WIRED BRIDE!


To say that Jen was the perfect bride to win the Wired 96.5 contest is an understatement! Yesterday she and Terry stepped up unto a stage at Harrah's Casino in Chester, Pa- overlooking the winner's circle of the track and said "I Do" in front of family, friends, Harrah's employees and various weekend gamblers! I LOVED working with Jen! She is funny, smart and just a little crazy!! And, there couldn't have been a better personality to deal with all the insane things that happened along the way than Jen's! She handled every glitch without even a sigh! "Whatever" is what she would tell me! I will miss you, Jen! And, when the pro pics are ready- I will be sure to share the bridal party prancing down the finish line like a bunch of thoroughbreds!! It was a hoot of a wedding and a great day!







FOR THE TROOPS


In the midst of wedding season I have undertaken a project with a very different purpose. On October 3rd I will be working at a gala for the USO of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. It is a challenge to put something like this together. But, supporting the families of the brave soldiers keeping us safe here at home is a worthy endeavor! No matter what your views on war, the men and women who have volunteered for this job, and their families deserve our support and respect. So, if you are one of my local readers and want to participate in some way, head on over to the Liberty USO web site and see how you can get involved. I would also love to hear from you military brides out there who have benefited from the work of the USO. It's a wonderful organization and the folks who work for and give their time for it are great people!



Monday, September 15, 2008

SAY IT WITH CHOCOLATE






This fabulous little company has the cutest ideas for favors, announcements...whatever! You can say "thanks" or "come celebrate with us"- all in chocolate. From little boxes with your photo on them, to your invitation in chocolate, to a lollipop with your engagement photo - what a delicious way to let your guests know you appreciate them. U Oughtta Be On Chocolate is worth the click of the mouse!






















Thursday, September 11, 2008

PIECE OF CAKE

The wedding cake is, by far, one of the most important decisions you will make. Whether simple or ornate, cake topper or flowers, fondant or buttercream- your cake will be the crowning glory of the meal and a focal point of picture taking. Here are a few tips on choosing your cake:


1. When choosing a baker, taste the cakes and go with your tastes.

2. Style the cake to the rest of the wedding and if color is part of the cake, bring swatches to the baker

3. In general, cakes are priced bewtween $1.50 and $15.00 per person. the more elaborate the cake, the more expensive.

4. The rule is- 3 tiers feeds 100 people. But, if you are getting married in a huge ballroom with high ceilings- make sure the cake isn't lost in the room. A good way to save money is to have a smaller cake for "show" and have sheet cakes in the kitchen to cut for the guests.

5. Fondant, a sort of icing paste is more expensive because it has to be molded and rolled to cut out shapes. It is time consuming and requires some artistic finesse. Buttercream is much more economical and has a frothier appearance. If it is a hot day for an outside wedding, you may opt for fondant.

6. Make sure you discuss with the baker the delivery and assembly of your cake. If you have a planner, she can be sure the cake arrives in one piece and has the look you expect. But, discuss the details with the baker and make sure to ask about things like set up fees and refrigeration.

7. Cutting the cake is up to you. Some couples like to cut the cake in the beginning, but the best time to cut the cake is right at the end of dinner. Many couples choose not to make a ceremony of it and just let whomever sees it, see it. Talk about this with your planner and your caterer and decide on the best time for you to cut that lovely confection.

8. Get it in writing! As with all matters in a wedding, get the baker's policies and limitations in writing. Make sure that your expectations are being met and that your cake will look and taste the way your ordered it- and be there on time and in one piece. Have your planner check the contract and follow up at the reception- before the guests see the cake!
Now, you have the recipe for success for a fabulous wedding cake!! Bon Appetit!