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Wedding ‘Dress Code’ Guide

by | Bridal Fashion, Bride, Bridesmaids


I’ve started decoding dress codes over on Polka Dot Groom and I’ve had a few requests to decode them for the ladies too. I thought it might be a helpful guide, especially with wedding season upon us! You know the couple best though, so if there are variations or you know them to mean something different in your circles, then wear what is most appropriate! (Thank you, Captain Obvious!)

Elenora gown from Rachel Gilbert, Simple Glamour earrings from Mimco, Wonder clutch from Mimco, QOPH heels from Mollini

White Tie

The most formal dress code of them all, white tie demands a floor length evening gown with a glamorous edge. Accessories should be decadent – beautiful earrings and bracelet or a beautiful beaded necklace. Wear heels in a evening style (like metallic or silk) to match the formality of the occasion while keeping your makeup and hair pristine and beautifully made up.



Anywhere But Here frock from Alannah Hill, I’m Over The Moon headband from Alannah Hill,  crystal dome studs from Mimco, Sparkle high heel from Witchery

Black Tie

A step down from white tie, black tie invites the wearer to don a floor length evening gown or glitzy, elegant cocktail gown in an evening fabric – such as silk, chiffon or even taffeta. The dress should be a dark colour or be matched with dark accessories. Keep accessories in the after 5pm style- sparkly, dramatic and pretty and add beautiful shoes. Keep hair beautifully styled and makeup as if you were heading out after dark.

Halli halter dress from Forever New, Chandeliers At Dusk earrings from Samantha Wills, Moonsky hardcase clutch from Mimco, Try shoes from Wittner


A step down from black tie, the formal dress code suits pretty cocktail dresses in beautiful fabrics – silks & chiffon are perfect for this. Formal allows a little more flair than black tie, so  add colour through metallics and pretty accessories.


Sunset ruffle dress from Gorman, Floral Divina Choker from Mimco, Eloise heels from Diana Ferrari

Lounge Suit/Semi Formal

A sweet cocktail dress or dressy skirt and top are just right for a “Lounge Suit” or semi formal coded wedding. A touch of fun can be added with a bold piece of jewellery or a vibrantly coloured accessory – like an orange clutch bag. If the wedding is an evening celebration, think of darker colours. Heels are a must.


Chevron stripe dress from Country Road, Sachie mixed stone drop earrings from Forever New, woven wallet from Gorman, Meg sandal from Witchery


Feel free and comfortable when dressing for a casual wedding. A lovely summer dress (or even a maxi) in a light fabric like cotton or jersey. Flat shoes or wedges and a colourful piece of jewellery to style it up.

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Kim and Dean’s New York Engagement Session

by | Bride, Engagements


Kim and Dean

To celebrate the fun competition we have running for Jen Huang’s first Australian workshop, we’re sharing the New York (New York you are on my mind!) shoot of Kim and Dean shot by Jen on the blog today! There’s something about New York taxi cabs and the sophistication of the city that sucks me in – every single time.

Kim explains why she and Dean chose New York for their photographs. “Dean and I had planned a summer wedding in the Rhode Island beach town where my parents have a home. Because all our wedding photos would be there, we really wanted to have engagement photos taken in the place where we met and made our first home together: New York City. We live near Central Park and it was cherry blossom season. We also took photos in Columbus Circle where we had our first date. It was just one of those perfect New York afternoons and Jen Huang did a fabulous job capturing it all.”

Kim and Dean met through a friend and their story? Well I’m not one to gush, but I think Dean’s response to Kim might have made me cry, just a little! “I met a lovely couple at my sister’s birthday party and after just a few minutes, they told me I had to meet their dear friend. They said he was South African, handsome, and lived in New York City (where I also lived). That night they called Dean and told him they met his wife. We met and were quickly smitten. One night months later, as we fell asleep, Dean blurted out, “I’m falling madly in love with you.”  I had been desperately waiting for those words and I told him I was falling in love with him, too. Without missing a beat he whispered, “I said madly.” We now say it daily to each other and it is the inspiration for my blog which is a collection of all other things that I love madly. Food. Travel. Style. DIY Projects. For the Home. And often, so much more.”

Dean proposed at Christmas time, Kim recalls ” I was antsy for a proposal. It’s true that you fear it’s never going to happen until the moment it actually does. It was the holidays and we were exchanging gifts. I can’t even recall what I gave him, but he gave me a Kindle e-reader. He told me to turn it on and test it out. Many titles were already downloaded and I sort of laughed at their cheesy titles. “Every Day I Love You More and More,” “Now and Forever,” “Meant to Be.” But, then I got to “The Big Question” and “Happily Ever After” and I looked up to find Dean on one knee with a beautiful engagement ring and tears in his eyes.”

Photographer: Jen Huang Photography

Collette Dinnigan Resort 2012 Bridal Collection

by | Bridal Fashion, Bride


Pearls & Palms Strapless Wedding Gown

Collette Dinnigan’s Resort 2012 Bridal Collection is such a work of beauty.

I love that Collette has moved from strapless with three designs from this collection- including one with three quarter sleeves. She’s also played with texture (my favourite designs always have beautiful texture) and used french corded laces which make it a little more traditionally “bridal” than recent collections but still with the Collette Dinnigan sense of glamour and style.

The gowns will be in-store shortly, but until then- which is your favourite?

French Corded Lace Short Sleeve Wedding Dress with Train

Diamond Sparkles Lace Strapless Wedding Gown

French Corded Lace Long Sleeve Wedding Dress

Photos by Collette Dinnigan

Vendor of the Week – Hello Blossoms

by | Blog News, Bride


We are gearing up for an extra busy few months here at Polka Dot Bride HQ while we try and pack as much inspiration in as we can before we celebrate Christmas! There are so many projects to finish off and so many posts to write, I can’t wait to share them all with you!

I love to introduce you to our directory members, each of who is brilliantly talented and incredibly creative! So as is our Monday morning tradition, let’s spotlight the Ms Polka Dot’s Directory members!

From bridal gown designers to stunning wedding venues to incredible stationers to talented hair & makeup artists and of course photographers! We have so many fantastic vendors for you to choose from and we’re adding more every week. Step right up, it’s spotlight time!

Today we say hello to Georgia and Cameron at Hello Blossoms a boutique floral design studio based on the Mornington Peninsula and serving the Melbourne and Mornington Peninsula regions.

I love the work of the Hello Blossoms designs team- each bouquet and arrangement I see from them inspires me. Colour, texture and an innate sense of style are all part of what Hello Blossoms’ creatively trained eyes bring to their work.

The team is committed to understanding your needs, desires and wants for your wedding- right down to understanding your wedding gown and because of this, they’re able to create a proposal and floral arrangements that suit what and your intended want for your wedding in a truly personal way.

To get to know the Hello Blossoms team a little better, we asked Georgia five questions in five minutes.

Favourite after five drink?

My favourite drink after 5 is definitely champagne! A glass of bubbles will always lift your spirits and give you a second wind!!

Favourite weekend getaway?

Definitely a quick trip to Queensland!! With all the budget airlines now it allows the everyday person to live like a superstar and jet off to the Sunshine State just for the weekend! Nothing beats walking off the aeroplane and feeling that warm breeze. For those traveling to the Sunshine Coast, a day trip to Maleny in the hinterland is a must!!

Favourite restaurant?

One of my favourite restaurants is Jim’s Greek Tavern in Collingwood. It’s a bit of an institution with phenomenal food and a great warm atmosphere. You are guaranteed not to leave hungry!!

What do you have for breakfast on a Sunday morning?

Breakfast on a Sunday morning (when we’re not packing down weddings) is a lovely fresh homemade bruschetta.

Favourite wedding story?

My favourite wedding story is a wedding we did earlier in the year in Sorrento for Philippa and Arj. Their journey to married life was so turbulent and just full of disasters (not unlike Charlotte’s wedding from Sex and the City).
Their venue double booked so a month out from their wedding they had no venue, the in laws arrived from the UK and moved in with them, the renovated house they planned on getting ready at wasn’t complete, it absolutely poured with rain on their wedding day and then Philippa got stuck in horrendous traffic along the esplanade and arrived nearly an hour late!
Having said this, we watched their ceremony after we had set it all up (and then moved it inside due to the rain) and it was the most gorgeous heart felt ceremony we had ever seen. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room and both Philippa and Arj could not stop beaming at each other the whole time. It goes to show you, no matter what happens during the build up and what plans have to change, it will still be the most wonderful and best day of your life.
I’m happy to say Philippa and Arj got off safely on their honeymoon without a single hitch!

Visit Hello Blossoms’ page to find out more about our Vendor Of The Week. Hello Blossoms is a member of Ms Polka Dot’s Directory

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