Ask Pat: Who should I bring to my bridal appointment?


Dear Pat: I scheduled my first bridal appointment, and I would like for my parents, grandmother, soon to be mother in law and my bridesmaids (4 of them!) to be there, but that seems like a lot of people! Who do brides usually bring to their bridal appointment? Should I try to narrow down the number of people I’m bringing?

I know it’s tempting to invite as many family members and friends to your appointment as possible, but more people means more opinions and that has the potential to make bridal shopping stressful–especially during the first bridal appointment! I usually advise brides to think about three or four people who are supportive and whose opinions will matter the most–those are the ones you want with you when you’re trying on wedding gowns for the first time. Most of our brides will come in with one or both parents and a friend. If you feel you need to include other family members or friends in the gown process, consider scheduling a second appointment to show them just your top choices, or have them accompany you to your fittings after your dress comes in.

Wedding Style Inspiration- Hair Accessories!

Not sure what hair accessory will complement your wedding day style? Then look no further, Sealed With A Kiss has got you covered! Look through some of our favorite headbands, combs and tiaras and you’re sure to find one that works well with your style.

  1. Want a hair piece that is truly going to make a statement? Then this headband may be perfect for you! It features delicate hand beading, sweeping crystals and hand made floral designs.
Photo Courtesy of Richard Designs

2. Perhaps you’re planning on having your hair styled into a pretty updo and want a small piece that will accent your chignon? Then this elegant hair vine barrette may be the perfect accessory for you! It has strands of crystal, freshwater pearls and rhinestones. This piece is made flexible to add versatility to how it’s placed in your hair.

Photos Courtesy of Laura Jayne Bridal

3. Perhaps your style is a little off-beat chic? Then you’ll love this dramatic hair ribbon with matte crystal and beautifully draped stones.

4. This side tiara with silver beaded applique is perfect for the bride who wants add a touch of vintage glam to her wedding day look. The headband is ideal for brides wearing their hair down on their wedding day.

5. If a boldly beaded headpiece isn’t for you, try this pearl and crystal halo! This delicate piece adds a touch of romance to your wedding day look.

Laura Jayne Bridal 2015
Photo Courtesy of Laura Jayne Bridal

6. For  brides looking to channel their inner queen, this tiara is ideal! It features extra sparkly silver crystals, and is a true statement piece!

7. Maybe gold pieces are more your style? If so, this five piece gilt foliage pin set is sure to complement your look beautifully! It features delicate tendrils of crystals and freshwater pearls.


Photo courtesy of Laura Jayne

Tell Me Your Love Story- Amanda and Micah

Amanda Smith

It isn’t often that you marry a guy you don’t like, but this didn’t stop our Sealed With A Kiss bride Amanda from becoming Mrs. Micah LeMon. Amanda had been working at the Blue Light Grill on the Downtown Mall in Charlottesville when she first met Micah, and it certainly wasn’t love at first sight. Micah was in charge of making a few changes to the restaurant, and at first she didn’t like the changes or Micah. After getting to know him, however, she grew to admire him and his work ethic, and and she finally saw him for the good guy he was.

They began flirting, which led to dating, and slowly her love for him grew strong. Amanda told us about one of her favorite dates with Micah where they visited three different watering holes, went on a hike, and then ended the day at McGrady’s Irish Pub, where they would later have their wedding reception. She decided that he was the smartest and sweetest guy she knew, which made her excited and a bit scared.

Amanda didn’t see the proposal coming. She knew Micah was planning an extremely romantic outing for the two of them, and when she mentioned the plans to a friend this friend insisted that Micah was likely planning to propose, but Amanda just didn’t believe it.

Then day of the special and romantic date arrived. Amanda and Micah had a tasting at Clifton Inn and then were having a nightcap. Out of nowhere, Micah dropped down on one knee and pulled out an engagement ring. Amanda was so stunned that she couldn’t process what was happening right away. When Micah saw Amanda’s face, he actually stood back up to make sure Amanda was alright and that nothing was wrong. Once Amanda finally registered what was happening, she began jumping around and asking if what was happening was real; she was so incredibly and unbelievably happy. Earlier, Micah had stashed a bottle of champagne outside, and once Amanda said yes he retrieved the bottle and he and Amanda toasted to their new life together.

When Amanda was asked how she found THE dress, she answered that she was looking for something lacy and Gatsby-esque. Our owner, Susan, then brought a particular dress from the Richmond store for Amanda to try. The dress had a separate lace overlay, and when she first caught her reflection in the mirror after putting the dress on, her first and immediate thought was, ‘Get this off of me.’ After a moment, Susan realized they had actually put the lace overlay on backwards, so they fixed it, and that’s when Amanda decided that the dress was perfect.

Amanda wanted their wedding to be a very relaxed and fun event, and she cleverly thought of a great way to achieve that in her wedding. The ceremony was held in her parents’ home. The guests were given burlap sacks filled with ponchos, koozies for drinks, and a fleece blanket with a lemon on it because of Micah’s last name, LeMon. As a replacement of chairs, the guests spread their blankets and sat on them during the ceremony. Guests hooted and hollered and whooped as Amanda walked down the aisle. The ceremony was followed by a reception at McGrady’s Irish Pub, as visited on their “big date.” Amanda said that the whole event was “pinch-yourself perfect.”

We loved working with Amanda; she was very fun and easy to work with and knew what she was looking for when she walked into our store. Stay fun Amanda, and congratulations on your beautiful wedding, as well as your beautiful dress!

Ask Pat: It’s only four months until my wedding day, is it too late to order a wedding dress?


Dear Pat: My fiance and I just moved up our wedding date and now it’s just four months away–but I just learned that dresses can take nine months to come in! Is it too late for me to order a wedding gown? How difficult will it be to find a dress in my time frame?

Don’t worry! Finding a dress is still a possibility. Some designers offer rush ordering options (keep in mind fees for this can range in price from $50-$500), but your ideal solution will be to find a dress “off the rack”- usually the sample dress brides use to try on. When you make your appointments be sure to ask the bridal salons what sample sizes they have available–some stores carry a range of sizes while others carry all size 8’s or 10’s, and you want to be sure that the sample you buy can be altered to fit you. If the dress you love is a few sizes to big or too small it can often still be altered to fit, but you may need to pay more in alterations. Most stores keep their samples in pristine condition, but if there happens to be a stain or broken zipper on the dress you love, don’t let that deter you–once you have the gown cleaned and meet with a seamstress, the gown often looks like new!

Have a question you’re dying to ask a bridal consultant? Email your questions to and one of our experienced consultants will be more than happy to help. Your question might even make it on the blog! 

Wedding Gown Style: Illusion Necklines

Today’s post is all about illusion necklines! You can find them on all sorts of styles and silhouettes, and they add a touch of romance to the wedding day look. Here are 6 of our favorite illusion neckline styles from designers we carry.

  1. This gown from Augusta Jones features a lacy boatneck illusion top with a ruched waistline and a flowy a-line skirt. Brides will love the effortless elegance of this gown. ajcarolyn
  2. Another relaxed yet elegant look is this fitted style by Justin Alexander. It features a Sabrina neckline and delicate chantilly lace. The v-neck on the back of the gown adds a wow factor to this look. ja8828collage
  3. This timeless design from Modern Trousseau has a bateau neckline and small cap sleeves, covered in delicate alencon lace. Layers of French tulle in the skirt finish off this classic and romantic look. jamila
  4. Illusion necklines don’t just come in the lace variety! This glamorous style from Justin Alexander Signature features a heavily beaded illusion scoop neckline (as well as a beaded illusion back). Look closely and you’ll see that jeweled and fabric buttons trail down the back of the gown, adding an extra touch of drama to the look.ja9735collage.jpg
  5. If beading isn’t your style but you still want a show stopping look, this gown from Augusta Jones may be perfect for you! This off the shoulder gown features a lace scallop on the illusion neckline and a flattering fit. ajskyler
  6. Thinking a ball gown may be more your style? Then take a look at this stunning style from Justin Alexander. This gown has embroidered and corded lace through the Sabrina neckline, illusion back and bodice. It’s sure to be a show-stopper! JA8726Collageedited (1)

Wedding Gown Style: Beaded Beauties

It’s hard not to fall in love with the beads and sequins on these gowns! Below you’ll find some of our favorite beaded gowns in a variety of styles and silhouettes. Enjoy!

  1. This hand-beaded gown from Justin Alexander is sure to impress! The fitted silhouette and deep V in the front and back make for a truly sleek and sultry look. ja9819collageedited
  2. This tulle ball gown from Casablanca Bridal is a favorite! We just love the gorgeous beading along the hem. cb2077collage
  3. Looking for something extravagantly elegant? Then this gown by couture designer Anny Lin might be for you! This light champagne gown has a heavily beaded bodice and gorgeous beading along the skirt and train.  jocelyncollage
  4. Hoping for a beaded look with sleeves? Then you’re going to love this gown from Casablanca Bridal. cb2162collage.jpg
  5. If you’re set on a fitted, then this beaded lace and tulle fit and flare gown by Justin Alexander could be the perfect look! The beaded illusion back as well as the beaded scalloped hem make for a very glamorous look. ja8814collage
  6. Want a gown with all-over beading? Then look no further than this look from Anny Lin. This silk chiffon dress is covered with delicate lace and pearl beading, and has a stunning illusion back design. annylincristycollage

Behind the Scenes at Sealed With A Kiss: Off To Bridal Market We Go!

New York Bridal Market is this weekend, and for those of you not familiar with what this is, here’s the rundown: designers release their new lines of wedding gowns and buyers and bridal shop owners line up to see and choose which designers and dresses they’ll want to carry in their shop.

Sounds simple right? Well, it’s actually a lot of work.


Dozens of runway shows are going on at any given time and they’re often spread all about the city, making it difficult to see more than a handful of collections. That’s why before we even get to market we have to decide which designers and collections we most want to see during the few days we’re there. This is especially difficult, because we want to choose designers who not only design high quality gowns, but who will be good to work with and willing to make changes to their designs to meet the needs of our brides. Every bride has her own unique style and we need to be able to cater to whatever that style may be. That’s why we select a variety of collections, offering styles that range from flowy and romantic destination gowns to beaded and elegant ball gowns. We do our best to choose designers who are willing to alter their designs, as well as designers who offer accessories like belts and detachable sleeves that enable a bride to make the gown a direct reflection of her own style.

We also have to consider how much our brides are willing to spend on their wedding gowns. While we might love a certain designer’s collections and think they’re a great company to work with, we have to consider whether or not the prices of their gowns will be within reach for the majority of our brides. We do our best to meet the needs of brides with any size budget, so we can’t go working solely with designers whose gowns are over $5000. We therefore make a point of selecting designers and collections that we know will provide high quality gowns at a range of prices.


Keeping all this in mind, what we’ll be doing this weekend is carefully selecting which designers to see during market and then select the gowns from their line that we believe are best suited for the brides who come to our store. It’s bound to be stressful but this is one of our favorite parts of the job. The dresses we buy at market likely won’t hit our stores until the late summer and fall, but once they do finally arrive we love to see how happy our brides are with our selection–that makes all the stress worth it!

Our bridal market adventures begin tomorrow, so be sure to follow our blog and our Instagram (@sealedwithakisscville) to see what we’re up to!

Wedding Gown Style: 7 Dresses with Layered Skirts

If you love gowns with pretty details and movement, then a wedding gown with a layered skirt might be for you! Below, check out some of our favorite layered skirt styles by the designers we carry.

  1. The layers on the skirt of this pink ball gown from Sincerity Bridal are subtle but beautiful! A bride looking for a style that is both romantic and fun is sure to fall in love with this dress. sincerity3890
  2. Love the layered skirt but looking for a more fitted look? Then say hello to this fit and flare style from Augusta Jones! ajpiper
  3. Looking for a layered look that’s a little more airy? Then this Lillian West style may be for you! Perfect for a garden wedding. lw6413
  4. This elegant Justin Alexander ball gown proves that layered skirts can be sophisticated. ja8823
  5. Maybe you want a style that’s a little more fun and flirty? Then you might like this look from Sweetheart Gowns! sweetheart6119
  6. This blush colored couture design by Anny Lin Bridal has one of our favorite layered skirts! Each layer of Swiss Dot tulle has a gorgeous lace edge with sequins. annylinchristabel
  7. Looking for something with all-over lace? This gown by Augusta Jones features gorgeous lace layers. ajbell

Tell Me Your Love Story- Diane and Dan

diane kocher.casale

Diane and her husband Dan met during college nine years ago. Diane knew Dan by his reputation as the mysterious heavy metal guy who cruised around in a black and red Camaro, but she had never plucked up the courage to talk to him. The opportunity finally presented itself at a mutual friend’s party–iTunes was new and the big thing around campus, and they were playing one another’s playlists. Dan was in charge of the music, and a playlist containing the heavy metal band Black Label Society caught his eye. It turned out this was Diane’s playlist, and the rest is history. They’ve been together ever since, and Diane says Dan is truly her best friend.

Dan proposed to Diane on Valentines Day 2014. Though by this time they had been together quite a few years, Diane says she was not expecting it at all. She came home from work and he handed her a long rectangular box. She expected to find a shirt or something along those lines inside, but instead she found a smaller box containing an absolutely beautiful engagement ring. Diane says she was speechless, so Dan had to ask “so, yes?” to prompt her to answer. Of course she said yes.

Diane and Dan got married on October 3rd, 2015 at Fox Hollow in Woodbury, New York. Diane said “It was a wedding many will not soon forget. There was lots of delicious food, dancing, metal music and of course I crowd surfed.”

Congratulations Diane and Dan, we wish you the very best!


Wedding Gown Style: 5 Dresses with Sleeves

Looking for the perfect wedding dress with long sleeves? Never fear, Sealed With A Kiss is here! Below find five dresses with sleeves by some of our favorite designers!

  1. This lacy off the shoulder look is one of our favorite gowns with sleeves from Casablanca Bridal. Many brides also think the sheath cut is really flattering!


2. For the bride who wants to look glamorous on her wedding day, this fitted gown from Justin Alexander Signature with sheer beaded long sleeves is sure to do the trick! This dress also comes in a light gold/nude color, for brides who want to add a touch of vintage to their glam.


3. Is a ball gown more your style? We love this one with lacy three-quarter sleeves from Lillian West!


4. For brides looking for something simple and elegant, this gown by Augusta Jones will be a winner.


5. Prefer an elegant beaded style? This a-line gown from Casablanca Bridal has an intricately beaded top and a simpler crepe organza skirt.