Attention Brides-to-be: This ones for you! You can thank me later.
If I mentioned 3 things, where would I be … Sari’s, curry and the Taj Mahal? Yes, beautiful India. A land that is home to many contrasts and contradictions.
My journey was to the Southern part of India in the region of Kerala, to a village called Varkala. Home to the art of tantra, Ayurvedic treatments; spas, massages, reiki and medicines along with yoga classes, meditation and Ashrams ….there was so much beauty and romance. Yes, you heard right … Romance!
The aroma of soft spices and the array of blended cultures added to the beauty. There were a combination Kashmiri, Nepalese and Indians of all hues – all gorgeous in their own right.
I happened to be fortunate enough to be in India this past Valentine’s Day and it was just beautiful. A very close friend of mine, of Indian origin explained that the Indian men are very romantic and that Valentine’s day is actually a big deal. Such a big deal that actually a few days before there is a special day where the men will approach women they have secretly had their eye on for the past year. Unbeknownst to the potential lover, they will deliver or plant a rose somewhere for the woman they have set their heart on and declare their love! Eat your heart out Romeo!
Varkala is a cliff side beach village. On the beach you find couples strolling along the water, getting their feet wet and gazing into each other’s eyes while the sun slowly sets in the background. Oh what a beautiful sunset!
The beautiful rays of sun that stream across the warm ocean water could be likened to the colours and reams of silk that are displayed on the beautiful Indian women in their sexy saris. They are designed to show just enough skin to raise an eyebrow, outline the shadows of their curves and hug the parts that should be imagined only in the subtleties of your mind.
I happened to be there for Valentine’s Day. It was a hazy day and a balmy evening with a subtle taste of sea air and a hint of salt on your tongue. There were heart-shaped balloons everywhere and roses being given to every woman who walked into an establishment, whether she was single, married, old or young … You could feel that love was in the air. All the men were full of smiles and passion in their eyes and that mystical feeling of love was apparent and you could smell the sweet scent of romance and the warmth of passion everywhere you turned.
I found a special place called the Secret Garden in Varkala – and it’s truly a secret! Off the beaten track from the beach bums and tourists on the main drag, located on a side street of mostly residences and accommodations, is a hidden gem. The Secret Garden is a restaurant owned by Chef Khan. Who at the tender age of 31, has been cooking since the age of 7!!! So he is the maestro of his own kitchen, conducting his own seducing recipes. Every night the menu is different as he whips up a variety of succulent and delicious dishes that pander to every one’s tastes.
His specialities for that week were Italian, Indian and Keralan style dishes. I was Impressed to learn that every region has it’s on type of cooking and while there are many essentials spices not All are used in every region. The fabulous ingredients that he uses are:
– red chilly
– cumin powder
– garam masala
– coriander seed
– ground pepper
– fenugrec powder (fish)
– caraway seeds
Coconut oil, coconut milk, pomegranate and potatoes and rice were staples he used to make many of the dishes. At my last meal I was graced with a pumpkin curry, aubergine (eggplant) in coconut milk sauce, steamed butternut fish and lemon rice shaped like a heart! What’s not love! The food was exotic and delicious – I fell in love with it.
They always say that the way to a mans heart is through his stomach but as a woman my heart skips a beat, just a little, everytime I hear the word India! I have just had the first encounter of my lifetime love affair with India.
Michelle Lowe is WBM’s Contributing Editor based out of London, world traveled and exquisite taste for travel.
Obviously summer in South Africa is HOT. So shorter dresses for the bride and bridesmaids only make sense. We can even adopt the trend here in the states for the brutal hot summers.
Make it known to your guest they can also dress slightly more casual to the wedding. Just because you are cutting down on fabric does not mean you have to cut down on elegance. Fabrics like silk, organza and chiffon are lightweight but still add class. Or better yet, this is an excuse to have two dresses! One for the ceremony, and something lighter for the reception.
On your wedding day you want to be comfortable and radiant! This will ensure you are comfortable and happy. A happy bride makes for an even greater wedding!
For some of WBM bridal shop favorites you may want to visit:
Photos by Juan Algarin, Hair by Michelle Swiney, Makeup Victor Amos, Styling by Louis Johnson IV, Jewelry by Elena Kriegner- www.elenakriegner.com
Let Kim Tumey tell it she is a southern girl. ” I am very particular. Very hands on so a wedding planner, I don’t think so.”
This is going to be by far not a typical southern wedding. Nothing about this wedding is going to be traditional. From the engagement party, which will be hosted by a celebrity, to the FaceBook fans who are bidding to be guests at this wedding.
But did we expect anything less from Kim. If anyone has ever attended any of Kim’s events they have been nothing short of entertaining. So the wedding is going to be something to see.
In between juggling her celebrity clients, negotiating a deal, Kim insists on planning her own wedding. The search for the dress has begun. Securing the location, head count, which in my opinion is probably going to be the cost of feeding a small country.
So we asked Kim, any drama from the groom about the wedding plans? Her response, “Nope, he agrees with everything like the typical groom! Great right!” Wow as all I can say.
Have you secured your venue yet? Kim’s response, ” yes, but I don’t know if I want to announce it yet. I’m not already. That sounds like she isn’t to sure and she has more then one location in mind. Or it isn’t big enough for the stadium size audience that wants to attend.
We asked about the dress and how dress shopping is going? Kim, ” I was going to go shopping but someone offered to design me a wedding dress.” Unbelievable.
Now for a typical every day person that may be your mother, your aunt, your grandmother or a cousin. But we are talking about Kim Tumey here, so that could be any recognizable brand designer, it may be coming from Italy, France, who knows? All I know is we had some offers here in NY for her already so here begins the problem. Or is it a problem?
If that is the extent of her problem, getting to many offers for her dress then I think we haven’t seen nothing yet. It may turn out to be a runway show. She may have to change several times before the evening is over.
Well ladies and gentlemen stay tuned for the next episode of “The Race To The Alter-starring Kim Tumey.”
Kim Tumey, Publist, Celebrity Broker, are some of her titles, some of her responsibilities are casting, management, event planning and negotiates deals on behalf of celebrities for movie roles, commercials, plays and endorsement deals.
Some of her past and present clients that you may recognize are actress Vivica A. Fox, actor Omar Benson Miller (CSI:Miami), actor Brian White (Men of a Certain Age, 12 Rounds, The Game Plan), Sean Blakemore (General Hospital, Star Trek Sequal, Motives), Boris Kodjoe, Morris Chestnut, Darrin Dewitt Henson (Soul Food, The Express, Tekken), Neo Soul artist Dwele ,actress Elise Neal, NLBM, Churchill Downs and the famous Kennedy- Shriver & Hearst families just to name a few. No one to major, you don’t say… Hahaha.
If some of those names aren’t big enough for her she is now adding one more client to her roster of brilliant people, Robert Davis, former actor of Nash Bridges (1996-2001) who presently has no connection to the entertainment industry other then his soon to be bride. Don’t be surprised if he gets back into the game. This green eyed, brown skin, charmer, is a blue collar worker in the oil business in the Gulf. His starring role “HUSBAND TO BE”. She is also adding one more title to her already extensive resume, “BRIDE TO BE”. Yes Tumey is tying the knot.
This is all being done as she cares for the needs of her celebrity clientele. Wow. The only thing we can say is “This must be Love”.
It is with great pleasure that the staff or World Bride Magazine follow her on her journey as she plans her nuptials. My concerns are: Is this going to be a wedding or the Oscars? What will the guest list look like? Where will the papparazi be hiding? This is definitely the making of a serious reality show.
This may be the royal wedding of Atlanta! Already she is getting messages from greats like Vivica A. Fox. Message of love, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pwe-gvNEflc&feature=youtu.be.
Kim Tumey’s past event guest have included David Curso (CSI Miami), Omar Benson Miller (CSI: Miami), Cindy Crawford (Super Model), Russell Crowe (actor), Star Jones, Tom Arnold (actor), Angela Bassett (actress), MLB’s Curtis Granderson (Detroit Tigers) and Dontrelle Willis (Florida Marlins), singer/ actress Ashanti, singer Ciara, R&B artist Trey Songz, actor Matthew Perry and more.
If her events speak for what she does can you imagine what her guest list would look like at her wedding. I don’t want front row seats, I want back row so I can see every single person that come to this gala.
The Biggest Loser
When being labeled “The Biggest Loser” means saving your life you embrace the title with a smile, as did our new dynamic couple. Nicole Brewer, age 38, Fashion Wardrobe Stylist and Correspondent, contestant on the hit shot “ The Biggest Loser” with her fiancé Damien Gurganious, age 32, Industrial designer, and entrepreneur.
We ran into Nicole at the event at Robert Verdi’s- Blue Print Cleanse.
How did you meet?
In water Aerobics at Bed-Stuy YMCA in Feb ’06
When did you get engaged?
Nov ’07 -my birthday, total surprise
How did it happen?
It was a day of royalty fit for a queen. He created a fabulous program (also does graphics) that laid out the day: Private Brunch at Bowery Bar. -5 hour-Day of Beauty at Great Jones Spa, which included lemon visiu massage, full facial, Jacuzzi and steam treatments.
-Coffee at Serafina
-Appetizers at Dos Caminos on Park Avenue
-Dinner at Casa La Femme, Egyptian restaurant in romantic private tent!!! It gets better. Belly dancers, the works
-Finally, desert at the jazz vault in the Blue Water Grille, where he finally pops the question, to my complete surprise!!!!
Next day, brunch at Cafe Lola and tickets to Wintuk, Cirque de Soleil
Needless to say, I was on the phone with my friends and family all day and all night from CA to UK spreading the news.
When are you getting married?
Originally it was Nov 9th, 2008 but after being cast for the Biggest Loser we happily postponed! And now we are thrilled to have reached out goals of starting a new healthy life+family together!
New date: August 16th
Where are you getting married?
The Renaissance, LIC, NY
Did you find your dress?
Amsale and her national sales director, fans of the show, were inspired by my return/elimination episode on Biggest Loser and not only custom designed my finale dress, but surprised me with an offer to design my wedding gown as well.
We chose it on Friday!
Damien’s tuxedo and groomsmen?
Working on that now but colors looking like ivory, reds, oranges, browns with a touch of hot pinks
My bridesmaids are wearing beautiful red formal gowns by David’s Bridal-very elegant and sexy. We are very happy with the style+ silhouette that flatters every figure.
What’s on the menu? Or final tasting is Sun 31st of May! We love to indulge our guests on this special day with a variety of international foods
Who are your vendors?
Chef LoveJones, Bill Jones Epicure
Guest Vocalist, Nikki Blonsky from the movie, Hairspray-a client and dear friend
Ravel Hotel in Long Island City, its very chic and modern, brand new with great views and outdoors decks for celebrations
Parris Whittingham photography
What is your biggest challenge?
-Sticking to our very lean budget. There’s absolutely no wiggle room. Our priority is
To start a family and buy a home, so budget is very important!
-Keeping the guest list intimate!
-Decor, the venue is so elegant on its own and needs very little by way of design. I want minimal flowers + candles, but gorgeous + very simple arrangements. Lighting will be important.
-Finding the right flower girl dresses. I want our two nieces to looking like me, not like Jr. bridesmaids, and they are 10 and 11 years old, so its tough-but I will find the right dress!
-I am trying to get Damien to take a ballroom dance class so we can have a choreographed first dance. I am trying to convince him that its not corny, but I am still working on him. He is a great dancer; I am the one who needs some brushing up. I’d love to shock our guests with a tango!
So there you have it. Stay tuned as we follow this amazing soul of a human being continues her journey of planning a healthy and fabulous wedding.
February has many meanings to different people. Harsh winter, short month, Celebration of Black history month and last but not least the month of “amour”.
In the bridal industry November through February is the highest point of engagements and romantic winter weddings.
This month awakens all the senses that may have been hibernating during these past cold winter months. Sight, the engagement ring, diamonds, semi-precious stones, jewelry, are often gifts of choice. Taste, chocolates, champagne, and strawberries -the seductive tools of the tongue. Smell, Roses, and perfumes, lotions and candles, the taunters of ones sense of smell. Sound, to hear the words that melt the heart and evoke other senses that lead to last but not least Touch. Silks, Satins ,lace and other luxury goods. That only fashion can adequately satisfy.
This is the time couples would steal moments to revitalize their love or to reconfirm their relationship. This may have also been the time to propose a new level to the relationship.
Where ever you are in your relationship some things that may assist you in expressing your love:
Diamonds date as far back as some 3,000.00 years to India. It was there that it was probably discovered that the precious and beautiful stone had the ability to retract light. In those days, diamonds was used for two ways decorative purposes and as talisman to ward off evil or provide protection in battle. In The Middle ages it was thought to be used for its healing powers.
Today, diamonds, is the worthy symbol to celebrate ones lifelong commitment of love. Tiffany & Co., Movado, David Yurman and H.Stern are there to assist in that area.
Chocolates, coming from the Cacao tree was discovered some 2, 000 years ago in the tropical rainforest’s of the Americas. The first people known to have made chocolate were from the ancient cultures of Mexico and Central America-Maya and Aztec. The early lovers of chocolate mixed this seed with various seasons to make a spicy frothy drink. It was the Spaniards that brought the seeds back home and new recipes were created and thus chocolate became a hit. Today Noka Chicaneries, Jean Philippe Patisserie, Emily’s Fortune of Love and Astor have further developed this seductive sweet pleasure.
Wash down this treat with sparkling wine to the elite Champagne. Originating from French monks, named after the Champagne region of France. It was Frere Jean-Oudart and Dom Pierre Pegnon, Benedictine monks and cellar masters that created a method of “mousse” another name for bubbles.
It is with great pleasure that we invite you to visit our website and request a free copy of our Indulgence booklet to view and be seduced by some of our favorite retailers. Register and get your free copy at http://www.worldbridemagazine.com