Red Carpet Hair: Get Inspired by This Years Met Ball Looks

If you are a bride-to-be who’s looking to step outside of the box with your wedding looks, look no further! Who ever said it wasn’t ok to push the limits was wrong! That would be exactly what the stars at this years Met Gala Ball did. When it comes to hair we saw everything from Beyonce’s sleek low bun and birdcage veil to Sarah Jessica Parkers twisted bouffant. They all brought their “A” Game and I loved them all but I could only pick a few. Good luck choosing your most favorite look of the night, it will be tough!

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BEYONCE’: slick back low bun with birdcage veil

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JOAN SMALLS: side swept braid

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BLAKE LIVELY: vintage glamour waves

"Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala - Arrivals

NICOLE RICHIE: wavy updo with purple hues

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SARAH JESSICA PARKER: twisted bouffant

Rihanna

RIHANNA: messy updo

Selena-Gomez

SELENA GOMEZ: classic updo

Taylor-Swift

TAYLOR SWIFT: “old hollywood” tousled curls

Reese-Witherspoon

REESE WITHERSPOON: faux bob

 

Image source: Getty

Sonia Castleberry: Beauty Editor | Hairstylist

http://www.soniacastleberry.com http://www.bridesbysoniacastleberry.com

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To Pietrasanta with love . . .

They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and there is plenty of beauty to fall in love with at the Albergo Pietrasanta Hotel.
Or while you are there, simply fall in love all over again with that special someone.

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Although, it was a grand seventh century palazzo (palace), the property is not ostentatious in its appearance. In fact, if you are not careful, its simple yet elegant façade and glass entrance could be easily mistaken for one of the many stylish art galleries that are dotted along the medieval streets of Pietrasanta.

 

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Each sleeping room is more beautiful than the next and with more fabulous space than the next depending the room type or suite. All are to die for, especially if you are travelling from other parts of Europe. Not only do they offer luxury amenities, but, every detail is thought of from the beautiful soft furnishings right down to a shaver with shaving cream! The period furniture is elegant and all the rooms have wonderful natural light. If you are lucky, you may have a room over looking the romantic courtyard.

As you enter the lounge area, ahead lies in a glass atrium the dining room. The first thing that meets the eye is a beautifully landscaped garden cleverly designed to connect with the unobtrusive converted stables the other side of a peaceful and quiet space. They even have a small gym, off the garden, a great place to stretch or warm up before your exercise. Inside the atrium dining room, the menu is ever pleasing to the eye and to your stomach, along with the beautifully chilled prosecco served daily.

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The Albergo Pietrasanta Hotel is in a small town known for it’s art and it’s attraction of celebrities and famous artists such as Fernando Botero and Alfonso Cuarón (Oscar Winning Director for Gravity).

Another unknown celebrity, Barbara Pardini is the jewel of the property, and the General Manager.  She brings a certain “je ne sais quoi” to the hotel. Which embodies all of the beautiful things that you will experience upon your visit. Specifically, the unique and niche one of a kind experiences that only she can provide for you to experience as a guest at Albergo Pietrasanta. She offers this and more in order to enhance your stay at this exquisite venue. Her wonderful and warm aura is so inviting, you can’t imagine anything that she organizes for you not exceeding expectations – but they do!

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A few of the trips she organised were; a trip to Carrerra, notable for the white or blue-grey marble quarried there which is the same marble, quarried hundreds of years ago for some of the Michelangelo’s statues.  It’s a sight to behold and driving up the marble mountain in a 4x 4 is not for the faint of heart! Or a private tour of the great opera composer, Giacomo Puccini’s home – now a museum, or a concert at the  open-air opera house dedicated to his work situated on the Massaciuccoli Lake – bellismo!

These are just a few of the one of kind experiences available.

A day trip to Portofino, Cinque Terre, the beaches of Versailia, or the exclusive shops in Forte dei Marmi can all be arranged as a guest at Albergo Pietrasanta. Closer to home in Pietrasanta, don’t miss the Mexican Sculptor, Gustavo Aceves’ exhibition LAPIDARIUM, located in the main Piazza.

Coming from the UK where customer service can often be questionable, there is nothing else to ask other than, “why can’t it be like this everywhere?” The discreet staff is at your service for everything and anything and more than willing to help you with every whim or query. The hotel is neither small nor large rather it could be likened to a fine private home. What is impressive is the extensive art collection consisting over 61 pieces of mostly first editions, throughout the hotel.  What’s not to love? Art is a consistent theme through out the hotel and the town. If you are as passionate about art as I am, you will believe you have reached Nirvana!

If you want an experience that money can’t buy or a romantic wedding, a honeymoon or an artistic getaway off the beaten track, contact Barbara Pardini by email: bpardini@albergopietrasanta.com or Tel.: 00390584793727 and quote WBN-AP for a great rate.

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Perhaps, you will find here – all you need is love!

The List -One Registry for His and Her

The Bridal registry maybe one of the most anticipated tasks for any bride. Picking your favorite items while someone else flips the bill is every girls dream. Unfortunately picking up expensive china is probably the last thing your man has planned for his Saturday afternoon. I have compiled items that will truly make this a his and hers event.

Bedding.

A good portion of your marriage will be spent in bed. What says I love you more than comfy sheets and blankets? Brides and grooms usually forget all about the cozy necessities. Jersey fabrics are light weight and perfect for spring, while flannel sheets are great for your winter time cuddle night.

Knives.

Ladies make cooking for the man in your life easier on yourself and treat yourself to some amazing cookware. Slow cookers and toasters are great but good knives are a necessity. High quality cookware may not seem like the most ideal thing to be shopping for but it can definitely improve your dishes if your still a chef in training.

 

Electronics.

For my guys! It’s definitely acceptable to request electronics on your list. Speakers, cameras, DVD players, hey why not a ipad?! Don’t indulge to much though, no one likes a greedy couple.

 

 

 

 

Honeymoon.

Everything is done online now a days, and you have been dreaming of that honeymoon in the Cayman Islands right? A honeymoon registry only seems logical. This may have been frowned upon back in the day but the cost of spa treatments and snorkeling can add up so why not put in the list?

 

Macys.com is a one stop shop for all of your bridal registry needs!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blonde Bobshell: Eve’s Most Memorable Looks

evesoniabannerWho’s that girl? Eve’s that girl! She never fails us with her bold hairstyles. Whether she’s wearing long tresses with spicy highlights topped off with a blunt fringe or turning heads with her flamboyant blonde bob, Eve’s hairstyles are as versatile as her rhymes. Eve and her blonde bob looks are definitely a winner in my book! She wears this classic style so effortlessly always giving us sassy and chic. Let’s explore how to achieve her looks!

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STRAIGHT & SLEEK:

To create a super straight finish, use a hot flat-iron to touch up any sections that require a smoother texture. Finish with a light weight oil for the ultimate shine. Apply a dime size to the palms of your hands, emulsify and lightly brush across the surface of your hair. Always remember a little product goes a long way!

FHI Heat Platform Flat Iron

Sachajuan Intensive Hair Oil

Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair Oil

Alterna Bamboo Smooth Kendi Treatment Oil

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TOUSLED & FREE:

The tousled effect can be achieved by using a curling iron, 1’’ or higher, wrap 1-inch sections of hair from mid-shafts to ends only (leave the roots straight). Curl random sections of hair in different directions to create a more haphazard, rough texture. Gently touse your hair with your hands to break up the curls. Complete the look by misting a light finishing hair spray.

T3 Bodywaver

L’Oréal Elnett Hair Spray

Aveda Air Control Hairspray

Fekkai Sheer Hold Hair Spray

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BODY & VOLUME:

Body and volume can be achieved with product and heat. Separate your hair into 2″ sections and spray roots with a volumizer. Blow dry with a medium to large round brush starting near the back of the head using half-inch pieces and working around to the front on either side. To create extra volume, hold brush in the hair near the scalp until the hair cools (about five seconds), then move the brush down and through to the ends of the hair for a smooth finish.

Harry Josh Pro Dryer 2000

Ibiza B4 Round Brush

Aveda Volumizing Tonic

Ojon Volume Advance Thickening Spray

 

Sonia Castleberry: Beauty Editor | Hairstylist

http://www.soniacastleberry.com | http://www.bridesbysoniacastleberry.com

Building Your Spirits That Will Leave Your Guests Speechless

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Besides The actual ceremony, the next best thing about a wedding is the party, the bar experience and the food.   So when deciding on your menu that will have your guests talking long after the wedding is over requires a great amount of research when it comes to your bar setup.
As a cocktail waitress at one of the top cocktail bars in Harlem I know a thing or two when it comes to the experience of exploring a cocktail bar. Prior to my employment at 67 Orange in New York City,  which in reality gives you more of a speakeasy atmosphere bar setup in Harlem that opened some five years to date,  I knew very little about cocktails.
This inconspicuous venue, sits in one of Harlem’s historical blocks.  If you move to quickly you will miss it.  With it’s long dark velvet curtains in the window, small golden numbers 67 nailed to the wood beside the front door makes it difficult to notice.
When you join us for dinner and cocktails, expect an experience.  At your arrival you are greeted and seated at a table of your choice, the ambiance is felt on both levels of this intimate space.
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The Experts
Our bartender put great effort into creating each concoction poured into your glass.  So let me get into explain who they are and what we do. The entertaining part of performing this labor of love is the quest of discovering the mixers that our patron enjoy drinking.  Be assured  we have something for EVERYONE.
We pride ourselves on pleasing each of our guests, for example, on a cool New York Spring evening, a patron visiting our establishment, I will recommend something light, refreshing, and savory for their enjoyment, like the Moscow Mule.
As an expert in the industry it is my duty to be observant and make your experience with us a memorable one.
If I were to wait on a “gin & tonic” or “rum & coke” kinda guy/gal my approach is calculated,  I have perfected the ways to steer that person in the direction of a cocktail that will make them forget about such simple request forever.
As a professional bartender I have made it my point to find a more creative way to be innovative about my approach when I attempt to awaken the taste buds of everyone that comes and sits in our establishment.
Ingredients
All of our ingredients are fresh. Our selection of spirits and liqueurs are top shelf. The bartenders are seasoned and take pride in their craft.
The effort we put into serving each guest is a well crafted seduction we take pride in every time someone sits before us.  We provide you with a detailed description, and paint a picture that leaves you at the edge of your seat, that usually does the trick…
‘Emancipation Again’ which is an Crop organic cucumber vodka, muddled with cucumbers, ginger, cilantro, and lime, there’s a bit of agave, vinegar, citronage, and lime in there as well. Shaken with ice & served up in a chilled coupe glass. It’s super refreshing, light, a hint of sweetness and smells wonderful while you’re sipping on it.
Another favorite (for the whiskey lovers) is the ‘Le Grand Old Fashioned’ nothing like the traditional Old Fashion. This cocktail uses a Redemption high rye bourbon, baked apple bitters, benedictine, then stirred with ice and lastly poured over a very large ice cube. Afterwards there is a flamed orange peel rubbed over the glass to give it a smokey essence.
Visit Other Establishments and Explore
As a professional I find it very valuable to my craft to know what other professionals are serving in their establishments. So I make it my point to visit quite a few cocktail bars in the city & throughout my travels.  I find that each establishment is unique in their own ways. I recently visited Bourbon & Branch in San Francisco, CA.  They had over 80 cocktails on their menu. I must admit, I was a little overwhelmed, however I didn’t let that stop my adventure. Jayson Wilde who was tending the bar the evening of my visit, was given my preferences and I allowed him to create. He made the perfect cocktail for me.
The experience truly leaves you wanting to explore all kinds of different cocktails. I’ve been in the industry for about four years and I’m always amazed at how each cocktail is created, the many different ideas, flavors, scents, emotions put into each one.
Name Your Poison 
Names too, oh yes that’s very important! I had the honor of naming a cocktail at my establishment, inspired by gin.
The Color Purple’, yes like the film. Ingredients consist of  Plymouth London Gin, muddled blackberries, lavender bitters, Creme De Violette, St Germain, lemon juice & simple syrup. The flavor is divine and I’m sure you can guess why I chose to name it such.
I can go on and on all day about cocktail bars and such. So as you spend time planning your nuptials, take a breather in between selecting the wedding dress, selecting your venue, planning your seating charts, grab a cocktail, get creative, get in the mood for a nice adult beverage.
If you are feeling up to it, check out yelp and search cocktail bars in your area, go explore the menu, and remember drink responsibly. Cheers!
Alisha May is an expert cocktail mixer with a passion for people and the experience.  You can catch her at 67 Orange In Harlem New York.

Top TSA-Friendly Hair Products that will help you arrive to your honeymoon destination tress free

No matter where your honeymoon or summer plans may take you, travel can wreak havoc on your regular hair regimen. My mother always said big things come in small packages. That would definitely apply to all the portable mini hair products brands are offering to all you travel beauties out there. Even with the current carry on restrictions, you can stock up on the latest and greatest without hindering your hair routine or adding extra weight to your luggage. Check out some of my favorite travel-friendly buys below.

 COAST TO COAST CURLS Don’t worry about your luscious locks going lifeless while on vacation! Ouidad’s Love Your Curls Kit provides everything you need with the Clear & Gentle Shampoo, Balancing Rinse Conditioner, Climate Control Gel, Botanical Boost Spray Conditioner, and Deep Treatment Conditioner. they are perfect for carry  on luggage and weekend rendezvous. $37 ouidad.com

Kit

 

BLOW DRY ON THE GO This kit makes packing easier than ever before, with 100% air compliant, space- savers. Whether your look is beach waves or city straight, the blowpro JetBlow KitTM has you covered with Beach Blow Texturizing Mist, Blow Up Thickening Mist, and Heat Is On Protective Daily Primer. Glam on-the-go has never been easier. $18; at blowpro.com

JetBlow Mini Kit

BIG HAIR EVERYWHERE Unbelievable volume, firm holding, fast drying and ultra shining. The Big Sexy Hair Spray and Play Volumizing Hairspray will keep you looking cool, even at your hottest. $6 ulta.com Big_SprayPlay_MINI

NO WATER NECESSARY Ditch the water and say goodbye to oil and buildup with blowpro Faux Dry. This residue free transclucent dry shampoo lifts hair, gives a just washed look, and provides manageability to re-style. $20; at blowpro.com

Faux Dry

DON’T FADE AWAY Protect and clean all at once while traveling in style with Oribe’s Beautiful Color Travel Set. Made specifically for color-treated hair. This kit includes 6 elegant shampoo and conditioner packets and 1 shampoo and masque for a little extra love and care. $19.50 oribe.com and Bergdorf Goodman beautiful-color-travel-set-box-large

 

Beauty Contributor and Expert: Sonia Castleberry

http://www.bridesbysoniacastleberry.com |www.soniacastleberry.com

 

Choosing Who Captures your Wedding Memories Will Cost You One Way Or Another

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The ability to get to work on time, whether you’re in NYC, LA or Dallas, is based solely on your experience of the commute. You know that by leaving just three minutes earlier, you would avoid the high school kids, but still allowing you to weave in and out of traffic while still obtaining your coffee without being late. Allocating your time throughout the day, especially if it’s a routine task, becomes second nature and efficiency becomes key. Regardless if it’s a job, or your routine to put your kids to bed, you become an expert due to your daily lived experiences. Nothing could be more in the event you’re hiring your first expert photographer; whether fashion or wedding.
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As a working fashion/portrait photographer, I often mind myself in the same scenarios of trying to explain to prospective clients why they should hire a wedding photographer for their big day. I had the privilege of talking to Erica Camille and Kristin Reimer, both expert international wedding photographers based in NYC, and the main point all three of us would agree on is knowing how to be efficient with your time when the date of the shoot arrives. When speaking to Kristin she mentions, “Having a background in how to navigate around problems while still thinking on your toes to be creative and get the shot can be tricky if you aren’t used to them. Family dynamics, dealing with restrictions in a church or other venue, understanding the timeline intimately.”
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Family dynamics are definitely not something I think about when walking onto a set, nor is that something that comes into consideration when planning a shoot. When shooting a wedding, you’re shooting at minimum 10 people, which is a seldom scenario in the world of fashion photography. In fashion, you become meticulous about detail, about each strand of hair, about the correct foundation to match the lighting set-up, and every wrinkle that the untrained eye would never catch. Knowing how to please your client, which at many times – unlike the wedding realm – is a recurring client – and being aware of what details to be conscientious about to cater to that specific client. As a fashion photographer, my sole focus is to make the clothing look impeccable and to draw customers into buying the product.
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On the contrary, you hire a wedding photographer to capture the emotion and the spirit of the day. “Documentary-style wedding photography” is how Erica describes her aesthetic and are the exact key terms I would recommend any bride-to-be to look for when hiring a wedding photographer. As Erica continues to state, “the ability to capture a moment as it unfolds vs staging them” is the biggest difference between wedding and fashion photography. You hire a wedding photographer for the entire day to capture everything from the prep to the first dance. You want someone to know where to position themselves, at the exact time, and know exactly what to focus on to get those images that grab your attention for that one extra second, just because the wedding photographer becomes an expert at blending into the background to capture moments like the first tear you’ve ever seen your father shed. Those images are the ones that will grip your heart years down the line and bring you back to a specific moment, just as impactful as your favorite song in high school that draws the memory of your first crush within a mili-second.
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The expectation between the two photographers should be drastically different. A fashion photographer may shoot an entire wedding and you may get 40 images in return, because they’re used to narrowing down selections to just the top images, as what’s repeated in our minds is that you don’t need repetitive images of the same situations in the same clothing. On the other hand, both Erica and Kristin agree on an average of 800+ edited images and unlike a fashion photographer, they’re able to provide albums and online gallery settings, as well as printing packages for those quantities, which would never cross my mind. After realizing everything that a wedding photographer is responsible for and how diligent they have to be in order to capture so many situations, with such restrictive lighting scenarios, the prices for their services are not just to capture one of the most important days in your life, but to make it seem as easy and effortless so that you don’t have to worry about missing anything to be able to share such an exhilarating day.
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Our contributing writer Toni Smalilagic is a New York City based fashion and style photographer that travels extensively to capture the most amazing people in the world through the use of the camera.  To view his work please visit :

To book the amazing photographers that WBM had the honor of interviewing please go to the following: