27 Dresses… OK only 1!

SPOILER ALERT: The cutest kid EVER is at the end of this blog… keep reading!

 Professional Flower Girl

I feel like I just found out my favorite love song was written by a sandwich.” –Jane, 27 Dresses

You know that beginning scene of Bride Wars were baby versions of Kate Hudson and Anne Hathaway are planning their weddings? They spend their childhood planning out their BIG days and dream of being a bride. I know you all desperately want this to be me, but I’ve got news for you. I never dreamed of being the bride… I dreamed of being the MAID OF HONOR! (I conveniently prefer Katherine Heigl too!)

Now growing up in the industry, matched with being a PROFESSIONAL flower girl when I was younger, left me with a resume well suited for the most prestigious position of MOH.

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(I petitioned for my brother to be my matching Ring Bearer, also this is only 1 of 5 weddings we did.)

 

Sister Sister

“Did you ever know that you’re my hero, and everything I would like to be?” – Bette Midler, Wind Beneath my Wings

I’ve had many dreams for my life, including but not limited to: Making Celine Dion my honorary second mom, meeting Bette Midler, being a MOH, convincing my mom to have another child that would be scientifically forced into being a girl and joining a Sorority in college. While some of these have yet to make my list of accomplishments, I did indeed go through rush in the Fall of 2008 and pledged Pi Beta Phi! While I never convinced my mom that it was necessary to scientifically have another daughter, my sorority gave me what my mom never could… A BIG SISTER!

I know its super cliché and everyone says, ‘my Big Sister is the best, blah blah blah’, but you are all wrong. I have the BEST big sister in the entire world and her name is Ashley Baylor Smith (aka Baylor, Bay, or Bay Bay)! At this point I have started referring to her as my actual sister. But to be fair, she has helped pay the rent, picked me up while stranded in the middle of the highway, wiped my tears over boys and taught me how to curl my hair properly, so in all accounts she really is my big sister from another mister!

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 This was a picture taken in my first apartment EVER that I shared with Bay. It was a one bedroom. We were broke. I lived in the living room all summer. To this day, that is my FAVORITE apartment I ever lived in.

baylor7 My sissy and I, blissfully ignoring the fact that we could hardly pay rent that summer. Circa Summer 2009.

When she got engaged to her now husband Clayton, I CRIED, SCREAMED AND YELLED!!! Loud enough for her to hear me all the way from Lubbock to Dallas. But when she asked me to be her Maid of Honor, I practically had to be resuscitated back to life. THIS. WAS. MY. MOMENT.

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You know I couldn’t tell a sorority story without at least one really great themed RUSH pic… 

Personal Slaves aka Bridesmaids

“I’m sorry. I won’t apologize. I’m not confident which end that came out of.” – Megan, Bridesmaids

 

Of course y’all know we had to do it BIG! Baylor decided that she wanted all of us to have something a little different about our dresses. Everything we looked for just wasn’t up to par with our big expectations, so we took it to the drawing board and decided to create exactly what we wanted. We choose Silk Dupoini as the material for our gowns. We decided that each girl would have the same ball gown skirt, but each girl would get the chance to design and pick exactly what they wanted their top to look like! And, if this wasn’t enough, we enlisted a dear friend of mine named Tamara Crosson, to make us each custom brooch belts. As an additional surprise the day of the wedding, Baylor gave each of us a custom hand made necklace that matched our gowns perfectly! Now while I don’t have any comparisons for other weddings, I have to say I was really digging how much care and precision Baylor took to make sure each one of us looked FAB-U-LOUS!

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  Bay Bay and I with her other “lil sis”, Charlene …. I TOTES the favorite (Love ya Char Char!)

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All the bridesmaids with our BEAUTIFUL bride!

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Mom called this color taupe. Baylor preferred to call it “Pretty Dirt.”

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Typical Bridesmaid Selfies.

 

Double Duty

“Love to! Love the bag, love the shoes, love everything. Love to!” – My Best Friends Wedding

 

When it came time to customize Baylor’s dress, you know Altered for the Altar was ready for the job. Baylor decided that she wanted to custom make not only sleeves, but also a veil. She was lucky enough to be able to order the lace from her wedding gown from the designer. Then we went to work creating the perfect sleeves to adorn her dress and designing the perfect veil to accessorize it! The results were absolutely breathtaking!

 

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How pretty does she look?! I mean seriously!!! 

As gorgeous as Baylor’s bridal portraits were, when it came time to prep the gown for the wedding, Baylor decided she wanted to change the look of the dress. (Side note: this is why I will ALWAYS promote bridal portraits. They are the only “Dress Rehearsal” you can have before the most important day of your life. They offer you a chance to see exactly how everything is going to look and make any necessary adjustments). So, we went back to the drawing board and recreated the dress for her wedding day.

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Dad walking his little girl down the aisle.

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My sister is prettier than yours!

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Weddings are exhausting!

My Best friend’s Wedding

“I’ve got moves you’ve never seen.” – Julianna Potter, My Best Friends Wedding

 

So, what is the lesson here my friends? Even your BEST Friend and Big Sister can be a total diva and change her mind at the last minute…. Did I say that out loud?! (Just kidding Bay Bay I love you and I didn’t mean it….) But, seriously. We always enjoy customizing a dress (even if we need to do it twice) and making a dress beautiful, but sometimes you run into a situation like I did yesterday when a bride told me, ‘The dress is pretty but it’s just not me.’ Your dress should be two things: Beautiful and YOU! So, our goal is to give you a showstopper of a dress that not only looks amazing, but also compliments your personality.

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Mom and I enjoying Baylor’s Beautiful Wedding!!!

 

 

 

 

I rarely get to show you what happened after they got married…. Ladies and Gentleman, meet HUDSON CLAYTON SMITH!

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The Smith’s!

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And they lived Happily Ever After!

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(Side note: When I’m not busy claiming Baylor as my sister, I like to use my time claiming Hudson as my God Son… He’s not Catholic and neither am I. But I love him, so sue me.)

 

Adios,

Nina Esclava

#ConfessionsofNinaEsclava

 

P.S. SPECIAL SHOUT OUT to my Momma!! It is her Birthday today!! I truly do NOT know what I would do without this woman!! I love you SO MUCH! She IS he definition of SUPER MOM!! (As a courtesy I will not tell you how old she is. But, I will turn 25 this year…. and she was 26 when she had me!) — I kept my promise!

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