How to be the best dressed guest

#weddings It seems they're everywhere. Especially on the blogs, on pinterest, on twitter. It's not hard to see that the internet has become the go to source for wedding planning if you're a bride. But what if you're a guest?

If you're a bride you can google "Top 5 wedding dresses" and be hit by hundreds of posts. When you type in "Top 5 dress for wedding guests" all but 2 of the first page results are for dresses for the BRIDE! Ahh well it's silly to complain, it's not as though that's how I'd find a dress to wear anyway.

For most of the weddings I've been to I've worn dresses borrowed from friends - special event clothes are expensive dammit! But now I have 3 weddings to attend in the next 12 months and I want to go shopping. Here I've created 3 unique 'looks' for each wedding and I'd like your feedback.

NOTE: this isn't a "fashion blog". This is just a post on me getting dressed in something other than jeans and a t-shirt. Alrighty? 

I'm not sure of what the official 'themes' of each wedding are, since I'm not the planner (thank you baby Jesus) so I'm making them up based on the little I know and the personalities of the couples getting hitched. Let's go:

1. Hot summer - fun party - great music
Shoes: Rachel Comey Bend Sandal $240 @ Beklina. Dress: Suno Button Down Dress $283. Bag: Jill Sander Pyramid Clutch £258.33 @ NetAPorter.

2. Elegant - charming - uptown cityscape
Dress: Veronique Leroy black contrast dress $404 @ Opening Ceremony. Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs Petal to the Metal Flap Pouchette $240 @ ShopBop. Shoes: Marais USA Closetoe Wedge $115. Earrings $98 and 'No Sleep til Brooklyn' Bangles $88 by Kate Spade.

3. Dance your 70s shoes off cause we're in Vegas baby!
Dress: Sonia by Sonial Rykiel Brushed Silk dress @ NetAPorter. Earrings: I. Ronni Kappos Gold Earrings $175 @ Beklina. Purse: Vintage Green Faux Snake Skin Purse $19 @ nine20nine. Shoes: Vintage 70s Wedges $44 @ Dear Golden Vintage. Watch: Peacock Face Watch $29.95 @ Sportsgirl.

So there you go. 3 very different, very re-wearable outfits. Now to pick one! What's your favourite?

Pinata Love

Golden Alligator by Oh Happy Day. Diamonds by Confetti System. Icecream cone PiƱata by Simply Modern Mom.

The coolest wedding invite ever?

In my line of work I like to think that the idea or the concept is always more important than the execution. But if you had to explain 'good design' to an alien with a bag full of contemporary wedding invites I think you'd have a hard time convincing them of this. So few of them seem to have an idea at all.

In the sea of lace applique, letterpressed type and fabric lined envelopes it's hard to believe that a simple wedding invitation design even exists let alone one with a concept. But one does, thanks to designer Cristina Moralejo. Look...

It says tying the knot so simply. And because it's interactive it really elevates the role of the user/invitee - they'll be a part of the big day, not just spectators. I think it's a stunning idea.


Just a couple of final notes I have to add: 1. I'm not hating on the current crop of wedding invitaion designers. For one I love the work of Ellie from Mint at Hello Ten Fold. 2. I was inspired too look for good invites because of Jordan's post on Real Simple about how once no one came to her party :(

Music for Mondayitis

Oh 1999! It feels like a world away but for me it was a bit like music magic. Til this point in my life I'd been listening to the Spice Girls (and I still don't feel any shame about this) but I was ready for something else. Ben Lee stole my heart and so did a couple of other slight men.

It was a tough year to decide to step away from pop music too. Britney Spears' debut, the Dawson's Creek soundtrack and On the 6 by Jennifer Lopez are all key pop moments from '99. Tough indeed. I hope you enjoy.

Do you have any major years in your music memory?

Made my morning

I'm a big fan of the music of The Swell Season and when I heard this morning that a documentary about the love and the relationship at the heart of the duo is being released this October, my heart skipped a little.

Found via Portable.

New angles from You Work For Them

YWFT - Always a place for instant inspiration. Get angled and buy these vectors and font here, here and here.

New girls

Screenwriter Liz Meriwether in the New York Times last year:
“I love characters that are on the edge of something, I end up always writing about people trying to connect and failing miserably, usually in a funny way. I’m pushed to these moments in people’s lives where real life does become absurd, and I think those are usually moments of grief or moments of extreme boredom or extreme anger. Or just trying to have sex with somebody.”
Meriwether wrote No Strings Attached, a film that I felt, in writing was something exciting, on screen not so much (just a tad to schmaltzy). It was also Natalie Portman's first Rom Com. This year she has written New Girl, a tv series staring Zooey Deschanel. Have you see it?

She's a screenwriter on the rise and I can't wait to see what comes next.

Top photo by Josh Haner/The New York Times.

Geoff Mcfetridge

Inspiring title design for Where The Wild Things Are by Geoff Mcfetridge/Champion Studio.

Music For Mondayitis

Ahh week 2 of Music for Mondayitis. This week I wanted to share my FAVOURITE Australia pop star, Sia.

Do you often have strange memory associations? For me, when I hear the name Sia I think of Taylors Square, just by Oxford St. I dont know why. Can you tell me why?

It's strange because Sia is just the opposite of a urine-infested-park-fountain-homeless-abode. The complete opposite. She's light and fun and very boisterous. I've even considered her pipe-cleaner get up on the We Are Born cover as a Halloween costume, I'm sure it would be hilarious. And better than last years Sailor outfit. Anyways. Sia. Gorgeous. Have a listen...

Artist David Horvitz wants 58c from all of you

Very legit and very novel. I'm  looking forward to the results. Read more here.

And I love his final call to action at the bottom of the page:

California dreaming

I'm thinking this isn't the most practical desk (its price isn't), but it would be lovely to have. I am now a fan of its creator and etsy seller J. Rusten.

Inspired by...

Art by Kim Gordon and Ele D'Artagnan. Both artists represented by Kerry Schuss.

Do you Instagram?

Im just a tad addicted to Instagram. Are you? I mean I check it about 4 times a day! Follow me @brigittar. And leave me a comment with your name and I'll follow you back!!

Opening shots

What makes a good opening shot of a movie? I don't know but I presume in some film Masters program you could find out. It probably has to do with setting the tone or introducing the hero or such and such but I reckon that's something that is done in the whole opening scene. I'm thinking specifically about what makes that first shot - that moment when the picture fades up from blackness and you take a little breath in, ready to be go on a journey.

I had a look through my dvd library to try and find some good ones and to see if there are any similarities. What I found is that the majority of opening shots fall into one of three categories: Character, Landscape and Metaphor.

I love that stare of Olive's and how the kaleidoscope of titles relax to reveal Will in his empty home. But this gaze of Woody Allen is strong, it tells us straight away that this movie really isn't about Annie Hall at all but about him. All these shots tie us to a character by showing us, the audience, something the other characters don't ever see.

Fargo scares me to this day and each time I watch it these almost invisible headlights through the mist it takes me right to that place of 'oh my gosh its so cold something bad must be about to happen'. 'Headlights through the haze' can also be seen in the opening shot of Brokeback Mountain, Aladdin and (sort of) Pretty In Pink.

Cloud shots are probably the most common landscape to open a film, it's up there with the 'drop into a city/window' as seen in Psycho and Run Lola Run. I'd like to think the cloud shot started with The Sound of Music and has been best imitated by Toy Story.

A metaphor for what? Well I wouldn't want to speculate, but it's obvious these opening shots are really trying to tell us something true about the story. Seeing these reminded me of a post by tv writer Jane Espenson (BSG, Buffy) on how the first page of a script should really get to the point of the story. She quotes Jeff Greenstein as saying: I am a big believer that the opening line of a pilot (or the opening image, or the teaser) should be the series in microcosm. The 'teaser' as Jane calls it is all about getting the central dynamic or central message on screen as perfect as possible and as soon as possible.

Jane goes on to add that if you're writing a script and 'you've just shrugged and started with your main character waking up in bed, then I'd suggest that you might've missed a really good opportunity'. But that said if you need to show that your character does a lot of laying around or wakes up in an interesting way it might work for you. Off the top of my head I'm thinking about the shot of Scarlett Johannson's butt on the bed during Lost In Translation's opening credits and how in Clerks how Dante falls out of the cupboard as the ringing phone wakes him.

What I have learned during this exercise is that while openings are critical they're often recycled. But I think that's ok. Something familiar (but not boring!) is always a nice easy step for the audience to take into a story, to suck them in quickly.

Do you have any opening shots (or scenes) you really like? Have I missed any critically important shots and need to be slapped? Let me know in the comments.

Note: All screenshots by me for the purposes of this post only.

Music for Mondayitis

I always love For Me For You's Music Monday posts but being in Australia means they always arrive on a Tuesday. So I've been inspired to create my own Monday-Music posts that will land on the true Monday!

Country is a pretty underrated genre in my opinion. I'm not a fan of most popular country music but if something has a little twang or a hint of a banjo I am there. I discovered Jeff Bridges music by accident when his new album was featured on the iTunes homepage and wanted to give it a go straight away. The album is soulful and bluesy with straightforward melodies that I attempt to sing along too (I'm not blessed with a sing-aloud voice).

The first track is 'What A Little Bit of Love Can Do' and I've listened to it 27 times in 3 weeks! Seriously. I love it. You can watch the video here.

During my Jeff Bridges research I also discovered some amazing photographs on his site (which is full of awesome illustrations too). Most of the photos are from his time on set. The ones above are from the Crazy Heart shoot. You can see them all on his site, here.

Have a weekend

Well zit's (sic) Friday and I'm pretty stoked to have Snacked up and running again. It's been fun. If anyone is out there, tell me, what are you doing this weekend? huh?

I'll be celebrating my birthday with a few beers and putting the winter doona back on the bed after thinking I was safe to switch it out last week - Sydney weather you make a springtime fool out of me!


Graffiti in Newtown

My little bro came to town and it hit me hard that I had NO CLUE on how to keep a 12 year old entertained for 2 whole days. Shame on me really. But since he lives a pretty easy suburban life I thought I'd show him the mean streets (kidding) of my neighbourhood with a walking tour of street art sights. It was a fun way to spend an afternoon and I checked out some alleys that I never thought I'd walk down. But he loved it and that's what mattered.

 Here is a google map of all the places we planned to hit on our tour of Newtown and Enmore before we got distracted by the bmx shop and moo burgers.

Get me some cacti

During July, I was blessed to spend 3 whole weeks in Sunny Southern California. The trip was all about family and it was wonderful but one of the highlights was when I was all alone one afternoon in the most stunning garden I have ever seen.

Killing a few hours while my husband worked wasn't looking fun until ESB directed me to The Huntington. This place has an incredible library and botanical gardens where you can spend HOURS! (I did!) It's simply wow.

My favourite spot was the cactus garden. I have few words because I was in awe the whole time. Maybe I was so blown away because I'm Australian and we just don't see this stuff out here but I'm pretty sure that this place would have an impact on even the most seasoned Cactus connoisseur. If you're ever in LA, seek this place out, and if you want to get married there, I say do it. It's truly spectacular.

Pinning my faves

Over the Snacked hiatus, a few wondrous social and design sites sprouted. I am in love with Pinterest and two of my faves to follow are Bri Emery of Design Love Fest and the ever snappy and anonymous EastSideBride - I am especially smitten with ESB's 'Stripes FTW' board.

a new blog