Friday, December 12, 2008

Be your own stationery designer- or Tough Times 101

Are things a bit tight right now? Well join the club. My closet is calling out that it needs new additions to make it happy. Especially this right here. But oh well, my closet is just going to have to learn to live with disappointment. But why should you? Here is way to be your own designer and still have the personal touches that I spoke about in my previous post on using illustrations in your wedding. And all it involves is notebook paper and a marker.
I just wrote the bride and grooms initials on a piece of notebook paper ala 4th grade. Pick any background you like to attach the paper to. I chose my bulletin board and arranged a picture of the couple, some fabric flowers, and a clipping from a magazine. Presto! A fun and original engagement announcement!
The web is full of printing services. Upload your photo on to any number of products. I think this would be a great post card. I just made sure that my photo was standard postcard size (4.25 by 6 inches). I recommend MOO, a great printing site based out of the UK. They're a little pricier then some of the other online printers out there but they are quick, helpful, with a great product line. Simply follow the steps on their site, upload your photo, and type in the text you would like on the back.
And a word of warning on online printing. Do your research! For example, DO NOT be swayed but the over advertised and cheap Vista! If you ever want to read printing horror stories google their name. Scary!
Moral of this story- Originality does not have to be expensive.

New Bride- Marissa

Actually this is a portrait I did a little while ago and completely forgot to post about!
Marissa chose a marker illustration which many brides do to get that authentic designer created look. I just love the boldness of markers. The colors pop!
The photo you see on the left is a cropped version of the one taken by wedding photographer Faith Dugan.
Faith is based out of beautiful Newport, RI ( my home state. I'm a little biased).
And let me tell you, her portfolio is impressive. Faith describes her style as " a mix of photojournalism, art and fashion-inspired portraiture". Having seen countless wedding photographers work through the weddings I've been a part of ( I've been a bridesmaid 6 TIMES. And no, I did not keep all the dresses) I can tell you that I have been underwhelmed.
It's the art school snob in me.
I would love to show you more of Faiths work BUT blogger is acting up right now and will not let me upload pictures. So more to come!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Using art to create individual touches

A lovely reader, Rachel, just wrote me to ask where the corgi and bride illustration was from shown in the previous post. It was an illustration I used for a clients engagement party invite. That started me thinking of how using art can give a unique individual touch to the over all look of a wedding.

Sometimes, picking a look or an illustration for stationery in a wedding can be a daunting task. But there are a few simple things to keep in mind that I guarantee will help you.

1) What colors do you like?

Or rather what are the colors you are using in your wedding? Even if you don't have your full color scheme pick there is usually at least one color that is a for sure choice. On that note, don't panic if you don't have all the "Big" decisions, like colors, made for your wedding at once. It's a process! And it should be fun. Let it happen organically. For my client, all she knew was that robins egg blue would be in the wedding in some form.

And that was my only direction. I used vintage Dick and Jane books as my inspiration and a robins egg blue color theme. The client loved the little kid versions of the couple and especially the heart with their initial on the black board. Another thing to keep in mind when you pick stationery is-

2) What do both of you love? Or just you even!

For this bride and groom it was the brides corgi. Also by this time to bride knew that ivory and light pinks would be used in her color scheme too.

So obviously for the clients shower invite a corgi was a must! And to continue the theme from the last invite, a little girl bride made an appearance again with a similar color theme.
And finally-

3) When in doubt let your past choices be a guide for your future ones.

You don't know what you want for flowers? Give your florist the items you've already picked for the wedding and tell him or her to show you the choices that would best fit the colors you already have. There are 5 million linen choices and you can't decide? See what motif goes best with your invitations that have already been sent out. Husband to be and you want a theme but can't decide on one? You remember to fabulous invite you had made with your initials written on a chalk board and carry it over to your menu cards, thank you notes and favors.
Your wedding is going to be easy.

Wedding Playlist

It's been a while but here is my second installment of "Wedding Playlists that does not involve Barry Manilow, Celine Dion, or the Electric Slide". That being said, at all of my family weddings one of the biggest controversies has been the group dance songs.
My family is VERY pro group dance song.
The electric slide and Hava Nagila being two must haves...did I mention that we're not jewish? But my grandmother must have Hava Nagila!
At the one wedding that it was banned by a well meaning cousin, my grandmother got her Hava Nagila on to JT's "Sexy Back". I'll leave you with that mental picture. Enjoy Shannon's playlist.

Shannon's Playlist
Get Me To the Church On Time -Frank Sinatra,Sinatra at the Sands
Only You - Joshua Radin
Like u Crazy - Mates Of State
September- Earth, Wind, and Fire
You're So Cool - Hans Zimmer, True Romance Soundtrack
Chapel Of Love - The Dixie Cups
You're The First, The Last, My Everything- Barry White
One Way Or Another- Blondie
The Story- Brandi Carlile
You Belong To Me- Dean Martin, Dean Martin: Greatest Hits
Isn't She Lovely - Stevie Wonder
Today - Joshua Radin
I'm Shipping Up to Boston- Dropkick Murphys
You Can't Hurry Love- Phil Collins
Everyday Is A Holiday -Esthero
Who Loves You- Four Seasons
History Of Lovers- Iron And Wine
Dream A Little Dream Of Me- Michael Buble
I Could Not Ask for More - Sara Evan
Can't Take My Eyes Off You- Frankie Valli
When the Saints Go Marching In- Fats Domino
The Rainbow Connection- Kermit the Frog

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Untraditional/Fabulous Dress

My friend Ronnie has been putting a lot of thought into her impending wedding. They're having it at a venue that won't allow you to book it until March of that year. It's a gamble what day you're going to get so it's not like she can plan what dress she wants based on the season.
NOT that she would let the season dictate her dress so she tells me.
Ronnie has a love/hate relationship with traditionalism. She sees the point of it but doesn't like going along with it. Ronnie dances to the beat of her own samba band and wants what she wants.
She does not want to spend over 500 dollars, she would like to be eco friendly, and is can take or leave the color white. Above are some of the dresses that she is considering from a great site called
I haven't had the opportunity to illustrate a non traditional/totally fabulous dress for a bride yet but I'm really looking forward to it.
What about you out there in former bride and soon to be bride land? What did you look for in your dress? Any great stories?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

New Bride- Doris

How I wish, wish, wish this scan could show all the details in this illustration. The dress is so delicate and detailed and I got it in the illustration! I'm so pleased with this. But once I put it on the flat bed of the scanner, ZAP! All the details were blown out. I'm crushed. But I'm glad Doris will get the final product exactly how I envisioned it, if not better.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

New Bride- Priscilla

I'm off to my home state to vote. Why? Because I missed the cut off to get an absentee ballot and refuse to acknowledge NJ residency. I will always be a New Englander! And I believe, like many other people do that this election is too important not be heard. I hope my country appreciates me spending money I don't have and 4 hours on a bus.

BUT in the mean time enjoy the a new fashion illustration done for Priscilla.

And please VOTE!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!
I miss my own Corgi, Teddy. He lives at my fathers house.
He also really hates costumes. But I couldn't resist this picture from
I love how corgi's always have this "what the heck, are you doing to me"
expression on their face. :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Stop the Presses!

Jill Peck is a wedding and event planner based out of Hoboken, NJ. Part of her blog is featuring local etsy sellers. This week she's featuring my two lines Dori & Viv and my fashion illustrations. One of the items she liked was my thank you cards that you can add on to your fashion illustration order.
I really like the idea of featuring local etsy sellers. Especially in these trying financial times there are so many reasonably priced hand made goods out there. Why not support your neighbors and local artisans while adding uniqueness to a wedding?
Check out Jill's blog at her website-

New Bride

A new fashion illustration is in the works for Priscilla. This is a picture from her September 06 wedding.

Monday, October 13, 2008

In the works

I have a new fashion illustration I'm working on right now. Doris and her husband Richard just got married this past month in Austria, where the brides family live. The dress is Claire Pettibone and is very intricate. She was totally prepared and sent me lots of close up shots. I can't wait to show it to her when it's done!

Monday, October 6, 2008

In the works

I'm thrilled to have the next phase of my bridal services up and running! It's great to be able to use my illustrations skills to help brides commemorate their dresses. Years of figure drawing put to use in a new way. Above is my step by step process from photo to drawing and then a traditional marker illustration and a painted version in gouache.
Please check out more work at my new etsy store!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Vintage Trims

I like to incorporate vintage materials into every hat I make if possible. Besides scouring fabric and vintage stores for materials, one of my favorite stores is the downstairs of my parents house. My mothers family is Portuguese and settled in New Bedford, MA at the turn of the century. New Bedford was a hub for textile mills and all of my great grandmothers 7 sisters worked in those mills from age 12 on. This was waaaaay before child labor laws. Being the thrifty women that they were, the sisters collected all the materials they helped produce. And now, the trims that they collected can be found in Dori & Viv hats. I love the packaging also!
My great grandmother, Nana, the youngest of the family, is the last of her sisters alive. This year she turns 100! Oh and she beats me at cards each time I see her. And believe me, I don't let her win.

Monday, September 29, 2008

In the works

First of all, enough with the royal " we"! I was beginning to annoy myself. Dori & Viv is just little old me but the line truly does encompasses my entire family and all the amazing craft people that they were and are.

I'm sure many of you are like me and always have multiple projects going on at once. And here is a little taste of one that is almost ready to launch. More to come!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Stop the Presses again!

A write up from across the pond. Fantastic! Reading She's Crafty is reason number 542 why we would love to live in the UK. What a great resource for crafters who are lucky enough to live there. Can't wait to forward it to our friend who just moved to London. Plus Miss She's Crafty has great taste too. Our Deco is one of our favorites! And it better be too. So labor intensive!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Stop the Presses!

We're sure you all know about "Something old, Something new" one of the best wedding blogs around. We're thrilled that they are featuring Dori & Viv today! Yay! So check it out and the other great things featured on their blog-

Monday, September 22, 2008


We have a tradition here at Dori and Viv. Each time a friend of our gets married we put together an old school mix tape ( minus the tape. Hello! 2008!). Our friend Lara popped hers into her mothers mini van while driving herself and a whole boat load of bridesmaids to the church. As we saw Lara grooving down the street, veil waving in the wind as she tore through traffic we knew that this was a good thing. Plus finding new wedding and reception music is hard! We hope you get some inspiration our mixes too.

Lara's Mix
Today I Met the Boy I'm Gonna Mary- Darlene Love
I Believe in a thing Called Love- The Darkness
Wouldn't It Be Nice- The Beach Boys
There She Goes Again- The La's
I Wanna Grow Old With You- Adam Sandler
Only You - Yazoo
So Happy Together- The Turtles
White Wedding- Billy Idol
September- Earth, Wind and Fire
Lara's Theme- From the Dr. Zhivago Soundtrack
Wishing and Hoping- Ani DiFranco
Sugar Sugar- The Archies
Ain't That a Kick in The Head- Dean Martin
True Love- Bing Crosby
Accidentally in Love- Counting Crows
Going to the Chapel- Dixie Cups
Let's Get Married- Jagged Edge
Hava Nagila- From the Wedding Crashers Soundtrack

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Dori & Viv Bride- Shannon

Look how pretty she looks! We love seeing how brides style our pieces differently! It's the same Magnolia that our last bride Nicky wore but with a different style dress and jewelry ...
Completely different look! Thanks for sending in the picture Shannon! And all the best on your wedding.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Dori & Viv Bachelorette- Marissa

We at Dori & Viv love a good bachelorette. What we don't love is all the cliche, mega party store accessories that go along with it! Can't a bride to be have the time of her life while looking like the classy broad she is. We do! Check out Marissa and her whole bachelorette party celebrating- Dori and Viv style.

Lights, Camera... what's with the rain?

Jess lounging in between shots.
Rachel got the job done thanks to some skills at Sephora.
Ariel deals with our lighting situation.

Just a few candids from the Dori & Viv photoshoot. Due to some temperamental weather our lovely outside location had to be scrapped. Special thanks to our amazing photographer Ariel Weintraub for dealing with some less then ideal circumstances. Also the the lovely Rachel, Jess, and April.