We unveiled the winner of Operation Dream Dress this morning, live on Good Morning America. It was a tough decision—the five final designs were both unique and inspired. According to Diane Sawyer, each of the gowns was “dazzling”–and we have to agree! After the on-air fashion show, editor in chief Millie Bratten revealed that Amy Wong Micucci from Beverly Hills, CA, would go home with $10,000—and the distinction of having her dress photographed for the cover of our November/December issue. If you love it, you’ll be able to wear it for your wedding, since it will be manufactured by David’s Bridal this fall. Best of luck to all of our contestants, and we look forward to seeing all of your entries next year. –Jackie, Cubicle Chat

(sketches and corresponding dresses from left to right: Johnny Corona, Jennifer Allen, Haley Badenhop, Amy Wong Micucci, Claire Thompson.)

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Tonight is our private fashion show, where the final five Operation Dream Dress designs–chosen by America!–will be showcased on the catwalk and critiqued by our panel of experts. Among these panelists are our own fashion director, Rachel Leonard; Austin Scarlett, who you might recognize from the first season of Project Runway; Hilary Rhoda, the face of Estee Lauder’s fragrance, Beautiful; Dan Rentillo, designer for David’s Bridal; and Britt Aboutaleb, Associate Editor of Fashionista.com.  Our panelists and models are just arriving! –Jackie, Cubicle Chat

ODD Image for blogRemember to vote for the most beautiful wedding dress in America, created by up-and-coming designers, fashion students, and wedding dress aficionados. Will ruffles trump ostrich feathers?  Will color win out over traditional whites and creams? Will America favor trendy and short or a truncated train? Staffers here have already voted for their favorites, and our office debates are getting intense! We’ll announce the top five winners in June. Remember to cast your vote from now until May 26th at brides.com/dreamdress. –Jackie, Cubicle Chat

Working in NYC offers normal people (like me) the chance to brush shoulders with A-list celebs.  Yesterday I caught up with Twiggy, Brooke Shields, and Naomi Campbell.  It wasn’t some bizarre casting call—I took the subway up to the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s “Model As Muse” exhibition, which salutes the models who’ve helped push fashion forward over the last 70 years.  Each decade had its own look: the classic beauties of the 40s and 50s (Dovíma), the trailblazers of the 60s and 70s (Jean Shrimpton); the supermodels of the 80s (Cindy Crawford and Heidi Klum, both of whom were on the cover of BRIDES!), and the natural girls of today, like Gisele Bündchen.  If you’re in New York this summer, go see it!  –Jackie, Un-Veiled

Last night’s Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute gala–one of New York’s “Important Evenings,” provided lots of fuel for discussion and fun gossip in today’s weekly staff meeting.  While many of the looks were kind of out there (rabbit ears, Madonna?), there were some gorgeous dresses that I couldn’t help but daydream about for down the aisle.  Diane Kruger’s floral mini from Chanel Haute Couture, Iman’s elegantly draped number by Donna Karan, and Elizabeth Hurley in a sweeping Elie Saab Couture creation—they would all be gorgeous on a bride.  And for an after-party dress?  Gisele’s glittering Versace microdress might just be the perfect Something Blue. –Ellen, Un-Veiled

For her April wedding, my best friend, Lisa, told her bridesmaids that we could each choose our own black dress.  As matron of honor, I was relieved: Since I’m having a baby in May, my appearance is distracting enough without adding fuchsia to the mix.  I work at BRIDES, so I started at the fashion director’s desk.  She told me to check out A Pea in the Pod’s dresses (“Totally cute—I’d wear them!” were her exact words), which are sold at Destination Maternity, an awesome one-stop shop. It’s an easy place to love: The staff walks the floor with free water and juice, and the day I was there, they were also passing out Magnolia Bakery cupcakes.  I found 14 (!) dresses to try and about half were serious contenders.  Would I go boho with a silk 70s-style gown with funky black embroidery?  Or girly with the wrap dress that had a ruffled neckline and polka-dot chiffon overlay?  I finally settled on a flowy, goddess-inspired cocktail-length number with delicate gold beading under an empire waist, the BFF of preggo women everywhere. (PS: The price was perfect—I’d love to wear it again, but won’t be bummed if I don’t.) To pull my look together, I only needed a great blowout, patent peep-toe flats, and the Tiffany & Co. bracelet that was a gift from Lisa.  –Lexi, Cubicle Chat

 

April showers, and I have to run around all day for market appointments!  I am so sick of my rain boots…  Finally, I saw something that put a smile on my face.  Check out the whimsical customized boutonnieres at Fritts Rosenow Bespoke Boutonnieres. Weddings tend to be a bit bride-centric, now the grooms can express themselves too.   -Christina, Party Girl