Photographer Garrett Nudd collaborated with Zach McDonald of 86 things for fall wedding imagery in this issue. Treasure hunter and designer McDonald’s collection of objects at his shop in Warehouse Row helps event specialists and those working with a theme to put together the perfect look for the party. From milk buckets to antique candelabras, McDonald transforms buffet tables and dance floors with his iconic collectibles.
The addition of The Strand Salon and Elea Blake Cosmetics to the Chestnut Street merchants’ scene creates a one-stop beauty destination for brides and celebrants of any kind. Strand owner, Rachel McCoy, moved in over a year ago. The salon stresses eco-friendly efficiencies and products with fewer harsh chemicals. Within a backdrop of re-purposed furniture to energy efficient lighting, the Strand stylists use cutting edge techniques for men and women’s hairstyles.
“I love Chestnut Street,” says McCoy. “All the people are really friendly and having Elea Blake next door for natural makeup and color consultation is a perfect fit.”
Darin Wright owns Elea Blake Cosmetics, a nationally known custom cosmetics company that recently moved from Frazier Avenue. She named the company after her twin daughters. The statuesque Wright provides color analysis backed by extensive experience in the beauty industry. She is a model, stylist, instructor and speaker who founded the company in 1997. Her color studio and apothecary on Chestnut Street blends perfect makeup for women needing daily wear, theatrical, or on-camera styling.
To learn more visit chestnutstrand.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Monica’s Formal Wear has new owners. Stephanie Pack and Allie Holland announced the purchase in July and they have been gradually giving the store a new look, although they don’t plan any major changes.The previous owners, Steve and Delores Murphy, had owned the store since the mid 90s—a time of growth and change. The area now bustles with retail and restaurant activity.
Already, weeks are booked at Monica’s with fittings and after Pack and Holland go to market this fall, new designer styles will begin to appear in January. Prices for bridal gowns continue to range from a practical $1,000 to $3,500.
The gown Natalie Baker is being fitted for is by Mikaella, with a Malis veil. The sash is by Martina Liana.
To learn more visit monicasbridal.com
In Town Gifts
Fischer Evans is one of Chattanooga’s finest resources for everything celebratory. Laura Hartman and Marianna Decosimo greet brides and help them create a gift registry drawing from a broad selection of artistic and practical gifts.
“We usually spend an average of two hours with a bride,” says Decosimo. “Some know exactly what they want, others may not.”
To Hartman and Decosimo it is important to provide quality dinnerware and gifts that blend well and are versatile enough for modern brides.
In 2000, Arte Italica founder Ann Skidmore became the first to combine pewter and ceramic into a beautiful and unique dinnerware collection, known as the Tuscan Collection. It has been a best seller ever since.
“It mixes well in both formal and casual place settings,” says Hartman
Another exceptional gift is handmade metal serving ware by Michael Aram, an internationally renowned designer who has lived and worked in India since 1989.
Today’s brides are slightly older than in past times and most have a clear picture of the things they need for their homes, say these professionals. Some are seeking to mix new items with their grandmother’s china. Others want something entirely new. “Some brides pick fine china and others pick melamine,” adds Hartman. The melamine you will find on Ficher Evans second floor at the Market Street location represents a remarkably convincing reproduction of beautiful stoneware patterns, not the melamine of the 1950s.
The store’s gift selection includes a broad range of table linens, dinnerware, flatware and accessory pieces. Fine papers and custom invitations may be ordered, to, and usually require a two-week turnaround.