Modern Vintage

This wedding season, turn to classic, vintage looks: sparkling silver accents, shapely silhouettes and touches of movie-star glamour. Meld them with a feel that works for today: pops of bright florals, an evening-ish wedding gown and lush, saturated color in of-the-moment purple.


There’s a reason what goes around comes around. Vintage looks tempered with a modern-day feel combine the best of both worlds. And sometimes when times are uneasy we turn to classic, glamorous, yet still sexy, looks: curve-hugging trumpet or mermaid silhouettes in gowns, glittery, show-stopping jewelry and the occasional feather accent, like in our headpiece. And of course, a gent in a tux will always remind us that, yes, the look is still irresistible—no matter the year.

The Memorial Union was an obvious setting for our history-tinged spread: it’s a perfect backdrop to play off our vintage vibe—and many real-life weddings take place here, too. Add in classic florals mixed with more contemporary botanicals and you get the perfect accent for our bridal looks.

Of course a wedding isn’t a wedding without a sweet treat to top it off—our delightful buttercream confection of four off-center stacked layers adorned with gum-paste flowers accented with silver beading. The topper? A spangly cake decoration made of wire and clear beads, reminiscent of a fascinator—those quirky little hairpieces women wore in the early part of the twentieth century. Our bride is so beautifully wearing one, too—so it only made sense to reflect that in our dessert.


Bridal couple Special thanks to Rebecca and Guillermo (Memo) Gongora, who got married (in real life) in Cancun on May 19, 2004. Both work at the Great Dane Hilldale. Rebecca’s favorite part of her bridal look? “The color and the beading. I also loved the hair piece!”

Bridesmaid/groomsman Special thanks to Caitie Taylor and Ryan Berry, who are also a couple in real life. Taylor works at the Great Dane Hilldale and Aniu Salon & Spa and Berry works at the Great Dane Hilldale.

Hair and makeup Makeup by Ashley Franklin, hair by Thomas Quandt, Aniu Salon & Spa. 2275 Deming Way, Middleton. 833-2898.

Wedding gown Ivory silk satin trumpet gown with crystal embroidered neckline and empire-waist sash by Jim Hjelm, $2,909. Feather and bead hairpiece by Malis Henderson, $250. Satin shoes with crystal accents by Touch Ups, $79.95. Jewelry and entire bridal look courtesy of Brandi’s Bridal Galleria (address below).

Bridesmaid gown Matte satin asymmetrical draped gown with flared mermaid skirt in african violet by Dessy, $249. Jewelry and gown courtesy of Brandi’s Bridal Galleria. 1101 State Rd. 69, New Glarus. (608) 527-4436.

Tuxedos By Jones New York. Vest and tie on groom and vest and bowtie on groomsman by Pronto Uomo. Tuxedos courtesy of the Men’s Wearhouse. 7874 Mineral Point Rd. 833-1639.

Cake Round multi-layer white buttercream cake with gum-paste flowers and silver beading accents by Carl’s Cakes. 110 Market St., Sun Prairie (located in Market Street Diner). 825-3377.

Location University of Wisconsin Memorial Union. (Note: To reserve space at the Union for weddings it’s required you’re a Wisconsin Union member. Anyone can become a member. Visit for details.) 800 Langdon St. 265-3000.

Flowers Bridal bouquet: miniature calla lilies, periwinkle scabiosa, ranunculus, hydrangea, tulips, bluebird roses and hanging amaranthus. Bridesmaid’s bouquet: same as bridal bouquet plus cockscomb, hot pink spray roses and bear grass loops. Centerpiece: all of the above flowers plus pink sparkle lilies and heather. Floral design and table linens courtesy of Design Circle. 129 N. Main St., Verona (located in House of Flowers). 513-7444. 

Shayna Miller is associate/style editor of Madison Magazine.

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