By Laura Samuel Meyn
I DREAM … A BRIDAL BOUTIQUE
Another bridal shop now fills the space of recently shuttered De Ma Fille, and inside, a lot has changed. Owner Cecilia Chu remodeled the space to reflect a contemporary, urban aesthetic, installing light gray flooring and gold fixtures, painting the walls white and warming it up with blush curtains and accent chairs. With the fresh new backdrop in place, she filled the racks with gowns from more than half a dozen labels, including Hayley Paige and Pronovias, and opened the doors in October 2019. Gowns can be ordered up to size 34 in some brands; prices start around $1,100. In addition to wedding dresses, Chu also stocks jewelry, veils and flower girl dresses.
Q&A with Cecilia Chu
I Dream … A Bridal Boutique
We recently caught up with the globe-trotting, fashion-loving bridal boutique owner Cecilia Chu, who was born in Vietnam and lived in Paris before moving to Houston and finally landing in Fort Worth in 2002.
360 West Weddings What sets I Dream apart — what was important to you to offer?
Cecilia Chu I’m the only one with Pronovias in Fort Worth. Zac Posen designed an exclusive line for White One by Pronovias, and I’m getting that in my boutique in January; it has clean, modern lines. Hayley Paige has a new line that has a cowboy twist to it — the guy the designer is engaged to is from Texas.
360 What’s the best way to start looking for a wedding dress?
CC We recommend you send pictures if you have some. But half the time, brides end up with a dress that’s completely different than what they sent. You never know until you try it on; it has to look good on your body type.
360 What’s the ideal timeline?
CC You have to give it at least six months, though we do have ways of expediting. I already have brides ordering dresses for the end of the year. Shop early — if you have it three months early, you can do alterations, try the dress on with how you want to do your hair, how you want to wear your accessories.
360 Who should come along?
CC Don’t bring too many people or you’ll get confused; two is usually the best. You are the one who’s going to walk down the aisle in that dress. Please yourself first and foremost — and maybe your mother.
Bubble Bus Co. While its most unique feature is the custom tap wall inside the back hatch, Bubble Bus Co.’s restored 1978 gold VW Type 2 bus is more than a mobile bar. The bus, which still boasts its original bench seating in the back, also can be used as part of a lounge setup, styled as a photo backdrop or even hired as a getaway vehicle for after the reception. Owners Clay and Lina Sexauer were inspired by classic VW sightings during a road trip to Colorado, and on the drive home, hatched a plan. After purchasing the bus, Clay, who has a background in the restaurant business, got to work building a custom tap wall and installing a draft system so the bus can dispense everything from beer, wine and cocktails to iced tea, bubbly water and coffee. For its first wedding booking, at a Burleson winery in the spring, Bubble Bus Co. will serve beer and wine on tap. In the meantime, the bus, which made its debut in October 2019, has been working car shows and neighborhood, nonprofit and retail events, such as an open house for Morgan Mercantile that featured sparkling strawberry-flavored water, Moscow mules and a gin cocktail made with pomegranate lemonade and rosemary simple syrup. Services start at $195; call 682-259-0056 or visit bubblebus.co.
Lushra The Dallas-based company is known for its Instagram-worthy balloon garlands; while full-service installation is the standard offering, Lushra DIY kits provide the materials and instruction for professional-looking results on a budget. The “On Cloud 9” kit, shown, includes 9- to 24-inch biodegradable balloons in shades of pink, white and bronze to make a 12-foot garland for $50 (photo shows two kits). The company’s YouTube videos demonstrate each step, with such pro tips as how to make the balloons round instead of oval, and how to use clear fishing line to string them together. Custom DIY kits can be created from any of more than 50 balloon colors — or all white. Each DIY balloon garland should take about an hour to create with the help of a balloon pump. Kits are typically mailed, though Dallas studio pickup also is an option. Call 972-803-4771 or visit lushra.com.
Buon Giorno Coffee Trike Stuart Reed, owner and operator of the Buon Giorno Coffee Trike, calls himself the “Pedalista Barista.” The coffee trike, an associate business of the popular coffeehouse and roaster for which it’s named, boasts a pedal-grinder that produces, without electricity or batteries, the finely ground stuff needed to turn out espresso drinks. “People have been very impressed at the depth of my offerings despite the small footprint. My specialty is not only espresso, but machiatto, cappuccino, latte, chai tea latte, hot dark chocolate and everything in between,” says Reed. “A lot of folks book the trike during the cocktail hour, around the cake cutting or around the send-off, and oftentimes during the entire reception in order to keep the energy up and people having a good time.” Reed enjoys the reactions his unusual contraption elicits. “Coffee just makes people happy, and especially doing it in such a theatrical way,” he says. “It’s the perfect combination of my three biggest passions — coffee, bikes and sustainability.” Call 817-995-5792 or visit bgtrike.net.
PETS IN PRINT
Paper Planet If your pet had a favorite cocktail, what would it be? One creative couple gave a nod to their cat and dog at their wedding reception by commissioning Paper Planet to create a signature cocktails sign with the animals’ likenesses. The resulting sign invited guests to enjoy the “Dexter” (bourbon, bitters and simple syrup) or the “Millie” (vodka, ginger beer and lime), in honor of their four-legged family members. Paper Planet owner Julie West says staff artists hand-draw the likenesses from photos — they like to have at least two photos to work from so they can capture the subject’s personality — before turning them into digital artwork for use on signs, save-the-dates, custom maps, coasters, cocktail napkins and more. 6515 E. Lancaster Ave., Fort Worth, 817-451-8898, paperplanetdesign.com.