Monday, January 26, 2015

Sponsor Spotlight: Aristocrafts

I'm a sucker when it comes to little details at weddings -- you know, those sweet touches from the bride and groom that seem to put a personal stamp on their wedding. I've always found it to be such a romantic gesture, which is probably why I love designer Monica's Etsy shop Aristocrafts so much. The Madrid-based boutique specializes in all things wedding, such as custom-made wedding handkerchiefsbridal hair accessories, bridesmaids gifts, groomsmen gifts and even Christmas winter wedding accessories. And the pretty icing on the cake? All the accessories are accented with Swarovski crystals, pearls, feathers and beautiful laces. How awesome is that? Read on for more about the launch of Aristocrafts, online shopping tips and Monica's favorite winter wedding trends! xoxo

Keep in touch...
Official Web site: Aristocrafts
Tell me about your shop. What's the inspiration behind its launch?
Aristocrafts is a couture vintage-inspired bridal accessories shop. All the designs, creation, photos and shipping are done entirely by my hands. Ever since I was a little girl, I've had a soft spot for handkerchiefs and their delicate nature, but always regretted that with the modern days, handkerchiefs seemed to become more plain and functional, losing their elaborate beauty. I also wasn't satisfied with the fact that if I wanted to have a beautiful hanky, it had to be a vintage one, as I couldn't help but imagine how it was back in those days when the lady who owned the handkerchief opened it from a pretty new box and placed it in her purse for the first time, or carried it down the aisle on her wedding day for the happiest tears of her life.

So in 2011, inspired by a beautiful vintage handkerchief that I received as a gift, I decided to design and make a few handkerchiefs for the vintage-loving bride and opened my shop on Etsy. My first handkerchief sold in less than two weeks after opening, and the rest is history.

Over the years, researching about antique eras and in old wedding magazines, I discovered numerous other vintage products that captured my attention, so I began expanding my product lines to lockets, pouches, hair accessories, garters, cuff links and pocket squares. My shop has evolved since those first bridal handkerchiefs, and I can't wait to see what the future will bring!

Your shop features so many inspiring finds. What inspires you the most?
The European aristocratic life of eras gone by, nature and, of course, love stories.

What are your top 3 tips for shopping online and finding great deals?
I live in Spain, and I love online shopping as it opens many opportunities of sourcing out unique finds from all around the world, from foreign language books to vintage laces. My tips are...
1. Read the description of the item from A to Z. It really helps to make an informed purchase.
2. If you still have questions, don't hesitate to contact the shop owner.
3. Take the time to research. Sometimes the item you are looking for isn't on the first two pages of your search results; it may be waiting for you on page six.

What are some of your favorite wedding trends for the winter?
I always imagine a winter wedding as Victorian elegance in shades of silver or gold, a white fur wrap and muff for the bride and a dashing over coat for the groom.
What is your favorite piece in your shop and why?
I love all the pieces in my shop dearly. Hand-making my items makes me feel connected to each piece. If I had to choose one, I would say my Royal All Lace Hanky. I think it's one of the items that best represents my love for the days gone by and Aristocrafts' aesthetics.

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