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The 9 Step Workout to a Hot Bridal Bod

Not only is Michelle Elaine one of New York’s most sought-after wedding planners, but she’s an avid marathoner and certified personal trainer. She loves helping brides whip into shape before the Big Day, and Michelle is sharing some of her favorite slim down moves you can do just about anywhere. Pair this nine-step circuit with a clean eating plan and you’ll see big results in no time.

Lie on your right side keeping a steady form with your shoulders, chest, hips and legs in line with one another (*If you find yourself leaning forward or backward, and/or having difficulty keeping your balance just lean down on your elbow instead of fully extending your right arm.) You’re going to hold this position for 30-60 seconds, then switch to your left side and hold for another 30-60 seconds.

Get into a full plank position, as if you are about to start a push-up. From here, bring down your right arm and then your left so you get yourself into a plank position, and then lift your arms back up, leading with your right arm into that full plank position. You will keep bringing your arms down and up for 30-60 seconds, then switch to start with your left arm & perform for another 30-60 seconds.

Similar to the Tree Plank except this time both legs are fully extended and you will now dip your side down to just touch the ground and then bring back up. Perform these dips for 30-60 seconds and then switch to your opposite side for another 30-60 seconds.

Get into a full plank position and just place your left arm behind your back. Hold your body steady, don’t dip your hips down or push your butt up. Hold this position for 30-60 secondsand then switch arms.

This one is a little tough! Get into full plank position and then raise your right arm and left leg, hold for 30-60 seconds and then switch for left arm and right leg. (*This may be difficult to keep balance, if you need to, just kneel on the balancing leg.)

Get down on all fours and just lift your right foot to a 90-degree angle/hip height so that your foot is flat to the ceiling. Press up for a few inches as you bring that foot up and then lower back down and repeat for 30-60 seconds. Switch to your left foot & repeat for another 30-60 seconds.

Balance yourself into a full plank position with either a yoga ball or medicine ball and then lift your left leg and hold for 30-60 seconds while keeping balance. Then switch to your right leg & hold for another 30-60 seconds. (*The yoga ball, and/or a medicine ball will add difficulty so you can certainly opt for just having hands flat on the ground instead.)

Exactly what you’re thinking, just a basic push-up! But push-ups can transform your upper body & muscle tone! Start in a full plank position and then bring your body down & push-up. (*If you feel your hips sinking or your butt pushing up, place both knees down for assistance & keep the body steady.) Perform 10-15 push-ups.

Stand straight, head, shoulders, hips and feet aligned. Cross left arm over right & hold at a 90-degree angle, then lunge forward with your left leg. Continue to lunge forward alternating legs for 30-60 seconds. Then hold the lunge for 30-60 seconds and switch, this time starting with the right leg.

Pair this Workout With Clean Eating for Max Results!

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Photography: Laura Barisonzi | Make Up : Zann Parker | Hair: Styles On B | Sky Gallery: Sky Gallery | Trainer: Michelle Elaine Weddings

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An Engagement With Sophisticated New Yorker Style

Any engagement that ends with drinks on a city rooftop is my kind of photo session. Especially when it’s set in one of the coolest spots in New York City. Nancy Ray photographed these two loves in their DUMBO, Brooklyn neighborhood and you can see their entire session this way in the gallery.

From the Bride-to-be… We moved to the beautiful Brooklyn neighborhood of DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) shortly before getting engaged last year, and we love everything about it-from the waterfront and the downtown Manhattan views to the brick streets. When it came time to pick a spot for our engagement pictures, we knew we wanted to have our pictures taken in a place special to us a couple. We chose our neighborhood because it’s the place where we started the New York chapter of our lives together!

Our wonderful photographer Nancy Ray was able to fly up to New York from North Carolina for the weekend, and we set a date for late October, hoping that the fall leaves would be in full swing. Unfortunately, we woke up the morning of our session to a torrential downpour! Nancy and I talked about rescheduling, but decided to wait a few hours and hope that it would clear up. Right before our scheduled meeting time, the rain completely stopped and the sun came out!

We had a beautiful afternoon walking around DUMBO and braving the Brooklyn Bridge. We finished our session with a glass of champagne on our rooftop, which is one our favorite places to spend our evenings! Because we wanted to be sure we had enough time to take photos before any rain moved back in, we decided to stay in one outfit for the whole session.

I searched high and low for an outfit that reflected my style now that I consider myself a New Yorker, and my DVF dress made me feel stylish while still comfortable. Drew wore a Smathers & Branson personalized needlepoint belt that I gave him when he graduated from law school and his favorite Paul Stuart sport coat. We cannot thank Nancy enough for the beautiful photos!

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Photography: Nancy Ray Photography | Dress: Diane Von Furstenberg | Shoes: J.Crew | Belt: Smathers & Branson | Film Processing: Indie Film Lab | Jeans: Imogene + Willie | Men's Coat: Paul Stuart | Men's Shirt: Kamakura | Men's Shoes: Brooks Brother | Watch: Rolex

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Sweet + Sultry Chocolate Smokey Eye Tutorial for Valentine’s Day

We learned some pretty hair tricks to get into the Valentine spirit on Friday, and now we’re ready for the finishing touches, just in time for our romantic dinner date this evening. In the spirt of all things sweet, this “Chocolate Smokey Eye” tutorial by Face Time Beauty Concierge is the perfect little piece to amp up your look for a special celebration. You Look Lovely Photography captured it all step-by-step, making it as easy as can be… now, if only your chocolate souffle plans were as simple…


Some people opt to do a smokey eye before any other makeup is completed but we actually prefer to begin with a completed face before starting a smokey eye. It is much easier for us to envision how heavy the smokey eye should be if we are able to consider the perfected complexion. In this tutorial, we started with a “completed” face and have swept a soft layer of translucent powder over the eyelid for blending purposes.


Sweep a tan/beige over the entire lid and a bit above the crease. Be sure to choose a color that is not too dark. A beige hue with a hint of pink can brighten up the eye and be a great base.


Pick a darker brown (this is where the “chocolate brown” hue comes in handy) and focus on the sideways “v” of the eye in the outer corners. For example, sparingly sweep the chocolate brown from the outer corner inward and a touch above the crease line and then brush back to the outer point of the “v” and down towards the lash line. This gives the eye definition and depth.


If needed, grab the soft beige or tan color used in step #2 to soften the chocolate brown (this is helpful if you want to soften the look). Also, use a gold or silver tone (the brighter you go, the more contrast) right in the center of the lid to reflect light for illumination.


Use the chocolate brown shadow to create a soft, smokey line on the bottom lash line. Be sure to blend this so the powder disperses and the line does not read too harsh. Draw a thin line of black or deep brown kohl liner on top lash line and use a brush to blend (we love the eyeliner by the new Estee Lauder line, Estee Edit). The idea is to get the darkest hue closest to the lash line and then for the depth of color to disperse as it gets closer to the brow.

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Photography: You Look Lovely Photography | Hair + Makeup: Face Time Beauty Concierge | Venue: Face Time Beauty Concierge | Flower Crowns: Crowns By Christy | Robes: Girl and A Serious Dream

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For membership information, click here