Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Like A Lily: Mandi

{what she wears}

Remember this post on explaining Catholic wedding traditions with truth and love and planning an authentically holy nuptial Mass?  Mandi, who wrote it, has a gorgeously designed new blog, Messy Wife, Blessed Life (formerly known as Catholic Newlywed), where she writes about fashion, marriage, and life with her sweet husband David and baby girl, Lucia.  I'm completely delighted to have her share a look at her personal style and a perfectly girly bridal look!  Mandi's wedding colors were navy and ivory, and this time around, she says, "I wanted to create a wedding that was more feminine and soft."  With these pink and gray ballerina-inspired touches and layers of ruffles, I think she's done that in the best way, don't you?

Read on for Mandi's take on a unique approach to building an outfit, faith like a child, and why it's okay not to wear makeup on your wedding day.
Mandi's Style:

Describe your personal style in 5 words. Classic, feminine, simple, and evolving.  The past six months or so are the first time in my life that I've developed a personal style.  This is the first time I've ever had to describe it! 
What's the secret to punching up an outfit on the days when you're tired of everything in your closet? Recently, I've been really into comfort, so I've been wearing tons of tights and leggings.  I've found so much wardrobe inspiration in them.  Fun colored leggings and patterned tights add a little extra something to many of my previous "plain Jane" outfits.  I've often chosen a pair of tights or leggings first and designed an entire outfit around them.  If I wear jeans, I often just throw on any old shirt to go with it, but when I wear some funky tights, I usually put on more than just a dress or tunic, I tend to layer more, find more interesting color combinations, or add accessories.  They force me to be more feminine and put together.
Name a few of your wardrobe essentials. I obviously can't have enough tights and leggings.  A few pair of good boots (I'm learning boots really can go with just about anything).  I never seem to have enough camis.  A good pair of jeans.  Cardigans. 

Favorite Nail Color:
Skull & Glossbones by OPI, a pale, creamy gray.

Favorite Shoes: Big Buddha Wyatt Boots. I don't consider myself the cowgirl type at all, but I bought these to be in my sister-in-law's wedding and have fallen in love.  To my surprise, they go with nearly everything, step up every outfit a notch, and get loads and loads of compliments. 

Best place to shop: Thrift stores or any clearance rack.

Every girl has days when she struggles with her looks and her worth.  What do you do to remind yourself you're a beloved, beautiful daughter of the King?  Spend quality time with my daughter.  If you've ever been around a little girl and her mama, you'll know that every little girl thinks her mom is beautiful and amazing.  My daughter's just turned one, but I can still tell by the look in her eyes (and the fact that she already emulates me - puts my shoes on, brushes her hair when I do, etc.) that she thinks I'm the best.  If my daughter loves me that much, if she thinks I'm beautiful and wonderful, how much then must God love me?  It works the opposite way as well - as a mother, it's impossible to explain the depth of love I have for my child.  How much greater is that of God, my Father, whose love is more pure and complete than mine can ever be?

What's an item you can't live without? My purse.  I just got a new one from my husband for Christmas that I just adore, but I'm talking more about my purse in general.  I'm a "one purse" kind of gal - my purse has always contained my life; I don't have the ability to easily change purses to match with outfits so my purse has to go with just about everything. My new one is taupe Coach Outlet purse - the color is versatile, and Coach purses last forever.

How can a bride reflect her everyday style in her wedding day style? What a great question!  This is a really important aspect for women to consider when they think about their wedding dress, hair, and makeup. Some women see their wedding as a chance to dress up and look vastly different then they normally do.  For most, I think that's a mistake.  When I look back at my wedding pictures thirty years down the road, I want to be able to recognize myself in the pictures; not just my face, but my personality.  I think the key to doing this is being able to define your personal style and then finding wedding fashion that matches it.  I would say my style is fairly classic and simple.  I don't tend to follow current trends and my outfits usually only consist of a few pieces, not a ton of layering and accessorizing.  My wedding dress, makeup, and hairstyle reflected that naturally, simply because I listened to myself and blocked out the peanut gallery.  There is often a lot of pressure on brides from friends and family to chose a certain type of dress or wear their hair a certain way, but ultimately only the bride can choose what feels right to her.  My main piece of advice is for brides to stick to their guns and not be afraid to say, "This is my wedding and I will make the choices about how I look."  For example, I've known several brides that didn't wear any makeup on their wedding day and I thought they were crazy!  But now, I realize that they were just being true to themselves.  They never wore makeup, so had they worn it on their wedding day, they would have felt like imposters.

Fashion, evangelization, and the Feminine Genius: your thoughts?  The first impression we give people, before we even open our mouths, is our appearance.  Who knows how many people might be attracted to Christianity through contact with Christian women who present themselves with grace, beauty and dignity?  Perhaps you'll pique someone's interest in your values by (literally) wearing them on your sleeve?  By using fashion to display your natural beauty, you have a small part in showing God to the world.

Isn't she lovely?  The thought that a mother and daughter's love for each other can hint at the Father's love just kills me.  So beautiful.  If you like what you see here, be sure to head to Mandi's blog for more!

Want to share your style picks with Captive the Heart?  Email me at!


  1. So true about sticking to your guns and looking "like yourself" on your wedding day. I know a bride who wore her glasses on her wedding day, because that's how she's most comfortable :-) She looked STUNNING, of course! And I love what Mandi has to say about her daughter- too sweet!

    1. That's awesome! And that makes two of us who love what she has to say!

  2. Such great insights, Mandi! I have learned so much about God the Father and His love through my relationship with my own children too. And beautiful choices - I love that you included grey in your color scheme!

    Cheers to no makeup if that's not your thing!

  3. Loooove this! Going to have to try that nail polish, even though I am a hopeless grow-your-nails out person.



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