This weeks interview features Anne Charboneau from blithebride. Anne is located in Alexandria, VA.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m in my late 20s and have lived in the DC area for five years. I was born in the Midwest, where I met my husband, Ben. I used to be a managing editor at a publishing company in DC, but am now a stay-at-home-mom to my silly four-month-old baby boy, Cole.
What special things do you create for weddings?
I make bridal and bridal party jewelry and hair accessories.
Who or what sparked your interest in making wedding-related items?
My sister-in-law, Laurie, taught me how to make basic beaded jewelry many years ago. It was strictly a hobby then, and I primarily made jewelry for myself and for gifts. As I began planning my 2007 wedding, I noticed that wedding jewelry was either extremely cheap (and looked like it), or extraordinarily expensive and not something you’d want to wear again. I wanted to find a balance between affordable, high-quality, and reusable jewelry, and I think I was successful with my own bridal jewelry. Once I found that niche, I discovered Etsy and began selling my wares in early February 2007 in another Etsy store. I opened blithebride in February 2008. That month, I also started my wedding coordinating business with a dear friend. Much of my life is centered around other people’s weddings!
What is a little known fact, or something unique about your work that is interesting?
Despite that I have a “crafts area” set up in my house, I have rarely sat down at my desk to make anything! I always load up my big bead board and head to my living room couch, where I sit cross-legged to make most everything I sell!
If you are married, what’s the one thing you wish you had for your wedding that you didn’t?
A band. We DIYed our music with a rented speaker and lights system, and my former DJ husband created massive iTunes playlists. It worked out great, and people had a blast dancing, but I would have loved to hire a band that could do awesome covers.
What is your favorite wedding song?
I’m not a fan of traditional wedding music. My bridal party and I walked down the aisle to a Bach piano piece I played as a child, and our first dance song was “Be Here Now” by Mason Jennings.
What is your favorite part of the wedding journey?
It sounds cliché, but my favorite part of the wedding journey is the day of the wedding. I can say this especially after witnessing so many wedding days as a coordinator. All of your hard work in planning finally comes together and, God willing, everything goes off without a hitch. You marry the person you want to grow old with; your family and friends enjoy wonderful company, food, and entertainment; and you have year upon year of happy memories on which to reflect.
What advice can you share for all the brides getting married this year?
Don’t get caught up in what you’re “supposed” to do! It’s your day, and you can do whatever you want! Can you have white linens even though your dress is ivory? Yes! Can you have sunflowers in your bouquet even if you’re being married in December? Why not?! There are no rules when it comes to wedding planning. Take your creative ideas and run with them.
What is your perfect honeymoon spot?
Anywhere with beautiful scenery. Beauty is romantic!
If you could pick anyone famous that would purchase your items for their wedding, who would they be?
Famous people don’t interest me much. I couldn’t even tell you a famous person who is engaged to be married right now!
If you could choose 1 item from your shop that you wish every bride could have, what would it be?
My freshwater pearl and crystal hair pins match just about any bridal ensemble, and look great in short, long, textured, and/or straight hair.
Links where we can find out more about your work: