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Summer Wedding Style

Touch it. Experience it. Own it.

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Spending Saturday Morning
with a bungalow/8 Bride

At the one-hour mark, things started to get serious when a game of musical chairs found Mandi Dye right back where she had begun.

It was at co-owner Eric Burden’s station at BUNGALOW/8 that the bride-to-be was being prepped for what seemed an almost pseudo-surgical procedure, one of having... “They’re called hair extensions,” came the whisper. “She’s having hair extensions put in.”

That whisper was necessitated by a “first” of sorts. Never before had we the need to employ an interpreter in one of our stories, but this one was too important. We couldn’t miss even the slightest of nuances, so metroMAGAZINE’s Elizabeth Ford did double duty that day in acting as translator/photographer for a hopelessly clueless, fish-out-of-water writer.

Like the disembodied voice from the wings prompting an actor who had forgotten his lines, Ford was there to help capture the essence of what was unfolding at the salon that is so popular for wedding day hair and makeup machinations, ones that have become a rite of passage in their own right.


“Mimosas. Don’t use ‘champagne cocktails,’” she corrected as we passed the continental breakfast laid out for the party of 12 that represented the union of Mandi Dye’s and Clint Rathje’s families.

A small army of black-clad stylists was a frenetic study in perpetual motion as the bridal party rotated, station to station, from hair to makeup and back again so finishing touches could then be applied using all manner of doo-dads, thingamajigs and... Elizabeth was missing in action just when I needed her most.

“This is all about controlled chaos, but it’s a fun controlled chaos,” BUNGALOW/8 co-owner Michael Skradis said. “Mandi has been just great to work with and we like to think that she and other beautiful brides would tell you that we have the most creative team in the business.”

The nurse who is now married to a medical student agreed.

“One of the first things I thought of when we were engaged last April was ‘what am I going to do now?’” Dye said. “But I’ve been going to Eric for two years now and I knew I could talk to him about anything and everything.”

You mean like creating a signature style to bring to the altar?

“That too,” she said with a wry wink. “You should have seen him during our practice run.”

Hold on there. Practice? You mean that you’ve done all this before?


“Practice and the planning discussions are where the real work is done,” Burden said. “This is just the fun part. Mandi began with four basic ideas, four basic themes, and we refined them from there. We worked together to make sure we found a style that would reflect who she is... and who she isn’t.”

“I knew I wanted a fresh-faced look,” Dye continued, “Not too much makeup. Clean. Something that would remind us of...” “Classic Hollywood,” chimed in Heather Dizmang, the freelance makeup artist who was wielding an impossibly oversized brush as she painted... that is the right word, isn’t it, Elizabeth? Painted?

It was then that my translator’s hands darted to her temples as she gently pushed her way through the crowd that had now gathered around Dye, the woman who was stunning when she walked in that morning and downright radiant when she left.

Hmm. My colleague must be prone to the occasional headache, I keenly observed. And just when things were going so swimmingly as she made me feel ever so comfortable in an otherwise strange and alien world. Must make a note of that.

Just like all the notes made at BUNGALOW/8 in leading up to that rainy Saturday.


After all, Burden explained, his is the memory business. It’s an enterprise where success is measured in “oohs” and “aahs” that live on; more than just in film and on video, but in the very cores of a now newly wedded couple, their family and friends.

His advice for making the best memories for your wedding look?

“Keep it simple,” he said. “Be yourself and trust us to help do the rest. Keeping it simple doesn’t mean that it can’t be dramatic, that it can’t have excitement and flair. Keeping it simple means that we help find the best ‘you,’ the real you.”

The accompanying photographs leave little doubt that the BUNGALOW/8 team found “the best” Mandi Dye that day.

To view additional photos from this bungalow/8 bride, click here!

-end- metroMAGAZINE






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