“Oh Wow” so far has been the reaction of those who have had a preview of my wedding dress. “It’s not what I expected you to choose” is the next exclamation of literally every. single. woman following the “Oh Wow”. When I have asked them why they are surprised by my choice, they have all responded with “because it is so elegant”. Interesting. That has been food for thought…
In all honesty, I must admit that it is not what I thought I would choose either. I expected to choose a dress, they way I choose my Christmas tree – the more sparkly, colourful and flamboyant the better. Give me bling, glitter, beading, faux fur and lots and lots of vavavoomb. Aim for Marilyn Monroe in showgirl mode, or Roxy Hart in Chicago and you will be on track with what I thought I wanted and what everyone else expected.
Nothing I have ever dressed in has ever been referred to as elegant before, sexy on occasions, sophisticated at a push perhaps, but elegant is where I usually fail. My wedding dress, I am ecstatic to say, looks amazeballs on me and today is the day I am collecting it from Aristocrats of Chester. The reality of having my wedding dress in my clutches is giving me butterflies in my tummy; either that or the garlic bread which I ate knowing I am intolerant has just kicked in.
This will be my second wedding dress. The first time round, almost 18 years ago, I wore an ankle length, ivory, devore velvet, cowl necked dress from Monsoon. We were getting married in Las Vegas and I never bothered to go wedding dress shopping at all. In fact, I never bothered to have a single shopping day for wedding stuff at all. I happened to pass by my dress in the window of Monsoon whilst I was on my lunch break. £120 and job done with still time for grabbing a butty from Boots. A few weeks later, I nipped into Claire’s Accessories whilst waiting for my bus, bought hair sparkly thingies and then bus home. It was perfect for a Vegas wedding but this time round, my new Hubs and I are doing the full hit and I wanted a dress that wowed.
My Mum and daughter came with me to choose a dress. I had been super organised (oi Hubby, if you are reading this, stop laughing your ass off – I WAS ORGANISED; bloody army veterans and their superior organisational skills) and had chosen four dresses from Aristocrats of Chester’s website, and asked them to have them ready for my appointment. I discovered my two absolute favourite dress designers were Justin Alexander & Maggie Sottero, and I just knew the dresses would look beautiful on me. Ermm.. sorta..!
The first dress I tried on, I decided before the assistant had even finished lacing me into it, that this dress was ‘the one’. As I came out of the dressing room and did the “ta dahhh” to my Mum and Daughter, they both exclaimed “Oh Wow, it is so elegant”. I couldn’t wipe the massive grin from my face. Eventually, we decided that I should try the others on too, just to be sure. The other dresses were exactly what I had wanted, but on me, they just didn’t muster a ‘wow’ moment. On the hanger they looked wow, on me they looked ‘meh’. I never bothered to look anywhere else, I had my dress right from the start. Thank you Maggie Sottero, I am saying Yes to the Dress!
My daughter couldn’t believe that the first dress, in the first shop on my only day of shopping and I had the perfect gown. I then told her that my experiences choosing my wedding ring, venue, invites, shoes and flowers were exactly the same. It is not a lack of interest or a ‘That will do’ attitude, but instead it was down to a good Pinterest board and planning (bugger off hubs). I didn’t need to trawl the shops all day, which left more time for prosecco lunches instead.
The only two things that eluded me, were the right jewellery and a decent hairdresser. I have something specific in mind for my jewellery and I just couldn’t seem to find it until an hour ago, when the perfect sparklers beamed out at me from a Chester store. My first hairdresser made my do look like a fuzzy birds nest. I needed an elegant hairdo to go with my elegant dress, and this woman managed to give me a scruffy beehive head. Not impressed! I am not bothering with a make up artist, as my previous career was as a hair and make up artist and I am loathe to pay someone else to paint me up like an Instagram drag artist. Is it just me, or do so many make up artists these days just look Rupaul?
So, I am now off to collect my dress. I am going to do my best to put it in the spare room and leave it there, untouched, for the next two weeks. I promise not to hug it, smush it, stare at it or even breathe on it, until the day of the wedding. It’s not long to wait. I can do it. I really can… really…I can…maybe.
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