so, the post i have been dying to write since back in march! and the one subject i will probably always have in interest in: wedding dresses. (note: most of these are photos from friend's iphones, i'll share some more detailed shots of the dress when we get our photos back!)
|jen fariello's photo, please give her credit.|
i really only have two pieces of advice for wedding dress shopping: look at dresses before to see what appeals to you and what you want in terms of some details, and two: keep an open mind. (also, take me with you. please and thank you).
when i first moved to the city i spent many, many late nights at work (read every night and 3 or 4 AM). some of that involved a lot of down time though - waiting for someone to answer an e-mail, get back edits, and so forth. that naturally leads to some internet surfing and, though brian and i had only been dating for a few months, i have always looked and lusted over wedding dresses. i love dressing up in the first place, but to be able to wear a real gown of gowns and not have anyone think i was insane? oh ladies, ladies i have been waiting for that day with bated breath. since the age of five i think i have browsed picture of wedding gowns because i've never met a glamorous picture i didn't like.
and that's how i discovered pronovias. every now and then i'd see a dress i'd like, but when i perused their dresses i loved at least 70% of them, which made me think i could actually go to the store and try on a few dresses and end up with my dress. and everytime they came out with a new collection i thought - damnit, i wish i was engaged (also a good sign). and, of course, they had a very healthy price range, the exact same to those that you see at bigger bridal stores, so i also knew it was actually in our budget. i so wanted a wonderful dress that was elegant yet had a touch of glamour, but, as my post last week pointed, i didn't want to kill myself over it. i wanted to have fun and soak up the day - i only get to shop for a wedding dress once - so to find the "perfect" dress would have put a damper on that. i knew i wanted a fuller skirt, mostly lace, and preferably not strapless (though i wasn't opposed). and naturally i ended up in something i never would have picked (remember advice point #2!) other than that, i tried not to be too specific, though i knew some details in my mind that i would want and not want. above all, i looked to brides from the 40's and 50's as inspiration. even today those brides look beautiful and classic, as if someone could still wear that dress today and fit in. that aesthetic and timelessness was my main, and huge, inspiration.
i am a lace wedding dress girl through and through - i have swooned over many a lace wedding gown. i always felt satin wasn't for me - i didn't really have anything against it, but i gravitated towards lace dresses. the first three dresses i tried on, all lace wedding gowns, i loved, yet the skirts felt a little stiff to me. (for the record, i would have probably been thrilled to wear any of them - my obsession with glamourous dresses knows no bounds). and perhaps that's because i was looking at lace gowns, as opposed to simpler lace dresses with fewer layers/less crinoline. my aunt picked out what turned out to be my dress, and due to advice #2, i was happy to try it on for her. open minds and good attitudes go a long way.
when i put it on i fell in love with it, but it was so different from what i thought i wanted i kind of did a doubletake on the emotion. the waist was amazing - it cinched me in, was incredibly comfortable, yet slimming at the same time. the bodice incoproated the lace i wanted so bad, and the train, the ridiculous, most amazing train ever, was timeless but so glam. my mom and aunt nearly peed themselves when they saw me in it, and as i did a little walk around the store in the dress, my first thought was: this is so damn fun to wear. because of the train it was such a once-in-a-lifetime dress - i will never, sadly, be able to wear a dress like that again. it had beautiful details - buttons running all the way down, from nape of the neck to the last inch of the train, it was comfortable, it was glam, it was everything. i could overlook the satin because it just felt like me: i like wearing fun, glamorous, feminine pieces. (think i've used the word glamorous enough in this post?) my 17-year-old cousin was also with us, and as i was changing out of it, i asked for her honest opinion - a different generation, a fresh set of eyes. and she was so quiet and looked up at me with these wide, gleaming eyes and said "how could you not? it's amazing". and i was done, after four dresses.
we still went to kleinfeld's the next day, just to experience it. it was fine and the dresses were pretty but nothing made me feel that sure, nothing had the combination of enough of what i wanted to become the perfect dress. a couple of weeks after we got the dress i had some doubts - did we not try on enough? did it go too fast? was i too hasty in making my decision? but i pulled up a picture of my dress, reminded myself how bad-ass it was, and that second-guessing yourself on details of your wedding can be a disaster, causing unwanted anxiety. and so i went forth with the dress, and i'm so glad i did. i can't wait to show you some professional photos when we get them back (and see them myself!)