It’s not about the dress

April 23, 2012 at 11:14 am 3 comments

Well it happened. I found The Dress.

On Saturday, I went wedding dress shopping with the Best Woman, mom, godmother, and future mother-in-law. Don’t worry: it was nothing at all like Say Yes to the Dress. What I mean by that is no one in my entourage told me I looked fat or that my favorite dress was ugly. So, yes, it was smooth all the way around.

And we only went to one store – even better, it’s a local small business called Ooh La La Bridal Boutique. If anyone lives in NEO and needs a wedding/prom dress, I highly recommend this place. It was so low-stress, which is something very important to me for all my wedding planning and interaction with vendors.

Anyway, we tried on lots of dresses, and most of them were nixed immediately. And after narrowing it down to two, we decided to combine them. Yes that’s right: I am customizing my wedding dress. We’re using the cut and style of one with some of the design and more fine details of another. It’s perfect.

But it’s not really about the dress. The idea to combine the dresses and the decisions for what to include/change/delete were all a group effort. Everyone there contributed and helped construct the image of what the dress would look like. All these important women in my life came together to help create the dress I would wear to launch  my married life. It really was an amazing experience and felt like a good kind of traditional women’s power.

It also reminded me of this post on the decision to have a registry from A Practical Wedding. Meg Keene, the founder of the blog, had this to say regarding her realization about what registries really mean:

And then I got it. The registry has nothing to do with the wedding. Our great-aunts and grandmothers are on to something when they insist that you register so they know what pots you want. The registry is not about the wedding, the registry is about the marriage. For us, we hope that means a long life with a passel of kids, a ton of family gatherings, and lots of cooking. So for us, that’s what a registry is about – letting our friends and loved ones build that home for us. The registry is like a barn raising.

It felt very similar with the dress. It was a chance for important women in my family to make sure I am fully prepared for my wedding day so that it’s a great start to my marriage. Constructing the dress felt like a time-honored way of doing that. And while I love the dress, I love the experience of finding it even more.


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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. broadsideblog  |  April 23, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Love this story.

    I’ve been married twice, neither time in a white wedding dress. The first was vintage, from about 1905 and the second was a soft plum color, a long dress I’d owned for a decade.

    My mother and I are not in contact now so the day of my wedding last fall a dear friend, who came to Toronto (I live in NY but married in my hometown) came all the way from DC…that morning she helped me dress and put on makeup and just calmed me. It meant the world to have someone help. My half-brother handled the music and his wife made food for after the service. You are very right that the group effort makes the experience so much more powerful.

    • 2. Steph  |  April 24, 2012 at 10:52 am

      Thanks for sharing! That sounds like an awesome wedding – so hands on from some important people in your life. So cool!

  • 3. April Wrap Up and May Kickoff « Undefined Ambition  |  May 3, 2012 at 1:48 am

    […] expand my blogging horizon by taking on politics and current events, book reviews, and other things going on in my life. Oh yeah, and I posted my first dinner recipe and turned […]


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