It’s been a while since I did a wedding related post, but this week is the six month marker – although I’m not sure how it came around so quickly – to The Big Day, and since these kind of posts have a limited time frame, I thought it was time to get one in whilst I still could (and while the thought of a wedding isn’t causing me to hyperventilate loudly).
Before my trip, we’d kind of reached our limit of what we could organise: venue, save the dates and legal stuff had all been pretty much sorted, and the menu couldn’t be done until this month, when the caterer’s restaurant re-opened for tastings. Now I’m back, however, things have started apace.
Next up on the to-do list is rather important: Find A Dress. With this in mind, my mother is coming down next week and we have a day of appointments in wedding shops. The prospect of having strangers helping me into dresses whilst I stand in my underwear is not something I’m especially relishing, but hey, I’ll be able to chalk it up as a unique life experience. According to one shop, six months in advance is “a bit late”, which left me in a slight panic when I hung up the phone. Common sense soon prevailed, however, and I realised that a six month lead in time for a wedding dress is perfectly adequate. I’ve known people whose engagement has been shorter than this and the wedding dress they wore on the day was lovely. And if all else fails, there is always eBay!
The bridesmaids also need something to wear (otherwise they are definitely going to be stealing attention from the bride and groom!). So the trip to Thailand, as well as being a chance to see a new country and eat lots of delicious curry, was also the chance to get together with Z, one of the three bridesmaids, and discuss the all-important question of How many Flounces, How Much Peach and How Puffed I Can Get Away With On Their Dresses. Nah, not really, I’m not that bad a friend – we’re aiming for a simple cocktail length dress with a v neck and straps, which in theory sounds easy to track down. I have made life slightly tricky for myself, though, as my three bridesmaids (all of whom are fantastic friends from different stages in my life) live in
– three different countries
– two different continents and
– three different time zones.
This makes dress shopping somewhat tricky and it’s here I offer up a massive HALLELUJAH for the wonder that is the internet. Thank goodness for online shopping and emails, as otherwise kitting everyone out in the same dress would be impossible.
Just to further enhance the international (ie: complicated) aspect to the bridesmaid dress planning, we all fell in love with J Crew’s bridesmaid dresses: hands down they are the nicest ones I have seen – and could actually be worn afterwards, which was one of the things I was determined to base the bridesmaids’ outfits on. Be ashamed, British shops such as BHS and Debenhams! Your bridal ranges are nowhere near as stylish and as good value for money. I really hope J Crew come good on their idea to start trading in the UK, as brides here definitely need them and their gorgeous range of merchandise.
The only snag is that J Crew don’t deliver abroad – only to Canada and Japan. However, in a complicated three way poste restante, my lovely friend in Ottawa let me use her address to have some swatches delivered, which made my life so much easier, and meant I could take them out to Thailand to get Z’s opinion.
Alas, after all this international activity across three continents, the colour I had mind, graphite, just didn’t look right on Z; she looked really washed out. So it’s been back to the drawing board and searching for dresses in the second choice colour, turquoise. It’s the Pantone Colour of 2010, so I am hoping that cocktail dress manufacturers had been listening and making clothes accordingly! The Pantone website also claims that turquoise “offers a sense of protection and healing in stressful times”, and if everyone else’s wedding planning accounts are to be believed, I’m definitely going to need some of that. (And then a very large gin. And some chocolate. And maybe a hot bath with scented candles.)
And finally, here’s a picture of my engagement ring; I realised I never put one up on the site and so it felt like it was time for a Gratuitous Ring Shot in the Gratuitous Wedding Post.
I have never been a diamonds kind of gal (the ethical angle, and the fact your fiancé is supposed to spend a month’s salary, which has never sat well with me), and instead really wanted to have a moonstone. A moonstone and white gold ring is not the easiest thing to find “off the peg”, however, so we asked a lovely local jeweller to make one up for us. I absolutely love it, especially the way it moves between milky white and azure blue and deep purple in different lights, before going back to brilliantly clear. It’s a ring I feel proud to have on my finger for the rest of my life and every time I look at it, it makes me happy. Which is what an engagement ring should do, I think.