Some girls have binders and boxes, devoted entirely to their wedding day, stowed wistfully under the bed. The clippings lie in wait for the day a ring will be slipped on that special finger. The planning is practically done; all they need is a date on the calendar and a groom.
I fall on the other end of the spectrum. Attention shy, I never imagined my day to be a lavish affair. To be honest, I never really imagined it at all. When my boyfriend and I decided to get married, I was starting from scratch. I was excited about choosing the venue, narrowing down the guest list, selecting invitation fonts and most of all, the cake flavor, but not so stoked about finding a dress. As a fashion editor, I knew I was going to be hard please in the dress department. So with something sleek, modern and minimal in mind, I decided to do a broad scan of the bridal landscape.
On a trip to NYC, I booked an appointment at one of the most well-known bridal stores in the world. Hyped from years of watching countless girls say “yes to the dress” it seemed an apt place to start. I met my consultant, we did a quick tour of the floor and I slipped into the silky robe while she pulled more options from the stockroom. I tried on sleek sheaths, beaded numbers and one with swirly black embroidery. When we found one that suited my shape, I was paraded onto the pedestal and fitted with a veil. They even texted the designer a snap of me in the gown and showed me his immediate reply (“LOVE”). The hard sell caught me off-guard, and shopping on my own, I said yes. By the time I reached the front desk to put down the deposit, I panicked and couldn’t commit. I got on the plane to head home an hour later relieved that I hadn’t coughed up the cash.
Back in Toronto, I tried out a new shop that caters to cool, hip, boho brides. I brought our associate fashion editor for support as we sifted though the slinky dresses that filled the racks. I thought they might have something a little different, or at least a few non-ball gown options. But my too cool for school consultant had given up before we even started. Alone in the changeroom, she left me to squirm out of strappy dresses with difficult zips. An angry comment about not putting the dresses back on the right hangers put me over the edge. We didn’t even try on the last dress that I’d picked out. As we left, she said that she knew exactly what I was looking for, but that I would have a hard time tracking down my dream dress. Thanks.
Motivated to try one more stop, I booked in at a jewel box of a bridal boutique that carries lovely, high-end labels. There weren’t many dresses that fit my description but the service was top notch and I felt taken care of every step of the way. My consultant actually knelt down to help me into each dress. There was one potential option, but my entourage loved it more than I did. I left without a dress, but the experience put the wind back in my bridal sails.
Two days later, trolling the new arrivals on my favourite shopping site, I fell for a creamy ankle-length crepe dress. I clicked order, it arrived the next day and I knew it was the one as soon as I unwrapped the tissue paper. It makes me feel the way I never knew I wanted to feel on my wedding day. Now, I’m counting down the days until I can wear it, and I’m still looking forward to choosing that cake flavor too.
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