Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Honing My Skills

When I arrived at the bridal salon on Sunday, I was immediately overwhelmed by the sea of white that surrounded me. They must have had a thousand dresses there. And the sales girls knew of each them (the dresses I mean) by designer and style and they rattled their names off as if they were familiar household items instead of overpriced pieces of satin.

Her: “I’m seeing you in a Pronovias Ebano… or maybe a La Sposa Saman… what do you think?”
Me: blank stare… “I was, uh, hoping, for something, sorta, um, white-ish, that uh, um, makes me look pretty. What do you have in that department?”
Her: “Courtney, sweetheart! Don’t worry. We’ll get there. When’s the wedding?”
Me: “uh… September... of next year?”
Her: “Oh thank God! Thank God we have time! Come with me.”

And then she whisked me away into a fitting room, stripped me of my clothes, put me in strapless corset bra and petticoat and then started hoisting wedding dresses over my head as I closed my eyes and stretched my arms toward the ceiling. Shimmy, zip, pin, fluff, Viola! I’m bridal! I try on about ten dresses with varying degrees of success. None of them was *it* but I did learn a lot:

First of all, the classic A-line dress makes me look fat. I didn’t actually think it was possible for an A-line to look bad on anyone, but, hey, I guess I’m special.

Second of all, beads, sequins, rhinestones, crystals, and anything of the shiny persuasion – GET IT OFF ME! The sparkles that I love so much on other brides, and that I think show up so nicely in their photos, make ME feel like either a little Disney princess or a trampy Vegas showgirl. Neither of which is what I’m going for. Blech.

Third, straps are painful! Who knew? All my life I’ve had my heart set on a dress with tank top style straps (the better to wear a bra and be comfortable with!). But nooooooooooo. Now I understand why 99% of the store was filled with strapless gowns. If your dress has any sort of heft to it, the straps dig into your shoulders and make it impossible to hug people. Yikes! So now I’m thinking I might go strapless – this literally flips my entire world on its side. I’ve never thought of myself as a strapless kind of girl!

Fourth, NO SWEETHEART NECKS! You gotta give a girl SOME coverage if she’s gonna go strapless! Sheesh. There will be grandparents at this wedding. I can’t have my “girls” falling all out of a low cut sweetheart neckline. So please, Less Flesh!!

I think I am now MUCH more prepared for this whole process. In fact I just got off the phone with a second bridal salon. When she asked if I had any idea what I wanted, I responded, “Yes. I’m looking for a modified A-line with a dropped waist, made of silk, off white, with asymmetrical rouching on the bodice and a skirt that moves when I walk. Court train. No beads. No chiffon. No charmeuse. Lace is an option, but only as an embellishment. Nothing low cut.”

Ha! I can *so* do this!

Now all I need to do is FIND this (fictitious) perfect dress that I've invented in my head...

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