Sunday, 13 November 2011

We have a Winner!

Saturday 5th November.  Three dress shops.  One day.  One goal: find the fucking dress!!

First appointment of the day, bit of a weird shop, I tried on a few things, they were nice, but quite expensive.  I did see one I LOVED, but it was teeny and I couldn't get into it.  It's a Benjamin Roberts dress:

It was all chiffon, a fabric I hadn't really considered, and it had a gorgeous Art Deco-esque detail on the waist.  It was really gorgeous.  We draped a chiffon jacket over the top and it was such a 40's look I was really smitten.  Really smitten!  The lady in the shop did find a larger sample for me that she was going to order in.  I think this will always be, the one that could've been.

Onto the second shop.  The wonderful Marianne Jessica in Bromley.  Michelle was just superb, so helpful and attentive, it was brilliant.  Funnily enough one of my friends has just bought her wedding dress from there.  I ventured towards it and was just told, "No, no, don't look at that one...."  Cryptic!  Until my mum told me on the way out it was Beth's dress!! 

I am indebted to Michelle because she got me into the Chanticleer Babilee, a dress I have fantasized about since July when I first started dress shopping.  The first shop, Cloud 9, had a small sample and as a result, I wouldn't get into it.  I managed to squeeze into the sample in Marianne Jessica and uh, I was totally smitten with that too!

Bit cross because the picture does NOT do it justice.  It's tea length with a gorgeous polka dot tulle over the top.  So gorgeous.  And it just looked amazing.  Michelle took some very detailed measurements to enable them to tailor the dress with a longer bodice and a halter strap.  Unfortunately, at £1300, this dress will reside with the other Chanticleer dress, in my, "What could've been if I had a bottomless pit of money!"

Also, Michelle had the best trick for getting into button back dresses - elastic bands!!  They did the job, I tell you!

Onto the third shop of the day.  We stood outside and considered sending Lex in to try dresses on instead of me as I had my mind made up, I wanted the Babilee and was prepared to go halves (or thirds....) on it with my dad.  

In the end we bottled in and I announced myself as the bride to be.  The shop was terrible to be fair.  Dark and dated.  And FULL!!  There must have been possibly 4 other brides in there, all with an entourage that included men.  Now, I'm not a prude right, but I see wedding dress shops as a bit of a female dominated sanctuary.  The presence of all these blokes really put me off.  I picked out a few dresses (they really didn't have a lot that I liked, I think they catered to the more frilly, swathes of fabric end of the scale! and said I wasn't putting any on until the men had gone.  I mean, not in a diva strop way (honest!)  I just said I'd rather wait until the shop had emptied out a bit.

Eventually it did and so into the changing room I went.  The first two dresses I tried on I didn't even come out of the changing room, they were just horrible.  Oh, and did I mention, aside from the men in the shop, there were 4 other shop assistants all glaring at me with such looks of distaste I felt really put off!  I tried one on, and it was quite nice, I was really nearly sold, but I think that's because I was tired and I had just had enough!  I had picked out a tea length dress that was really quite 'plain'.  The woman seemed reluctant to put me in it and as usual, picked out all the 'fat girl' dresses for me, all of which I said no to.

On with the tea length dress.  Well, wow.  What else do I say.  It was amazing.  It didn't fit obviously, but you could see that if it were to fit it would do all it needed to!  It was a great length and was plain enough that I could add my own embellishments to it (stitching to make a sweetheart neck and a halter strap).  

Even my sister said it looked nice.  Breakthrough!!

Only problem.  The tag had, "One Only", written on it.  What did that mean?!  The shop assistant vowed to call me back in the week and let me know.

I went home and looked up the style and found that my local shop, Aurora Bride, is a stockist of this designer.  So, I called them on the Monday morning.  No sample to try on, but they could order it.  Taking a skive to work I popped down that afternoon and am pleased to say, I finally have a wedding dress on order!

The design and style?  Well, that would be telling....

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