First off guys, I’m sorry for my week-long absence. I’m still waiting for our pro photos to come back, but I’ve been seeing guest photos coming out in the past week (and it’s getting me all nostalgic, aww). Anyway, I can’t promise to write as “regularly” as I normally would, simply because I haven’t got an awful lot of wedding-related things talk about (unless, of course, you want me to just gush on about my husband—hus-band—I like that word). But I’ll endeavor to write when I can!
So, moving on from all that.
Hi, hive! I recall writing to you about my search for a dress and my ultimate decision to go with a dress designer who creates dresses from scratch.
Well, here it is: The Quintessential Dress Post.
Mr. Big has already seen her so Lilu will let him pass:
Image via DailyPop.In
Because my dress was constructed from scratch, she obviously didn’t have a name. However, on the day, the most common word I got from guests was “radiant.” And henceforth, she shall be called Radiant.
Radiant first came to me after that eventful day shopping in Cabramatta’s True Love Couture. I wanted a flowing dress, lace, some bling but not too much, but most of all, I wanted to feel like a stunner (I mean, who doesn’t want to feel like a million bucks on their wedding day?).
When I saw Mandy again, we designed Radiant on a piece of paper, talked about what I wanted, what would look nice, and what would, and sadly wouldn’t, work. By the time we had her all drawn out, Mandy asked whether we should get started sooner rather than later. Because I was in the process of shedding kilos, I told her later would be better, so the construction of the dress didn’t get underway until September.
To be honest guys, I yo-yo’ed many times on her design: did the bodice work? What about the sleeves? Could I dance in her? Would I overheat? What about the train, is it too long? What if people hate her? What if I hate her? WHAT IF MR. BIG HATES HER?
Mandy (bless her) put up with my paranoia and was able to guide me the entire.way.through the process. Now before I continue”¦
Soap box time: If you have doubts about your dress choice (dress regret, two words a bride hates), don’t let them fester. I let my opinions be known to Mandy (politely, of course) and she was able to either talk me down or help me improve the design. I know not every bride can get their dress designed from scratch, but even a store bought dress can be altered to suit your needs if you but request for those changes. Heck, I found most of my anxiety was unfounded. All I needed was to just talk about it. So for those suffering the dreaded dress regret, keep your chin up!
Getting back on track: after losing about 10 or so kilograms, I went in for my first fitting in about September.
I know guys. I know. I look odd. / Photo taken by Mandy
As you can see, it doesn’t really look like much. This was the basic construction, but even then, I felt pretty darn good about myself. I went back home and sent these super secretive photos off to my bridesmaids and was met with positive responses. My bridesmaids were eager to come along during the next fitting.
The next time I came to Mandy was about early December and I was met with this:
Sleeves – Check; Lace – Check! Also, I’m slouching horribly. / Photos taken by Usher/Friend Bee
During this fitting, Mandy added things as I stood in front of the mirror. I literally saw the dress transform as she worked. It was amazing:
Lace on sleeves and bodice—Check! Skeleton of corset back—Check! (Sorry about the icky skin guys”¦) / Photos by Usher/Friend Bee
My friend, Bee, took photos as we went, including close-ups of Mandy’s work.
My friend, Bee, taking this photo. She’s awesome like that! Also in this picture from left to right, me, BM Proper, MoH M&Ms, and BM Superhero. If you’re reading this BM Superhero, HI! / Photo taken by Friend/Usher Bee
She and all the other bridesmaids fawned over my dress for a good hour. I have honestly never felt prettier in my life (well, except for when I got married, hahaha!). When Mandy was satisfied with what she had done, we made another appointment and then parted ways.
Next time I saw her was in late December, about three weeks before the wedding. I was getting pretty darn nervous at this point—would the dress get done on time? My nerves were calmed when I saw what Radiant looked like now:
Photo by BM Cupcakes. Friend Bee couldn’t make this trip unfortunately. And can you spot the designer in the background?
My nerves then gave way to excitement as, again, Mandy added more and more to her design as my bridesmaids and myself watched on:
In these photos: more detail to the bodice and sleeves; and peppering of lace flowers on the skirt (I know, it’s hard to see, sorry guys). / Photo by BM Cupcakes
It’s odd being the ”˜mannequin’ from whom the designer works on, especially as I’m not exactly “model size”, but it was fun. Although apparently half the time I was either very rigid-backed or slouching like a mofo because I didn’t want to get in Mandy’s way.
After she was satisfied with her work for that session, we made the fourth and final appointment, but not before getting a group photo!
From left to right: BM Superhero, Mama Bighorn, myself, MoH M&Ms, BM Cupcakes (in red), and BM Proper. / Photo taken by Mandy
I’d be picking up Radiant in about a week!
When the day came, unfortunately, Mandy had a rush order from a bride. We postponed to the next day, and double unfortunately for me, most of my bridesmaids couldn’t make it. Luckily, BM Superhero was there to save the day! (As usual.)
When BM Superhero and I got to Mandy, she looked pretty damn tired. And yet she still managed to get this beauty ready for me:
Yes, that is a posed shot. And yes, she also made my veil, but that’s for a different post! / Photo via BM Superhero
From the back, the dress was a real stunner:
I loooooove this part of my dress the most. / Photo via BM Superhero
Mandy also did a simply bustle, which you can kind of see when you look at the close up of the corset back. It was a one-point over bustle, according to Miss Filly (thanks for posting that Miss F!).
During the fitting, I also hammed it up for the camera:
Showing off mah bling! / Photo via BM Superhero
And we got some close-up shots of some of my accessories to make sure it all fit together:
After thanking Mandy profusely for her tireless work, hugging her, and getting a picture with BM Superhero:
We parted ways for the final time, lugging Radiant back home. Mr. Big, who was on a business trip in Melbourne at the time, wasn’t around to see her coming back home (thankfully!).
And so, with that, I had a dress!
Who else got nervous about their dress? Anyone else suffer the dreaded dress regret? How did you get past it?
- Sydney, NSW, Australia
- Postgraduate Student & Aspiring Writer
- Wedding Date:
- February 2014
- The Hunter Valley Gardens & Tamburlaine Organic Wines