On my last post, I promised the male spin on wedding planning. Well, to be honest, there is not much to tell as Nick is being rather calm about the whole affair. He is busy with the guy stuff - getting the music and sound system for the church and the reception sorted out, transportation for guests and bridal party, that sort of thing. Anything with wires or tyres, that's his remit.
I will, however, tell you about what can only be described as Disaster. I have previously shared with you my anxiety over The Dress, and thought I had that one licked by having a dressmaker whip up a bespoke little something which ticked all the boxes. Having checked out her website, her references, had a consultation with her and examined frocks that she was working on for other clients, I felt reasonably sure that this lady could handle the very plain and simple dress that I wanted. At the first fitting, all looked to be going well. When I tried on the finished article, however, all my blood sank into my feet.
It was miles too short. The gores of the skirt hung crooked. The hem was curling up. When I pointed this out, she said 'oh that will press out'. I was so panic stricken that I didn't even say to her 'well why didn't you do that, then?'. As for the crooked gores, 'you should wear an underskirt with that, and it will press out'. Everything would press out. There was no sense left in my head or breath in my lungs and I could have made a scene but I didn't want her to touch anything else on that dress, so I just left. Besides, she was going away for the rest of the summer and didn't have time to do anything else.
Calmly, I made a plan to take this wretched garment to the best dressmaker I know, who has never put a stitch wrong in the 10 years or so I have been using her. I knew Sue would be able to sort this mess out. Why, you ask, didn't I use her in the first place? Because she swore that she would never make another wedding dress again, as brides are too wing nut crazy to work with and she didn't need the stress. Fair enough. I rang Sue and asked when I could bring the unfortunate garment to her. She was so busy she couldn't see me for three weeks, so we made an appointment for August 1st.
In the meantime, it turns out that I needed to have surgery. The date was set for me to go into hospital on August 2nd. Hmmm....
When I eventually turned up at Sue's and put the dress on for her, she declared that this dress was only good enough to wear to a barbecue and she wouldn't touch it with a barge pole as she didn't want her name even remotely associated with it. I asked her, choking back tears, if she could make me a new one. Then SHE started choking back tears, pointing to an enormous rack of bridesmaid's dresses she had on the go, apologising that she didn't have any time to do so, but if I found something else she would alter it for me even if she had to stay up all night before the wedding. Between the two of us we were trying very hard not to burst into tears. The full enormity of the situation hit. It was less than 7 weeks before the wedding. I was going into hospital the next day for two weeks. I had been told to expect a long and slow recovery but that I should be ok for the wedding. I would not be in a position to go out guerilla dress shopping after my operation, and I therefore had about 5 hours in which to find a new dress.
I hurried to the local large department store, and all they had were a few tattered size 8 wedding-y looking things and a salesperson who would not do any more for me than to tell me about a bridal shop located 'behind the police station'. Not exactly overflowing with hope, I found said bridal salon, and again tried not to burst into tears as I explained my sorry story to the very nice lady who worked there.
'You have to have something off the rack, there is no time to order anything'. She pulled out everything that was even remotely my size and we started trying on. Meh, meh, meh. There were several more dresses to try on when I realised I had 40 minutes to get to a meeting 20 miles away. I left, and at 4.00pm reappeared back at the bridal shop. There were only two left and I could feel a rather large, black cloud shot through with panic starting to descend upon me. I then rifled through a rack and hauled out a dress which I never in a million, billion years thought I would even look twice at. I stared at it. I asked to try it on. It fit. It looked nice.
At that moment, my Inner Fairy Princess brazenly walked into the bar where my Inner Librarian was sat sipping a small sherry. IFP grabbed IL by her Peter Pan collar and took her out in the car park, gave her a body slam, a double over the top back flip and made her cry 'Uncle' pinned in a half Nelson, before throwing her mousey little butt over the fence into a junkyard full of hungry, menacing dogs and rusty oil drums. Wiping the dust from her little fairy hands, she marched back into the bar and ordered a bottle of Taittinger.
You will have to wait for the photos!