Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Cover of "Father of the Bride (15th Anniv...

Cover via Amazon

What an absolutely perfect day I had yesterday!

A beautiful worship service with my Christian Sibs, then I had the absolute joy of doing something I never thought I’d get to do. I went with DIL2b to try on wedding dresses. I have to tell you, it was so much fun!

Besides my wedding dress, the only other wedding dress I’ve shopped for was Sister Amy’s. And I wasn’t with her when she found the one she ended up with. While we shopped with Amy, the owner of the shop turned on me–“Who do you work for?”

Since Mom and several sisters were there with Amy, I was a little suprised to be singled out. “Do what?”

“I want to know who you work for.”

“Professional Pharmacy in Pryor. Why do you ask?”

“Your comments and questions . . . you sound as if you work . . . .  She looked a little embarrassed. “The other bridal shops in town have women trying to shop us all the time to get our styles and prices. I thought you were one of them.”

“Mom owned a dress shop for years. I managed it for her, but we didn’t sell wedding dresses.”

“That’s why you know so much.” She went back to work, comforted that I wasn’t stealing her secrets.

Luckily, yesterday I didn’t have that problem.

We walked in to the shop a few minutes before our appointment (I had no idea you had to make an appointment to shop for wedding gowns!) and the assistant manager immediately greeted us. She asked Nikki (aka DIL2b) a few questions, then turned us over to a real sweetheart saleswoman.

This saleswoman took the list of dresses Nikki had found online and we got started.

They disappeared behind a wall of mirrors into a dressing room, and I watched the other shoppers. One group that got there before us had a mother, at least two sisters and a friend or two.

The bride of that group was a size 4. Tiny little thing with hair that came just below her shoulders. She was gorgeous, but there was something just a little off about her joy. I don’t know if they’d spent weeks going from bridal shop to bridal shop or if there was a little m/d friction.

This girl had on a dress that looked as if it were designed for her. Fit her perfectly from what I could tell, but she wasn’t happy with it and whipped on another. She had a tat in beautiful colors on her wrist and one on the back of her neck that had wings.

Not something I usually expect to see on a beautiful bride, but the world, she is a changing! LOL.

My DIL2b came out and looked at her first dress–something Cinderella would have worn. A beautiful crystal encrusted top, and a skirt with layer after layer of tull. We loved the top, but the skirt, not so much.

I just took pictures and told DIL#2 what I thought. And that was mostly, “I like that. That one’s nice.”

Nikki went back to try the second dress while I people watched some more. A trio of young women came in. This time the bride wasn’t trying on dresses. Her bridesmaids were. The girls weren’t built exactly alike, but they tried on similar dresses.

Something new (to me, at least) is the thing where bridesmaids don’t dress alike or even in the same color. I’m not sure what tied them together, except it looked as if they’d all have on street length dresses, and most likely will carry identical bouquets.

This bride hated any dress that was pink or peachy colored. No matter what silhouette or fabric, if the color grossed her out, she hated the dress and wouldn’t even consider it in other colors.

Nikki came out in her next dress. Again, the top was okay, but the skirt–meh. The saleslady showed her how the alterations lady could take off a couple of layers, but still, it left us luke warm.

DIL2b disappeared behind the mirrors again and I watched another bride come out dressed in white. The woman’s dress fit perfectly. The right length, everything! I soon found out she was picking it up, not just shopping. 

As I watched, the man with her went into the dressing room and closed the door behind him. Hm. Wedding coordinator? The closest I’ve been to a WC was watching Father of the Bride with Steve Martin. Martin Short was the WC (I think) and if this guy was a Martin-type-WC, I would have been happy.

But this guy was no movie WC. When he looked at the bride, I could see in his eyes that he cared deeply about her. If he was the WC, the Groom was in real trouble.

Then Nikki came out in THE DRESS. Thinking back, it seems I heard the angels sing when she stepped out. It fit her perfectly–once they pulled it up and clipped it. It made her waist disappear and her eyes sparkle. 

I adored it! Nikki loved it! I took pictures with my camera and my phone. I sent pictures to Nikki to forward to her mom (who couldn’t be there because she had to work). I also sent some to #4.

Sorry, I can’t post them here, but Middle Son might accidentally read my blog sometime before he gets married. And we do not want him to see the dress before hand.

We talked about trying on another dress or two, but in the end, she loved this one so much she wouldn’t take it off. Everyone–DIL2b, her MIL2b, the saleslady and assistant manager–everyone LOVED the dress.

As we finished up, I chatted with the other bride and her WC. Turns out he’s the groom. (Thank heaven! Some of those looks he gave her really worried me.)

He said, “I’m the groom.”

I answered, “Shut your eyes, quick! You aren’t supposed to see the dress before the wedding.”

“We aren’t doing much the traditional way,” he answered with a small smile.

His bride spoke up. “We aren’t from here and don’t have family close, so he’s had to  help me.”

That made me sad for her and her mother. They were missing so much they could never get back. 

“But I kind of wish we could have kept the dress a secret for our wedding day,” the man murmured.

That earned him an unhappy look. “Now you tell me!”

Hoping I hadn’t started a family fight before they became a fam, I said, “If it weren’t for the pictures, I doubt G-Man would remember what my dress looked like. That’s such an intense time, it’s hard to take in all the details.”

After that encounter, I was very happy to scurry out to the car. If there was a battle, we missed it! LOL.

We met the rest of the Shay Clan at Kilkenny’s for #1 son’s birthday dinner. As usual, we had a great time together. I’ll post pictures tomorrow. 

Better run. I’m late for work–as usual! Ü

Before I go, though, tell me about your wedding dress. (Or your bride’s.) Did you make it or have it made? One of the most beautiful wedding dresses I’ve seen was white velvet with pearl trim my college friend, Mina, had made for her wedding. Gorgeous!

Did you buy it? My SIL went all the way to Arkansas to get hers.

Did you shop around the world to find it?

Terminally Curious would love to know.