June 10, 2010
My best friend from college is getting married this fall. She is an incredibly low maintenance bride, and everyone is pitching in to help with this small, family centered wedding. Her future MIL is planning the reception, and I am designing the invitations, and her sister-in-law is giving flowers as a wedding gift, and all the bride has to do is nod "yes" or "no" to the hundreds of little decisions to be made in preparation for the wedding. (She's even letting us bridesmaids wear our own dresses!)
The one thing she cared about and had definite opinions on was finding a dress. She had been out scouting a bit, and had found a few dresses she liked, so she and I and another bridesmaid went shopping this last weekend to buy the dress.
This concept of "the dress" is hard. It is perhaps the most important piece of clothing you'll wear (certainly the most attention grabbing, even if it is simple). For a Christian who lives her life chastely and cares about the Sacrament, it is more than just an empty symbol too--it is white and pure and that means something.
But, on the other hand, it is just a dress.
At the shop, we looked at many gowns, all of which looked amazing on her, and none of which were right. They were mostly strapless, which she didn't want, and she was between sizes, which meant alterations, which brought the dresses out of her price range. Then, after looking at all these gowns, we pulled one off the rack. With a v-neck and empire waist and delicate embroidery, it was simple but graceful. And when she put the dress on, she looked so relieved, because it fit, it was modest, it was lovely, and it was on sale.
As I look at bridal magazines, I find that even in articles that talk about doing weddings on a budget, people are still will to drop several thousand dollars on a wedding dress--because the dress has such an aura around it. It's the one. But for people on a budget, the look of the dress is not everything. THE ONE happens to be one that fits, that is comfortable, and elegant and serves it's purpose (to make the bride look amazing), and is affordable and not stress inducing.
Her dress is not the most beautiful dress I've ever seen. It's not even the most beautiful dress she tried on. But is was "the one". Funny how that works.