At long, long, long last, Spring has finally sprung!
And its corresponding wedding season is already going full force. So I’m taking this opportunity to pass on some more wedding advice for my fellow Quirky, Confused, and Curvy brides:
- Flowers: Flowers are undeniably beautiful. And they can really spruce up any church, banquet hall, or hotel ballroom. But they are also ridiculously expensive and wasteful. My advice? Go with artificial. Before you cringe and drop the “tacky” word, do some research. Silk flowers have come a long way in the last few years. I used the website The Brides Bouquet and could not have been more thrilled with my choice. I got a ton of compliments and flowers for my entire wedding party only cost around $200. Plus I now have a keepsake from our wedding day displayed in our home. Even if you use real flowers for decorations, silk can be a great money saver when it comes to the actual bouquets and boutonnieres.
- Undergarments: Anytime I’ve ever been in or around a wedding, the bride has always had some . . .contraption under her dress. Whether she’s a size 2 or 20, there’s always some sort of push-up bra, corset, or hosiery that could have been used for medieval torture.
But comfort was a huge priority for me. Obviously I wanted to look stunning, but when selecting my dress, I also made sure I chose a fabric I could move in – not just to dance, but to sit and stand and bend and hug. I also wanted to make sure the design was something that was compatible with a regular bra instead of some strapless thing I’d be tugging at all day. I know most women are much more tolerant of specialized undergarments than I am, so to each her own. But I also want to reiterate the importance of making comfort a priority. Remember – you are going to be in this dress (and aforementioned undergarments) for approximately 6-12 hours, if not more. Do whatever you can to maximize your comfort. I highly recommend wearing your bra/shapewear of choice a few times before the wedding day to “break it in.” I also swear by these amazing things called Skimmies which can really save us curvy girls from the dreaded “chub rub.” I now wear these under every dress I put on and have no idea how I suffered through pantyhose and the like for so long.
- Receiving Line: I was absurdly stressed out about the receiving line. A friend who had gotten married before me told me that so many guests “mobbed” her in the church lobby that she was almost an hour late for her pictures, which set the entire night back. Since our photo location was a bit of a trek from our ceremony space, I didn’t want to get behind schedule. Plus, my venue was a theater on a crowded downtown street, and there was no room for such a thing. So I decided to simply not have one. After the ceremony, our officiant announced that there would be no receiving line and that we’d see everyone at the reception hall. This worked perfectly. Me and my bridal party managed to leave the ceremony spot swiftly so our day could stay on track, and we had plenty of time to eat, dance, and mingle all night. We even managed to visit with pretty much every single one of our guests at our leisure.
- Your Bridesmaids’ Hair/Nails/Shoes: I know most brides obsess about Every. Tiny. Detail. of your wedding day, but this is something you don’t have to waste time thinking about. Trust me, no one is going to notice whether or not your BMs have a pedicure or if their manicures match. No one is going to whisper if they all have different updos. No guest is going to gasp and faint if their shoes don’t match, especially if the dresses are long. The only request I made to my girls were to pick the same color/fabric dress and not to wear flip flops or hooker shoes. I trusted them to make appropriate and comfortable choices, and of course they did! I wouldn’t have picked insane women for my bridal party. And keeping the expectations of the details casual helped my girls stay calm and happy, so they could help me do the same.
- A Tan: Many moons ago, when I was young and skinny and spent every waking minute of summer vacation swimming (or marching away the days at band camp), I had a killer tan. It made me feel pretty and I could get away without wearing much makeup. But now I’m pretty pale. Even more so because I spend 8+ hours a day sitting behind a computer. So for a hot second I did think about slipping into a tanning bed or getting a spray tan for my big day. But I decided I didn’t want cancer, and didn’t want to waste money risking a runny, uneven, unnatural looking “glow.” So I ditched the idea and wore my natural skin tone to my wedding. It worked for me every other day of my life, so why wouldn’t it fly on my wedding day?
- Losing Weight: Last but not lease, please do not go insane trying to drop, like, 30 lbs. or four dress sizes for your wedding. Your fiance proposed to you because (s)he loves you just the way you are. So there’s no need to drastically change your body. It’s fine if you want to add some muscle or trim away a few pounds of holiday/winter weight, but don’t go buying a dress a size or two too small thinking it’ll serve as motivation. This only gives you something else to stress about! You’ll be a gorgeous bride just the way you are. Trust me.