Saturday, February 11, 2012

On The Dress

While watching a recent episode of My Fair Wedding (yes, okay, I watch a few bridal TV shows), at the moment when star David Tutera gasped at the notion that a bride world ever even think of buying a wedding dress online, Ross (yes, he watches, too) looked at me and said: "Well, I guess you screwed up."

Okay, so I'll admit it. I did buy my gown online. Only, it came with a return policy that the bride in question was apparently without. And also, my gown isn't a gown.

I never saw myself as the pouffy white dress type. Pure white only makes my pale Irish/Eastern European complexion paler, and at 5'2" with curves, a ballgown would make me look like a Barbie cake and a mermaid or trumpet dress would probably make me look, well, something like this. So I wanted something a few shades off of white, and I wanted it short. Not Mary Quant short, but something that wouldn't make me look shorter than I already am. And something that, as a bonus, would allow for fabulous shoes. I'll still look like a bride, but I'll look like me as a bride, rather than me as the kind of bride TV and bridal magazines tell me I should be.

Here's the best thing about my dress, though. Other than the fact that it will be far more comfortable than a traditional gown. Other than the fact that I'll feel like me. Other than the fact that it flies against all of the wedding-industrial complex ideas of what a wedding dress should look like: my dress cost me under one hundred dollars.

I originally purchased my dress on ModCloth, a really wonderful site from which I buy a lot of my clothes. But I wasn't sure about the size, and when I saw the dress also posted on the Nordstrom Wedding page, I decided to buy the back-up size there and just return whichever one fit me less. (A process which I undertook with the help of a seamstress.) Nordstrom won, and a day or two after the original dress was bound for ModCloth's HQ, I saw an ad on one of those wedding blogs you see here on the right, telling me that Nordstrom's bridal sale was on. I clicked through out of curiosity and saw my dress, the dress I'd purchased from Nordstrom less than three weeks before, on sale for 50% off. And when I called Nordstrom, they happily refunded me the difference. (Nordstrom is world-renown for their customer service, so I wasn't surprised by this ... but I was really, really happy.)

Bottom line: I was able to save a ton of money (a thousand dollars or more!) and get a wedding dress that felt like the dress I should be wearing, because my general distaste for the way we, as a culture, feel about how the bride should look and how much money she should spend to look that way. And I bought it online, David Tutera.

[Photo via]


  1. I'm sure I'm not the only one who is now trying to figure out if there's any way to see said dress by looking at those sites. :) So excited that you found a dress that seems to fit you inside and out AND saved you money; while I loved everything about my wedding, if there's one thing I'd do different it would be try to spend a bit less than we did. LOVE THIS BLOG!

  2. and also, the security code it made me type to publish that comment was seriously "Elfdoodoo", which has me hysterical.

  3. You could find the dress but you'd be guessing. Ross has decided he doesn't want to see it before the big day and so I didn't include a direct link.