I Never Seen A Light Move Like Yours Can Do To Me …

When Eric and I started planning our wedding, there were very few things that I knew right away I wanted.  Two of the things I was most sure about?  The song I would be walking town the aisle to (which I’ll discuss in my next post), and our first dance song (which I’ll be sharing today).

A lot of couples have a song they deem special, known to them as “our song.”  Despite the fact that I’m obsessed with music, Eric and I don’t have a song.  This probably should have made choosing our first dance song difficult, but it really wasn’t.

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The wife of one of our groomsmen took this picture during our first dance, and Eric and I thought it looked really nice.  Guest photo.

The song I immediately thought of for our first dance was “The Luckiest” by Ben Folds.  The first time I heard this song, I was in college.  I remember listening to it, really listening to the lyrics and thinking, “I want a love like this.”

“The Luckiest” is, in my opinion, the perfect love song.  The music is lovely (practically made for dancing!), and the lyrics are incredibly sweet and romantic without being cheesy.  The last verse is actually pretty sad, but it’s also romantic in that “love that will never die” kind of way.  (If you’re not familiar with the song, that verse basically tells the story of an older couple in their 90s.  The man dies, and his wife dies only a couple of days later of a broken heart.  As I said, it’s sad … But that’s honestly the kind of “depths of my soul” kind of love I always wanted.  And now I feel so lucky because I’ve found it.)

I like a lot of songs by Ben Folds, but “The Luckiest” is by far my favorite.  And now it will forever be one of my favorite songs because it will always remind me of my wedding day and how happy I was in that moment, dancing with my new husband.

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This was my favorite picture from our wedding.  I think part of it is because it captured such an intimate moment so beautifully.  Personal photo taken by Kelsey at Memrical.

The Reasons All Have Run Away, But The Feeling Never Did …

I’m going to take a break from recapping the wedding planning process today to share what many brides might consider a “rite of passage”: The Post Wedding Chop.

While planning a wedding, one thing you obviously need to figure out is how you’d like to wear your hair.  (I wrote about my wedding day hair inspiration here: Watch Out When You’re Faced By What You Don’t Know and about my hair/makeup trial here: Sandpaper Tears Corrode The Film.)

As you can see, I was pretty set on an updo.  The thing about updos, though, is that your hair has to be long enough to actually go up and stay up.  Sure, I could have gotten extensions … But that’s not really my thing.

So I grew my hair out.  It wasn’t crazy long or anything (I’ve definitely had longer hair in the past!), but I kept the layers to a minimum and requested that my regular hair stylist only trim up the split ends and shape up the long layers each time I visited.  I also kept my hair color the same.  I’ve been dying my hair black since the second semester of my senior year of college (so it’s been black for 8 years now!), and I didn’t think my wedding (or any time immediately before) was the time to try something new.

But … I’ve been getting bored with my hair.  Every time I go to the salon, I think, “Okay, this will be the time I try something new.”  And then I chicken out at the last second.  It never fails.

Here is one of the most recent pictures I’ve taken.  Yes, it’s a selfie.  I sent it to Eric while he was at work before I went out to dinner with my friend, Elaine.  I rarely wear makeup, so it was a rare moment of looking “nice.”

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It’s not the greatest picture, but you can see my “usual” hair pretty well.  Personal photo.

I think part of the problem was the fact that I hadn’t really spent much time looking for inspiration photos.  Without visuals, it’s kind of hard to describe exactly what you like and don’t like to your stylist.  If I wanted to make sure I got the look I wanted, I needed to do my research.

As I often do when I need beauty inspiration, I combed through the zillions of pictures on Pinterest.  I’m kind of ashamed to admit this, but I literally spent about an hour and a half searching for the type of haircut and color I was picturing.  (And trust me, when you have something specific in mind, it’s nearly impossible to find exactly what you’re looking for!)

In the simplest terms, I was looking for the following:

  • Choppy layers
  • Face framing layers to elongate/slim my round face
  • Shoulder length or a little longer
  • A cut that would look great with side-swept bangs
  • Dark hair with highlights
  • Highlights in red or auburn (possibly caramel, though I was more interested in a shade of red)
  • Different ways to highlight hair

I got a lot of ideas, and started a new inspiration board.  I had a hair appointment today, so I knew if I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone and try something new, I needed to get all of my inspiration pictures in one easy to access location.  Otherwise, I’d never bring it up to my hair stylist and I’d come home with pretty (but boring) hair.

So … A little over 4 months after the wedding, I took the plunge.  I figured I may as well try something new and fun now.  There’s really no reason not to.  And … It’s hair.  It grows back.  The color can be changed.  Nothing is permanent.  (Or so I had to convince myself all the way to the salon.)

The result?

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Unfortunately, the natural light was long gone by the time I made it home, and when I tried to take a picture that would show the highlights in the light, my face was instantly washed out.  I wanted to take a picture to share it anyway, though, because this is (kind of sadly) a big moment for me.  This is quite literally the first time I’ve made any sort of major change to my hair since I had layers and bangs cut in back in 2007!  Personal photo.

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Here’s a picture of me in different lighting so you can see just how subtle the highlights actually are.  I know I look weird and serious (and I’m not wearing makeup, so please don’t judge!), but I was concentrating on finding the right angle so it looked completely black.  Personal photo.

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And finally, a picture of the actual highlights.  As I said, I wish I could have gotten a good natural light picture … But this will have to do for now.  (I may update this at another time with a picture of it in natural light so you can actually see what it looks like in real life.)  This is just one side after I lifted up the top layers of my hair.

I’m really pleased with the way it turned out.  The change is subtle, but it’s definitely different.  I had 4 inches taken off, new (choppier!) layers cut in, and, of course, the addition of red peekaboo highlights around the front.  I’m going to see how I like this over time, but I may continue tweaking with each appointment until my look is changed a little more drastically.

I Can’t Remember All The Times I Tried To Tell Myself To Hold On To These Moments As They Pass

I was trying to think about what might make sense as a follow-up to my four part wedding day look series, and I realized I hadn’t discussed what anyone else was wearing that day.  So today’s post is all about the rest of the wedding party and their attire.

Eric chose to wear the same tux that his groomsmen and my Man of Honor wore.  I know that some grooms opt for something a little different to stand out, but Kevin (my Man of Honor) was actually the only one to wear something a little different.  He wore a boutonniere, while the other guys simply wore a pocket square.  (Hey, he had to get some flowers somehow!)

When we initially chose our color scheme, Eric and I decided that the tuxes should probably be grey.  There were surprisingly not a ton of options for grey tuxedos, but Eric settled on the Legend Grey Tuxedo by Calvin Klein.  And I loved it!

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Image courtesy of www.my-tuxedo.com.

As for the girls, I initially just wanted them to pick out something they liked.  After talking with them, though, it seemed like they preferred that I at least give them some ideas.  So I searched.  And searched.  And searched.  I stressed more about the bridesmaid dresses than I did about my own because I couldn’t find anything I liked that I thought they’d like/be comfortable in.

Eventually I found a few dresses and sent them the pictures.  Surprisingly, they both liked the same one.  I then asked if they preferred grey or a blue/green color and sent them pictures of the swatches I’d gotten in the mail.  (Side note: Wedding planning can be kind of tough when all of your bridesmaids live far away.)  And they both liked the same color as well.  So really, my bridesmaids made the dress decision really easy.

Here’s what they ended up choosing:

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This is the Wtoo 788 in Mediterranean.  Image courtesy of www.watters.com.

And finally, a picture of the whole group together.  This is one of my favorite pictures from the day!

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I’m not really sure why (yet again!) the wedding picture is so small.  I tried resizing, but nothing seemed to work.  Hopefully you can at least get the general idea.  Personal photo taken by Kelsey at Memrical. 

Sandpaper Tears Corrode The Film

This is the final week of my four part wedding day look series.  If you missed any of the previous posts in the series and want to check them out, you can find them here:

And today I’ll be sharing pictures from my hair and makeup trial.

I know plenty of people who didn’t bother with a hair and/or makeup trial prior to their wedding day.  And while it would have definitely saved me some money, I thought it was totally worth it.  For me, it was about peace of mind … I didn’t want to go into the salon the morning of my wedding without knowing what to expect.  I was already anxious enough … I didn’t want to have to worry about what my hair and makeup would end up looking like on top of everything else!

With regard to makeup, I decided I really wanted the following:

  • False eyelashes
  • Smoky eyes
  • Barely there lip color
  • Natural looking makeup with just a bit of drama in the eyes

This is what I ended up with:

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Please ignore the mess in the background.  Cleaning wasn’t exactly high on our list of priorities in the weeks leading up to the wedding.  Personal photo.

I feel a little awkward posting a picture like this of my face, but it’s the best one I took after coming home from the salon.  I loved the false eyelashes so much that I really want to try putting them on again sometime in the future, maybe for a nice dinner out or other special occasion.  I’m a little intimidated by the idea of putting them on myself, though!  Overall, I thought the makeup artist really understood what I wanted and I was pleased with the result.

I shared my Sara Gabriel hair wrap in my accessories post.  I originally thought I’d end up with it wrapped around my head in a way similar to a headband, but when I showed it to my hair stylist (along with several pictures from Pinterest that I liked), she had a more interesting idea.

With regard to hair, I decided I really wanted the following:

  • Soft, romantic updo
  • Loose curls
  • Some texture (possibly in the form of braids, though I knew they might not show up really well in my black hair)

I don’t usually like the way I look with my hair up, so it was kind of odd that I decided on an updo for my wedding day.  The thing was, I didn’t want my hair to start looking really rough by the end of the night (which would be very possible since the ceremony was outdoors and Nebraska is fucking windy).  That doesn’t happen to every bride who wears her hair down, of course, but I’ve seen and read enough to know that a fairly large percentage of brides who wore their hair down for their wedding later regretted it because it didn’t look that great as the night wore on.  Additionally, I knew I wanted to dance and have fun during the reception and didn’t want my hair in my face.

I tried to get some pictures at different angles because I wanted to send them to my mom to see what she thought, but I also knew I’d be eventually posting them to this blog.  I still feel kind of weird about sharing these pictures because, well, who (besides teenage girls) takes a million selfies to share on the internet?  But this was a huge part of the wedding planning process … So I should probably share it.

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Personal photo.

The lighting in that picture wasn’t amazing, but it’s the only decent shot I managed to get from the front.  On the actual day of the wedding, the stylist added quite a bit of volume (which I hated at first, but I’ll go into more detail on that in another post!).

And now for my favorite part … The back!

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Personal photo.

Eric actually took the pictures of the side and back for me.  I didn’t really want him to see it beforehand, but since we lived together way before we were even engaged, that was pretty much impossible.  I figured I’d probably look a little different on the actual day of the wedding anyway (and I did!), and I managed to keep the dress a secret (even though it was hanging in our guest closet once alterations were complete).

And the side:

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Personal photo.

You can kind of see the braids in this picture, but, as I said earlier, they didn’t show up that well since my hair is so dark.  On the day of the wedding I thought they were maybe even a little less obvious.  I got a lot of compliments on my hair, though, so it ended up looking good regardless of whether or not the braids were really noticeable.

My actual wedding day hair wasn’t quite as loose as it was in the trial.  I was pretty bummed when it didn’t look exactly like the trial (though I guess I should have expected that it would never look exactly the same), but I think it was probably for the best.  My hair stayed put all night (minus a couple of strands here or there), and I think if it had been as loose as it was after the trial, it would have maybe lasted through the ceremony.  I guess that’s the trade-off.

I’ll discuss the getting ready process (and the final hair and makeup looks) a bit more when I get into the wedding day recaps, but there are still a few more things I want to cover before then.  If anyone is reading this, hopefully you enjoyed the four part wedding day look series!

Watch Out When You’re Faced By What You Don’t Know

This week I’ll be writing the third of four posts in a series covering my wedding day look.

I’ve already written about choosing my wedding dress and my accessories.  Today I’ll be discussing the inspiration behind my hair and makeup choices.

I had a lot of trouble making a decision about how I wanted my hair and makeup done on my wedding day.  I had a few ideas about what I might like, but it was only after I combed through Pinterest that I was able to start putting the pieces together.

The problem, though, is that Pinterest is ridiculously addictive.  It’s also kind of dangerous when you’re wedding planning.  Why is it dangerous, you ask?  Because any search you begin will inevitably lead to about a million results.  That definitely makes narrowing down what you actually want much more difficult.

After looking at what felt like thousands of images, I finally found several hairstyles and a few ideas for makeup that I really liked.  I knew that my hair and makeup would never be completely identical to these pictures, but they provided me with some visuals for my hair stylist and makeup artist.  And if you’re currently planning your own wedding, I’ll tell you that this is so important.  Otherwise they’ll have no idea what your vision actually is.

So, without further ado, here are my hair and makeup inspiration photos:

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As you can see from these pictures, I was very drawn to soft, romantic updos with loose curls and braids and/or twists.

Although I don’t always like having my hair up, I thought it would probably be best for my wedding since I planned to dance and have a lot of fun.  I was worried that if I wore my hair down, the curls would drop out if I got too hot.  I did, however, still pin a couple of potential hairstyles that didn’t involve an updo:

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As for makeup, I decided I wanted a romantic, fairly natural look with smoky eyes and false eyelashes (since mine kind of suck).  Here are the looks I loved when I was searching through Pinterest:

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Next week I’ll share my hair and makeup trial photos so you can see how all of this came together!

‘Cause You Don’t Mind Seeing Yourself In A Picture As Long As You Look Far Away

I mentioned in my last Wedding Wednesday post that I’d be writing a series of four posts covering my wedding day look decisions.  (If you want to read that post, it can be found here: But Something Told Her That He Spoke Of So Much More Than All Of This.)

For my second post in this series, I’ll be focusing on my accessories.

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I kept it pretty simple with just three main accessories.  Personal photo.

I was worried I’d have a really difficult time choosing accessories to compliment my gown that brought together the overall look I was going for, but I really didn’t.  I think it helped that I tried the belt I ended up choosing with several wedding dresses.  This was actually the bridal shop owner’s pick (she was my bridal consultant as well) after I described my love for texture and florals when it came to wedding dresses.

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A closer look at my belt.  Personal photo.

This is the Watters Lucille belt.  While it was an expensive choice, it was also the only belt I tried on or even saw (in person and online) that I thought was really me.  As I mentioned in my last post, I had some very specific ideas regarding what I did and didn’t like when it came to wedding dresses, but I didn’t have a specific vision of the whole look until I put this belt on.

Now I know this will sound ridiculous, but after seeing myself in the dress I chose with this belt, I suddenly pictured running through an enchanted forest.  (See?  Totally ridiculous.)  But that became my vision for the wedding.  And when I discussed the way I felt with Eric, he was surprisingly on board with the whole thing.  I mean, I didn’t want some over the top themed wedding with tons of fairies and unicorns and whatever else you might think of when you think “enchanted forest.”  I just wanted a more natural look that incorporated whimsy and romance.

My hair accessory was also a surprisingly easy choice.

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A closer look at my hair wrap.  Personal photo.

This is the Sara Gabriel Amber hair wrap.  I loved it from the moment the bridal consultant placed it in my hair.  It matched the belt surprisingly well and it sparkled beautifully in my dark hair.  (After my hair and makeup trial, Eric had to help me get it out of my hair.  He then told me it looked like “a bunch of little lights” in my hair and he thought that was really cool.)

I ordered the hair wrap on the same day I placed the order for my wedding dress and belt.  I was a little apprehensive about this particular accessory, though, just because I hadn’t really decided how I’d be wearing my hair.  I had pinned a few of my favorite looks on my wedding inspiration board on Pinterest, but no decisions had been made.  After all, I ordered this stuff in January … The wedding was still 10 months away.  The one thing that made me a little more confident in my decision was the fact that the wrap was pretty versatile.  If I’d chosen a headband, for example, I could really only wear it one way (or maybe two, if my hair stylist was particularly creative) … And that would of course limit the ways in which my hair could be styled.

I knew from the beginning that I didn’t want a veil.  I think veils are absolutely stunning on so many brides, and I’ll admit that even now I look at other wedding pictures and think, “Maybe I should have just sucked it up and gotten a veil.”  I’ll write a more in-depth post about some of the traditions Eric and I chose to leave out of our wedding and why, but, for most brides, the veil is an important accessory … So I thought I should at least mention it here.

There wasn’t really a specific reason that I didn’t want a veil … It’s just that I honestly didn’t picture myself wearing one.  After Eric proposed, I spent some time searching through wedding stuff online to get some ideas and inspiration.  I then tried to spend some time just closing my eyes and imagining what I’d want things to be like on that day.  And let me tell you … Not once did I imagine myself wearing a veil of any kind.

So I wrote off the veil as something that wasn’t my taste and moved on.  I can honestly say that I didn’t even try on a veil at any of the bridal boutiques I visited.  As far as I can remember, no one pushed me to do so.  I simply had to say that I wasn’t interested in wearing a veil and that I preferred a headband or hair wrap, and that was the end of that.

The only other accessory then (I don’t really consider shoes an accessory, though if you do, feel free to read my post on that here: I’m So Empty Here Without You) was the jewelry.

Oh, the jewelry.  This was actually the most difficult accessory for me to decide on.  When I initially ordered my dress, belt, and hair wrap, I also tried on some of the jewelry available for order in the bridal boutique.  I tried on several pieces I liked from Sara Gabriel and Haute Bride, but nothing really screamed “BUY ME!” so I decided to wait.

And then suddenly it was a few weeks before the wedding.  And I was starting to freak out because I didn’t have any jewelry to wear.  I went through a phase of “I-don’t-need-any-jewelry-because-my-dress-and-other-accessories-are-amazing,” but it was short-lived.

I like jewelry.  I don’t wear it often because it’s impractical to do so at my workplace, but I do like it.  If I’m going somewhere (even just to a friend’s house), I’ll typically at least wear a pair of earrings and my engagement and wedding rings.  I don’t have a ton of jewelry (mostly because I can’t wear it every day), but I do have several pairs of earrings, several necklaces, and a nice watch to play around with.  So I knew I needed something on my wedding day.

From the beginning, I was pretty sure I only wanted a pair of earrings for the wedding.  If I could change anything about my wedding day look, though, I probably would have worn a pretty necklace as well.  I thought the dress and other accessories were enough, but I think a necklace would have given more of a “wow” factor.  But … Too late now.

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A closer look at my earrings.  Personal photo.

Anyway, since I waited such a long time to decide on my jewelry, my options were a little more limited.  I couldn’t order from certain places because it wouldn’t arrive in time.  So, of course, I freaked out some more.

And then I remembered good old Swarovski.  I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of looking at their website before, but better late than never.  I actually found several pairs of earrings I really liked, so I saved the pictures and sent them to my mom for a second opinion.  She told me she liked one specific pair the most, and they happened to be one of my top two favorites.  So I ordered them.

The thing I liked most about the earrings was that they were simple.  They were large enough to be noticeable in photos, but not so large that they’d distract from the other aspects of my wedding day look.  They were dangly (a must for me), and they weren’t overly bridal.  That was important to me because I wanted to be able to wear them again (I actually wore them to dinner on New Year’s Eve).  I mean, I’ll never be able to wear my other wedding stuff again (with the exception of the shoes), so it’s nice to have at least one accessory to wear in the future that will always remind me of that day.

But Something Told Her That He Spoke Of So Much More Than All Of This

When Eric and I were planning our wedding, I stressed about a lot of things.  One of the things I stressed about most was my wedding day look.

I think that most brides get a little anxious about how they’ll look on their wedding day.  For the average woman, her wedding day is the one day in which she’ll have the undivided attention of a bunch of people.  It’s also the one day she’ll probably want to remember for the rest of her life.  And hiring a professional photographer pretty much guarantees she’ll want to look and feel more beautiful than she ever has in her entire life.

Since this is such an important part of the wedding planning process, I’ll be devoting the next four Wedding Wednesday posts to the various decisions I made regarding my wedding day look.

I’ve decided to start this series of posts with a more detailed dress post.  Although I’ve previously written about my dress shopping experience, I didn’t give a ton of details.  This was mostly due to the fact that I didn’t want Eric to get a sneak peek of my dress.  (He does read this blog, after all!)  But now that the wedding is over, I’m ready to share more.

I had some pretty specific ideas about what I wanted in a wedding dress.  On my “must have” list:

  • Flowy/romantic
  • At least some lace (though I was pretty picky about the style and type of lace)
  • Unique details
  • Texture
  • Ivory or slightly darker (as long as it looked decent against my skin tone)
  • Strapless (though I would also have considered a one shoulder gown if they looked better on my body)

I also had some pretty specific ideas about what I didn’t want.  Some of the things that would get an automatic veto:

  • Stark white
  • Shiny material (such as satin, taffeta, and possibly other materials I can’t think of right now)
  • Pick-ups
  • Overly blingy, over-the-top dresses

I tried to keep an open mind when trying on dresses, but I was very upfront with the consultants at each bridal shop regarding what I liked and didn’t like.  I actually did try on a few dresses featuring elements I typically disliked, but I generally tried to stick with gowns that had all (or most) of the “must have” qualities.

My mom took a lot of pictures during the dress buying process.  I was definitely grateful that the bridal shops I visited allowed photos because these pictures ultimately helped me make my final decision.  Trying on a bunch of gorgeous dresses was very overwhelming for me, so it was nice to have the pictures to look at later when I actually had time to really think about all of my options.

I won’t post all of the pictures here because, to be quite honest, some looked completely hideous.  Like I would be embarrassed for someone to stumble upon images of me wearing these gowns (even though my head was cut out of most of the pictures my mom took).  Others were just blah and not really worthy of being noted here.  Not to mention the fact that I tried on something like 28 dresses at 4 bridal shops.  That’s just too many dresses to post here!

I will, however, post a few of the dresses that I really liked.  These are in no particular order, though I will save my top three (including my final pick!) for last.

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Image courtesy of http://www.allurebridals.com.

That’s obviously not a picture of me in the dress, but I think it’s kind of helpful to show a stock photo as well, especially in this case.  The sample I tried on was kind of ragged (the bottom no longer draped correctly and the gown was so stretched out that they had to shove a couple of pillows into the back to hold it on), so I don’t think you can get the full picture from my personal photos.

I tried on the dress in the champagne/silver color option, and I really loved it.  It was surprisingly flattering against my skin tone (I’m pretty pale, though I don’t really look that pale in these pictures for whatever reason), and it made my body look pretty good.  It’s a blingy dress, but not over-the-top.  The skirt was draped in such a way that it looked a bit like it had pick-ups (which, as I mentioned, I really do not like), but it fell in a way that didn’t make me hate it.  And while it didn’t have any lace, it had everything else I was looking for.

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See what I mean about the ragged sample?  Personal photo.

I decided not to choose this dress for a couple of reasons.  First, I wasn’t completely sold on wearing a big ball gown.  I wore a big ball gown for my senior prom in high school, and, to be honest, this dress reminded me quite a bit of that dress.  They were in no way identical, but they were similar enough that I didn’t think it would be the right choice for my wedding day.  The other deciding factor?  I felt like my chest was on display.  I know that the sample wasn’t fitted to my body, but it still gave me an idea of what it might look like … And I really didn’t want the focus of the day to be my boobs.  So I had to say no to this one.

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You can see the beading a little better in this picture.  You can also see the lumps created by the pillows they had to shove down my back.  Personal photo.

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Marisa wedding gowns are notoriously difficult to locate images of online (so there are no stock photos for this one).  They don’t spend much money on advertising, so there are very few pictures of models wearing their dresses (or so I’ve read).  I’m pretty sure this is the correct name of the dress, though, since my mom wrote everything down for me and gave me her notes after each appointment.

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The sash was sold separately, but I don’t have any pictures of me in the dress without the sash.  I also realize that readers of this blog probably know what I look like since I’ve previously posted pictures of my face, but I really didn’t want my face to pop up in a Google image search of this dress style … So I blacked it out.  Personal photo.

This dress made me feel incredibly chic and sophisticated.  It gives the illusion of being taller (something I really appreciated since I’m only 5’1″), and is also very slimming.  It was, without a doubt, a gorgeous dress.  Sometimes I still look at the pictures of myself in it and think that it would have been a great choice.  But it wasn’t “the one.”  It didn’t have a lot of the elements I wanted in a wedding dress, and it also didn’t make me feel amazing.  It made me feel pretty, but it didn’t wow me the way other dresses had.

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The back of this dress was gorgeous (as long as you can pretend those red clamps aren’t there, of course).  Personal photo.

Watters Malibu

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Image courtesy of http://www.watters.com.

I thought this dress was stunning.  It met most of my requirements, and though the sample was a bit snug (I hadn’t dropped much weight at the time I went dress shopping), I loved the way it fell on my body.

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Again, I blacked out my face to avoid having it plastered across Google image search.  Personal photo.

My main issue with this dress was that it seemed to be made with a spring/summer wedding in mind.  I mean, just look at the stock photo from the Watters website!  It’s a beautiful dress, but it just seemed so wrong for a November wedding.  It would have definitely made the top three if I had gotten married in the spring or summer, though.

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This really was a stunning dress.  Personal photo.

La Sposa Maya

LaSposa_MAYA_1

Image courtesy of http://www.lasposa.info.

This was one of two lace gowns I really loved.  The scalloped neckline and subtle vertically striped underlay were nice unique details I really liked.  And the train on this dress was beyond gorgeous.

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I don’t think this sash came with the dress (if I remember correctly), but I didn’t have any pictures of myself in the dress without it.  Personal photo.

Unfortunately, the dress just didn’t really feel right.  It was dramatic and classic and bridal and beautiful … But when I closed my eyes to picture my wedding day, I didn’t really see myself wearing anything like this.  It was hard to say no to this one because it was so pretty.  But, again, it wasn’t “the one.”

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See?  The back of this gown is just breathtaking!  Personal photo.

Pronovias Dagen

DAGEN_A

Image courtesy of http://www.pronovias.ca.

When I first got engaged, I started looking at a lot of wedding dresses online.  I wanted to get an idea of the things I liked and didn’t like, and I wanted to know what was out there.  I spent a lot of time looking at pictures of dresses, but I think I spent the majority of my time on the Pronovias website.

I was in love with so many Pronovias dresses that it was kind of ridiculous.  I went into dress shopping with the idea that I’d probably end up purchasing a Pronovias gown.

And I almost did.

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Again, I don’t remember if the sash came with the dress or not, but I don’t have any pictures of me without it.  This picture is unfortunately a little out of focus, but you can at least get a general idea of what the slightly too snug sample looked like on my body.  Personal photo.

This dress was a dream.  It made me feel like I was floating on clouds with the romantic, flowy skirt.  The lace was beautiful, and the train was gorgeous without being as dramatic as the La Sposa Maya.  If the dress had been altered to fit my body, it would have been a great choice.

But something just didn’t feel right.  I thought a lot about the dress, looking at the pictures of myself in it over and over again.  I worried that maybe I was too attached to the idea of wearing a Pronovias wedding dress that I was focusing more on the designer than the dress itself.  I didn’t get any excited feelings when I had the dress on.  It was just a pretty dress.  Beyond that, I felt like it was just a “typical” wedding dress.  It was beautiful, sure … But it looked like pretty much every other lace gown out there.  It wasn’t special enough for me.

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This dress is obviously gorgeous … But it just wasn’t for me.  Personal photo.

And finally, my dress.

Watters Odette

1000w

Image courtesy of http://www.watters.com.

I think I mentioned this in my previous post about dress shopping, but I’ll mention it again.  I tried this dress on at the second bridal shop I visited.  It was a dress I had pinned on a “secret board” on Pinterest, and I was so excited that I would actually get to try it on.  When I first pointed it out to my mom in the bridal shop, she wasn’t very enthused.  She said it was a nice dress, but it wasn’t as pretty as some of the others that were hanging nearby.

I was determined to try it on, though.  And I’m so glad I did.

Back Camera

Again, I’ve blacked out my face due to the dreaded Google image search.  I have the same sash on that I was wearing with the Marisa dress as well (a sash I will be writing more about in a future Wedding Wednesday post).  Personal photo.

I loved that this dress incorporated everything I wanted in a wedding dress: it was romantic and flowy, had some lace detailing, had some beading (but no over-the-top bling), and had some nice texture with the sash I added.  It was also a darker ivory, strapless, and had a very unique skirt.  It was perfect.

I didn’t want to take this dress off.  I cried when I saw myself in the dress at my first appointment, and even cried again when I made a second “just to be sure” appointment.  Even though I struggled with the final decision, I knew for sure after the second appointment that it was the right dress.  I felt so beautiful.  And coming from someone who never feels beautiful, that’s saying a lot!

Back Camera

The sample didn’t fit that well, but I wanted to show off how gorgeous it was in the back.  Personal photo.

I never regretted my decision.  Yes, I still see wedding dresses that I think are gorgeous.  Yes, I still sometimes look at pictures of myself in the other wedding dresses and think, “What if I’d chosen that one?”  But you know what?  I’m glad I didn’t choose anything else.  I got so many compliments on my dress on the wedding day.  Everyone told me how unique and beautiful it was, and how it was very “me.”  And while I wasn’t wearing the dress to receive compliments, it was nice to know that others also thought I made a great decision.

I can’t wait to share more wedding day photos on this blog to show how everything came together!