Tag Archives: bridesmaids

The One Dress to Please Them All

6 Mar

In my last post I was at a loss at what to do. The brick-and-mortar stores and local online stores were selling bridesmaid dresses at insane prices. And the only “legitimate” looking online store with reasonable prices had mixed reviews!

So what did Miss Big do?

Well, after some panicking, I decided to do a late-night Google Search. Mr Big was in Adelaide at the time, so I wasn’t able to sleep. I literally spent 3 hours searching for the “right site”. I searched high and low, and was just about to give up when I stumbled upon a post which directed me to another online store: For Her and For Him. It was 3AM by this point.

Curious, I clicked on the link and was met with stunning dresses. Not only that, but their website looked professional too!

Was I dreaming? Did I fall asleep while Googling? A pinch quickly told me that, nope. It was real. I scoured the website, looking at all the beautiful dresses.

And then I found this dress:

Dress in classic blue

The Multi-Wear Dress in Classic Blue. Taken via For Her and For Him.

Now, they look like standard dresses, yes? Well, they’re a little bit better than that.

Now, I know a lot of you know about the convertible dresses from Dessy, Two Birds Bridesmaids, and a multitude from Etsy sellers, but the problem with those dresses are the amount of ‘flesh’ that’s shown in the back and the price for some of ‘em!

convertible dresses

Beautiful on these girls… but a no-go. / Image via Polka Dot Bride, dresses from Two Birds Bridesmaids.

My girls are all pretty conservative and we’re extremely uncomfortable when the subject of ‘convertible’ dresses was brought up. However, when I showed them the dresses from For Her and For Him, I got a resounding ‘yes’ from all of them.

As an aside, when I asked for Mr Big’s opinion on convertible dresses, he replied: “Is that when the top comes down?” Oh Mr Big. How I love you.

Anyway, during October sales, I managed to get the dresses for $AU140 each, with no extra charge for custom sizes or shipping!

When they came in, I asked for my girls to come around to collect ‘em and they took a group shot:

group photo_trollface

From left to right: BM Proper, BM Superhero, BM Cupcakes, Groom’s Homie Oddball, and MoH M&Ms. And yes – I did put a troll face on Oddball. She insisted on it. / Personal photo.

And on the day, this is what the girls did to their dresses (excluding Oddball, who was attempting to get her contact lenses in somewhere in the villa):

bridesmaids dresses_wedding day

Instagram from BM Superhero.

I was quite happy with how the dresses turned out!

Did anyone else have trouble finding dresses in their budget? Did anyone else’s fiancé (or husband) say something that silly about women’s fashion?

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Dressing the ‘Maids

4 Mar

(Original title is original.)

I know it’s been a while guys! I’ve been trying to get my thesis done for university and at the time of publication I have just received pro-pics! We’re still waiting on some images though, so hang tight.

Now, after reading all the newbee blogger blog posts, I realised something: I never talked to you about the bridesmaids dresses. To be 100% honest, this was the most difficult part of the wedding (that, and groomsmen shirts – detecting a theme here?). My dress – easy. Groom and groomsmen suits – check! But bridesmaids dresses? Gorramn, it was flipping difficult.

After some talks with the girls, we set some criteria:

  • We needed a colour that would suit all the girls and that they would feel comfortable in.
  • We would keep the dresses similar in colour and fabric, but different styles. All the girls have different body types and we all agreed that different styles might better flatter each type instead of sticking to one style.
  • We were keeping all the dresses “knee-length” (as in, either just over, under or on the knee)

And off we went in search of the perfect bridesmaids dress. Cue Indiana Jones music here.

Now, I expect fancy-shmancy dresses to be about the $AU100 to $AU200 range. It’s a given. The materials are supposed to be “luxe”, the design beautiful, and the tailoring at oftentimes difficult. However, the prices on some of the dresses I found would’ve given me a stroke had I had the inclination to have that sort of thing!

I wanted the mismatched look. To me, the mismatched, same-coloured bridesmaid dresses look gorgeous and they’d suit the different sizes of my bridal party. I have short, petite ‘maids; tall, athletically-built ‘maids; and broad-shouldered ‘maids. So I needed to find a happy medium, like this bride did:

grey bridesmaids dresses 2

Love their shoes. Love! / Photography by Jill Thomas Photography via The Brides Café.

Also, I love all their shoes. Love. But I digress.

Unfortunately, when I began to look at actual bridesmaids dresses, they were eeeexpensive. I don’t know about you girls in the Americas (or even the Europe or Asian brides), but in Australia, I’ve heard of bridesmaid dresses costing upwards of $1500.

Fifteen. Hundred. Dollars. That’s a lot of money on one dress. I almost fainted when I heard that!

I was paying for my girls’ dresses, and I don’t have that sort of cash lying around. So when it came time to look for a dress to purchase, I was desperately trying to find a place that sold pretty, well-tailored dresses for a fraction of the price. I tried the brick-and-mortar stores as well as online Australian stores, but the prices were over $AU200 at the very least. At most, I had seen a dress for over $AU500. My budget was under $AU200 for each dress.

After weeks upon weeks of looking for something within my price range, I was close to giving up. And then BM Superhero sent me this:

LITB_chiffon-dress

The “A-Line V-Neck Knee-length Chiffon and Stretch Satin Bridesmaid Dress” from Light in the Box.

Digression: BM Superhero really is a superhero. I think I’ve mentioned that… like, a million times.

Amazed, I quickly sent her back a reply. “Where did you get that,” I asked, “and how much is it?” Her reply was sending me the direct link and when I clicked it, my jaw dropped in astonishment. It was under $US100.

So with that, hive, I turned to the internet.

I know it’s controversial to some, especially as it takes the business away from the bridal stores, but I literally did not have any alternatives. I looked high and low for a dress that fit into my criteria and my budget and it was only through that one simple click of the link that I found it. And so, I looked through Light In the Box.

Admittedly, all the dresses were gorgeous. Here are just some examples:

example_LITB-dresses

Some of the Light in the Box dresses that fit into my criteria: (1), (2), (3), (4).

They were within my price range, gorgeous and came in a variety of colours. I stalked the site for a few months but before I could pull the trigger, I decided to look up reviews. As most of you might already assume or know, they weren’t exactly stellar. It was mixed. Some people received dresses with impeccable tailoring. Others did not.

I was, however, ordering five dresses, and I didn’t want to risk that type of mistake. So I did something which every (ok, not every) bride does in these situations.

I panicked.

Where would I get their dresses from if Light in the Box was a no-go-zone? Should I turn to the other online stores, even though they look significantly dodgier? What was a girl on a budget to do?

Up next, you find out what a panicked Miss Big did. Don’t worry, it’s not that bad!

Who else suffered a metaphorical stroke when you saw the price tags on bridesmaid dresses?

Shooting Each Other… Out of Love!

2 Oct

AUTHOR’S EDIT: If you guys don’t know my process, I write out my post a day or so before I put it up, re-read, edit, re-read, and then re-edit. This ensures that it flows well, it’s not too long (like some of my previous posts have been) and I don’t accidentally say something stupid. Unfortunately, I didn’t do that to this post and I’ve upset some people, so I’m going to make sure I stick with my process. Sorry to all those I’ve upset. I promise it won’t happen again.

Before I get into the fleshy part of this post, I’d first like to say that my bridesmaids have been supportive of me throughout this entire process. I sprung the “be my bridesmaid” thing on them, and luckily for me, they accepted. They’re all going through different stages of their life, including buying houses(!) and navigating through the ick that is breaking into corporate life. They are, honestly, the best girls I could ever ask for, and all of them are awesome in their own right.

Pretty recently I was told by my bridesmaids that they can’t throw me a Hen’s party, but they will be throwing me a Kitchen Tea. Despite the fact that – yeah – I was a little bummed, I totally understand why they can’t. Two of them are trying to or have just purchased a house (one for investment; the other to actually live in), one of them has only recently got a steady job which they are excited for, and another one of them is under the age of 16!

I am excited that they’ll be celebrating with me through a Kitchen Tea. I have the date but I’m not too sure what else is happening apart from tea, cupcakes, sandwiches, and, I think, games! It sounds like its gonna be fun, and I’m just waiting on details now. I appreciate all that these girls are doing for me! And I should really communicate this to them more often.

As an aside, I just found out the Kitchen Tea, Hen’s Night, and Bridal Shower are one-in-the-same, events going from morning-to-night to celebrate the bride’s last hurrah. I didn’t know that! Sounds exciting. 🙂

At the same time, GP isn’t exactly sure he’ll be having a Bucks. One of our friends offered, but they’ve only recently opened up their own store, so his schedule is pretty busy. The other is currently in Barcelona, Spain. And the third recently bought an apartment with his long-time girlfriend. A majority of GP’s groomsmen are in New Zealand (including his Best Man). So to GP, with all the busy that’s happening, and the distance from the majority of his side of the bridal party, that meant foregoing his Bucks.

To be completely honest, though I’m a little bummed that I won’t be getting a Hens, I’m okay to forego it. My bridesmaids will be planning something epic. I just feel bad ’cause GP – as far as we can tell – won’t be getting a Bucks.

And then last Sunday we went paintballing.

Now for those who haven’t gone paintballing, it’s – for lack of better word – awesome-as-nuts. It’s adrenaline-packed, gun-toting, Roadie-running fun!! After going through a few matches, shooting each other, and just having overall fun, GP and I decided that we really wanted to do this as a pre-wedding thing! And what better than a combined Bucks and Hens! In this way, we’d get the numbers from the combined group rather than a single Bucks party having to share it with a group of teenagers they don’t know (trust me – it’s not that fun…).

The only problem is we gotta figure out who would be willing to come, where to go, and whether or not we can have a ‘private’ paintballing party! I also want to include my little sister, Groom’s Homie Oddball, into the mix, but being 15, she’s just shy of the 16 age minimum.

What does everyone else think? Who would be willing to go on a combined Hens/Bucks and shoot each other with paintballs? 😀

Bouquets, Brollies, and Boutonnieres – Oh My!

25 Sep

I mentioned in a previous post that my bridesmaids won’t be holding bouquets as they walk down the aisle and the groomsmen (and groom) won’t be having boutonnieres. This is because the weather may be what one would call stinking and stupidly hot. For the bridal party, who will be in suits, dresses, heels, and walking, standing, posing and smiling all day, the heat could be potentially horrendous. To add to this, half the bridal party are from the much cooler climes of New Zealand, specifically Christchurch (with one from Auckland).

And so, with that said, we’ve decided that the groom and groomsmen won’t be getting boutonnieres as they’ll, likely, not be wearing their suit jackets for most of the day. In lieu of a lack of boutonnieres, the groom and groomsmen will have custom-made shirts that’ll differentiate them from each other!

As for my girls, they’ll be given parasols to shade them from the heat. This way it’ll act as a twofold item – as an alternative to the bouquet to carry down the aisle, and as a way to shade them from the heat when we’re out and about taking photos and being generally bridal-party-like.

For those who aren’t convinced that parasols for bridesmaids are an awesome idea, look at this!

bridesmaids_parasols

Bridesmaids carrying parasols, so dainty! / Image via Martha Stewart Weddings.

blue_parasols

Parasols and blue dresses! / Image via Pinterest, photography by True Photography.

We’ll be purchasing the shirts for the guys from this website as documented in this post. And the girls will be getting their parasols from Chinatown Online, an Australian website which sells relatively inexpensive parasols (as compared to the other websites).

So what do you guys think? Was it a good decision on our part to skip the boutonnieres for the guys and bouquets for the girls?

Dressing the parteh people!

17 Jun

Good afternooooooooooooooooon people!

I woke up at 5AM this morning to go to the gym and I. am. exhausted. Realistically, I should’ve had a power nap this afternoon, but got caught up playing Dragon Age: Origins. Now that my exam is done and all my assignments have been handed in, I should be focusing on my thesis work, but no.

I’m playing Xbox games.

Tomorrow I’ll have to buckle down and get to writing my Introduction and Lit Review as well as finally getting an ENTIRE month to code those gorramn interviews.

As for wedding news, we’ve got (most) of the guest list sorted, which is GREAT. We sent out our invitations early, purely because we have guests who may be coming from overseas (Canada, the UK, Indonesia, and NZ). It’s still 7 months until the wedding, but that’s ok! GP and I were happy that our invitations were out of the way and we don’t need to worry about them! I’ll have to have a full-fledged “making of” the invitations later on, but right now, this post will talk about wedding clothing.

We have succeeded in getting most of the clothes for the important members of the bridal party!

  • Bride – Check! (deposit paid, getting fitted tomorrow, feeling fabulous!)
  • Groom – Check! (and looking so. very. suave in his suit, may I add)
  • Groomsmen – Check! (and we’ll [hopefully] be seeing them in these suits later on in July!)
  • Bridesmaids – Almost… (got to get one more set of measurements and then we can buy ’em)
  • Mother-of-the-bride – Check! (my ma is altering her own dress and it’s looking really good – now all we need to do is buy her that necklace and we’re done!)
  • Mother-of-the-groom – Not yet, I think (I haven’t asked her about her search in a while, but seeing as we’ll be in NZ in July, I’m hoping we can find something together 🙂 )
  • Father-of-the-bride – Check! (we got one for my pa when we were getting groom and groomsmen suits – his suit is a more dark slate grey and looks dashing on my daddy)
  • Father-of-the-groom – Check! (I haven’t seen him in his suit personally, but as I said – NZ in July, hopefully he can put the suit on for us to have a look!)

We just need to get a few more things to complete the ensembles (double-cuff/French-cuff shirts for the men, the necklace for my ma, accessories and shoes for the girls) and then we’re set. I’m super excited to know we finally have a look for these very important people! 🙂

PARASOLS!

13 Feb

My title is so original.

So I was surfing the interwebs yesterday and found two websites that sell REALLY PRETTY PARASOLS. They are:

http://www.abitshady.com.au

and

http://www.parasolswithlove.com.au

They both sell BEAUTIFUL parasols – lace, rainproof, and oriental (paper). I’ve been thinking of giving my bridesmaids parasols in lieu of flowers on the day because they’d make awesome photos. But I never really thought to get a parasol myself. I’m thinking about it now, and a parasol would look stunning in photos, especially of the lace or Monk variety.

Like this for example! (Image (c) A Bit Shady)

Like this for example! (Image (c) A Bit Shady)

Now I have to draw up comparisons charts so I can either, a) convince myself that buying a parasol is TOTALLY WORTH IT, or b) get blown away by the extra moola and say HELL TO THE NAH to a parasol for myself.

Decisions.

I hate decisions.

Shopping with the Girls, Part 2: Would you rather be ignored, or noticed in a very bad way?

27 Nov

Again I say to Mr Big, I love you but,

you shall not pass

Image via AllPosters.com.

Last we left off; we had all clambered into our cars and driven to another bridal store, Sweethearts Bridal Boutique.

When we rocked up into Sweethearts Bridal Boutique, I’d like to tell you we got smothered with attention but we weren’t. The attendants were too busy with another bridal party who were more, how do you say, looking for a purchase.

So when I was able to get some attention, I went to the counter, forked over $AU40 (to ‘try on dresses’), and then went to try on dresses. Their bridesmaids’ selections weren’t really that great, and my only reason for going there was to try on “Katie”, since my bridesmaids wanted to see me in it.

Unfortunately, Sweethearts didn’t have “Katie”, but they did have “Mollie” (or Molly).

Mollie_brides desire

“Mollie” (or “Molly”), by Bride’s Desire, Wendy Sullivan.

Mollie, however, was a size 8 or 10. I can’t remember. All I know is that it didn’t fit me. So they put me in another dress and then lay it over me and told me to pretend I was wearing it. It looked great on me… except that it wasn’t really on me.

Unfortunately, Mollie was a lot of moola and I didn’t want to spend too much on her. Plus, MoH M&Ms and Groom’s Homie Oddball were like this:

IMG_0999

ZZZZZZZ…

So after we shook them awake, we departed.

Now before I continue, I’d like to get this out in the air. As a warning to readers out there, I had a very bad experience at a local bridal store. I name it in this post, because I don’t think I should ignore the fact that the ladies in this shop were extraordinarily rude to me. I was met with constant audible sighs, rolling of eyes, derogatory remarks, and disparaging comments. I had never felt uglier in.my.life until I had gone into that store.

I should also mention that this shop went into liquidation October of this year. So I should also be glad that I had a bad experience here, or else I’d be part of the 70 or so brides who went through hell trying to get the dresses they were promised with some even failing! Luckily, Australian designer, Henry Roth, offered to give brides dresses below cost price. So with that said, our next and final stop was at another local bridal shop, “Bridal Vision”.

I explained to my girls that right underneath was a great place for bridesmaids, and that was where I wanted to go. Friend N pointed out that we may as well go to the bridal store too.

We visited Bridal Vision too, but after being met with extremely rude customer service (including being talked down at and constant rolling of eyes), I bid them adieu and literally dragged my girls away and to the formalwear shop below. I was shaking by the time we were in Classics, but hid it from the others. I didn’t want to ruin the day by having a gorramn breakdown!

And so, off we went to Classics Formal Wear. They have a huge selection of gowns, and I was able to see all of the girls in different styles and colours. By this point, however, we had already settled on blue, but it didn’t hurt to look!

I cheered up as I saw my girls looking at the racks-upon-racks of gorgeous dresses. The customer service here was so much more attentive and friendlier.

Again, I’m a terrible blogger and didn’t get any pictures. Plus, it was getting late, and I was still shaken up by Bridal Vision, blugh! We ended the day, however, with a cup of coffee as we sat in the food court of a local shopping centre. Apart from the debacle in Bridal Vision and the lack of attention at Sweethearts, it was a pretty good day and I got to spend it in the company of very good friends.

Did anyone else experience horrible customer service from bridal shops? Who else has crammed a dress-shopping spree in one day?