It felt sort of sad when Season 11 of The Big Bang Theory ended. While it did end on a high note with Amy and Sheldon finally tying the knot, it was distressful to think that we’d have to wait for months before Season 12 airs.
The wedding dress elicited a lot of laughs. As it was meant to. It’s not the most flattering dress by “normal” standards but Amy is not exactly normal — if, by “normal”, we mean average and a conformist. Amy is super smart — a nerd whose sense of fashion escapes definition and categorization. And it was the smartest decision on her part to wear a dress that she liked rather than choose what her girl friends, Penny and Bernadette, preferred.
It showed strength of character too to defy everyone else’s opinions and do exactly as she pleased. Who the hell cared if no one else liked her dress? It was her wedding, she was the one who was going to wear it and she was sure that Sheldon would appreciate her choice. Taken in that context, I could almost love her wedding dress.
Brides should take a cue from Amy Fowler. Choosing a wedding dress is not about whether other people will think you look good in it but, rather, how good you feel wearing it. As Amy did.
So, Amy couldn’t have benefitted from any advice?
Well, if I knew an “Amy”, I’d want to tell her A LOT MORE before she goes shopping for her wedding dress. If she asked. In fact, this is something I’d tell my own daughters and all other brides-to-be. If they asked.
You’re poring over a bridal magazine and you zero in on that one dress and decide that it’s the wedding dress of your dreams. Big puffy skirt that seems to float, a beaded bustier top and a glittery headdress to hold the veil that will make royal brides green with envy.
Dewy-eyed and picturing yourself in that lovely frock, you go online, look for an affordable reproduction of the entire get-up including that drool-worthy headdress, then you whip out your credit card and order them all.
You wait excitedly for your wedding attire to be delivered. When it finally does, you put it on and… oh, my goodness, is that really me in the mirror? I look terrible! Your torso appears shorter than you remember, your arms look like mutton legs about to burst and half of your face is hidden by the headdress. You cry, you want to sue the company that sold it and you feel like cancelling the wedding because you just know that everyone will be sniggering behind your back.
What the heck went wrong? It is THE perfect dress. How can you look like an over-frosted cupcake in it? Two words.
Go back in time to that moment when you saw the dress in the magazine. Picture the model (or the celebrity) wearing it. If she’s five-foot-ten and weighs a hundred and twenty pounds, and you’re five-foot-two and weigh a hundred and forty pounds, then, you have the answer. That lovely wedding dress was designed and executed to fit the frame of the model or celebrity that wore it and make her look exceptionally gorgeous. It wasn’t made for you. That’s why you look terrible in it.
It’s the first rule, really, whether you’re choosing a wedding dress or your first suit for an important job interview. Whether you’ll look good in a full puffy skirt or not depends on the shape of your body. Perhaps, you’ll look better in a dress with a narrower silhouette.
Beyond knowing your body type, be aware too of what your strong points are. If you have beautiful shoulders and arms, a bustier or an off-the-shoulder dress should be fantastic.
If you have a derriere that turns people’s heads, by all means, choose a form-fitting gown to highlight your asset. Why the hell not? It’s your big day, after all, so go and be the star.
A white dress is traditional but it isn’t a must. Not everyone looks good in white. But if you decide that it’s white or nothing else, be aware that there are so many shades of white. Cream, milky white, ecru, pale silver… Take huge swaths of materials, wrap them around you one by one and see which looks best for your skin tone before making a final decision.
Beware of know-it-all designers
Some brides go the designer route. If you decide that you want a designer to do your wedding dress, shop around for a designer. Talk to them, ask to see their portfolio and, if you personally know a bride or two whose wedding dresses he or she has made in the past, interview the brides to get some feedback.
Tip: Choose a designer who listens to what what you want and makes constructive suggestions to turn your ideas into reality.
AVOID at all costs any designer who talks more than listens and insists on his ideas rather than yours. If the designer tells you outright that what you have in mind is all wrong, walk out the door.
You’re the bride and it’s your wedding. Don’t allow a designer with a bloated ego and sense of self-importance to bully you into allowing him to substitute his or her ideas about what your wedding dress should be.
Go shopping alone
Some brides prefer to try on different wedding dresses and then decide which one they want. If you’re among these brides, on the day or days you go shopping for your wedding dress, go by yourself. Don’t take your mother, don’t take your best friend and, most especially, don’t take a group of people with you.
Seriously, every person has a different taste in clothing. Your mother might want you to wear the most beautiful wedding dress but if her idea of a wedding dress is pegged on what she wore two or three decades ago, you’ll know that her suggestions will just annoy you. Well, unless you’re going for a themed wedding and the theme is the 80’s or the 90’s.
Girl friends are even worse to take along. No Penny. No Bernadette. If you try on something that doesn’t suit their taste and you have a tendency to feel insecure, their comments might make you feel like you have the worst sense of style ever.
The biggest no-no: Don’t take along a girl friend who fancies herself a fashionista. No, no, no.
Be confident. Know what you want and decide for yourself what you look good in. Remember, it’s what you look good in and not what looks good on you. Half of the beauty of a bride is exuding the radiance of a confident woman.
So, you found a dress that’s a perfect fit. It flatters your figure well, the fabric has just the right sheen and, oh, you just feel lovely in it. BUT it weighs a ton. It’s heavily beaded and after twirling in front of the mirror for ten minutes, you already feel just how heavy it is. Plus, it scratches in places.
Consider the length of the wedding ceremony, the time it takes for the wedding photos to be taken and how long the wedding party will be. The dress is lovely and it makes you look and feel like a movie star. But wearing it for four to six hours and most of the time on your feet… will you still look and feel like a movie star after all the toasts have been made or will you resemble a wilted cabbage wrapped in glittery fabric?
Be smart. Choose a fabric that’s comfortable against your skin and a design that will allow you to move freely and comfortably for the duration of the event. You don’t really intend to be a decoration at your own wedding, do you? There are enough flower vases for that.