I can’t imagine what it is like for a sale’s clerk to ask, “Is this your dress?” Yet, I am certain I know what it feels like to walk down the aisle with an unflappable “Yes!” It is not a dress of another’s dreams; it is a dress that honors me. It is a dress that was made for me. It is the dress that was crafted with careful hands for that day. With each stitch, and each choice, I was considered and consulted. Every detail is chosen in tribute to a special person in my life, lace from Mom’s wedding dress, Gram’s buttons, my love of printing.
I am not the sort of person that likes to shop in major department stores. My first time trying on a wedding dress in a big retail chain was awkward. A lovely girl I had never met, continued to tell me, “This one looks really good on you.” Mom would turn up her nose, knowing that I was going to say, “It just doesn’t feel like me.” She has heard the same sentiment, different words, continuously, since I was 14.
So I took other measures, online, vintage shops, consignment stores. I tried on white dress after white dress and my fiancé would say, “It is really nice, but it doesn’t look like a wedding dress.” I kept trying to convince him that I was not like other brides. He already knew that, though. When I realized Fermata Designs was in my budget, the hunt was over. Nick didn’t have to look at any other “not-so-wedding” dresses and my mom would be included through photos and e-mail. I was in caring hands, now.
I explained the wedding and what I wanted for that day. I showed Carla our invitations and the crafts I made for the wedding. She cried, we shared a moment. I knew I would have nothing to worry about. For one time in my life, I found someone that was on my page. So I imagined and she created. On a very gray day in Maine, I exchanged my vows, looking like the prettiest form of me I can look. There was never a fear, never a stress, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.