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Wedding Dress Stories: Vicky

Wedding dresses. Oh, the pressure. Not only do you have to contend with years of fanciful ideals saying you’ll just know when you find ‘the one’ (dress, not partner), but there are all sorts of other things to contend with when it comes to picking a wedding dress. Colour schemes, budget, weather, venue… the list is endless and the pressure is enormous, and sometimes things just don’t go to plan. So that’s why we’re telling your tales. Your wonderful, weird, wacky and heartwarming tales of finding THE dress. We start with Vicky…

The proposal

“My other half’s proposal included a private helicopter landing in the grounds of a manor house. There he was, down on one knee, holding a ring designed and handmade by a jeweller in Bath… I obviously said yes! I then found out that he’d arranged for my family to join us, and so they were secretly watching and we finished the day with afternoon tea. I also found out later that he’d organised a secret photographer to take pics of every special moment – from him asking my dad to picking the diamond, to the proposal. The boy did good and the pictures are amazing!

The fairytale

With a proposal so special I decided I definitely needed a wedding and a dress to match up. We chose to get married in a dreamy castle in romantic Italy; growing up I’d always dreamed of the fairytale wedding, as most little girls do.

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I knew what I wanted

After watching my sisters and endless friends get married, I already had a dress design and shape in mind. I have an identical twin sister, so luckily after watching her try on dresses, I knew what they would look like on me. In my mind, I wanted fishtail, sexy and daringly backless!

The hunt was on

So off I went with my mum, dad and seven bridesmaids to try on dresses for the first time. I must admit, I had done my research and after securing the venue and realising that my dream of getting married in a castle in Italy was actually coming true, I knew I wanted to be that princess.

So I went dress shopping with my perfect dress image in my mind and I tried on fishtail after fishtail. But none of them were ‘the one’. I spent the next few weekends visiting other shops, but I still couldn’t find ‘the one’. I did find one possibility, and it was beautiful, but everyone I knew told me that I would know when it was ‘the one’ and that I would get emotional, and this just didn’t happen; the whole idea was actually putting a great deal of pressure on me. I told myself I had to feel excited and fall in love with the dress, but I’m not an overly emotional person and the thought of crying over a piece of material just seemed ridiculous!

Collection of wedding dresses in the shop - shutterstock_362169635

New York bride

Anyway, the hunt went on with no real excitement and definitely no tears. After looking on the web one night, I found a new bridal shop that had just opened in a village nearby, and they only stocked dresses by Madeline Gardner New York (MGNY). I researched the designer and realised all her dresses were big and beautiful and I thought why not (that niggling image of the princess was still there in the back of mind and the fact that Italian weddings are all about big dresses – the bigger the better!)?!

So off we all went and there I was… stepping in and out of beautiful princess dresses and I absolutely loved them, but none were ‘the one’, I just didn’t get the feeling that everyone kept telling me I’d have.

The lady at the shop had mentioned a trunk day that was being held in a few weeks, where a fresh collection of dresses by the same designer would be shown for one weekend only with 15% off for instant purchases. So I booked myself another appointment. I came away feeling disappointed and a little confused that perhaps I actually wanted the complete opposite of what I initially thought.

Image courtesy of Madeline Gardner New York

Image courtesy of Madeline Gardner New York

Finding love online

That night I went onto the MGNY website and fell in love with one of her dresses online. It was everything I wanted in a princess dress, with delicate straps, a low back, a gorgeous fitted sweetheart bodice, and intricate lace flowing from a sparkly belt into a full princess style skirt. It was elegant and beautiful. So I scoured up and down the country for the dress I had seen online but, yep you guessed it, nowhere stocked it!

After watching endless episodes of ‘Say Yes to the Dress’ and seeing the famous David Emmanuel warning that a bride’s biggest mistake is to get her heart set on a dress she cannot have, I realised that was me. Day after day I would look at the dress, I’d show my bridal party how amazing it was and I realised that until I tried it on – to rule it in or out – I just couldn’t say yes to any other dress.

Short of travelling to New York, my last hope was to ask the lady to request the dress from MGNY for the trunk show in a few weeks time. It was my last resort. She told me she would certainly put it on the list but there was no guarantee as it was in the designer’s new range. The weeks passed, I constantly checked my email to see if she’d got it, but I heard nothing.

 

THE dress

So trunk show day arrived. And there I was, standing outside the shop with little hope of it being there and guess what… through the window I glimpsed it, hanging on the rail, glimmering back at me.
Inside the shop, I took the dress into the changing room, I got into it, looked in the mirror and the lady asked how I felt (she seemed just as nervous as me). I was silent and covered in goosebumps and an overwhelming feeling came over me and yep, you guessed it, I cried! Walking out to my bridal party they all joined me in floods of tears, even my dad was in tears, and I really knew it was the one. The fact that the dress was nowhere else in the UK made me love it even more. It makes it special, just like my ring, and it all just seemed like fate. I purchased it there and then (with the discount!) making my fairytale dream come true.”

 

Do you have your own wedding dress tale to share? Give us all the details in the comments box below, or contact us if you’d like to be featured in our Wedding Dress Stories series.

About the author

Laura Feasey

Having studied journalism at the London College of Fashion, Laura trained in crafting features and articles, not only in the subject of fashion, but in lifestyle, art, travel and culture. For the last few years she has been writing for a number of clients, from holiday companies such as lastminute.com and lowcostholidays, to design retailers such as zalando.co.uk and Debenhams.

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