The Reception Dress

Like so many things in this wedding planning process, finding a dress to wear for the reception portion has been an adventure. Let me back up, as I’m sure you’re wondering why I’d need a reception dress at all.

When I found my wedding dress, it was everything I wanted, and everything I never wanted, at the same time. I am a practical person, who is getting married outdoors in the summer. At what point, exactly, does that make it a good idea to get married in a dress with layers and layers of heavy fabric, and a giant train? No point that I can think of. (Side note: Don’t worry, those are the only details my fiance knows about my dress, and the only ones he will know until the big day.)

But it is a gorgeous dress, and I feel like a princess in it. So the compromise with my practical side was to get a second dress for the reception–it would be knee length, and breathable, so I wouldn’t die of dehydration. After all, since going to the bathroom in my wedding dress would be a nightmare, there will be very little water drinking beforehand. Of course, since it would be my second dress, it couldn’t be very expensive.

Thus began the search. I used Pinterest and etsy and finally found something I liked. But it was so expensive that I balked and compromised on something cheaper. Instead of the lace dress with a shift underneath, I would get the same lace top with a fancy party skirt–sparkly tulle layered on top of blue satin. I got my measurements professionally taken, and waited. And waited. I really do hate waiting.

Finally, it arrived. I was so excited, I had spent months envisioning myself in that dress at the wedding reception. And then I put it on.

I have the particular body type that is commonly known as “top heavy”. As in, some styles make me look like I am all chest (not in the good way), and no waist, and maybe even adds on another 10 lbs. Yes, it turns out this particular skirt/shirt combination was exactly one of those styles. It wasn’t pretty. I felt ugly.

Once again, I had spent money on a failed wedding project. Tears were shed. Self-deprecating statements were made. Fortunately, my partner was (eventually) able to reassure me that they weren’t useless pieces of clothing, they were still pretty, I just needed to find something different for the reception.

Thank goodness for friends. One of my bridesmaids eagerly agreed to go shopping with me for this new dress. We went to a local store that I’d never been to before, but seemed to have a good reputation. And we found a dress in that first store! I know it was the right dress because I can still put it back on and feel pretty, which is really the only thing I can ask. Because if I can’t look back at my wedding/reception pictures and think “hey, I looked pretty”, then what on earth are we spending all this money for?

I promise one day we will return to the craftier posts, but you may be stuck with wedding-related drivel for awhile. I hope you will put up with it 🙂


10 thoughts on “The Reception Dress

  1. So glad you found something you feel good in, sarah… females are a funny species…and it does have to feel right xoxo
    Auntie Jo

  2. I will absolutely put up with the wedding talk! I’m so glad you found your perfect reception dress and I can’t wait to finally see pictures of your dresses after the wedding!

  3. Ahh you seem to have your wedding date around the time ours will be. My future husband always says “So glad I’m a dude”, and then I feel alone again. Life’s great.

    • Yes, I have had so many feelings of alone-ness during the planning. My partner has been great with trying to help the execution, but the planning part has fallen to me. But you’re not really alone because there’s people on the internet suffering with you 😉 When’s the big day??

      • Ours it the 9th of August.. Planning befalls us women because men seem biologically incapable of taking that stuff on. If I let Zach plan to wash the dishes, he’ll end up breaking the sink, know what I mean? You don’t let a grizzlie bear near your doll house. It’s the same goddamn thing. STRESS. Good luck to you 🙂

        • That’s just 2 days before mine! I can’t believe it is SO close. I am so excited to be married but so terrified at the amount of work to be done beforehand. Good luck to you too!

  4. I’m top heavy too! I am loving this story and can’t wait to hear how it all goes!

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