Attacking Life with Comedic Jaws of Sarcasm. Recovering Dating & Relationship Blogger - Made it to Step 12 When I Got Married.

A Sense of Expectation Hanging in the Air

I have new advice that anyone getting married (Shannon, Carrie, Carla – who already did this) should pay attention to:

Get. Two. Dresses.

No, I’m not kidding. Actually, my journey to ending up with two dresses was a weird one. To recap something I posted 2 months back, I ordered #1 too late, so got #2, an adequate but much less expensive substitute “just in case.” Well, #2 ended up coming in a few weeks ago, needed no alterations, and was shuttled to my parent’s house this past weekend where it has taken up current residence in my childhood bedroom closet.

While X and I were in the land of Gloom and Doom, I got a call from the sellers of dress #1 that it was ready to be picked up. X and I went over there because he had already seen #2, so I just figured let him see the first one and he can pick. We got there, they located my dress and put me in it. It’s 1 size larger than their sample size – which now fits by the way, like a glove and feels like a nightgown.

I put on the dress that was custom made for me, knowing it would be too big and would need alterations, however, I was unprepared for what happened next. Itch. Scratch. Itch. EEK! The level of lining closest to my body was forcing my thighs into some sort of tourniquet situation, they were begging for release, and everything below mid thigh broke out into full blown itchy madness.The nightgown feeling of the sample is in direct contrast to feeling like I’m rolling around in a sausage casing lined with sandpaper. Get. This. Off. My. Body. NOW.


I have no idea either. X and I sat there for 4 hours while they took the dress away, pressed all the layers, came back, tried it on, still itched, looked at the sample, figured out that the sample had thicker lining between my body and the tulle, then had to exit because the fire alarms went off, went back to the store, smelled burning rubber, hoped it was my dress so I could just get my money back and be done with it all, tried it on again, got stuck in it when the zipper jammed, had to slide out of it so they could fix the zipper, went out and sat with X who started planning how I should get my money back, then tried the dress on again, then it was itchier in the back of my thighs, then everyone said they didn’t know and I would have to come back tomorrow to talk to the manager. I’m making the manager try on the sample, then try on the dress that was made for me. And did I mention when you pick up the layers they are all shredded and tattered at the seams? THIS is a custom gown? Yikes.

As X and I sat there waiting for this to be figured out, I looked at him and said, “Considering this wedding is in 2 1/2 weeks, can you imagine how much I would be jumping off a ledge right now if I didn’t have a backup dress, safely nestled at my parents house?” It resulted in our having a conversation on how everyone should have a backup dress. Instead of blowing your whole budget on one dress, get a second one. It really helped me not lose my shit today.

X said, “Yeah, and we haven’t even discussed that black grease stain down the front of it.” Um. Yes.

Tomorrow I’m going to request that they keep the stained itch-factory,   clean and press the sample instead and give that to me.

And it makes me wonder – all these bridal salons try to convince you to not buy them from the ebay $100 sweat shops, but you know, considering the condition my dress was in, I’m not sure that I didn’t just overpay for something out of one of those very same factories.

What did we learn here today? Two. Dresses. You can always sell one.


  1. Dagny Taggart

    That’s insane. And something interesting to think about – even if I’ll probably wear blue when I do it. A girl can always use two blue dresses too, right?

    So glad you have the gorgeous backup AND that the sample will fit you perfectly, if that’s the direction you decide to go!

  2. carrie

    what the crap did they have in there? Acme itching powder? But this is excellent advice to keep in mind, b/c you just never freaking know.

    D and I are doing our guest list…literally right now. Unbelievably painful. As it stands now, there are 178 people we need to invite to this wedding. Kill me. You know, D went to the back of the condo about 5 minutes ago…I think he might have made a run for it.

    Time for some cuts…

  3. chris

    I agree…two was definitely the way to go. And my $99 back-up eBay dress ended up being THE dress 🙂

  4. Velvet

    Dagny – I’m just shocked that the special order one was made so horribly. Have you ever seen a piece of fabric where the cross fibers are shredded so that the fabric is coming off in strings? Yep. That’s the lining. It’s not good.

    Carrie – As of now, they are trying to say that the sample has been tried on and worn more, so it’s softer. X said “NFW” that the tulle is rougher than the sample quality, and that the lining is clearly thicker on the sample than on my dress. Seriously, imagine 600 thread count sheets vs 100 thread count. That’s what the lining feels like. I actually just found this review online about them:

    BUYER BEWARE!!!! This shop has very poor customer service and will say/ do anything to get you to purchase a dress from there. When my gown came back, it was a totally different (very poor) quality from the sample gown that I was allowed to try on. This shop doesn’t back nor warrant its products.

    uh oh!

    Yeah, omg, your list is out of hand! We’re at 35, final count. I’m very excited. You won’t get to see all those people, and you won’t get to talk to everyone. But if you have big families, it makes sense.

    Chris – I’m thinking that’s the way to go. This thing looks like it came off ebay, strings hanging everywhere, and it was $1500. I don’t know what tomorrow is going to bring…and I standby my earlier wonderful kudos to Lefty’s Bridal in Maryland. Thank God for that woman, because seriously, if I didn’t get a backup dress from her, I’d be screwed. Or wearing leggings under my dress.

  5. X


  6. Velvet

    X – Nope, never.

    X don’t read this next part.

    To everyone else – yes. Cotton. But ya gotta keep the fantasy alive.

  7. Washington "Save Me A Piece To Dream On" Cube

    Well….ya can always BLOG about the Little Shop O’ Horrors complete with pics if you get stuck with it. Then do a series of “trashing the wedding dress.” Velvet and X playing in the mud, jumping in the ocean, standing in line at Taco Bell. Sounds like that Sex and the City episode where Carrie broke out into a full blown rash.

    This is a real sore point with me. The fact that people don’t take any pride in producing quality merchandise anymore, AND that customer service (What’s that?) sucks so much. I love it when they start arguing with you. Uh? Customer is always right? I guess in a bridal salon they calculate you won’t be coming back as a repeat customer :::knock on wood spit spit making evil eye Devil Dio fingers:::

    Something Blue Cocktail

    2 oz Hpnotiq
    2 oz white wine
    1 oz ginger ale
    Build the ingredients in a Champagne flute.
    Serve and toast to a long and happy marriage.

  8. Shannon

    Eeek! This is why I’m buying something off the rack from a department store, or a bridesmaid’s gown in ivory (I mean, besides the fact that my budget is teeny). I don’t want to deal with all the anticipation and stress, followed by disappointment when the dress either doesn’t fit or sandpapers its way into my ass. Screw it – all brides are beautiful if they look happy, and no way will I look happy if I’m wearing a month’s rent.

  9. Velvet

    Cube – X was sort of irritated that they were trying to tell me it was the “same” dress, but to try them both on, one after the next, you could so easily feel that the lining was different and the 2nd one was hurting. Stupid tulle. ITCHY!!!

    I’d hate to do a trash the dress because it really is so gorgeous, but I’m hoping they can figure something out. We’re heading back over there in a bit.

    Shannon – I wanted to buy off the rack, and that was how I started my search. But then when I realized that all those dresses with the boning and lining make you look so fab, I was hooked. See, you’re lucky! You don’t have any areas that you have to downplay, lol! The beauty of being the perfect size! And again, Congratulations for you! I’m so happy for you guys!!

  10. Shannon

    Velvet – I do need the boning and the lining and such, but I figure I’ll do that with undergarments. A long-line bra is cheaper than a couture dress.

  11. Velvet

    Shannon – good point on the undergarments. I had basically nixed them though because we’re doing it this month (July, eek! Hot!) and it will be outside. So I’m actually not wearing anything under the gown except underwear. Unless X asks. Then I’m not wearing underwear at all.

  12. Jo

    My dress was from Nordstroms. I bought it online without ever trying it on AND it cost less than $200.

    David’s Bridal had a surprisingly good selection of affordable dresses for those looking for a 2nd option. It was too formal for me but I tried on several ($99!) that looked great.

  13. Siryn

    This is why, God spare her life, my mom’s cousin will make my dress if I should get married. She made my sister’s and my cousin’s dresses, and she’s looking forward to making mine… if the guy would ever show up in my life.

    I’m so sorry to hear about the massively horrible bait and switch, but I’m glad that you have some peace of mind in having a second dress handy.

  14. Carla

    Totally late for the party (blame it on vacation, then subsequent, err, stomach issues afterward).

    I’m nervous about my dress! I called the store and they told me “late August” and don’t have an actual date for me. Ugh. I told them my parents are in town in August and I wanted them to see it (which is true), but the real reason is that I have an appt on September with a seamstress that’s WAY cheaper than the bridal store and highly recommend it. It better get here by then. And it better not be crap!

  15. JohnnyDC

    I’ve been a big fan of redundancy for about ten years.

    Two beers..
    Two popcorns…
    Two ice creams..

    You know the second one is coming, why get up twice? 😀

  16. Washington "Clueless" Cube

    I read Johnny’s last sentence and immediately thought about sex. Why is that?

  17. Velvet

    Jo – I heard about that David’s Bridal $99 thing but I never seemed to figure out when that was. The time I went, it was crazy in there, and there wasn’t anything at that price.

    Siryn – That is the way to go. Definitely have it made by someone you know and trust! Hey – are you in town still and we haven’t done lunch???

    Carla – BUT, you have a backup, right? See? We were smarty pants to do this, but for reasons we didn’t even know. We just liked other dresses. Ha.

    JohnnyDC – HA! I love you!!!!

    Cubie – Because it’s Johnny!

  18. Barbara

    You are always the ultimate in practicality. I would never have thought of a second dress. But I must say Dress #1 has made me nervous from the get-go. I’m so glad there is a back-up even if you can’t get out of paying those big bucks. It’s just money and you will forget that, but you will always have the story of the custom-made dress that was just a colossal big itch!

  19. Siryn

    Yeah, I’m in town – for the foreseeable future. Yes, we must do lunch. Email me!

    As for the prices… you know, the difference is in the fabric. My sister’s dress could easily have cost thousands of dollars had it been commercially made, but we had a hookup – my late aunt worked for a fabric company in New York and was able to get fine Italian silk at a good price.

    And that’s the thing – David’s Bridal and many other off the rack places are not going to have very refined fabric. In the end, it IS just a dress, but it’s more than that. The difference between a 10k Vera Wang dress and David’s (other than the name brand and marketing power) is in the fabric. How much that matters for one day depends on the individual.

  20. allezoop

    Tim and I will be thinking of you and I can’t wait to see pictures! Maybe you can have a ceremony dress and then a reception dress if the tulle situation has not been remedied?

  21. Cyndy

    We’re all looking forward to hearing a recap of your wedding, whenever it is. It must be pretty soon, right? Best wishes and congratulations! I hope your dress situation worked itself out. But I’m sure it will be a beautiful day no matter what.

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