Our friends John and Gregg are going to get married on a Saturday afternoon this coming September. The whole shebang is going to be devastatingly tasteful, I’m pretty sure, and even though the grooms have a sense of humor I’m not sure how far I should push that in what I wear to their wedding. Because my first impulse is to wear something fun! And fun! isn’t always appropriate. So, Internet, I need you to help me figure out how not to look like an ass at this wedding.
Okay, first we have up two dresses given to me by Maggie when she was cleaning out her closet last winter. Please ignore my hair and scowling expression. The pink halter is cute, huh? There’s a little kitsch factor in there, too, that I think the grooms would appreciate, though it might call too much attention to me on a day that is about two other people. Also, I’d need a wrap and new shoes. And I don’t really have the money for new shoes at the moment.
The black number, by way of contrast, is pretty straight ahead, though it needs accessories to start looking fancy. And I kind of don’t think this is really a little-black-dress sort of occasion.
Here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson, right? That pink sheath is also from Maggie, and heigh-de-ho! I think I’d also need a bouffant and some frosted lipstick to really swing it. And shoes, god, always the right shoes. But again, maybe this is too much of an attention getter.
The gray suit (which needs to be pressed, wow) is what my mom wore to get married to my dad in a civil ceremony in downtown Minneapolis in June of 1952. I love that I can fit into it. I don’t have any pictures of my mom wearing it, unfortunately, but imagine her being 5’4″ and me being 5’11″, the hem must have been halfway to her ankles. The beauty of this is that I wouldn’t need to buy shoes, these black pumps would work fine. Maybe some gloves, though. And seamed stockings, and a pillbox hat with a veil, and a whalebone girdle.
Previous to this little fashion show, Jack thought it would be funny if instead of wearing one of these dresses, I went to buy something fancy at Nordstrom and then returned it the next day, crying*.
*This is now just an excuse to tell you another story about our wedding, which took place at a time when we were beyond broke. I had planned to wear that gray summer suit my mother’d gotten married in, above, but Jack and his mom talked me into getting my own dress. Finding a wedding dress for under $100 requires you to have some pretty low expectations. Jack didn’t want to wear the same suit he got married in the first time around, understandably, so I went with him to Nordstrom to look for a new one. He picked out a beauty, and while he was getting hemmed I wandered into this long, black beaded creation that looked fantastic on me and cost $1,000. Would you like to open a charge account? Why, yes, I would! We got it all home and when I realized what I’d done I started crying. “We can’t afford all this, we can barely pay our rent!” Jack was disgusted by my lack of financial confidence, but I took it all back the next day. Nordstrom employees are unfailingly polite, but when confronted with a sobbing woman returning her wedding dress, they cannot get you out of there fast enough.
(I ended up scoring the long, white satin sheath wedding dress, that you can see in that link above, at the Saks 5th Avenue outlet in Camarillo for $88.)