TRAVEL THERE: WHAT DO YOU WEAR FOR A VOW RENEWAL
From the day we decided to go on this cruise and have a vow renewal ceremony, the thing my friend Deb seemed the most excited about was shopping for my gown. That’s not that big of a surprise. We love shopping and we don’t even need a reason to do it, but this was somewhat of an occasion.
Setting My Expectations
While Bill thought I should probably wear a lace sundress I’ve had in my closet for several years, Deb and I were determined I would have a proper gown for the big day. She started asking early on what I wanted and I actually had no idea. I did run on to several photos that had a sort of flapper feel to them that I liked.
I’d done the big , heavily-beaded satin gown with long sleeves the first time around. I was looking for something more simple, more mature and perhaps a little sexier. What I didn’t want was strapless, with a sweetheart neckline. I’d seen one too many of those on Say Yes to the Dress.
During our discussions about this singular article of clothing, Deb warned me that I’d need to spend about $5000. I knew that wasn’t happening. My original wedding dress had been a sample I found at a consignment store and it had only cost me a few hundred dollars. I’d seen it elsewhere for several thousand, but that’s not what I’d paid for it. I didn’t see why the renewal gown should cost more than the wedding gown – even with inflation.
The top dollar I had in my mind was $500 and it would have had to be some kind of gown for me to pay that much, but that was my ceiling. Deb thought I was in for an education.
The first place we visited on a slightly dreary February day was David’s Bridal. I actually didn’t see anything I wanted to try on in the regular stock. Over on the clearance rack I found two likely suspects. One I adored and I adored the price tag even more, but I wasn’t going to end our shopping fun quite so quickly. If it was meant to be, then it would be there when I came back to get it.
We spent the day going all over the place, but I actually only found one other gown that even competed with that downright bargain I’d seen at David’s Bridal. We went to special occasion dress stores, bridal salons, a designer outlet, consignment stores and even a few department stores, but nada. With the field narrowed down it was time for Bill’s input. People are aghast that I have no problem allowing him to see the dress. He picked out the first one and it worked out OK, so why wouldn’t he do the same for the vow renewal.
The David Bridal dress would be best described as old Hollywood. Halter styled in ivory chiffon with a great big bow at the neckline – you’ve seen Marilyn Monroe in dresses like it. I found the other dress at Terry Costa and it was more Aubrey Hepburn than Marilyn Monroe. Demure, with a high-neck, lace bodice and chiffon skirt, it was in white. I couldn’t lose.
In neither of my stores was I going to get the Kleinfield’s treatment. Bill and I visited David’s first. He had the requisite tears, but he wanted to see the other dress, too. There was no comparison. He couldn’t wait to get back to David’s.
Remember my $500 budget? Well subtract $375 from that, because when I’m telling you I got a bargain, I mean it. What? You want to see it? Well, just because I let the groom see it doesn’t mean you get a peek at it before the big day. Come back next week and we’ll talk about shore excursions.