I've been delaying writing this post because I don't really know what to write! But, as the walrus said, the time has come...
I started the dress hunt wanting an elegant, simple dress with a halter neck in ivory. I wanted some detail on it, but wasn't quite sure what. The important things for me were the back of the dress - I had visions of a backless dress - and straps. It had to have straps - I've seen too many strapless dresses and really wanted something 'different.'
I didn't actually see many halter necks that I liked, but there were several strapped dresses that ticked all the other boxes. Like these from Benjamin Roberts and Ella by Essence:
So I started looking for dresses to try on. If I was in the UK I would probably have started with high street dresses, but that's not an option here. I started with a sample sale at a dressmaker's, and it was very weird looking at myself in the mirror. Some looked nice, but none were perfect. Then I found a dress shop in town that didn't charge a try-on fee, so I went there.
Felicity's Bridal were really nice. They stocked the Ella dresses, with my favourite being the one in the bottom right picture. They suggested how I could move the detail higher on the dress (which looked much better), and let us spend nearly two hours trying on about 15 dresses!
Then my awesome friend suggested over lunch that we needed to look somewhere else too. Jessica Bridal in Kingsland had an opening for that afternoon, only charged $40 for unlimited visits and had a sale on. That was where things got both interesting and confusing.
I tried some dresses similar to the Ella ones, but they also had some more unusual designs (they design some of the dresses themselves). The first dress I put on was 'just to look at the neckline' - but it turned out to be amazing. It was blush coloured, fitted perfectly (except in length) and had a lot of beading and sparkle details. It had a very vintage feel about it, and was totally not what I wanted - but it was by far the best dress I'd tried.
Having found two dresses with the 'wow' factor, we realised that none of the other dresses had had it. We had to go and find a bar after that so I could recover from the shock...