Holy Matrimony · Wedding Dress · Wedding Vendor

She says: The Quest of Finding the Gown

This is the sequel of my previous post on wedding gown.

I am not a big fan of wedding gowns, in fact I am a bit scared of choosing my dress. I deliberately postponed my search of the gown until I am ready to face my fear. I used of have a mild phobia of big fluffy wedding gown with lotsa beads and sparkles [Winston’s Edit: That’s a phobia??!!]. The idea of wearing a heavy, troublesome, over-the top wedding gown leaves me with a little nausea and goosebumps. So I turn to an unconventional and non-threatening option to choose the gown. By browsing through online shops that specially sell pre-owned wedding dress. This gesture freaks my fiance out.

For a month I went through www.oncewed.com and www.preownedweddingdress.com to look for my ideal wedding gown. From these websites I discovered my future favorite wedding gown designer, Monique Lhuillier. I was not impressed with Vera Wang and not part of Bride Wars frenzy.Β  I fell in love with a full Chantilly lace gown by Lhuillier with the code name Claire. The beautiful paisley pattern and full Chantilly lace doesn’t come with a hefty price tag, which was also a big plus. I was raving about this dress and started to contact a few sellers to get the best price. I found a seller with the best price possible which miraculously have the gown that fit my size. Most of the size are for Caucasians, so the odds of having a 5′ 2″ gown is depressingly low. So when the price went down to 1,100USD, I was blown away and ready to purchase.

claire01 copy

However, Winston and Katryn were not comfortable with my decision of buying my wedding gown online. Katryn insisted me to try the real gown, with the real cutting and material before buying Claire. Good advice. So I went down to Tanjong Pagar with Winston, to have a taste of wedding gown. Reality stikes. Most of the gowns in bridal shops are exactly the type I’m avoiding, so I was quite desperate.

Until we went to our last stop Di Gio Bridal. The sales girl, Josephine, was smart enough to spot my taste of simple and minimalist gowns, she brought me a beautiful structural gown with minimal beadings on the neckline and a nice clean Duchess satin dress with Swarovski crystals. I was finally at ease. ItΒ  also open a possibility of finding my gown in the local bridal world. She mentioned that I am not like a typical Singaporean brides, who wants more blings on the gown. I think it’s not only for Singaporean, Indonesians also fancy heavy beadings and bling bling. It doesnt feel like a wedding gown, without all that, that’s what they always say. We chatted with their in-house designer, a flamboyant and talented Mr Casey. Surprisingly Monique Lhuillier is also his favorite designer and we shared the same opinion about her gowns.

We did not sign up with them that day, but they left us with good impression. The second bridal we went to was Margaret Brides. This time it was a better experience, because MB gowns suit my taste of simpler, subtle gowns. However their price is not subtle. Margaret the owner and the designer herself takes pride in her work, her gowns are gorgeous, but she also has the designer pride which unfortunately clashed with mine. Budget is also an issue. In order to materialize my dream wedding gown, we need to pay almost double our original budget. I wanted to use French Chantilly lace which adds about 4k to the basic package. So forget it!

In the end I did not have peace in my heart to buy Claire, so I let it go (Eugenia, one of my housemates, made it easier by cutting the printout picture into pieces!). It was not easy, because I have been clinging to Claire for some time, thinking that this is a good buy. But actually I knew that it is not a wise decision to buy your wedding gown online.

Just after I let it go, I spotted another dress from Monique Lhuillier Spring 2010 collection, Katya. I love it right away, there’s an uncanny feeling telling me that this is it! I rely a lot on my emotional connection when it comes to deciding on something. This is one of those moment. But Since there is no way I could buy this dress, unless I fly to Hong Kong or to Los Angeles to buy the orginal gown, I will have to tailor made locally.

My first and only choice is Casey from DiGio Bridal. I made an appointment with them, and this time I brought Clarissa and Dora (my housemates cum bridesmaids) with me. I trust their taste and opinion. It’s comforting to know that they agree with your choice. Cut the story short, we signed up with them.

I love working with passionate people and Casey is definitely one of them!

Picture 38

6 thoughts on “She says: The Quest of Finding the Gown

  1. I don’t know where you are located, but I am a bridal seamstress who can create from pictures, photos, sketches and websites. A great way to get a designer gown for less. 30 min south of Winnipeg.

  2. Good grief! I stumbled on your blog and was completely blown away that there’s another local bride out here with the same taste as moi!

    I’m exactly the same! Not impressed with Vera Wang, but adore Monique Lhuillier. Ended up tailoring ML’s “Melissa” gown from the 2007 collection locally! Check out the teaser pictures here:

    http://princesspanda.wordpress.com/2009/09/06/my-fabulous-re-interpreted-vintage-inspired-lace-wedding-dress/

    My quest for the perfect wedding dress ended when I made the decision to have it tailored rather than to purchase something online which I’ve never tried on.

    http://princesspanda.wordpress.com/2009/07/26/designing-tailoring-your-wedding-gown/

    But I did try on one other dress while on holiday in Australia and ended up ordering that one online! So now I have two dresses…perfect for my two events!

    Good luck with preparations.

  3. Hey hey!πŸ™‚ Saw your comments on my blog. I’m a bridezilla alright!

    I have a private ceremony for family members and overseas friends in the morning. Max about 100 people attending only. Gonna wear the lace dress then, right through to the brunch reception (which would have touches of Narnia and LOTR inspiration because that’s totally us).

    In the evening, we have a reception for more than 500 people, and it’s a full-on 1940s opulent event. I’ll be going in with the blinger Maggie Sottero “Gatsby” gown then, and the birdcage veil & feathered headdress because that goes with the feel of the theme. Plus it’s champagne with silver embroidery which is quite art deco and less traditionally bridal overall. Maybe I’ll even use a fur stole.

    I love your Katya gown, but I doubt a russian birdcage veil would go with it 100% though because of the silhouette of the dress. You’d need something that clung to the hips a bit lower, like a dropwaist, mermaid, trumpet, fit & flare, or slinky 1930s sheath silhoutte in order to carry off a russian birdcage veil.

    For my lace gown in the morning, I’m going with a traditional floaty, simple fingertip veil, with an additional waltz-length layer flowing down the back. I tried it on with the dress; it worked perfectly! Had that classic, old-fashioned, ladylike look I was aiming for.πŸ™‚

    Be sure to pick a lining that’s a slightly darker or lighter shade than the lace; it really makes a difference because then the details on the lace would pop; which would look outstanding in photographs. The beauty of chantilly lace is in the delicacy of the weave; it would be a shame for that to be lost because the lining is the exact same colour. Alternatively, there should be liberal areas (perhaps your back, arms, etc) where there should be NO lining, just lace on bare skin, and then you can really see the details. Monique Lhuillier likes to use a light latte slip under her ivory lace dresses.

    Hope this helps! I’ve enjoyed your blog. Wish Mr. Panda would contribute like your man does! I’m gonna blogroll you on my blog!πŸ˜€ Good luck with preparations! And do drop in for a chat sometime!

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