Social Media Isn’t Real..? Why I’m not going to be the “Perfect” Bride

I’ve been going back and forth and toying with this decision for a month, but this week, I’ve made a decision.

My wedding dress is beautiful, but it doesn’t fit.

I have put on around 5 kilos (10 pounds) since we got engaged in February (e.g. photos below) and I am too large for my couture, made-to-fit dress.

I had been nervous about the issue already, knowing I was a little bigger, but it feels a lot more “real” now that the wedding dress is at home in New Zealand (and at the bottom of the wardrobe). When it emerges from the wardrobe to be tried on, the dress zips up to my waist, and then stops, with around 3 inches of space between the sides of fabric.

The dress cannot really be altered without changing the design.  If I want my dress to look as intended, I’d have to lose the 5kg.  However, I’m fit and healthy and also pretty happy with my size.  To lose weight to fit the dress. I would have to make myself uncomfortable, be hungry and deprive myself between now and February.

I’ve felt torn, knowing the dress would look better if I lost weight: maybe I’d look better, be the ‘perfect’ bride, and do what seems to be expected of all brides anyway – lose weight for the wedding. However, the rational and more sensible side of me disagrees with those insecurities – I won’t be the ‘perfect’ bride just because I’m a size smaller, and it won’t be the ‘perfect’ wedding just because I burden myself with a weight-loss goal and a diet.

Weddings can reveal insecurities: Brides know that everyone is going to be looking at them, and also that people are going to analyse, appreciate, critique and consider every aspect of the day, including, it must be said, the dress. It’s no wonder then, that we want perfection, but setting unattainable, unrealistic goals is not the answer.  Embrace imperfection in weddings, as you should in real life.

Being the “perfect” bride isn’t about being a particular size, weight, standard of beauty or having the most beautiful decor.  What would make my wedding “perfect” is one where I am comfortable, relaxed, and glowing with the excitement and joy of marrying someone who loves me so unconditionally, and couldn’t care less whether my dress zips up, gapes open, or is altered with a subtle insert of fabric to give me a bit of breathing space.

With that in mind, I’m proud to let you know that I have an appointment at an Auckland Bridal store for an alteration-fitting this weekend, and I’ll let you know the result!

Update… If you come across this late… I feel that I should let you know what happened!  I took to have altered.  To my huge surprise, it actually zipped up this time, though it was considerably tighter than I wanted it to be.  I was advised that though it could be taken out, it may be at the expense of the quality of the beading and the structure. I was advised to be my ‘healthiest’ self between now and the wedding, and told that I’d probably drop a few kilos due to stress anyway… and she was right, the dress fit. So, as happy as I was to have it altered, and encourage you to do the same, I hope you’ll appreciate that in the end I really didn’t need it altered after all!

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