FINDING THE DRESS | “Engaged in December, planning a September wedding… I thought this was completely reasonable.” | By Jessica, Real Bride Bloggista

Happy Monday afternoon, my dears!  It’s good to have you back, tucked safely within my loving embrace.  …. only to be dropkicked without warning into Bloggista Jessica’s loving embrace, for today at least.  But don’t worry; she’s very loving, and being a mother already, she has actual real world experience with loving embraces.  High kick, woot!  You’re in good hands. ;)

By the way, if you’d like to follow along with where I’ll be and what I’m doing today through tomorrow, I’ll be live tweeting what I’m up to over at Trump SoHo.  Hopefully I’ll remember to use the hashtag #SoHoBride and the handle @TrumpSoHo in all those tweets.  Hopefully.  No I probably will.  I think.  

I’m actually really excited to tweet with you guys about it, because tonight I’ll be slipping into a truly spectacular (in my opinion) Reem Acra gown… so uhhhhhhhh, I’m moderately pumped?  Yes, that’s accurate.

K, enough about me.  Ladies and gents, please give a warm welcome back to Jessica!  Jessica, take it away…

Hey guys…………….welcome to PART DEUX!!!!

Now that we’re properly acquainted ;) there is so much sharing of super important stuff to do! I don’t know where to begin! Sometimes I just want to say…eeeehhhhh f**k it….. what do you say we just blow this whole thing off and go on vacation?! But I can’t go and do that now can I.. not now that I’ve told all you people and set this crap train on its tracks! But I’ve thought about it!!! It’s a lot to take in. Sometimes it feels like I fell into a cleaver photo shoot, had to “DIY” a flag bunting to climb up a cupcake tower, leaped over the candy bar to get to the random bunch of balloons, floated to the photo booth to take a quick picture with a fake mustache, tripped over a ball jar while writing something terribly funny on a tiny chalkboard then pinned a succulent bouquet on my pinterest board. You know what I’m saying?

In all seriouslessness though, the amount of information/inspiration to consider is daunting. I was expecting to be planning for another baby not a wedding. We really wanted to have two fairly close together (lil guy is almost 1!), but no way am I going to be prego (<—-I want to drink booze) at my wedding. We’re shootin for a fairly quick wedding, so you know….we can get back to the baby making ;). We got engaged at the end of December and are planning for a September wedding. I thought this was completely reasonable. But what do I know! I had one caterer I called laugh at me and tell me “good luck!”. The experience of finding my dress ended up being incredibly rushed and panicky. Apparently it take like two years to get these things sewn together on three different continents. I now understand why most people give themselves at least a year to plan, but I think if I did that I’d never make it out the other end.

I’m kind of a type A with split personalities. That is to say I’m a quirky, nonsensical, bad ass of a control freak. I tend to contradict myself in accurate ways and have very specific ideas about what I want. So as you can imagine with my two kids – two jobs – limited time frame – limited budget – limitless imagination – one eyed – one horned- flying purple people eater of conundrum, planning has been so much fun! TOTALLY FUN! Luckily, I have a few magic beans to cash in. You see… those two jobs I mentioned are both sort of within the “industry”. Firstly, I’m a caterer (the little bitty kind) and I also work for a slightly less little bitty stationer by the name of “Momental Designs”. The latter has afforded me to meet some amazing people (hey Alison!) who have been abundantly generous in helping me reach my dreams of wedding awesomeness. More on that later……but first the dress.

Regardless of the importance of the major players in a wedding you know your first concern, as any good self righteous bride will tell you, is the dress! I’ve always imagined something soft, feminine and lacy, which is weird seeing as I’m none of those things and have never owned anything lace before. But this is par for the course with me *see above statement* as I tend to dress for a “theme” or a feeling I’m having. My fiance and I are of the artsy fartsy somewhat dramatic type (he loves Morrissey) and I wanted to go in a direction that suited us both. I began to envision myself in a hauntingly romantic victorian frock. Delicate high collar, long sleeves, head to toe lace with a soft patina… a real gem. Alas they just don’t stock these beauties over at my local Margie’s Bridal Hut & Lube. You should have seen the looks I got… walking into bridal shop after bridal shop asking “Do you have anything that’s not strapless and all lace that has no beads or sparkle?”. Lets just say I was swimming up stream. I looked for vintage, but the days(8th grade?) of having a 25″ waist are long gone for me. I looked for unique, but found out that’s just another word for “out of my budget”. I did find a surprising number of very talented young designers through internet searches and Etsy that were promising, but nothing that fit the bill exactly. I toyed with the idea of having a dress made and found a designer who’s work I loved, but she was in Colorado… and I’m in PA. It was just too risky of an endeavor. Strike, strike, strike. So I got creative…. I found a simple vintage looking lace gown, that besides being strapless, had what I was looking for. I ordered some additional lace and convinced Chi (my seamstress and new BFF) to fix me up a victorian neckline. My dress doesn’t come in until late June so I won’t really know what the final product will look like until, oh say, a few months before my wedding. FUN!!!!!

Just for s**ts and giggles here are some inspiration photos, a few you might already be familiar with from my pinterest board, to tantalize you.

Oh gheeessss…. I totally forgot to show you guys my ring! I actually slightly loath when it becomes “about the ring” but being as I’m divulging all I feel a need to oblige. It’s a little untraditional (go figure) and he did it ALL BY HIMSELF! I kid though, Brad has excellent taste and is surprisingly not clueless. I know… lucky girl :) He found the designer on Etsy and had it made, her shop is called “Specimental” and she uses conflict free rough gems and recycled metals…yeahhhh!

So, do tell…….. what is inspiring your dress choice? Do you go with something tried and true or make a daring statement? Inquiring minds want to know!

xoxoxo  - Jessica

Alison here again!  Jessica is one of our fabulous Real Bride Bloggistas, and she’s planning her Fall 2012 vintage wedding.  Jessica is the coolest, and if you dig her half as much as I do, you can also check her out over at The SoupChic on Facebook.

image credits: lead images 1 & 2 via ffffound / (non-personal) images/sources can be found within jessica’s inspiration board on pinterest

Label(s): Jessica, The Bloggistas, {Fashion}

Love all of this...


  1. Mindy on March 26, 2012

    That ring is all kinds of awesome.

  2. Ariana on March 26, 2012

    Oh wow, that ring is gorgeous! So simple and unique and all over the place lovely. Your guy did good, real good. In fact, I’m heading to that Etsy shop RIGHT NOW.

    Can’t wait to see your dress!

  3. Falon on March 26, 2012

    No worries, I planned my wedding in nine months…it can be done! Just realized that when you say you planned your wedding in nine months there might be some baby implications there–totally not the reason why! Excited to see the dress, love the lace and the sleeves!

  4. Jamie on March 26, 2012

    Love it, Thanks!

  5. Lena on March 26, 2012

    The ring is gorgeous, the girl is funny and the gowns are to die for–and knock your head against the wall over. I think it’s safe to say I adore Jessica.

  6. jessica on March 26, 2012

    Oohhh the kind words! they make-a-me smile:) He did a really good job at picking out a ring that felt like “me”. Yah know?

    I have to say that revisiting the “dress situation” for this post was a little emotional for me (<— that's embarrassing). I hope I feel better once my dress comes in and we start stitchin it up. I hope :P

  7. Debbie on March 26, 2012

    I love that ring and from the moment I saw it, I’ve been lurking around Specimental coveting certain designs…sort of the same way you covet my old Wagner Roaster. :) The dress is the perfect foundation for the alterations you have chosen…very much like the perfect canvas waiting for the paint. <3

  8. Mandy on March 26, 2012

    That first image made me laugh out loud. I needed that … and the beautiful dresses!

  9. francine on March 26, 2012

    hi jessica! i absolutely love some of the dresses you posted, but i went to your pinterest board and didn’t see any of the dresses posted… did you take the pictures down? thanks!

  10. Shannon on March 26, 2012

    A wedding can be planned in nine months. I’m having a four month engagement, we’re a month in and I’m just down to the artsy fartsy handmade stuff I’m doing on the to-do list. The caterer that laughed at you is an idiot, you’ll be fine. Good luck on the custom dress though, brave woman.

  11. Carly on March 27, 2012

    I planned in 9 months from 2 states away and everything turned out great! You will be fine!

  12. Meg on March 27, 2012

    You can do it. We got engaged and married in September and I planned my wedding 8 hours from the actual location. It can be stressful but totally do-able. And those vendors who laugh, they are the ones you definitely don’t want to work with!

  13. jessica on March 27, 2012

    Thanks for the piece of mind guys! I’m working it out, there are a few bumps but I’m sure it will all be fin. JUST FINE. :)

    @francine I actually pulled some other pics from my Etsy file of faves and a few dresses I was stalking online. But I’ll totally pin them for you asap!

  14. bridal girl on March 28, 2012

    In my case, I just got some of my ideas through bridal magazines and I imagined myself wearing them. I was able to get my dream gown through that magazine and it was perfect.
    Love that ring by the way!

  15. Kristen on March 28, 2012

    love that ring! I’ve been eye balling it on etsy!

  16. Sarah on March 28, 2012

    Amazing ring. It reminds of something I saw on another site.

  17. I laughed out loud by the first one. Liked the gown’s and ring. Cool.


  18. Kristy R. on March 29, 2012

    So much goodness to come my friend.

  19. Lori on April 6, 2012

    Gorgeous dress selections, I love lace! If you want to see about some custom wedding dresses and not kill your wedding budget, come check me out!

  20. The Brides' Maid on April 11, 2012

    I love that you have decided to go with lace. I tell all of my brides that you will never be mad about the fact that you had a lace wedding gown (unless it’s cheap lace, then you will be PISSED) It photographs beautifully and gives your wedding a classic feel. I will have to tell you that Pronovias has some of the most beautiful lace I have ever come in contact with and the high necked dress that you posted by them is the one I would go with. Manuel Mota and Ellie Saab also have exquisite lace.
    Good luck, my friend. Hope all goes well.

  21. Belle Mariee Bridal on April 24, 2012

    Beautiful ring! A friend of mine got planned and got married in 3 weeks!!

  22. Savannah on April 25, 2012

    The image at the top with the girl and her head in the box belongs to Lissy Elle. I’m not sure if you guys got permission before editing it or not, but just in case I figured I’d let you know :).

  23. 4utea on July 5, 2012

    It is funy! But i like the dresses on pictures!thank you!

  24. promstreet on July 5, 2012

    Gorgeous!!!!!Love so much!

  25. coast, beach, wedding on July 10, 2012

    That ring is amazing. Great article.


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