Things are moving along with the wedding. We have a date, places, airline tickets, hotel reservations, photographer, bouquet and officiant. We still need rings, music, suit, and license. To the best of my knowledge, we’re over the hump of nailing down the big stuff – now it’s all cake, so to speak. I realized for the first time the other day that I’m starting to have fun working out all the other details, now that the logistical nightmare part of things is over. I got my shoes, got my purse, and I figured out how I’m wearing my hair. I also found the perfect lingerie for under the wedding dress. Which, much to my persistent dismay, I learned I cannot wear with the wedding dress. Here’s why.
I had my first fitting last Saturday. Since I knew I’d be in PA over Thanksgiving, I called up the DB and scheduled some time with their seamstress. I got an Eastern European lady on the phone – presumably (and correctly) the actual seamstress – and soon found myself desperately trying to decipher her accent without asking her to repeat herself a thousand times. By the end of the 10 minute call, I guess I was amply satisfied that I had scheduled the appointment and had not inadvertently joined the Communist Party.
NB: Here’s when not to schedule a dress fitting: the day after Thanksgiving. I tried to walk off as much of the previous day’s excess at the mall as possible before my appointment. 3:00 rolled around, and Mas and I grabbed my bag o’dress and headed over to the World’s Sorriest Strip Mall (Sparkles Beer Store? Dollar Tree?). I weaved my way through the hoards of giddy bridesmaids trying on their polyester uniforms, ducked into a fitting room and put on my fancy new lingerie. Then I put on the dress, or rather, almost put on the dress. The lingerie expanded my waistline too much and the dress wouldn’t snap shut. Enough of it peeked through the bust and the back that I looked like I was wearing a girls’ undershirt underneath. The lingerie that I had spent $50 now served no purpose other than to mock me from the tissue paper-lined box in which it came. I would have to freeboob it, I cringed at the thought.
Fortunately, it was only the lingerie and not the Thanksgiving dinner that prevented me from fitting into the dress. I got it on fine and headed over to the alteration station. En route, the cap sleeves dropped off my shoulders and I tripped over the train three times. I had gone from Pretty Princess to Miss Havisham in mere moments. All I needed was a tiara dangling off a heavily-hairsprayed bun atop my head and some blue eyeshadow to round out the horrorshow.
Taking a step back, I soon realized (read: mas told me) all I really needed was a serious hem, bustling and an extra inch around the waistline. All of these concerns were parroted back to me in heavily accented English when Sofia joined us.
“Yas, the shoulders.”
“Yas, a hemming.”
“Yas, we do the bostle.”
“Yas, we take out a little so to can sit down on wedding day. And I think we put in some boobies in for you.”
She looked me up and down and then winked as if to say: Gentlewomen, we can rebuild her, then set about on her task of measuring, draping and pinning, all the while spinning me around like a lazy susan. I expected cartoon birds and chipmunks to appear out of nowhere, singing a little sewing song out of a Disney movie. Instead, I got my mom staring at me with her purse on her lap, her stern visage advising me against eating anything but beansprouts until the wedding, and Sofia, quietly mumbling to herself in Hungarian.
And almost as soon as she had started, she had finished. “I like your shoes,” was the last thing she said to me before disappearing behind the iron curtain of the alterations room.
I shuffled back to the dressing room where I quickly dressed and vacated the space for a belligerently impatient bridesmaid, then ducked my head into Sofia’s office. She pulled out her notebook to show me the list of alterations. It was time to get down to business.
“Okay, so the shoulders, I pull them up,” she started, pointing at each item as she went down the list.
“And the hem, also up.”
“And some of the bostle.”
“We take out on sides. That cost the most,” she said, circling the hundred plus dollar figure in red ink. Suddenly I rued every food and alcohol calorie I had consumed between dress purchase and this appointment.
“And the boobies,” Sofia concluded, finishing her litany.
I shuffled over to the register and wasn’t surprised to learn that everything Sofia had to do to rework my wedding dress would cost about the same as buying another whole dress. Lovely. Well, I guess it’s not as bad as it could be. I mean, I can’t walk into the wedding looking like Bride of Frankenstein.