Today, I’m delighted to hand over to real vintage bride Lucie. I’m only giving you a tantalising glimpse of her lovely wedding as it will soon feature on fabulous wedding blog LoveMyDress. (I promise to let you know, as soon as it’s up there!)
And instead, I’m very pleased that Lucie’s agreed to talk us through her happy experience of choosing the perfect vintage wedding dress…
“As soon as I got engaged, I was dying to start trying on wedding dresses, but managed to restrain myself until a year before the wedding. A strapless meringue was never going to be ‘me’, and I didn’t like the feel of modern lace, so I always thought I’d end up with a vintage dress. I researched various vintage bridal shops and planned a jam-packed day zig-zag-ing across London with my sister (Maid of Honour) and mum (most excited mother of the bride in history) in tow.
Heavenly Vintage Brides was our first appointment and, from the website, looked to be the smallest operation. However, as soon as we entered Helena’s AMAZING room-of-wonder, I knew I had stumbled upon a very, very special place. From the welcome we received from Helena, to the amazing breadth and quality of the dresses in her collection, it is definitely nirvana for any vintage bride-to-be.
Having gone through the decade-ordered rails (all three of us ooh-ing and ahh-ing at every dress), I selected a very varied range to try on. Helena then discussed each dress with me, giving her valued, honest opinion about whether it would be likely to fit and suit my body shape. We almost discounted my dress as I was convinced it wouldn’t go over my hips, but Helena said we could give it a go.
I usually detest the whole fitting room experience, but trying on dresses with Helena was like being a kid again, playing dress-up. Before ‘the dress’, I tried on a 1950s full-skirted gown, some cute 1930s button-front lace dresses, and a tiered-skirt Victorian dress, all of which were beautiful. However, when it came to my dress, once I’d got over the amazement of it fitting like it had been tailor-made, I could see from my mum and sister’s faces that my search was over – it was perfect.
My advice to any bride-to-be is to ignore any part of you that’s inclined to play the whole thing down and play it safe. Before I reserved my dress, I had a niggling doubt that it was too glamorous for me (I’m usually quite understated) and ‘too much’ due to the very long train – in most scenarios I cannot bear to be centre of attention, so thought a simpler, plainer dress might be better. I’m so happy now that my mum and sister managed to persuade me that, if I was going to feel glamorous and amazing on just one day, it should be my wedding day and that I would be an absolute idiot to even consider looking at other dresses.
Another piece of advice for anyone buying a vintage dress is to see if you can find anything out about the history of your dress – knowing some of the story behind it will make it even more special. After I’d left Heavenly Vintage Brides, I Googled ‘1940s wedding dress’ (it wasn’t an era I knew much about) and was absolutely amazed when my actual dress appeared on the first row of the image results. Clicking through to the page, I found a listing from when the dress was sold a few years ago and found out that it had been made by a designer store in New York where Marilyn Monroe used to shop!
Our wedding day was EPIC and I surprised myself completely by how much I loved the attention – mostly from everyone complementing me on my dress. It felt amazing to be wearing such a unique dress with such an amazing history and I’ll treasure it forever.”
Thanks so much, Lucie. From the little glimpses we’ve seen, we know you look stunning. But wait… I can’t bear it…! You know I just can’t keep a secret…! So here is Lucie looking absolutely beautiful and radiant in her 1940s dress with long train.
Big thanks to Lucie for her great words, and to photographer Mark Tattersall for these lovely images. For more pictures, you’ll have to keep watching my blog each week!
Heavenly Vintage Brides