I didn’t want a ‘proper’ wedding dress because we were getting married in a register office and I thought it would be too much. Also, I thought I was too short and too fat (stupid me) to wear something grown up and glamorous. Oh and then there was the fact that our budget for the wedding and honeymoon was £700 …
My mum and I went shopping for an ordinary dress, smart enough to wear to be married, but not so over-the-top that I’d feel foolish. I was embarrassed enough being the centre of attention without having to wear a dress. Most of the guests would never have seen me out of trousers before and I didn’t want to draw too much attention to my legs.
I can’t remember trying on any dresses other than the one I bought. It was a plain cream shift dress with a satin ribbon at bust level and a matching coat, also trimmed in satin. It was too long, but everything’s too long for me and my sister had a friend who did alterations.
The suit cost, I think, £35. My shoes cost £30. I wore my sister’s veil and headband.
I’ll never forget the first time I tried the dress on at home. My mum frowned and said, "You’ll have to get some of those tummy control knickers." A moving moment.
My sister’s friend made a mess of the hem and we had to get someone else to redo it, which is why the dress is a little shorter than it should have been.
Despite that, I really loved the outfit and felt totally comfortable on the day (albeit frightened half to death). I did plan to get it dyed red or navy or something and wear it again (perhaps to other people’s weddings) but I never got around to it and eventually it went to the charity shop.