Women over 40 are increasingly marrying again, but getting married in mid-life throws up different issues from marrying when you’re younger.
Brigit Sapstead is having her wedding at Easter in Wells Cathedral and it will be a great time of joy and celebration, but she’s found that things are more complicated the second time around.
In particular, finding a dress has had Brigit tearing her hair out and she still hasn’t found the right thing. “I want something in which I will look radiant but not tarty, traditional, but not meringue,” she says. “But there is nothing for a 40-something who wants to look chic. I haven’t got the budget or the time to trawl the shops for the perfect dress”
This season especially, Brigit points out, the designers have done mid-life women no favours. “This season everything seems to be sleeveless and strapless, and I know I am going to be cold.” she says. That leaves her searching for a pashmina or some other sort of cover-up.
Brigit spent the day in Brighton…
The wedding is around the corner, the bride is a mess: no dress; caterers have pulled out; and her hair has started to fall out!
With only 6 weeks to go, it’s not a case of blushing bride, but flushed with stress. I’m not a ’20 something’ about to wear tarty meringue; nor ‘mother of the bride’. Nor do I have time or budget to trawl London boutiques or worse, designer outlets stores, to locate appropriate couture! There is nothing for a 48 year old who wants to look fab on her special day!
So off to Brighton yesterday with 16 year old Freya; day started stressfully as the train was delayed – should have expected it; took a call from BT who I had been arguing with about charging me £168 to change my old telephone line to a new one in my fiance’s home. And, guess what, I was in the wrong; however, they waived the fee as I had misunderstood instructions. God Bless BT!
Met an old friend of mine in Bill’s, the organic cafe and downed far too much wine. Then, reeking of garlic, we hit Monsoon. I had bought the Rosie, a satin pink and sleeveless affair – girlfriend did not like the dress, said the quality of the satin was cheap. She is right! Dress went back, but I still yearn for that pink….headed to Bhs, where there is a new collection of bridal stuff by Elizabeth Emmanuel. By now, the garlic was beginning to cause problems, bloating, as were my feet. At 48, you feel these things. The wine had nothing to do with it!
Bhs provided a pair of shoes – at 5’11” and with a back injury, I cannot attempt stilettos or doctor fiance will be doing more than marrying me on our wedding day. A pretty pair of kitten heels in cream satin at £30 were a bargain too good to miss…..now, it’s onto the dress.
Hey, I have got this wrong – shoes before dress???? Bhs’s range of dresses is limited, unless you want a sleeveless and backless number, you are wasting your time. However, if you are looking for your little helpers, and I stress little, its brilliant for cutesy bridesmaids and pageboys, but nothing for a 16 year old with attitude!
Freya, tried on every variety of ‘prom’ dress available – not that many, because it is only February. Prom dresses get sold as cocktail gear at Christmas, or summer ball attire in June. Debenhams came up trumps with the Coast label, and we triumphed with a natty cobalt blue number. You will have to wait till the big day to catch a glimpse, because as Freya decreed, no way would she try on any more clothes! And, certainly not for my camera.
Do I buy back the pink number? I managed to find a faux fur wrap in Debenhams which would keep my shoulders warm….Freya says I am being a wimp and she would rather freeze than be seen dead in an outfit with sleeves. But, then, there is a 30 odd year age gap!