Is this bridal enough?: The great WHITE lie

Guest post by Ocelot

These gowns are both made by Allure. One is the Allure Wedding Dress 8802, and the other is from Allure's prom line Night Moves. Aside from perhaps a difference in belt width, this is the same damn dress — COLOR is the only difference. In white, this dress is about twice as costly because the white one is largely considered a lovely “once in a lifetime” gown and the grey is well… just a dress.

Doesn't that just twist your knickers?

I started off not wanting a lot of the normal wedding trappings, like flowers and so on. But, little by little, I've given into the ideas of some of these things in order to make others happy, or, because alternatives were too difficult or expensive. Somehow, I have latched onto “the dress” as the single thing I would have complete control over. Short of drugging me, one could not force me to wear something I didn't want!

However, I AM feeling the same pressures to “give in” to a gown in the white family, like ivory or eggshell. Maybe not pressure, but a general lack of support which all started with this one nasty sentence: “You don't want to look like a bridesmaid at your OWN wedding, do you?”

I wish I could remember who said it, so I could slap the shit out of her, but it wouldn't matter. I've heard so many variations on that particular cutting remark that I'd probably have a sore slapping hand by now.

A few people are immediately dismissive of a non-white dress, but over time they begin saying things like, “How will we know who the bride is?” and, “You will look like you're going to prom!” and everything in between. It's started to seep into the more doubtful and anxious parts of me and I start to wonder — “Is this BRIDAL enough?”

I don't even know what “bridal” means. Does it mean white and expensive? Because that's all I can find. If it's white, it's automatically bridal, no matter what it is. If it's any other saturated jewel-tone color, I feel I have to add things to ensure that BRIDAL feel — a veil, a train, a pile of flowers. I also feel like I'll have to find a “better” reason than personal preference to divert from white just so that people will understand.

If YOU'RE feeling pressure to “give in” to a white dress, check out these colored dress tags for some inspiration:
Red dresses
Blue dresses
Gold dresses
Pink dresses
Purple dresses
Black dresses

Sometimes I wonder who could be so stupid as to show up at my wedding at my request, and then not remember I'm the fucking bride without a visual cue. Maybe I'll huck the bouquet directly at 'em — that'll jog their memory!

I wish I could be more confident in the choice to go with a non-white dress. I see so many lovely women here with alternative apparel and I am so dazzled. I wish I could borrow their courage and their determination!

I would like to know how people came to their choices and stuck by them. Anyone want to share?

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Comments on Is this bridal enough?: The great WHITE lie

  1. It’s really about what makes you feel like a bride. I hate shopping for white, my dress was yellow. But what made me feel like a bride was my veil, so i had to have one. You just have to decide what’s important to you.

  2. If it’s important to you for your dress to feel bridal but unique, and if you’re worried about upsetting your family with a dress that isn’t white.. consider Justin Alexander 8465. It’s got ivory lace, but a beautiful coffee blushy colored skirt. it’s not quite pink, not quite nude, or brown. it’s my dress and i’m super excited about it. it feels “bridal”, “special” but not cookie cutter..and i don’t think i’ll be “hurting anyones feelings” with it. 🙂

  3. In all honesty, not only do I know exactly know how you feel but I sometimes wish I had that courage as well. I’m beginning to crack through my parents in terms of my dress, but there is so much more that I’d wish they would just let me take over on. I feel like maybe it has to do with them being used to planning things for me instead of just letting me do it. I hope that I find even more courage and eventually my parents will just let me voice my plans without any wincing from them.

  4. *huggles* I love OBB. Even if I was regreting my blue dress choice (which i’m totally not) you guys would have changed my mind with your support. Keep it coming OBBs!

  5. “Sometimes I wonder who could be so stupid as to show up at my wedding at my request, and then not remember I’m the fucking bride without a visual cue.” A-FREAKIN-MEN. That’s all I heard when I told certain family members that I wanted to wear pink, and that was my same response: If a guest can’t remember I’m the bride, maybe that person isn’t close enough to me to be invited?!? The whole thing seriously makes me feel ill. People should feel free to wear whatever they want on the day they get married.

    As for me? I was shopping for pink dresses (or blush or whatever) until I stumbled upon my stunning ivory gown at the Goodwill. So I’m wearing white after all, but my seamstress is adding some pink tulle underneath for me.

  6. I’m right there with you. I’ve always known I wanted to get married in a red dress. Except that now that me and the boyfriend are about to get engaged (ordered the rings last Saturday!), it turns out that he wants me in a white dress. I know I’ll wear a red dress, but it’s going to be a loooong journey for us to agree on the wedding, I’m offbeat and he’s surprisingly traditional. 😛

    • Hahaha, we’re the opposite – I want (and just bought) a cream-coloured dress, he wants me in a red dress. Oh well. We agree on most of the other things, and it’s been a good opportunity to work on our disagreement-resolution skillz. Besides, it would be really difficult to find a red dress that doesn’t clash horribly with his kilt! If your guy is wearing a suit, you won’t have that problem! He’ll think you’re gorgeous no matter what you wear – it’ll be the big smile on your face that he’ll be looking at!

  7. I am completely in favor of a dress in any color that you want. This is your wedding, your special day and it should reflect the individual touches that you want to have. I have seen many gorgeous brides in all shades of dresses. One of my favorite elements about weddings is how things are brought together to make a unique ceremony tailored to that couple. There is nothing wrong with listening to the advice of a trusted friend or wedding pro but these should only be taken as small tidbits of info and the bride should go with her heart on such important choices.

  8. For the small, religious ceremony, I actually stuck by my choice to wear a red dress. It was hard though – Red has so many contemporary negative connotations in Western society, that I knew I was in for a long fight. But I didn’t give in to the white dress lie for this ceremony because red was important to me, and I felt so far removed from the religious aspects of the ceremony, that I needed the red dress to represent me. I needed to wear it in order to create some meaning for myself. The Result? Everyone complimented me on my dress. Those that didn’t give direct compliments merely expressed pleasant surprise. Those who might have felt offended kept it to themselves. So at the end of the day, I realized it wasn’t worth worrying about the opinions of people who didn’t have the courage to tell me how they really felt anyway.

    • Red is traditionally a “lucky” colour in many Asian cultures. It was also popular in Ancient Greece- but I think that’s because they pelted the bride with fruit and nuts after the wedding as a symbol of fertility and red wouldn’t stain.

  9. I’d always kind of known I didn’t like white dresses but the thing that finally decided it for me was actually looking through bridal magazines. I’d flick though pages and pages of white dresses thinking “Yeah that’s ok”, “I kind of like the pattern on that one”…then I’d hit a blue or purple dress and instantly think “Wow!”. Deciding between an “ok” dress and a “Wow!” dress is a no-brainer to me.

    I did get some of the stupid comments about looking like a bridesmaid, but we solved that one – they wore red. 6 girls in red, one in blue. Which one could possibly be the bride?

  10. I’m getting married in a dress styled to look like the corpse bride dress but with a over dress added to it (I have thistheory that her dress was the slipfrom her wedding gown) I’m designing it myself and I’m adding lavender and blush pink hues to it. I’ve already heard flack from family and friends but I’m going to be beautiful in MY dress at MY wedding and that’s all that truely matters isn’t it? My guests are not getting married I am so my wedding should represent my FH and me right?

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