Money Talks

… and a lack-of talks a little louder. In crude tones. With obscene gestures.

Let’s get one aspect of my wedding planning mentality clear here. I am a very if-it-doesn’t-serve-a-purpose-don’t-waste-your-$ type of person. Flowers? Regardless of how nice they look for a day or two, they die and what are you left with other than a $50 debit to your cashflow?

So you can imagine the internal anxiety I go through at the thought of dropping 3-4 months rent on a dress I’m going to wear for a couple hours. Sure, fine, I’ll look at those pictures for the rest of my life, but really? Will anybody but me be able to tell if it’s poly-blend or silk? Synthetic or antique lace? And for pete’s sake, 30 years from now nobody will be commenting about the quality of my dress, they’ll be like, “OMG did you really wear your hair all pouffy like that?!” “Look at how silly your makeup looks!” or, “Eww, that style is soooo 2010.”

Laur, Shea and I made the inevitable trip to David’s Bridal last weekend, which I will compare to shopping at American Eagle in high school. Rather, buying American Eagle at Value City (which I did then, and will continue to shop at discount department stores until I die, don’t take the analogy the wrong way). I’m not a fan of the mass-produced chain retailer vibe, and I think I might have seen some blacked-out and snipped tags on the racks.

Also, my “consultant” (who should just be called “worker” since we pulled the dresses ourselves and she just manned the zippers and clamps) had a patchy mustache. The quality of the dresses was very obviously reflected by the quality of grooming done by the staff.

So yesterday Laur, mom and I ventured to a “real” bridal shop – in the very chic suburb of Rocky River – where cardigan sets and custom tailored jeans reigned highly supreme to our hoodies and tennies, and many noses were upturned in our direction. Ok it wasn’t that bad, but it’s no Welly-ville.

We enter the cute boutique-y shop and immediately I’m wondering how I can flub on my actual budget to keep the owner from kicking us out of her shop. She tells me the average cost of her gowns is about $2,200. I attempt to keep my jaw at an acceptable elevation from the floor, and refrain from throwing an actual dollar amount at her while still giving the “you’re insane if you think I’m spending that much money” look. My entourage flops on the cushy Victorian couches and owner Cathy and I begin scouring the discontinued racks.

Pouffy gown after ball gown after crystal-embellished-and-toulle-filled gown later, I’m tired of masking my “I smell something funny” face and “I literally hate this dress with every ounce of my soul” comments, and am ready to throw my Nikes back on and head out. Anyways, I’ve seen price tags lower on a used car lot – a purchase will NOT be made today.

And then owner Cathy, bless her heart, says,

“You know, I have a bridesmaid dress that might be the style you’re looking for, and it can be ordered in white…”


So if everything goes as planned, I’ll be walking down the aisle (ooh goosebumps!) in a beautifully simple, classically modern (is that an oxymoron?) gown, with a couture embellishment (recessionista, hel-LOOO!)that will remain a secret, because it’s my favorite, FAVORITE thing I’ve found shopping like, in my entire life.

And that’s a lot of shopping.

Oh, and thank you to owner Cathy for taking a giant hit to her commission for the month.


Sarah Soon-To-Be


2 thoughts on “Money Talks

  1. You failed to mention the time you & your bridesmaid hit the bar at the IX Bridal Show. While your mother fulfilled her duty carrying everything, staying calm, trying not to be too overwhelmed how many people there and not hitting the bar myself! I did have a very nice Sunday spending time with you and Lauren.


  2. Ooh… I recently stumbled on your blog and am enjoying it! I live in northern Cali but am from Cleveland. Family is in Westlake and I went to HS in Rocky River – never heard of it being described as a “chic suburb” before, so cute!

    Sounds like you worked out a really smart and awesome deal on your dress, good for you! :)



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