In Need of a Wedding Gown?

The other day, I received a comment from Joyce – a bride-to-be in Mangalore. She ties the knot in a few months and is hunting high and low for Christian bridal gowns in Mangalore. If any of you people reading this are from Mangalore and know how to help her out, it would be highly appreciated.

An update: Buttercup, a reader, has kindly contributed a website that should be of help to brides looking for a bridal gown tailor in Mangalore. Visit Concetta Bridals to view the beautiful gowns up there.

I have never been to Mangalore, and know less about how weddings proceed out there. When I think about the difficulty in finding the right accessory, fabric, decor, caterer, etc. over here in Vasai and even in Mumbai, I wonder what Christian brides and grooms who are looking for all these things and more go about it in other parts of India.

I wore a bespoke gown for my wedding

Sure, we have the internet these days for everything, but some of the best wedding vendors out there are unlisted in wedding directories and barely a small fraction have websites of their own. This is very sad, as it would be of tremendous help to Christian couples looking for quick, affordable and quality solutions to their wedding if all these wedding vendors were listed somewhere on the Indian interwebs.

Christian brides in India almost always go for a bespoke bridal gown. Not many prefer vintage or second-hand gowns as they are viewed as hand-me-downs. A pity, since lace and fabric back then were divine as were some of the styles.

If you would not mind a second-hand or vintage wedding gown, I would suggest you try a place like David & Company in Dhobi Talao at Marine Lines, Mumbai. I remember a dreamy concoction of flowing pink lace fading into white I once came across out there. I wowed to wear a gown like that for my own wedding but yes, I eventually went for a simple number.

If you don’t find what you are looking for there, you could always ask them to direct you to other retailers who stock second-hand gowns. Do take a quick stroll down Crawford Market before you try elsewhere and pay close attention to the shops that line the start of the lane. They stock ready-made gowns and if you are lucky, you may find a seamstress who will agree to stitch one for you in a short time.

From what I hear, Inspirations, the bridal and floral accessories boutique at Amboli in Andheri West is another place that has recently started stocking ready-made gowns. The quality maintained at Inspirations is fantastic and along with a gown, you will find yourself stocking up on button-hole flowers, tiaras, corsages and some exquisite wedding jewelry.

Silver Pages, a Christian wedding information directory dedicated to listings of wedding-related services is another brilliant resource you can consult. I am not sure about their website, but I have been told that you can obtain a copy at Snehalaya at Mahim West in Mumbai.

If a trip to Mumbai is impossible, I would suggest you ask any women’s group in your local parish for pointers on the best bridal gown tailor in your area. Never doubt the solid information to be found in a group of women I say!

Failing that, I list down some excellent dressmakers abroad that you can check out if there is no other solution but to order a wedding gown online. These are Indian pocket-friendly, and I know of a few brides who have been happy with their gowns:

David’s Bridal

Pre-Owned Wedding Dresses

Once Wed

Be wary of purchasing a wedding gown from websites that offer wholesale wedding gowns or discount gowns as returns/alterations/shipping etc. could turn out to be a painful process. Unless you know of anyone who has made use of the service, it would be inadvisable to get a wedding gown via them.

Purple Feathers, Darling Nuns, Shopaholics & New Beginnings

Last Friday had me sleeping a bit late due to extreme excitement over my first shopping excursion for the wedding.

Something Special in Bandra is a DIY bride’s dream & maybe the groomsmen & the men from my bridal party’s nightmare. I shall reveal nothing more than two words - purple feathers.

Mom and I wrapped up with Something Special and I don’t know what compelled me, but I was pulled towards my school or more specifically the nuns who were so much a part of my childhood. I was unable to meet my old principal but as I was nervously jotting down a note to her, I met the terror of my boarding school days.

Said terror was the resident nurse and the choir mistress. If you were sick, you were huffed at for falling sick. If you were not sick, you were huffed at for causing general inconvenience. If you had a good voice, you had to attend interminable singing practices. If you couldn’t croak well, you were banished to the spare voices section.

Us girls would find ourselves in quite a pickle when in the presence of the terror.

So imagine my surprise when said terror gives me the biggest bear hug in mankind’s history and greets me like I’ve come home. It made me quite sappy to tell the truth.

Easter dresses beckoned me though and so I had to leave the good nuns for the nonce with promises to return soon for more reminiscing. Luck had it that I found the perfect dress in the first shop itself. I am so darn pleased with it, that I am planning on wearing it on the day my Second Banns are read in church.

The next day continued in very much the same vein. After a lot of waiting and coaxing I got to watch Confessions of a Shopaholic with three absolutely, divinely, stylish girls.

From frame one onwards, I was captivated. I forgot all about my cheese popcorn. I forgot about everything except a theatre full of beautiful women who let go of the world for an hour or two, the purple galoshes , coats, dresses, heels and purple everything, three women who loved to shop and always have a better-than-good time and Sophie Kinsella’s magical, funny story.

The adrenaline was gushing and I was incredibly high on a fabulous weekend spent with family, friends and cousins. So I ended the night with a thorough soaking in Temptations at Bandra and spread some Britney Spears ‘love’. On a side note, they really ought to chuck them old CDs out from the jukebox!

 

Aside and apart from everything else, this has been a fitting last week to an old year and an old life.

Sukaala to the new year! Gudi Padva abhinandan.

My Palette of Purple

As many of you know, the colors I’ve chosen for my wedding are:

Rich Cream
Pale Gold
Goth Purple

This unusual combination is very difficult to put together on many counts, mainly because people simply don’t go for anything darker than a freaky shade of wine when it comes to dark purple.

However, I live in hope and hope to find my perfect match (color i.e.) very soon.

Did I Ever Tell you About the Rings?

During our engagment, one thing i was REALLY excited about was the ring. After a lot of searching and shoutouts for jewelers with a twist, Melroy & I (or rather Melroy) found out about Mario Romano.

Hailing from Brisbane, Mario creates unique jewelery (most of them bespoke). Melroy approached him with the initial designs (which happened to be a Gimmel for me & a Claddagh for him) we had selected, but due to time-constraints (we had less than a month till D-day), we couldn’t get those.

Our second choice was something rather simple (infinity bands) and required just a little modification to suit our purpose. Mario managed. And how!

Less than 2 weeks before Melroy had to depart for India, I remembered about the Big Indian Diamond Superstition and called up Melroy ASAP to convey my concern and the pressing need to avoid bad luck.

You see, all the jewelers out here allow you to purchase diamond/s in the name of the person you want to gift it to and keep it for a week. If, during that period no harm befalls that person, then the diamond is the one for him/her. If not, then time to exchange it for another one and repeat the process till the stone fits or the person dies (just kidding!! As far as I know, nothing like that has ever happened).

So moving on, poor Melroy woke up from his sleep and promised to call Mario the first thing the next day. He told Mario about this unexpected development and the dear thing assured us that he would buy the diamond and keep it for me for a week.

Thankfully, during that week I did not fall sick, get lost, kidnapped, lose any loved one or suffer any major or minor injury. And so… the diamond came to be mine forever, never to be lost and never to be forgotten (you won’t believe how often I misplaced the ring!).

When after a lot of cajolling Melroy showed me my ring (the darling fellow was goin to get down on one knee and all), I was ecstatic! Mario had done a fine job  and had put in his own twist to it (he added diamond dust). Melroy’s ring too was striking (I shall put up the pics shortly).

The only hitch was, I had given Mario the wrong size and I had to roam with a ring that was at least 3 sizes bigger strung on black lace around my neck (I must say, it made for good novelty jewelery).  

So when Melroy took it back with him to Australia to get the size adjusted, Mario obliged us once again. He fixed up the ring and did not even charge us for the service. Now how often do you get jeweler’s like that!

Suffice to say, Mario Romano did a smashing job on our engagement ring! We are hoping to catch hold of him for our wedding rings :)