Getting married during lockdown meant very little of the wedding we ended up with resembled the one we had intended to have. One thing though that did deliver in full on my vision for the day was my beautiful dress, luckily bought and altered before quarantine rules settled in.
In truth, I was never one of those girls who grew up picturing what I would one day look like as a bride. Don’t get me wrong, I love watching Say Yes to the Dress as much as the next person (bloody good television, that) but my fascination with wedding gowns always ended with the enjoyment of seeing others pick theirs out.
Perhaps this lack of personal interest in weddings was due to a lack of interest in marriage. I know this sounds odd as a recently married person, but having grown up with separated parents and half-siblings from my dad’s first marriage, I can't recall ever considering marriage to necessarily equal great love, great commitment or great happiness, and witnessed first-hand that these three things could quite readily exist outside of wedlock, which I basically always just saw as legal paperwork.
Because of this, I never had ideas throughout my life of THE DRESS. It wasn’t until last fall while working at Toronto’s leading dress rental boutique The Fitzroy that I tried on and truly fell in love with a dress, thus discovering the brand that would soon – unbeknownst to me at the time – provide my wedding dress.
The cornflour blue dress which I wrote about on the blog at the time was from London brand Needle & Thread, one I somehow never discovered during my multiple years living in the city. It was too big for me and had some features I would have done without, but I remember vividly the feeling of putting it on – the instant weight and touch conveying how well made it was, only confirmed upon closer inspection. I soon explored the brand further online and professed myself besotted with it. When my friend Brynne saw the dress, she said, “how fun and different would a dress like that be to get married in?" I hadn't considered it but agreed wholeheartedly, so when my own wedding soon appeared unexpectedly and imminently on the horizon, the brand came instantly to mind.
Ever since I was little, blue has been my colour. Mum always made sure to dress me in it when she still had authority over my wardrobe, and continued to encourage it when I was beyond that. I have always loved the colour myself and agree it suits me best. My feelings about weddings be they as they may, there must still be some traditional part to me somewhere, for when it came to choosing a dress to get married in, I couldn’t entirely remove myself from the cream or ivory of classic brides.
Needle & Thread incidentally has an entire bridal range, however they have so many lovely dresses that incorporate pastel colours in a soft and subtle way, that I strayed outside of the ‘Wedding’ section of their site. Of the countless dresses I fancied, nothing appealed to me more than one champagne and baby blue lace gown… it is inspired by Victorian lace and felt like something straight out of a BBC period romance. It had details that make it unusual and unique, but enough in its tulle skirt and embroidered lace that made it feel unmistakably bridal for me. It also served as my something blue for the day.
When I asked Jesse ahead of the day what he thought my dress might look like, he basically described a Meghan Markle dress, minus the train. Straight lines, sleek, simple, modern. Definitely no frills or lace. Being so far off the mark, I was so eager to see his reaction on the day, but despite being surprised by it, he loved it almost as much as I did. When he was shopping for his wedding outfit, I’d sneakily suggested of the pocket squares he was considering, he opt for the baby blue one I knew would match the dress perfectly. My friends also sent me flowers for the day from incredible Toronto florist Wild North (read about them and the other incredible small businesses that made our day here) which I used to form a makeshift bouquet. These also included blue tones so, small and as unorganised as the wedding turned out, there was a somewhat unexpected colour theme to the day, and I think it’s safe to say… blue is still my favourite colour.
All photos courtesy of our amazing photographer Carina Yu.