What Jo Did… Got Dress Wobbles.

Holy smokes! 98 days to go. Yes people, WE ARE INTO DOUBLE FIGURES!

Too. Much. Excitement.

How is it March already? I’m sure it was only a few weeks ago that I was getting over-excited about Christmas. At least it’s nearly hen do time. Getting my Dolly Parton costume ready – I’m wearing one, even if no-one else is.

We’ve got quite a bit done this month/six weeks since my last post – I LOVE the feeling of ticking things off the list. We did go for a week’s skiing in the US though, to give us a bit of a break from school/wedding-y stuff.

I loved hearing all the stories about teeth in response to my last post – I was amazed by how many of you are having work done! Just after that post, I had the muscle between my top gum and top lip cut away (it’s called a frenectomy – do NOT, under any circumstances Google this. Bleurgh!)
The procedure was fine(ish) as my mouth and nose were totally numb, but when my dentist stitched it (didn’t even think about the stitches before I had the op – not sure how I thought it would heal?!?) I could feel the thread dangling on my chin, which completely freaked me out.

The next morning, I looked like an extra out of some dodgy low-grade horror flick. Grim.

Poor Mr A – not what he’d envisaged waking up next to, I’m sure. Thankfully, it was all congealed blood (sorry!) that washed away, but I would warn anyone having this procedure to make sure they have the following day off work – I was told I would be fine to work which, in effect, I was. HOWEVER, I work with some funny people (and teach some funny kids), and every time I laughed or smiled, my stitches reopened. I know, totes gross, which is why I am now moving on to something nice and girly…

W-Day Glow

My lovely Pops bought me some fantabulous products to get my skin looking all glowy and radiant for W-day. I must just point out here that he didn’t actually choose them himself – that would be MEGA impressive. Now, Mrs O’Shea mentioned in the RMW Real Brides Hen Do post that my skin is perfect – proof that a lovely layer of Clinique foundation will trick even the most discerning eye! That said, I am pretty lucky that I only need to use a bit of foundation and powder (and blusher, of course!) and I’m good to go.

So, what did I go for? Well, after some extensive research (i.e. Looking at the Eve Lom vs Liz Earle debate on RMW and chatting to the beautiful Amy-Louise at the hen party), I plumped for the Liz Earle and IT IS AMAZING! For five minutes every day, I feel like I’m in a spa. Lush.

I purchased the starter kit, with hot cloth cleanser, toner & moisturiser and it came with a free full size face mask (Bargainous!). Skin is smooth, it even gets rid of my mascara, and (not that it really matters) it was beautifully packaged.

Now I just need to sort my W-day make up but there is quite simply too much choice for little ol’ indecisive me. I get a bit overexcited around make up counters in department stores (think Buddy the Elf in New York!) and spend ages looking. Then I end up having a little word with myself about the cost of all these pretty things, allow myself to purchase the necessities (Clinique gentle light foundation and powder), then trot off to the ‘normal’ make up section in Boots for my Rimmel mascara and Bourjois blusher.

BUT, having been pampered by the completely wonderful Mariam Jensen at the RMW Hen Do, I am determined to put together the ultimate W-day make-up collection! I’m thinking Laura Mercier. I’m thinking Bobbi Brown. But I’m also thinking I should stick to what I know. Then I shelve all make-up thoughts for ‘another day.’

Must sort this before I write again, ladies!

Dress Decisions

Something else to sort – the dress. Remember the dress? The one I got for £500.00 down from £1600.00 in a sample sale? The dress I raved about?

Well, In the words of Little Britain’s Andy Pipkin, “I don’t like it!”

Now, I can’t show you a picture of the dress, which is très frustrating. I tried it on in November and loved it. Come January, it’s being pinned into place for alteration, and I’m looking in the mirror thinking ‘what a beautiful dress, but not on me.’

Stupidly (LADIES WHO ARE YET TO BUY DRESSES, TAKE NOTE!), I never sat down or knelt down in it in the shop and it just looked odd!

It does need altering around the top, but there is a chance I’ll end up flashing actual boob unless I use lingerie tape (not good on hot days!). In the words of the lovely Dot (my seamstress), “Your vicar is going to get a right eyeful if we don’t get this sorted.” One day, I’m hoping to be able to think back to this and laugh 😉

I HOPE these doubts are a combo of:

  • Having the dress for so long (since last Feb.)
  • Trying it on too many times.
  • A natural ‘lull’ in lovage for the dress? (A few married friends have said this is normal?!?)
  • Seeing too many other amazing dresses on RMW(!)
  • The fact it needs altering.

I’m planning to revisit Dot avec Mrs A Snr and the veil very soon, when I will *hopefully* fall back in love with it! She very kindly offered to buy me a new one (Mrs A Snr, not Dot!), but I’m trying my hardest to learn from the mistakes of the lovely Jenny O with her multiple dresses! 😉

I also feel a bit like I owe it to that dress to love it, because I loved it so much to begin with, and it was a total bargain!

Someone please, please tell me that you’ve felt the same way about your dress at some point during the planning process? The weekly trawls through RMW Undress need to STOP!

So much simpler for the boys! Mr A decided what he wanted to wear yonks ago, and a jaunt to the űber-convenient Moss Bros confirmed it. I do have pictures of him in it, but will leave it until the W-day post. All I can say is that he ROCKS a morning suit!


Our invitations are ALMOST ready. This, my lovelies, is too exciting for words!!

Our wonderful, and hugely talented neighbour (Jan) designed them for us, incorporating a drawing of a peony by none other than Mrs A Snr!

It looked like this:

And now the front cover of the invitation looks like this:

The back looks like this:

And the main invitation looks like this:

It is tri-folded, like so:

with a flap on the inside centre section, holding the RSVP card in place.

Jan has come up with some amazing ideas, and we have been VERY indecisive. She used to work in advertising in London, and now we are lucky enough to have her creative genius in our little village! I first met her at a wedding fair in 2005, got chatting, and then ended up moving next door to her in 2008. There was no-one else for the job as far as our wedding stationery is concerned!

On the back of the envelope we will be using stickers sporting this rather excellent monogram, designed by none other than our very own, very talented Kelly Reds! What a total legend this girl is – we completely love it! Thank you so, so much Miss R!


Can anyone think of some original but clear wording re: dress codes? It’s tricky – the venue looks very formal, but we want everyone to feel relaxed. Men in suits (lounge, not morning) and ladies in lovely summery dresses – maxi or short, floaty or fitted (and maybe hats – I loves a hat). I’ve seen the wording ‘English summer party in a field’ before, which I like BUT, it makes it unclear for the blokes, who might decide to rock up in shorts(!) Plus, for us, no denim at a wedding is a given, but some people do love to buck a trend…

So folks, I’ve run out of space to tell you about food (yum!) and equipment hire (LUSH water glasses!). The latter sounds quite dull, but it has been VERY interesting shopping around for the best deals – saved £1000.00 in total by going with three DIFFERENT companies instead of one. I’ll save the food for next time 🙂

In the meantime, please give me your make up tips, your tales of dress doubts (if any of you have had any!), and your clever suggestions for dress code wording – all very much appreciated!



PS: I couldn’t send this in without sending a huge thank you to everyone involved in the RMW Hen Do in January. It was a truly brilliant day, with lots of wonderful suppliers, at an amazing venue. It was quite surreal meeting all the lovely ladies (and Charlotte & Adam) I talk to daily on Facebook. To echo what Shirley said last week – they are SUCH a supportive group, which I am so happy to be a part of.

Thank you, gorgeous girls! (and Adam/Zoolander!)

PPS: MAHOOSIVE congratulations to the gorgeous Alex – the first Real Bride to tie the knot, and now on honeymoon. *YAY*

Author: Adam Crohill
Adam likes Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.

62 thoughts on “What Jo Did… Got Dress Wobbles.

  1. Hello hello Jo!

    I may just steal some of your invite style if thats ok?!!

    My friends got married at Stowe, VERY amazingly Bronte-esqe!

    Im afraid I cannot comment on your dress wobbles as I am yet to even try one one, but I can agree with your love of Liz Earle Hot Cloth Cleanser – amazeballs (I read too much RMW!!)


  2. Jo I love your invitations! and I am now off to buy some Liz Earle….what is the Clinique foundation you use?! Lucy x

  3. I am so reassured to hear that other normal brides have a ‘dress lull’ I just had my toile fitting on Saturday and was over the moon with it. But come Sunday afternoon my head was filled with little doubts, what will it be like when it’s made out of the proper material? will I prefer my calico wedding dress to my real one!? etc etc
    I guess my biggest problem is, I designed my dress (with the help of a fabulous dressmaker) because there wasn’t anything I found in shops that was quite what I was after, so I know I like it in theory I just can’t quite picture it!
    Your invitations look lovely, I love the Wuthering Heights quote! So exciting to be in double figures!

  4. Its funny you should say your having dress wobbles, I haven’t even put a deposit on my dress yet and are having them! I have been looking for my dress for 5 months now, its all getting a little boring. I finally tried one on I liked at the weekend and it was like a eureka moment, I even swished about in it. I bought a tiara that matched to encourage me to stick with it… but as soon as I left the shop I felt deflated, like ‘why do I like it?’ ‘Did it really look that nice?’. No matter how much my mum has tried to tell me it was nice I just don’t feel the same now. Which leads me to think that no matter what I try on or purchase, I will get wobbles for a whole year up until my wedding. Scary thought!! Either that or the dress is not right and I need to keep looking. Much to the dismay of my rather fed up bridesmaids and family. There must be a dress out there that makes me happy! I’m on a mission 🙂 xxx

  5. I also use Liz Earle and it is amazing!! Also, re dress wobbles, you are not the only one…I bought mine waaaaay back last summer, tried it on for the first time a couple of months ago and felt just ‘OK’ (think I was expecting a ‘TA-DA’ type moment). After standing in much silence, Mum looking intently at my very silent face I decided once it fits (needs a lot of taking in) and I get ‘sparkly bits’ added, I will feel TA-DA! (or so I hope!). I’m sure you will look beautiful and fall back in love with your dress. xx

  6. I bought and took home my dress two years before the wedding and I fell in and out of love with it often. Many a time I debated going to try on others, or thought about just buying another one off ebay or something (especially when I saw a great deal on a dress I had lusted over often) or got very close to buying a totally different dress to wear in the evening. But I put it all down to having the dress for so long that I was getting used to it. I eventually kept it at a relative’s house to stop me trying it on and looking at it so often and closer to the wedding I found I had little time to be worrying about it anyway. On the big day I felt amazing in my dress, everyone said how “me” it was and I was so so glad that I hadn’t changed it. Just like my hubby, I knew it was the one right away, why would I change it?


    PS Another fan of Liz Earle here. My skin has never looked better 🙂

  7. Hello Jo,

    What a gorgeous read on this lush sun drenched day!! x

    I put my signature to 2 different dresses and woke up in the middle of the night after signing each and thinking, god no, i cant get married in that, i HATE it! My mum calmed me down, but in the end i was too panicky, i would have been a wreck had we not found James. I am now having my dress made, so from scratch it is my dream, everything i loved all rolled in to one beautiful champagne couture dream!! *slightly smug swoon*!!
    I’m sure you’ll be fine, it is after all just a dress, pfft, of course it’s not, it’s THE dress, the most important dress you’ll ever wear! If you dont 100% love and you have an escape route, take it… brutal I know, sorry!! But if you dont feel it’s right, you’ll be so mad at yourself, whatever you choose though, i’m sure you will feel beautiful, love does that to you!!

    Re. Dress Code, i am petrified that people will turn up at my carefully planned day looking like a Primark explosion, it honestly stresses me out! Soo, much to the Boys annoyance i have put on the bottom of our info cards ”Lounge Suits, Cocktail Dresses and Milinery Requested”. Like you said, it’s obvious, but you know there are the odd few who just dont get it!! I’d keep it really simple… ”lounge suits, summer frocks and milinery requested’, no one can argue with that!? Well they can, but they’ll have me to answer to!! Hehe!!

    I hope you’re next dress fitting goes well. xxx

  8. Hi:) I’m soo glad to discover I’m not the only one to have said “I love the dress just not on me.” I was so close to deciding to look for a new one but decided not too, putting down to having tried it on too many times to find matching shoes and underwear. I’m glad I decided to stick with it, it’s a lovelly dress and have been reassured a thousand times that It looks perfect on. I hope you fall in love with your dress again 🙂 x

  9. I had my first fitting a few weeks ago and I wouldn’t call it dress wobbles exactly but I certainly wasn’t as in love with my dress as I thought. I’m hoping it’s just because it still isn’t properly fitted and it’s the kind of dress where that matters a lot but I was hoping that when it arrived in my (approximate) size I would like it more than in the sample size but it was the opposite! I just hope the reality of what it will look like lives up to my imagination on the day.

    Looking at such beautiful dresses all day on RMW etc is definitely the cause of my “wobbles” there are just so many beautiful dresses out there I ‘m not sure how anyone can narrow it down to just 1. As long as mine is still in the top 5 by the time I get married I’ll be happy 🙂

  10. Liz Earle is my hero(ine?!) – I got some of the cleanse and polish stuff free as part of a magazine subscription last year and am now 100% addicted to the stuff.
    I am SO glad other people are having dress wobbles/lulls. I’m not getting married until next August so started dress shopping in Jan as I thought it was bound to take me aaages (seriously, it takes me an hour to dress myself in the morning) and then bam, I found ‘the one’ on my second visit. It was everything I was looking for and the only one that made me feel like me, if that makes sense? I felt I was wearing it rather than it wearing me and on the strength of that feeling I went ahead and put a deposit down. Problem is now I am OBSESSED with looking at photos of it and the more I look at it the more I think I want to tweak a bit here and nip it in a bit there…tres worried about how I’ll feel come w-day, to be honest. I’m going back next week to try it on again and talk to the seamstress about customising it and after that I’ve promised myself I’ll delete the pics on my phone and stop goddam obsessing until all the alterations are made. I think it’s REALLY hard to envision how you’ll look on your w-day, and I think once hair and make up is done and the dress fits perfectly you’ll fall back in love with it all over again.

  11. Jo your skin was perfect before you started using Liz Earle so what on earth does it look like now?! and as per @Lucy – what is the Clinique foundation, I must know immediately!

    And loving the invitations……

    I will email you quick sharp ref dress wobbles!

    Charlotte xxx

  12. Wow your invitations look amazing!
    I had a dress wobble too- I tried on my dress at home pre alterations (also a sample dress) and felt like a big fat lump. I was so upset! Then I went to my alteration appointment the following week and once the seamstress pinned the dress in place it was all ok and when the alterations were complete I was in love again!
    As for dress code- I wrote “Sharp suits and fancy frocks” at the end of my invitations and everyone turned up looking fab!
    Take care x

  13. I think dress wobbles are completely normal, after all it is one of the most photographed dressed you will ever wear. I had major wobbles and even now after looking at all the pretty on these pages find myself gasping and thinking “Wow, if only I’d done more shopping”..

    I made my decision many months ago and somewhere in this country it’s currently being made but it wasn’t all sunshine and kittens. I loved it but after a month or so, before we put down a deposit, I started thinking, “but did I prefer that Alan Hanna one” or “But what about the Ian Stuart one?!” and I whipped myself into a frenzy that lead to me one day driving from Swansea to Cowbridge to try on one option, then from Cowbridge to Hereford to try on my other option, going to my parents house and hashing it over with my mum before turning round and driving all the way back home to Swansea, crying all the way when I realised 13 miles into the journey that I was battling my head versus my heart, and c’mon ladies, we all know that wedding dress = heart decision.

    But I made my peace with my decision and I’ve come to realise that I do love my dress, but for me it’s not really about the dress, it’s about the accessories. I dress quite plainly in my day to day life and then accessorise with statement pieces and I’m being true to myself and doing exactly the same on my wedding day.

    It’s a big day and it’s a big dress, wobbles are almost to be expected!!

  14. Hey,

    I struggled with the dress code wording too. We’re having an outside wedding (fingers crossed on the weather) and I want people to be confortable but smart. We’ve gone for “countryside chic” on the invites – bit much maybe, but sort of summed it up. I’ve then put a section on our wedding website (super high-tec me) about dress code which essentially tells people that it’s a nornal wedding attire affair but outdoors – fabulous hats are optional and people should bring wellies and an umbrella if it’s raining!

    I think people have a certain expectation of what to wear to a wedding, hopefully that’s not shorts for most people! (although there’s always one).

    By the way I’m putting in a shout out for Eve Lom. Since I started using it 2 years ago the ony time i’ve ever had a spot is when i’ve been lazy for a few days and used face wipes to take off make up instead. Otherwise, my skin is just totally clear all the time – miracles.

    And dress wobbles, woah, tell me about it. In 10 days I see my wedding dress for the first time ever (I tried it on in a different fabric – plain white – and just went for it)and I’m super-nervous because the actual dress is pin-striped (Ian Stuart libertine in the honey stripe). Sometimes I feel sick with worry over hating it when I see it in the flesh. It’ll be fine though right? ahhhh….

  15. I too often have dress wobbles, mainly because mine is the opposite of what I wanted (long elegant, with straps or sleeves, thinking similar to Jenny Packham) and somehow I fell in love with a fifties style (without the pouffy skirt) tulle and lace beauty, I would leave my fitting intially with euphoria about how much I loved it but within days I would be deflated and wonder if I would like it and how different it was to what I thought I wanted to wear until I tried it on again, but I have stuck with it, and it more reflects me then my original ideas and even when I have seen beautiful dresses that I love, I actually couldnt imagine myself in them and have them suit me as much as mine does.

    I also bought mine early on, over a year before the wedding which I think doesnt help!

  16. I was a first shop, first dress, no thanks I don’t want to try on any more and yes I’m sure I don’t want a meringue dress shopper. That was August last year and picked it up a couple of weeks ago, final hapening this weekend (should really put the chocolate bar down now). I honestly think the more you look at the more confusing it gets and looking with wishful thinking at other brides can only add to that confusion.

    As for the skincare, may have to go get some of this magical Liz Earle. Generally my skin behaves but with 6 weeks to go, it’s totally playing up and not looking very photographically pretty at all so may have to break the cardinal rule and start messing with the skin care routine in the run up to the day,

  17. I bought the dress I’m getting married in two weeks after I got engaged, I like it as much now as I did then. I don’t love it though but I knew I wouldn’t find anything else that would suit me and my wedding as much as the dress I choose.

    I wonder how dress choices would change if the colour wasn’t limited. Think of the dresses you could choose. It would be like your very own Oscar dress.

  18. Hi Jo

    Your invites are lovely! With regards to the wording, we had similar issues and I simply put “dress code: for the men, lounge suits, tie optional and for the ladies, something pretty!”

    Oh and I ADORE Liz Earle! The Cleanse and Polish works actual miracles!

  19. Never commented on Rock my Wedding before – (not because l’m not an avid reader…seriously check the site every hour…..and read and reread each posting!) but because l’ve never felt compelled to post a comment as l have done today.

    Jo, l completely completely understand and can relate to your dress wobbles. I myself had the exact same experience. I brought my dress last August and tried it on and thought “WOW, this is the one…!” Then fast forward 5 months after alot of wedding magazines/sites and ideas, not to mention a stone and a half lighter, l tried on the dress again, and l just didnt think it was “ME.” I wanted a completely different style to the dress l had chosen.

    I didnt want to share this with my Mum because l was so worried l would offend her after she’d spent a small fortune on my ‘dream dress.’ I then worried that l only liked the Dress because at the time, it was the only 1 that had made me feel slim and confident…and then now l’ve lost my “extra baggage” l didnt have to worry about that.

    And then my Beautiful Bridesmaid made me see sense and gave me some lovely advice, she said that “l had found my dream dress and now my dress just needed to find me…” And then it just clicked, she was right, this was MY DRESS, and all l needed to do was add some finishing touches…..mmaaannyyyy adjustments later, adding some straps here and there, a belt (cant say anymore)…l now have my dream dress again.

    So…my advice to you Jo, is when you go back to try on your dress, think about all the things you can change to it, and make it yours

    C xx

  20. Bobbi Brown, Bobbi Brown, Bobbi Brown! I can’t say it enough. The majority of my makeup bag is BB, and I love it! (my purse doesn’t love it, oopsy). But for a special occasion I would so highly recommend splashing out. I use her “natural finish long lasting” foundation, peony blush (which looks hideously pink in the packet, but once on is gorge), various eyeshadows, which last ALL DAY and don’t crease, gel eyeliner (a complete godsend, and if you only get one item, BUY THIS!!) and “lash glamour” mascara – definitely no clumps. Eek, that sounds like I wear loads of makeup. But it all looks very natural, I promise!

    Good advice about sitting down in your dress!! I haven’t done this, but am now afraid to do so, in case it induces dress wobbles!!!

    Could your invite say something along the lines of “Please come dressed for a fancy garden party”, or “We’d love to see you in all your finery – prize for the best hat!” and then give a bottle of something to the winner?

  21. It’s so great to hear about other dress wobbles (even if it isn’t nice for you ladies!) I bought my dress back in January after trying on many MANY dresses. The thing was I made a change from tulle and lace to more silky dresses late on in the try ons – so the dress I have is a mainly silk with a little bit of lace on dress, and something far far away from what I started liking. I also ended up choosing between two dresses – a large percentage on a popular wedding forum said one particular dress as did my mum and one of my bridesmaids (based on pics only – my mum was on holiday when I chose my dress!) …. and I went for the other one!

    I’m looking forward to seeing it fitted to me and just trying it on again if I’m honest – I’m hoping that will alleviate any worries and I’ll love it again. Until then I’m trying to stop myself searching for sample sales and on eBay (I said trying to stop – not definitely!) to give my dress a chance when it arrives.

    I wa never going to be the girl that tries on a dress and says “this is the one”, but I sure as hell wish I was more decisive than this! xx

  22. Aaah great post, and just what I needed!! I am getting married 13 weeks TODAY 🙂

    I gave up on the make up, there was simply too much to choose from, and I have relented from my original decision of “I can do this myself…. (with a little help from Miriam) to ok I will happily pay £150 for make up on the day and trial!! My mind is now at ease!!

    HOWEVER, I am also having small dress wobbles – I’m guessing this is natural? I love the dress but I am worried about my arms! Might just be me having a “fat” day but I see all these pretty dresses with sleeves and at the time it never occurred to me that this was an option, as every shop you walk in to is mainly a sea of strappless/sleeveless white/off white/ivory numbers!! I hope I am wrong, the dress is currently too big for (yay for shedding a few lbs) so I am also hoping this is the majot factor in why I am not currently head over heels like I was!

    Also my hen is in a few weeks and I am sooooooooo looking forward to it, but I will be wearing a bikini! Has anyone else suddenly realised it’s March and thinking, bikini….. hmmm – not quite ready for that yet!! *sigh 🙁

  23. I can’t comment on dress wobbles, as I am currently a bride without a dress (putting it off to be honest, scary stuff) but I am sure you look beautiful in it and once the alterations are done you will fall in love with it again.

    Liz Earle on the other hand…oh my!! I too got the starter kit free with a magazine subscription and fell in love with it! I have what I think is generally called ‘problem skin’ (I prefer ‘pain in the bloody arse skin’) with a nice mixture of spots and dry patches – joy! Since starting using this it’s pretty much cleared up completely (combined with Bare Minerals make up – I was considering e-mailing this to the reader recommenders bit…seriously amazing stuff!)

    Wooo to the Liz Earle love on here!!
    p.s. to anyone who’s looking at it and thinks it’s a bit pricey – it is, but it lasts AGESSSSSSSSS. I’m pretty religious with the whole cleanse, tone, moisturise every morning and night routine but I’ve still only used one set in 6 months.

  24. Wow Jo! I read your previous post and even though I’ve already had one brace about ten years ago, I do feel the need for another to be picture perfect. Having a bit of a smile obsession I’ve looked into having a frenectomy, but read stories saying how their lips/smile have reverted back after a time and they were disappointed. I’d be very interested to keep up to date with how yours goes/if you think it’s worth it and who did it.

    I’m an avid user of Liz Earle, nothing else removes my mascara so efficiently.

    My advice to Sam would be if you’re not sure at this stage then STOP! Don’t waste money. It may take a while but you will find a dress you love. It took me over a year to find my dress. I loved a couple and kept dithering between the two, which one did I like best? I figure the reson for this is, neither were quite right. As soon as I found ‘the one’ I knew. No doubts. x

  25. @Kim – Libertine is dress that gave me the biggest dress wobbles! I love that dress! My dress was also Ian Stuart, they are all such beautiful dresses, I’d love to have a whole collection of them. I found a second hand Libertine in my size not long before my final dress alterations and was sooooo close to buying it too. Was very happy in my dress on the day though 🙂

  26. Afternoon Jo,

    Double figures now hey? Such a milestone, can’t wait till i’m there to! Your teeth ordeal sounds major epic, it will be worth it in the end and you will have a gorgeous smile for your wedding day. Am so glad my mum got me geeky NHS plate braces as a 13 year old (headgear included) as it would have caused a major ball ache to sort it out now (not that I have balls mind, am picking up ‘bad’ language off the males in my dept).

    Have just looked up this Liz Earl stuff on the net, think I might just go ahead and treat myself sshhhh, don’t tell Andy.

    Your invitations look absolutely stunning. What a talented Mother-in-law-to-be you have there, I don’t suppose you hire her out haha! Ta for the mention, anymore help you need, just give us a shout.

    With regards the dress, I think you are doing the right thing giving yourself time to reflect and mull things over. At the end of the day though, go with your heart.

    Big real-bride-love,
    PS GOOD LUCK for tomorrow. Nail it!

  27. Have just ordered my Liz Earle bits and it looks like a face mask product also fell into my basket. Ooops! Can’t wait to try this stuff out. xxx

  28. Why do we all fret about dresses we love? I have a creamy coloured Aoushka G vintage style dress and it was the only dress I liked when I went on the dress mission ( not to mention it was in the sale!) ever since though I find I’m thinking ridiculous things like ‘what will my friends think of it?’ and ‘I hope he likes it!’ just because it’s not the cookie cutter type of strapless gown. Well ladies I think we all need to learn to say ‘b****r it!’ your dress shone out to you for one reason or many and your gut instinct is usually right. Have faith in your good taste and your confidence will make you look even more beautiful on the day xxx

  29. @LadyFuschia, which did you go for in the end? I found it so hard to choose, all the Ian Stuart dresses are amazing and fit so so well.

    I’m not sure about the flowers on the back of mine, maybe a bit much given the pin stripe too so I’m thinking of having them taken off any then made into head pieces for my and my bridesmaids.

    Probably getting ahead of myself, first fitting on 10 March!

  30. Ladies – you’re all amazing! And I’m going to reply to ALL of you. However, I have an interview tomorrow for my dream job, at my dreamy training school, so I MUST get that sorted.

    I shall treat myself to a RWM sesh later tonight though 🙂

  31. Hi on our invited we wrote something along the lines of gentlemen are invited to wear shirts and tie and ladies hats and fascinators would be very welcome, hope this helps in terms of the jeans issue I discussed in depth with the family gossip how our venue wouldnt allow people to wear them and word soon got around 😉 xx

  32. I just wanted to say that we were invited to a 60th birthday party last Saturday, and the invite clearly said ‘dress to impress’ so I wore a beautiful silk floor length dress, did hair and make-up, only to find that no-one else had bothered at all!
    And we were invited to a wedding that stipulated a black tie dress code, so we carefully checked out exactly what that meant for a day time ceremony and evening do; another long dress for me and a very smart tux and bow tie for my hubby, and again no-one else bothered….. I do hope you have better success than that Jo however you word it!

  33. I bought my dress about 3 weeks after getting engaged, I loved it at the time and it was reduced to £150, but I never had a ‘this is THE ONE’ moment. I then proceeded to fall in and out of love with it about 5 times, until about a month ago when I fell in love with it and it became MY dress. Still get a few ‘hmm’ thoughts when I go home to my parents and peek at it though.

    Here’s a couple of my theories …
    1. This is THE DRESS the one you’ve been thinking of since you were little, the MOST IMPORTANT dress you will ever buy … etc etc
    there is so much pressure for it to be perfect that there will always be some little fault to find.
    2. Usually when you have to buy a dress for an occasion you only have to fit in with one sort of ‘area’ of your life (ie date night, going out with girlies, dinner with parents etc) in this dress we are going to be integrating with pretty much most areas of our lives and everyone sees us differently. This dress has to show our ‘me’ side to everyone.
    3. Such a huge decision! I don’t know about anyone else but I keep having ‘I can’t believe how I just made that huge decision’ moments. ie ring up butcher book pig – there I’ve booked my wedding breakfast. It seems weird to have finally chosen MY wedding dress – all this time up to this moment and the decision has now been made. FOREVER. This is what I will show my children, what future generations will see me wearing in my wedding pictures (which seem to be the ones to survive) THAT IS SCARY!!

    SO my thought is this, make peace with your dress, you loved it for a reason stop picking at faults, you will wear it on your wedding day and then love it forever because it will be what you were wearing the day you became Mrs …

    sorry for the huge post xxx

  34. LOVE LOVE LOVE those invitations!! And the Bronte quote! We got around the dress code issue at our formal venue we had ‘Suits and posh frocks’ printed on our invites and our guests certainly turned out in their finery! Good luck with your dress issues 🙂

  35. We had the same problems regarding dress code wording! In the end we went for “Garden Party Formal if you will, but no ties or hats (we don’t like ties, and hats are scary)”. Obviously this is quite specific, but it worked like a charm for us! Hope you find something that works for you!

  36. Just had a massive stupid row with my other half, then reading the quote on the back of your invite just made me melt and have a lovely tummy feeling… so thank you! he’s not so bad after all 😉

    I was also going to suggest Garden Party Formal for the dress code – I think it sums it up nicely. xx

  37. Howdy Jo!!!!

    Great post lady! I think dress wobbles are more than normal, especially as there’s SOOOOOOO much choice!!!! BUT I do think you’re dress is lovely!

    As for you’re invites the are ruddy delightful!!!! Well done neighbor!!!

    Oh and well done Kelly the stickers look cool too!!!

    Bring on your next post!

  38. Wow Jo, that is some serious brave-ness going on with the gum ‘surgery’?! Sounds exactly like what I would love to have the guts to do. Got my ‘6 month smiles’ in now and cannot wait to have them out already! Keeping my mind on the end result.

    Liz Earle yay! It’s saved my winter-ravaged dry skin and I am so so happy with it. Now getting myself into the habit of hot cloth cleansing morning and night in the run up to W-Day.

    The invites are lovely! Nice one. And the dress drama – I’m worried now, as just purchased mine a couple of weeks ago and already have tiny weeny second thoughts (I sooooo should’ve tried sitting down and kneeling in it!). That’s the only downside of being wedding blog obsessed – you see too many other lovely gowns! Sure it will work out fine for you.

    Looking forward to the next post! 🙂 x

  39. Jo, I dress wobbled too! I bought my dress 9 months before my wedding in jan this year but by september I was starting to really worry if I’d made the right choice. Fast forwarding I wore the dress and adored it….but there’s just so much choice nowadays…everyday we look at sites like the fab RMW and you see an amazing dress/idea/invitation etc etc and it can make you doubt the decisions you’ve made. Just remember how you felt when you had that moment of knowing it was your dress! For me it helped to not google my dress every day, or look at my fitting pics as it can lose the special feeling just a bit. I think it’s all a natural part of the w-planning process albeit a scary one at times! x

  40. I have to agree with what those other wise ladies have said about dress pressure. I first started dreaming about & drawing my dream dress when I was five. Almost as soon as I started trying on dresses in bridal shops, I knew I wasn’t going to find the perfect dress there. I’ve therefore decided to have a dress made for me- thankfully not like those dresses I drew as a child! When I first got my sketches, I was totally overwhelmed- it was amazing, perfect, THE dress. However, as time has gone on, the doubts have started to creep in. I’m hoping that once I go for a fitting & actually see it off the paper & not just in my florid imagination, I’ll be right back in love with it. It’s just so hard to think that this is the one dress & once you’re committed, that’s it. Lots of pressure on an outfit!
    On another note- I LOVE your invites! I am so in love with Wuthering Heights & have been trying to fit in some of those beautiful quotes (thought of having an excerpt as a reading, but could only narrow it down to something like a half hour, multi-character dramatic production!). It’s going to be so hard not to steal this idea!

  41. Hi Jo.

    Totally normal to get dress wobbles! I too got my dress early – a year and a half early! And I have had rather a few wobbles since! I am back to being in love with it now, and actually every time I see it I think how beautiful it is.

    It’s so easy to have doubt because there are so many dress choices, and we’d all probably look great in more than just one of course. But for me when I tried this one on I felt me in it. It’s quirky yet elegant and my mother in-law and the shop assistants said when I came out of the dressing room I had this huge smile, whereas with the others I as a little more serious – and that isn’t me!

    What I’m trying to say is it’s worth finding a dress that really suits your personality as well as your shape. And for those who have their dress and are having wobbles, stop looking at other dresses and be confident with the one you chose. You will look beautiful!


  42. Jo, you are SO bloomin clever!! The WH quote actually gave me goosebumps!!!

    LOVE it, all of it.

    As for the dress, I hope the combo of alterations and some sage-ness from Mrs A Snr will remedy the situation. Otherwise, there’s always Oscar DLR – though you know you’d rock the Andy P vest 😉


  43. Jo, your dress wobbles have seriously roused the RMW community!!!! 🙂

    I think having wobbles is totally normal. I mean, how many times in your life do you buy a dress at least a year before you’re going to wear it?!?!?! It’s such a long time to wait! I’m sure you’re going to love it all over again once it’s all properly fitted and adjusted. The girls at Sassi’s shop have already had to advise and reassure me about my dress choice (it’s a good thing that they are amazing and very very friendly!).

    Hmmm I Think I may have to try Liz Earle out! I use one of the Clinique foundation and I love it!! I did buy some Chanel foundation for our engagement pics as my friend who works at Sky News said that that’s the one they recommend for their presenters because it reflects light best. It is amazing but a little pricey so it only comes out for special occasions!

    I hope that your interview went well – I bet you rocked it!

  44. @Kim My dress was one of his limited edition dresses so there are only a couple made as samples before he chooses his collection. So….no official photos of it anywhere, and it doesn’t even have a name. I named it Starburst though 🙂

    You can see a pic of me in it tho in our wedding photos if I’m allowed to put a link in here…


    I hope your dress fitting goes well and hope you feel amazing in your dress – I know I did in mine 🙂


  45. But Jo you look so beautiful in your dress. We know drea wobbles are normal and I am so sure you will fall in love with it agin. Amazing post! Those invites are so gorgeous!! I am going to buy to Liz Earle stuff now, she should be paying you commission! xxxx

  46. To Jo and all other ladies commenting on this post, THANK YOU!
    You have all helped me realise that the ‘dress wobble’ is okay and happens to alot of brides to be.
    I proposed to my other half last July after 5 years (it would never have happened if I’d have left it to him!) I was (and still am) SO excited, it didn’t take long till I was buying every wedding magazine available to look for THE dress. After trying on about 10 different styles I found the dress that I have now bought, by Essense of Australia (currently hanging in my best friend’s wardrobe…until July next year!)But unfortunately I am definitey having a ‘lull’ in my love for the dress at the moment but I’m hoping once it fits properly and I have made the decision of how to have my hair etc it’ll be fine, fingers crossed!
    Also, LOVE the invitations…beautiful design! And I am very lucky to have a friend that works for Liz Earle on the Isle of Wight who keeps me stocked up with all of their awesome goodies! Definitely would recommend them to anyone, the woman is a genius! Sending positive vibes to all ladies reading this and good luck on all of your wedding days…oh and RMW is my favourite wedding blog…LOVE IT!!!


    Well, my lovelies, that interview was brutal! I won’t find out until Tuesday either – feels like a looooong wait!

    Thank you for all your amazing comments *blushes*! It’s great to know I’m not alone on this – maybe we should all meet up and try on our dresses in one big room!

    @Helen – steal away! I’m glad you like it. Oooh, when did your friends get married?

    @Lucy – funnily enough, I went to buy a new bottle yesterday and they’ve ruddy well STOPPED SELLING IT! Gutted. It was the Gentle Light Foundation with the loose powder over the top. However, I have substituted it with their new Moisture Surge tinted moisturiser. I had a sample of this when we were skiing a few weeks ago, and really liked it, so I think it will be a close match to the Gentle Light 

    @Harriet – Oooh, how exciting! If it makes you feel better, I’ve spoken to some of my friends who got married last year, and the one who loved her dress from start to finish was the one who designed it in the same way you have. Her only tiny wobble was just before the wedding when she saw the finished article and she’s lost a bit of weight, but it was fixed in 2 days and she LOVED it! And just think – NOBODY will ever have your dress! Awesome 😉

    @Sam – the ‘swishing’ sounds very positive! If you’re happy and comfortable with moving around in it AND you loved it, it sounds like it could be the one. If you’re bored of looking, why don’t you leave it for a few months, then go and try that one on again and see how you feel? I reckon it’ll give you a second wind if you have a wee break from it. Good luck!

    @KT – I need your faith to rub off on me, because I reckon you’re absolutely right! Fingers crossed we’ll both have ‘TA-DAAAAA’ moments very soon!

    @LadyFushia – You are so wise 😉 And again, completely right. This is why I left it at Dot’s, but because I left it there at a time when it didn’t fit (which is the whole reason it needs to be there, D’oh!), my last impression of it is not good! Eeeeek! I also think you’re right about the on-the-day-feeling… nothing else will matter because I’ll be wed!
    PS: OMG! Just got to the end of my replies and read your additional reply to Kim. All I can say is ‘WOW’!! You (and your hubby btw) look breathtaking! Perfect dress for you, and those shoes are awesome! No wonder you were so happy with it!

    @Amy – How ruddy exciting girly! It sounds immense, and you obviously made the best decision! I hope we get to see pics of it on RMW 😉
    Also – great suggestion for the dress code!! Thanks darl!

    @GG – I hope you’re right! And, yes – trying to find everything to match is a mission! Men have it sooooo easy –pants, socks, shoes, suit. DONE!

    @Kate – very sensible way to look at it – top 5 would be good! You have the same issue as me – a negative last impression due to it not fitting yet. It will though LOVELY!!

    @Leanne – Feeling the Liz Earle love! Introduced one of my BMs to it today and she’s gone home to order some!
    STOP LOOKING AT PHOTOS! This is part of the reason I’m wobbling – an unhealthy obsession with staring at other brides/models wearing it, when they have totally different shapes, complexions and hair. I sounds like you and this dress were in love at first sight, so it seems apt thatyou should wear it on W-day 😉

    @Charlotte RMW – Ha haaa! My skin is luuuuuuminous 😉 Not really, it’s just looking smooth and healthy. Went to a wine and cheese night last night (was a better combination ever invented?!) though, so it won’t look as good tomorrow 😉
    *YAY* for Dolly P – if it don’t get the DP hen, I think we should do a Real Brides shoot in homage to her!

    @Natasha – Thank you, thank you for another brilliant suggestion for the dress code! And I echo your feeling like a big fat lump – this is exactly what I felt like. Fingers and toes crossed I end up as happy as you were!! 

    @Anna – gosh, that is a mammoth dress shopping trip! What dress did you opt for, lovely lady?

    @Kim – ‘Fabulous hats optional’ sounds brilliant – thank you darl! Ahh, the great Eve vs Liz debate – would have loved to try out the Eve Lom but it’s a wee bit out of my price range. Sounds amazing though, and I know Charlotte RMW is a huge fan!
    Holy cow, your dress is INCREDIBLE! I totally love it! It will DEFINITELY be fine. More than fine! Hope we get to see pics! Good luck with the fitting next week – so exciting!

    @Katrina – I know EXACTLY what you mean. I honestly thought I would go for vintage lace, and didn’t! So now, of course, I keep thinking I should’ve gone for lace! But I think you’re right about things you like not necessarily reflecting your style – it’s so easy to be swayed by what you see in magazines and on blogs, and you kind of have to scrape away all the layers of ‘like’, to find out what really suits you!

    @Steph – Ha ha – look at my reply to Katrina above! You’ve just proved my point! Go with your gut!
    Let us know how you get on with the Liz Earle if you go for it!!
    6 weeks to go!!! Uber-exciting!

    @Sharon – Interesting point! I had a couple when I worked at Blenheim Palace where the bride wore a stunning sea green dress. Absolutely BEAUTIFUL! Speaking of Oscars – imagine having to choose a dress to be photographed in all the time! Mission. Luxurious mission though!

    @Joanna – cracking name lovely 😉 And thank you for the dress code idea – another cracker!

    @Claire Noelle – Hurrah for your first comment on RMW! Thank you (and your bridesmaid!) for your wise advice. I REALLY want to see your customised dress – it sounds awesome!

    @Lauren A – Do you work for Bobbi Brown?! Guess what the only item currently on my ‘Make up to check out’ list is? Bobbi Brown gel eyeliner! Where did the recommendation come from? RMW, naturally 😉
    More awesome dress code ideas – so pleased I asked on here! And, yes – definitely try sitting down in your dress, and bending down to talk to people who are sitting/small children, and kneeling if you’re having a church wedding.

    @Verity – Ahhh, a fellow indecisive bride! What dress did you go for lovely?

    @Mrs S – 12 ½ weeks now! Eeeek! Ahhh, the dreaded arms – I feel your pain here lovely! According to MrA, tricep dips are the way forward on this (Bleurgh!) but if you’re as anti-exercise as me, maybe think about a lace bolero to go over the top. My friend wore one for her wedding for this very reason, and we all thought it was a part of the dress!
    Have a look at this wedding if you’re not sure what I’m going on about!
    And here is an alternative – a jacket in the same material as the dress.
    Good luck lovely!

    @Ruthie_Ruth – I completely forgot to mention how long it lasts. Mine came a month ago, and included a 30ml bottle of the Hot Cloth Cleanser as a freebie, and I only finished using that last night!

    @H – Mmmm, interesting. I had to have mine done, because the gap needed to close and the muscle was stopping that from happening. But, I must say, not having the muscle there was stopped my lip going so high above my gum when I smile. That, coupled with the second round of braces in two weeks, which will push the teeth/gum up by another 2mm, SHOULD make all the difference.
    I guess the proof will be in the W-day pics! 😉

    @KellyReds – Hurrah for the Liz Earle purchases! And thank you again for your help with the invitation ideas and the monogram – love it!

    @Louise – I LOVE ANOUSHKA G dresses! Which one did you go for? I had my beady eye on on of hers for a while, and the skirt was all feathery – gorgeous!

    @Helen Howells – love this idea about telling the family gossip about the jeans. Hilarious, not to mention genius! I think I might tell the security at the venue to not let anyone in if they’re wearing jeans 😉

    @Belinda – this has happened to me before too, and it’s SO annoying. People clealy have very different ideas about how to impress! The black tie dress code is so self-explanatory though, especially for the chaps! I can’t believe that one got ignored! At least you looked amazing both times though – the hosts must’ve been very grateful that SOMEONE had followed their code!

    @Alice – never apologise for a long post – I love ‘em 😉 £150?!?! Total bargain – good work girlfriend!
    You’re so right about showing your ‘me’ side to everyone – proof that it HAS to be your choice, because if you try to ‘please’ everyone, you’d have to wear about 6 different dresses throughout the day! You’re also right about the showing the photos to your children/grandchildren BUT I’ve seen pictures on display at friends’ houses from their weddings in the 90s/early 00s and, although the style of dress is obviously now ‘outdated’, they a) still look gorgeous b) are clearly utterly in love – the smiles are the first thing you notice, not the outfits, and c) they are still happily married. 
    @Sophie & Em K – ‘Fancy frocks’ has a certain ring to it, doesn’t it? And I like the ‘Garden party formal if you will.’ Thank you for this lovelies!

    @Karen – Ahhh, I’m so pleased I’ve stopped a row using the power of Emily Bronte 😉 Glad to be of service!!

    @Amanda C – Hey Darl, thank you! Felt a lot of pressure with the invites after seeing yours all finished – they are EPIC! I think RMW need to do a post on the wedding invitations of all the RBs in the FB group – not a duff invite amongst them! All very cool!

    @Lara – VERY excited about your 6 month smile. Can you post a pic of it on the FB page?
    And your dress?? Your dress is utterly beautiful – I love it! It is so flattering on you (although you have a killer bod, so could pull off ANYTHING!) The neckline is perfect, and the back is divine! Of course, this is easy for me to say, and as I’m having the same feelings, I don’t expect my words to change your mind 😉

    @Emma – you’re also right! I must stop looking at my fitting pics!! They are a) blurred and b)taken at an unflattering angle!

    @Jenn – this is exactly what we tried to do with the WH quotations! But any writing around this section just shows Cathy’s madness and Heathcliff’s aggression, so we thought it might sound a bit odd! Loving the idea of a little drama production at the front of the church though 😉
    Also, see my reply to Harriet above re having your dress made. I am certain you will LOVE it, although the waiting must be seriously tough!

    @Jemima – Really hope we get to see pics of your ‘quirky yet elegant’ dress! Can you tell us which one it is??

    @Emma W – Thanks Darl! See you soon for the flower chat!

    @Gem – Ahhh, the Oscar de la Renta. If only! I still ruddy dream about that dress. Don’t have a spare £10k knocking about, do you?

    @Celine – Hello Lovely. So pleased that the SH girls have been ho friendly and helpful. I guess that’s the one thing you miss out on by buying a sample!
    Which Clinique foundation do you use, lovely? And which Chanel? Might have to add that to my list of potential W-day purchases, although I’ve always found theirs to be a bit yellow for my skin tone.
    I knew you’d like the invites – pink and sage green ROCK!

    @Jenny Lane – Thank you lovely! And yes, Liz Earle should be paying me commission, but then I got the idea off RMW, so maybe Charlotte should get it 😉

    @Katy – Huge kudos to you for proposing! Am full of admiration for women who propose. Which Essence dress did you go for? Mine was stored at my bf’s house too!
    OMG! A friend who works at Liz Earle! We ALL need one of those, you lucky duck!

  48. Oh my goodness Jo! What a lot of replies, and your EPIC reply at the end!!

    I have also had dress wobbles but not because I fell out of love with my dress – oh no, I think its gorgeous – my problem is simply that I think I could have tried on and chosen MANY different dresses and lots would have been *The One*. The one I bought was chosen 3 weeks after we got engaged, in the first shop and within the first hour of dress shopping. A few months later, I worried that maybe I’d been too hasty and that there were others out there that I’d love too. And there were plenty in magazines!! But I’ve resisted going to try any on because I do really love the one I have and it will look lovely. As would many others, but this is the one I have and thats the one I’m going to wear.

  49. Jo, Thanks for your reply…
    I chose the style D1101, which was the shape I initially wanted but doesn’t have the ruffles I was looking for, they are more like pleats.
    Now comes the difficult decision of how to have my hair, as I’d like to wear the strap as a halter neck rather than the asymmetric one in the picture on the website. My hair is quite long and I rarely wear it up, so any tips or advice from anyone would be much appreciated? 🙂

  50. Dear Jo,
    Thanks for the mention! Glad you’re loving the Liz Earle!
    All I would say about the dress wobble is have a look around, try on some other styles, try to figure out if it is a wobble or if the dress is indeed not the right dress.

  51. Dress Wobbles – have them too. Went to my dressmaker over the weekend and I am just not sure – stayed away all Sat night fretting about it – and woke up Sunday and confided in my hubby, who, ever the practical one, said:
    1. You are beautiful, everyone always thinks the bride is beautiful no matter what she looks like, and after the day other people don’t think about your wedding dress that much, so stop stressing.
    2. You did once love it so there is a strong chance this is just nerves.
    3. We can’t assign any more of the budget to the dress – so what you wear on the day is up to you – the dress or your pj’s – either way by the end of the day we will be husband and wife and no dress dilemma will prevent it
    4. I love you

    So oddly, I feel much better and have decided not to think about it. All I really want to do is get married – and the rest is just frippery. I’m sure it will be fine on the day!

  52. Crikey, an immense list of replies!

    Believe it or not, I don’t work for Bobbi Brown. I flippin’ well should, I’d be in heaven!!!

  53. Oh, Katy! It’s BEAUTIFUL! I definitely think hair up to show off your back, maybe in quite an ‘undone’ way though, nothing to formal. Let us know what you choose!

    @ Cathy – what a wise and lovely hubby you have! Men are so anooyingly logical! Sorry to hear you’re having wobbles too, but you’re quite right about everything but the marriage being frippery. Very true.

  54. @Jo – thank you 🙂 My shoes were a little touch of Britishness seeing as I was marrying my Australian man 🙂

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