Once again it has been a while!
This past month has been crazy (including the whole getting sick thing and ticking off “meet new people” which I actually am cringing and regretting lots).
So I got my wisdom tooth removed! I think I will write about that in detail in a separate post because it can be quite a big deal for some people. I thought it was going to be a tough one for me because the tooth was not straight and actually pokes outwards and made a hole in my cheek (it’s actually still the gum considering it’s quite low, but you can imagine the part where your gum kind of turns into the inside of your cheek gets a bit iffy). The tooth was also at close proximity with my IDN (some nerve that you don’t want to damage). It took about 40 minutes and I was sedated and didn’t know a single thing until I woke up. Pretty much pain free, but I was very swollen for about 4 days. Will write more about it separately as this was not the point of this post.
So, I was invited to my friend’s wedding which the title suggests, will be in a week’s time. She handed me this handmade invitation which was a really nice touch since she didn’t just go out and buy pre made ones (I don’t know what I would personally do, but it seems like an easy, stress-free solution in a way).
This isn’t the first time I’m going to a wedding. The first one I went to was a kid, and as an adult it was maybe 2-3 years ago for an ex-work colleague.
I know I shouldn’t make it a huge deal since it’s not my wedding, but I’ve known my friend since day one of university, before the first lecture even started, so it was kind of special since we just stuck together just like that and made it through the course together. It sounds like a serious case of “omg it was meant to be” in terms of friendships and it certainly feels like that at times.
I’m not going to lie – I have had a horrible time trying to figure out what to wear on the day. The last time was relatively easy because it was cold-ish weather (can’t remember when it was though) and I wasn’t going to take off my jacket so I could wing a sleeveless dress that I just bought online. It also wasn’t particularly formal (in fact I felt overdressed) so it didn’t really matter all that much. This time though, there are going to be like a zillion people attending (large wedding) and half of it will be traditional big Asian/ Chinese family style since the dinner is at a Chinese restaurant. This complicates things a lot because I’ve also been doing my research online and it tells you a million things that are common sense, but also restricts your wardrobe choices.
Basically do not wear:
Black to a Chinese wedding.
Please don’t. Unless you are a male and you are wearing a suit – even so, only the blazer pants and shoes (and belt if you want to be really detailed – okay and watch) can be black, but don’t do all black.
In fact, black is probably only acceptable for accessories such as bags, shoes and blazers/ jackets or cardigans/ shawls. When I say do not wear black I don’t mean avoid black completely, but rather, do not show up in a black dress or completely in black as it is not very nice. Chinese people tend to associate black with unfortunate events, so avoid it.
White to a Western wedding.
Considering half of the wedding itself will be in an outdoor rose garden setting, the bride will be wearing her wedding gown which is white. You don’t want to wear white or else it looks like you are the one getting married (or so this is what the Internet is telling me). I was about 70% close to rocking up in a cream coloured lace one piece dress with a camel tan blazer on top. Don’t judge me please, it just looked good and went with the rose garden theme really well – not only that, I actually have this dress ready to wear and haven’t worn it out to any occasion before.
Anything too tight or revealing.
You will regret it. Because it will most likely be uncomfortable to wear for more than 6 hours, and the one I am going to starts from about 1pm till 9. That’s a crazy 8 hours and the last thing I want to worry about is my hem length or if my stomach juts out or my upper arms are fat. Thank you, but no thank you.
Anything too bright that makes you look like a traffic cone.
Like red, or neon.
Something too formal, or something too casual for the occasion.
Again it’s one of those things you just want to get right or else you will look back on it and think to yourself “what was I smoking to wear that?”. Just because you flick through someone else’s wedding photos and look at what their guests wear (which is what I did) and think “oh hey, she’s wearing that so it should be okay!” but also noticing “she stands out though…” you just don’t want to be in the same position as that same person. Not saying they felt uncomfortable or looked bad, or was particularly out of place – but I’m just super picky. I don’t want to wear something I will regret, feel uncomfortable in (for any reason whatsoever), or stand out from the crowd. We’re not talking fashion runway or whatever here – I just want to go there, look like a guest, act like one, and be treated as one.
Generally the wedding invitation will tell you the dress code, but this didn’t say anything. I merely had to judge what the code was from the invitation, but I still wasn’t sure. I decided semi-formal for benefit of doubt.
I had a hectic time choosing my outfit – definitely plan in advance:
Attempt 1: The online dress which looks absolutely perfect… but not.
I purchased a cream lace dress online (I didn’t think that cream was a big deal, and it was an impulse buy because it’s so hard to find dresses with sleeves and a collar these days – no, really, seriously) thinking it would do.
It was far too short. And showed too many bulges 😦
One of my biggest problems with dresses is either them not fitting me properly, or they are too short or too long. I don’t really look all that good in long dresses so I have long avoided them. A lot of dresses fall short on me, especially ones made by Asian brands/ companies because they generally cater for girls probably 5cm shorter than me. To me, those 5cm mean a lot and can basically turn a dress into a long top. So I wear shorts under to compensate. Once I wore a dress to work (free clothing day, no need to wear work attire) and my manager told me “I wish I told you not to wear shorts to work”, but my (at the time) colleague was like, “…that is definitely a dress”. Unfortunately, not everyone sees it that way.
Anyway, I’m glad the dress was too short or too stretchy and uncomfortable because if it fit perfectly I would have worn it, and I would have looked so stupid since it is too similar to the concept of a wedding gown.
Attempt 2: Let’s go online, again.
Feeling at a loss since I was disappointed with how that dress failed pretty miserably I decided to go online. I finally found something suitable which was good for the occasion and pretty much fail proof. I put my payment in… and the order didn’t go through. Thinking there was a genuine technical difficulty, I submitted my payment again… and guess what? Funds are temporarily taken out, no order was put through. It has been a whole week for me trying to chase up this “reputable” website to just cancel my payments but their customer service is just so bad it is driving me insane.
I shouldn’t say this as a generalisation, but where possible, do not rely on buying a dress for any important occasion online, even two weeks in advance. Something similar happened to me – I purchased a dress to wear to an anime convention two weeks in advance… and the seller never sent it out. I got my money back, but I didn’t go to my convention. Now I think I am too old to go, so I blame it on some stupid eBay seller who basically shattered my cosplaying dreams. Thank you, but no thank you.
So now? Two transactions that are pending and need to be cancelled, and no dress. 0-2.
Attempt 3: Online shopping is unreliable, let’s go see the physical product.
In forever, I decided to hit the shops and actually see and try clothing that I actually liked because it’s just fail proof.
How wrong I was!
I’ve completely forgotten the reason why I hate clothes shopping so much in Sydney, and now I am reminded why. Everything is just seasonal – similar/ same patterns, textures, fabrics, cuts – I mentioned this earlier in this post, but this is not fashion runway – I just needed something appropriate and there was nothing! I hate that stretchy polyester/ nylon and elastane blended fabric that is trending at the moment. It makes you feel too warm since your skin cannot breathe under it, and it’s so tight – we’re not going swimming, we’re just going out to an event!
If I saw something appropriate it was either I deemed it too casual (to me, a dress only one colour without any special cutting, layering or different textures is boring – as is a dress with just one pattern all the way through, like polka dots) or the colour was wrong. Call me conservative, but a lot of clothing I saw that was well, alright, but not the right colour. I avoided navy as it is too dark and I was afraid it would be mistaken for black.
2 hours of wandering around like a lost and helpless child, I returned home at a loss.
Attempt 4: Resorting to “I can wear this – it’s not the best solution, but it’s acceptable” outfit.
Who says you need to wear a dress? I’m sure that if you wear an appropriate top with pants or a skirt it should be fine, and I have clothing to accommodate for that!
It was extremely comfortable, fun to accessorise (I could add a fashion/ add-on collar to the top) and looked nice.
Too bad it looks like I’m just going out to high tea with some girl friends though. But I was getting desperate and this was the worst case scenario – being that underdressed person.
Attempt 5: I give up. Maybe I should try the first option again. Wait, what is this dress? Why do I have 2?
I went through our storeroom (which is where I chuck all my new clothes into before I start wearing them and generally forget their existence) and got really confused why I had two cream lace dresses in the same bag. It was a dress I purchased maybe a year ago and threw aside because it was a bit too large.
Ecstatic that it fit so much better than the dress in attempt #1, I was almost going to just declare it a winner. It was the right length, and what I had in mind.
Too bad I then went onto the Internet and with a zillion links telling me NOT to wear ivory, white, cream, off-white whatever, I was back to square one, or perhaps, square minus three.
Attempt 6: Keep on searching. Deny reality. Something must exist!
It was only at this moment that I found a dress that I had purchased 2 years ago intending to wear out shopping/ bar hopping when I was overseas in Hong Kong. I had avoided the dress because it was a camel colour which from afar I was worried looked like I was wearing nothing, but I bought it anyway because the cutting and layering was nice. It’s also in my favourite fabric – a type of chiffon which is flowy, non-stretchy and long lasting. There were a few problems with it, like it being see-through – but I easily solved that by wearing a slip and an underskirt.
Attempt 6 and FINALLY, although not what I had in mind, it was the best option I had and I have no other choice. All I can say is that finally I am stress-free and that’s all.
Plan your outfit with accessories in advance:
I had in mind that I would be wearing gold accessories as I was going to bring my Valentino Va Va Voom with me since it was the most elegant clutch I own, but as you can see from the photograph, the wedding invitation is not letter sized. I ended up having to swap clutches, and change my jewellery colour from gold to silver and tried on a few options to see which seemed the most suitable.
If you’re like me and like to get details ironed out, don’t leave this to the day because you will simply feel stressed and think that you have made a bad choice. I know if I make a bad choice I will dwell on it and start kicking myself in my sleep for not thinking enough.
Take care of yourself:
I have three major concerns – (1) wisdom tooth removal (2) the odd zit that comes up (3) the bruises on my legs.
Thankfully, my face is no longer swollen (my gum is still a bit though). My skin troubles are real and here (though I can still manage) – it’s the bruises that I am worried about.
Basically I dropped a roll of plastic wrap (this wrap is like huge, think of a roll about half a meter long and maybe 6kg with a thick paper core) onto the top of my left foot paper core down. It hurt so much and my foot was swollen on impact – there is a huge bruise there. Luckily most of it has faded but I will be wearing heels that will show the top of my feet (stockings/ whatever are not an option as my heels are open toe). The main concern is that bigass bruise on my right knee, which I got from lifting my knee to a 10kg box in an attempt to not drop it – all I got was a 10kg box slide down my knee, and that’s how this terrible bruise came about. There is also another one near it which is maybe 25% as nasty, but still nasty nonetheless.
I’m sure the bruises will heal by next week, but for now, they are still pretty big and noticeable. Now that I’m getting older, I find it longer to recover from things like colds, acne scars and bruises.
So is a wedding invitation a scary thing?
Yes. Because it took me no less than 24 hours to actually decide what I will be wearing. It took me maybe 10 hours to decide what present to give (I still need to buy it – worst case scenario you get a gift card/ contribute to the wishing well), and the fun part – I still haven’t decided my hair and makeup for the day.
Sometimes it’s a good thing to not be so paranoid. I think I’m fairly obsessive compulsive when it comes to events and I wish I cared just a little less about something as superficial as how I look. Easier said than done.
It will also be an awkward wedding since I don’t really know anyone all that personally at the wedding with the exception of the bride, since none of our mutual friends (as in close friends) will be attending/ have been invited. She didn’t exclude them by the way, they are most likely overseas somewhere. And I get to see my one week bosses again… and maybe, just maybe they will drill me about thinking about a career in architecture again. I sincerely hope that I hit it off with some random stranger (guy or girl doesn’t matter) so I can avoid these types of confrontations. Hopefully they won’t happen – it’s Sunday and it’s a celebratory atmosphere, surely you can let me off this once, pretty please?
This has been a long post. Sorry for the rambling and lack of pictures. I will be back soon hopefully with a more colourful post with pictures, if not actually helpful information. Good night!