My Wedding – My Way (Totally)

According to popular rumour some women get pretty worked up about all things bridal…

Popular culture calls this Bridezilla territory and I heard one story this week that I feel compelled to share. My mum and I went mother-of-the-bride outfit shopping (personal shopper appointment at House of Fraser – do IT) and while mum changed into the 15 or so different combinations the talented personal shopper had picked out, I chatted to the lovely lady*.

It turns out she is going to a wedding this year and is to be a bridesmaid. The bride-to-be insists that her bridesmaid grows her hair so that it fits with her vision of how the bridesmaids look.

In the world of me, I view this as utterly unreasonable. And who flippin’ cares either? My mum, bless her heart, chipped in at this point with a comment about me being a very non-Bridezilla type.

Strictly speaking, I am a bit Bridezilla – if only with myself. I am frantically exercising, frantically dieting and frantically doing all kinds of extravagant skincare** things in order to make sure I look my best by May.

This self-improvement is very shallow – perhaps I should instead frantically research how to be a good spouse, the secrets of modern marriage or what I need to live a worthwhile life. (I have a feeling that the fixation with skincare, cookery programmes and my waist to hip ratio isn’t so worthwhile.)

So with this newly-reinforced ‘I am not going to be a Bridezilla’ resolution in place, my fiance and I have re-entered the minute-by-minute negotiations for what happens on our wedding day.

Me – speeches before dinner. Him – speeches after. Me – ABSOLUTELY no alcohol before the ceremony. Him – I would like a drink with my brothers beforehand. Me – so, despite our shared atheism, we do have a Catholic priest from New York coming, shall we get him to say the Selkirk Grace? Him – NO. This could be interesting…

 

 

*So, how did you get into this job? Do you love your work? Are you happy on Mondays? What happens, each season the new collection comes in do you familiarise yourself with the garments? What kind of discount do you get? You worked for the Mary Portas franchise? It wasn’t so great?

**Ahem, while in House of Fraser, I got tangled up in its beauty counters. I bought Clinique’s pore refining solutions serum and the instant pore corrector. Serum – I’ll deliver the verdict three weeks down the line. Instant corrector thingie – pretty good, but it’s never going to meet my perfectionist standards.

The Accidental Abstainer

Have you ever given up something by accident?

I ask because when we set a date for getting married, fired up with joys of planning and list-writing, I included a note of everything I was going to give up to save money for the aforementioned nuptials.

They included (it was pretty ambitious, given my penchant for the frivolous): diet coke, women’s magazines, beauty treatments in salons, taxi journeys, new make-up or skincare before existing stuff ran out, clothes, shoes etc.

Needless to say, several weeks after the list was drawn up diet coke, new make-up, beauty treatments et al were still making their way into my shopping basket. The incentive just didn’t seem to be there.

However, about a month ago I discovered a new author I really like; a woman who has written a series of epic stories scanning continents and including fabulous characters, themes and wit. For a month or so I haven’t looked at women’s magazines and, when this registered consciously, it became a point of pride not to buy them any more. (The odd free edition of Stylist or buying Good Food magazine does not count).

So, thanks Diana Gabaldon – you may have inadvertently contributed to my wedding funds!

As I am a marketeer’s dream, being without women’s magazines has also affected my make-up and skincare buying habits. Without the constant bombardment of new product advertising and promotions through beauty pages, I’m no longer tempted by the latest snake oil trick promising all kinds of wrinkle reduction, complexion brightening and skin plumping.

In addition, reading novels tends not to leave you feeling as inadequate as magazines do (‘why oh why don’t I have that great job, those gorgeous clothes, that particular new form of exercise guaranteed to tone me up in half an hour’). And, er, why do I care so much for these things?!

Now, I just need to stumble on a few more accidental giving up tricks and watch those money-wasting habits disappear…

Bramble vodka and crumble – could we get more mellow fruitfulness…?

Favours update: this week we went brambling (see the pictures above). For those of you outside Scotland, this means gathering up free fruit courtesy of your nearby hedgerows, and specifically refers to blackberries. We’ve collected roughly 1.8kg in total, which have been mixed with 700g sugar and four bottles (4x75cl) of vodka – cheap and cheerful, no point wasting Grey Goose on this. I’ve sealed it up in Kilner jars and it’s now a waiting game; the end result (hopefully) a pretty potent fruit liquer to be divided up among small bottles and labelled for the wedding.