Plus, I've also decided that at the end of each of my wedding recaps I will leave you with a small tip, words of wisdom, experienced advice or suggestion from the lessons I learned that will hopefully help you in your future planning process and on your big day.
Now mind you, I got married at an outdoor venue with a zoo. So if you plan to do ANY pictures or wedding related events outside in your dress, just simply plan on the fact that you will in fact get some type of dirt or stain on your gown. No way around it. In fact, even if you don't step outside at all in your dress, unless you are wearing something that is above your ankles, people will step on it, food will get near it, and just a dirty floor in general are bound to stain that beauty.
Looking back, I was a horrible blogger bride. I did not get photos of lots of little things (like the spots on my gown) that I knew I would blog about. So forgive me for my lack of images in a lot of these recaps.
Anyhow, here is a pic of me in the pretty little Maggie Sottero SaBelle gown that I donned on April 16th (remember I have no pro pics yet):
And here's one showing that lovely train in all it's beaded, embellished, laced glory:
Here's a pic of my mom and niece checking out the zoo at the venue the day before during the rehearsal:
And here's one of my mom and my nephew (one of the ring bearers) and his other grandma sitting on the bench at the venue during the rehearsal:
Why am I showing you these random pics of the zoo and the bench? Well, notice the things on the ground in those pics? Dirt...and grass. And even on the concrete areas of the venue there were leaves and dirt. Now mind you, this venue, they keep it in tip top shape. The night before your wedding from 3 am to 7 am, they have a cleaning company come in and sweep and hose everything down. So it's not like it was filthy. This is just what happens when you are, well, outside, DUH!
Now try to walk around and maneuver something like this throughout these type of grounds:
Needless to say, I got some great stains on my gown. As I mentioned, if you plan on walking anywhere outside (and especially if you have a train), you will most definitely get your dress dirty. Underneath my train was covered in dirt. The top was not that bad, but it was not spot clean either. At one point, my photog had me sitting on one of the little ledges in front of some shrubs and trees to get photos with my girls. Later, while we were standing around, I noticed that there was a huge yellow stain of pollen from the flowers on the back side of my gown right on my waist. Totally noticeable.
I called over my coordinator and some BM's and asked them to get the bar of white ivory soap and the washcloth I had brought in the bridal cottage to do some spot cleaning. My seamstress suggested using a bar of pure soap and washcloth to dab at stains rather than a stain remover type pad.
Well, the wash cloth and soap did little to assist in the removal of the stain. Of course, my lovely coordinator Amanda had SHOUT stain remover pads in her waist belt. So after realizing my seamstress' idea was not working, I gave her the go ahead to use the SHOUT. And thankfully, the little yellow spot came almost completely out.
Everyone around me was freaking out about the stain and the girls were shocked at how relaxed I was about the whole thing. I am a type-A total control freak, perfectionist, stress-case weirdo about a lot of planned things in my life. But I had resolved myself to the fact that nothing was going to upset me on our wedding day. And I stuck to just that. (Now granted, a few things have upset me about the wedding day after the fact, but you'll have to wait for future posts to read about those.) So if they hadn't gotten the yellow stain out, I wouldn't have cared...after all, it was on the back side and if it showed up any pics, they could have photoshopped it out.
However, after we were completely done with all of the photos, once the guests started arriving just before the ceremony, I had my sister and BM Cousin A go out on the back patio with me and they inspected my entire gown and dabbed away with the soap and cloth to try to get some of the dirt stains out. It wasn't horrible and they did a good job.
But believe me, this was not the last of my unfortunate encounters with stains on my dress...the best was yet to come...and at the worst possible moment!!! (Stay tuned in a future recap)
Today's tip: Be sure to understand what will happen in getting your dress dirty on wedding day. Don't think it won't happen no matter how careful you are. Be prepared! Bring with you in your emergency kit: water, pure bar of soap, a *white* wash cloth, stain removing pads, club soda, paper towels, Tide Eraser pen, etc.
And the BEST thing that my coordinator had on her: WHITE CHALK! That little yellow stain of pollen, Amanda said that white chalk can be gently rubbed over most wedding gown stains to help 'hide' them on your big day. I don't know if she had to use it or not because I think we got most of it out, but it was there in her hand at our disposal.