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anniedeighnaugh

And so it begins...wedding guest dress

Annie Deighnaugh
8 years ago

We have a wedding to go to in the end of April and I'm starting to work on what to wear. It's an odd time of year as it could be cold, raining and in the 40s or it could be sunny and in the 70s. Also the wedding will be on a farm with the reception in an historic barn. Bride has requested we wear, "rustic glam. Don't worry, we're not sure what that means either. Somewhere around cocktail party and not-quite-black-tie." She also recommends wedges for the grassy terrain. The wedding is at 4:30 and the reception will run into the evening.

So I started looking on line and swear I've seen 1,000 dresses of which only a few might work. I really like the looks of this Escada. But certainly not the price and not the red.

So that means making one. What I like about this one is the fit and the shape and the neckline that allows for a nice necklace and the emphasis on the shoulder. But I'm not finding a pattern I can use or easily adapt. So my work begins. I have all those beads left over from the veil, so I'm thinking I could add beading to the shoulders if I wanted to.

Am I heading in the right direction? I'm concerned that if I go with a jacket with the dress, I'll be too mother of the bride...but then again, with the weather and the night time hours, I'm sure I'll want something to cover up.

What say ye?

Comments (150)

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Uh oh....went to the doc's today and they are close to a mall, so I ran in and found 2 dresses and a pair of shoes I can wear. Now what do I do!!!

    Well, I think I'll work on the dress anyway and now I have back up besides. From nothing to an embarrassment of riches.

  • kswl2
    8 years ago

    You could get at least one of the dresses and follow through with making your own. Then you'll have something safe and something spectacular!

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  • ellendi
    8 years ago

    Now, we need to see the two you just bought.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Headless woman time!!! Please comment on dresses and shoes. (Please no comments on the legs that look like dead mackerels!)

    Option 1: Ikat print dress with nude shoe. Dress has princess lines and is fitted to the waist where the front pleats open up to add fullness to the skirt.

    Option 2: floral print dress with peacock shoes. Princess line bodice to below the bust where it meets a slightly curved seamed. Skirt is a-line.

    Option 3: keep sewing the dress out of the sari fabric...

    This post was edited by AnnieDeighnaugh on Fri, Apr 4, 14 at 16:21

  • natebear zone 10B
    8 years ago

    I like how the second dress gives you a small waist and evens out your proportions.

    However, I think the peacock shoes take away from its beauty. The nude shoes keep your legs looking long and the focus on the dress.

  • ellendi
    8 years ago

    They both fit perfectly. If you go with the first, though, a different shoe. I know the nude shoe is on trend, but maybe not with this dress.
    And,I think a black shoe for the second dress. The blue works but gives it a more casual feel.

  • DLM2000-GW
    8 years ago

    I'm going to stick my neck out here and be 100% honest. I'm not loving either of the dresses because they seem more casual then things you were considering above. Even with jewelry I'm not seeing them amped up enough for a wedding, barn or not! However.....I love the fabric you found and think it could be a stunning dress for you.

    I'm also following this with interest with a wedding on my calendar - end of June, downtown Chicago hotel, Friday night......

  • ellendi
    8 years ago

    Dlm, we too have a wedding in Chicago, but in September. And my DD has one the week before at the Marriott Magnificent Mile.
    My niece' s wedding with be unconventional and casual. I'm not too concerned about a dress.
    Both my daughters can go out the day before, find a dress and shoes, done!
    So far, I have been lucky at Nordstrom's petites for my last three special events. Although I hate dress shopping, I do enjoy going to an event in a dress.
    I like the style of Annie's dresses.

  • tinam61
    8 years ago

    I'm going to be honest and say that I do not care for either of those dresses on you. As mentioned above, the ikat is much less formal that other dresses you showed earlier.

    Trying to put my finger on what IMHO is wrong. For one thing - with a full bust - those necklines just seem wrong. It's making you look like the widest part is right across your chest. I know it may be hard to find a v-neck or scooped neck that is not too revealing but it would really make you look smaller across the chest (lengthens the neck).

    I'm wondering about something that is a softer look, slightly flowing. I don't mean fussy or frou-frou, but longer, flowing skirt out of a filmy fabric. I think something fitted in the waist but softer above and below would be very flattering to your figure. Going a bit longer and fuller through the skirt would also help even your top half out and make you look taller. Not sure that what I am describing is making sense - hope so. I'm not really digging a print either unless something very small. I'd go with a solid, fab color.

    tina

  • flowerpwr45
    8 years ago

    I'm a latecomer to the conversation but I love clothes and it helps so much seeing a dress on a real human; I agree, I think you need a bit of a lower neckline to look your best.

    And the nude shoes really do make your legs look longer, IMHO.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Hah! And that's with my minimizer bra! Both my gramma's had very ample bosoms...of course theirs kind of just blended into their ample waists....

  • Gracie
    8 years ago

    I find the second print to be a bit swimsuit-ish but it's a better neckline.

  • Laurie
    8 years ago

    Have you seen this v-neck dress (linked below) from Talbots?

    Here is a pattern I used a few years ago...Vogue V8188.
    It's a sleeveless sheath with princess seams & a v-neck. For myself, I altered the pattern by raising the v-neck up a little bit higher. I used a light sage colored Shantung/Dupioni fabric.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Talbot's V-Neck Dress

  • colleenoz
    8 years ago

    Tinam61 has said exactly what I was thinking. Neither dress does you any favours as far as the shape goes: both make you look very top-heavy. I appreciate that you are, but the neckline calls attention to this. The style and fabric overall says more "nice lunch with friends" than "wedding guest"- I thought may_flowers was spot on with the "swimsuit-ish" remark as well.
    OTOH, that sari fabric is _gorgeous_. Option 3 is looking good.
    I sympathise; I need to get a move on and get working on my MOTB dress for this November.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Oh boy, I better get busy then. Our overnight guest finally left this morning...after 11 days! And I have 21 people plus overnight guests coming for Easter and then the wedding is the following weekend. Yikes.

    I guess I was so thinking spring and farm wedding that I wanted a "gay print" instead of something somber. And I'd tried on so many sheaths that, when fit over my hips, were just too big in the shoulders, that when I found these that fit so well, I was delighted. Well, I may hang onto them anyway as back up, and see if I can't get the sari dress done between now and then....but I hope I don't go through all that effort only to still have my ample bosom be, um, front and center, iykwim....

  • Olychick
    8 years ago

    I'm not sure what happened to your original vision or your fear of this, but both of those dresses look very close to this (which can be the problem with a print when you aren't the age of and you don't have a body like Kate Middleton):

    A solid color (and that blue is gorgeous, maybe without the sari embellishment) will bring you back closer to where you say you want to be.

  • lizzie_grow
    8 years ago

    Annie,

    I like how you look in both those dresses you purchased. You have pretty legs & they show off those & honestly, I don't think they call attn. to your "bosoms"! Plus, they look comfortable & like they fit really well.

    I do some sewing, too, and know you could make that fabric look beautiful IF you have the time and energy with the other demands in your life right now, but you know best about that! As I get older, I can't spread myself that thin anymoreâ¦..how I miss that "olden days" energy!!

    Anyway, that's my opinion!

  • thankurnmo
    8 years ago

    I have a similar body type- and I thought the 2 dresses looked fine, but not wonderful.
    I am trying to find a pic of it online, because I bought a knit Ralph Lauren dress with a little v neck and a waist that is gathered to the side (not too good at describing sorry)-- but I bought it a while ago like maybe last year. I still see it in different colors though so I think it's still quite current. It is VERY flattering, and comfy.I think full price is maybe $110.

  • kitschykitch
    8 years ago

    My .02, Annie.

    The dresses are too casual. They do not look appropriate for a mature wedding guest.

    The fabric is too lightweight. You want a good quality fabric with some control, like a shantung silk or linen.

    The cut does not flatter. You have lovely arms and legs. You need something to minimize the torso. You can do that with one solid color, cut to expose a v neck. There are v necks that work with large bosoms, if they are fitted well. Failing that, you need a scoop neck and something to draw the eye down. For example, a scarf or a serious necklace.

    You are brave to subject yourself to such personal critique. I hope it is helpful and apologize for any offense.
    If I were you, I would try, just try, an afternoon with a personal shopper at a place like Saks.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Interesting kitschy...none of the fabrics are light weight. The dresses may not be thrilling, but I don't think they are inappropriate, certainly not age wise. If my boobs were hanging out or it was skin tight, or bedazzled, or short as my crotch or backless, then, maybe. But I would feel appropriate and respectful of the occasion wearing them. After all, it is a spring wedding on a farm...and I'm not in my 80s...

    I've tried on solid dresses and they all look so somber and boring. I think maybe I was looking too early as these dresses were just being put out on the floor...maybe more spring dresses have come in and it might be worthwhile taking another look.

    I have a black faux wrap dress that fits me well and is very flattering, but I refuse to wear black to a wedding...it's not a funeral.

  • kitschykitch
    8 years ago

    That's it, of course! A wrap dress probably looks great on you. It gives you a v but you control how much. Why not get one in a more upbeat color? That sounds perfect.

    By "inappropriate" I meant inappropriate for a grown, professional woman for a wedding, if that makes more sense. They are not in upscale enough for the "you" i picture, if only from your lovely home. They look like something to wear to a luncheon, to me.

    Anyway, I may have offended, unintentionally, and for that I am sorry.

  • DLM2000-GW
    8 years ago

    Annie I watched the Katie Couric show today and thought of you when I saw her dress. It was a gorgeous solid green but the fabric had texture to it so the light played on it a bit and it didn't look flat and boring. I think that may be the key. Wish I could find a picture of it to show you - looking but no luck yet.

    Edited to add - she wears fabulous dresses a lot - major inspiration !

    This post was edited by dlm2000 on Mon, Apr 7, 14 at 17:02

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    No sweat kitschy. I believe, for the most part, people are taking time to post to help me, not hurt me, and I appreciate honesty. In the old days, Mom was around to give me the brutal truth...now I have to "rely on the kindness of strangers" so to speak.

    I went shopping again today and came up with 2 more. DH likes both of these much better than the print dresses and one is as comfortable as PJs so I think I may have found a dress...I can continue to work on making one too if I want, but I think, at least, I have back up. The print dresses are going back, as are the peacock shoes.

    This Ivanka Trump features an asymmetric neckline with the fabric criss crossing the bodice and gathered into a bit of bling at the neckline.

    The other is a Ralph Lauren which features shoulder pads (they're back?!?) and a gathered V neck which so many of you recommended and a 12-gore skirt that flairs out, a little longer and softer line than the others.


    What say ye?

  • DLM2000-GW
    8 years ago

    Both are beautiful and flattering on you! Either one will be a great choice. Do you have specific jewelry you'd like to wear? That may tip the scales one way or the other but I think you've saved yourself some sewing!!

  • ellendi
    8 years ago

    I vote for the second one.

  • Laurie
    8 years ago

    Both of those are great!
    I lean towards voting for the second one.

  • cyn427 (z. 7, N. VA)
    8 years ago

    The Ralph Lauren looks wonderful on you! Quite flattering and the one I would choose.

  • marlene_2007
    8 years ago

    They both look great on you. I vote for #2 but either would work.

    I also think pearls, white pearls, would be perfect.

    This post was edited by marlene_2007 on Mon, Apr 7, 14 at 18:43

  • kswl2
    8 years ago

    I also like the RL dress, it is a bit more "evening," where the other two sheaths would be perfect for a day wedding in a church, followed by a club reception, especially when dressed up with good hair, shoes, jewelry, and a wrap of some kind (since you dislike my old lady cardigans, lol). Do not care for the Trump dress at all, but the RL really does flatter your figure.

    Please wear a string of pearls with this dress, if you wear it-- it was made for pearls! Fab earrings and bracelet, a pretty tiny purse and I would wear darker silver or pewter shoes, not black, but that's just me. And a lovely shimmery wrap!

  • sweeby
    8 years ago

    The Ralph Lauren is PERFECT! Elegant, figure-flattering, nice balance of tastefully-mature without being matronly. And I agree with the pearls suggestion also. Very classy ;-) And it would be lovely with a wrap for 'just in case' cool weather.

    You've found your dress!

  • flowerpwr45
    8 years ago

    I really like both of those last two on you!

  • lizzie_grow
    8 years ago

    My opinion??? I love the RL dress on youâ¦so flattering. Is it the comfy one too?

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Wow! I didn't expect there to be such a consensus! And I have to admit the RL is the one that is as comfortable as PJs, and the fabric is the kind that will pack beautifully (the wedding is out of state) so I think I have a dress.

    Sorry, though, no pearls. I have a lovely string and pretty pearl and diamond earrings that go with them, but ever since Barbara Bush, I've been unable to wear them. Any of you remember the pearls in Thoroughly Modern Millie? Same thing with Margaret Dumont from night at the opera...

    But if I'm not sewing, I'll have time to either shop or perhaps make a necklace out of beads...something more "wilma flintstone" as mtnrd would say.... or I have really good gems I could wear if I want to risk it. (I hate traveling with good jewelry out of fear of losing it.)

    Shoes will be next though as the wedding is outside on the lawn so they are recommending women wear wedges and I don't have any....I like the suggestion of pewter or silver for the shoes though....part of me wants to try to change shoes for the reception though so I can wear something more formal...maybe just flats for the wedding....

    Thank you all for your input...much appreciated!

  • Olychick
    8 years ago

    Omigosh, those are both gorgeous! And they look so much nicer on you, but especially the RL. The color is very flattering and I think esp. the length of the RL is perfect. Whew!

  • tinam61
    8 years ago

    Yes you've found it! The v-neck, a bit of flowing - it is very flattering! Lovely color also. I'm not a pearl person myself and think you can find something really fab to wear with the dress.

    tina

  • outsideplaying_gw
    8 years ago

    Wow, they are both lovely on you. Another vote for the RL. So glad you went shopping again and found these. And if it feels like PJs, and packs well, then all the better. Now you can enjoy the rest of your busy time leading up to the wedding.

  • kswl2
    8 years ago

    Anything that feels like pajamas is all right in my book!

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Thank you all so much...I guess the long search paid off!

  • lyfia
    8 years ago

    Love the second one. I'm also amazed at what a difference the V-neck made. Don't remember who noted a V-neck would be more flattering, but I'm always amazed with those that can see these things as I'm clueless to those things.

  • texanjana
    8 years ago

    Yes, I agree the RL is perfect. Very flattering.

  • maire_cate
    8 years ago

    The RL is perfect and the neckline is great too. Where on earth did you find it?

    My nephew is getting married in 5 weeks and I'm also hunting for a new outfit. I've been watching this post every day....you've found a dress that's great for the wedding and reception but not limited to a dressy event. You could easily wear that to other functions.

    And it's in my favorite color.... a rich blue, on my monitor it looks sapphire.

    I don't think I'd wear pearls though and I happen to love them. There are so many silver necklaces that would enhance that neckline and color - perhaps complement a metallic shoe too if that's what you select.

    This post was edited by maire_cate on Tue, Apr 8, 14 at 14:02

  • mlweaving_Marji
    8 years ago

    Just checking back in here. You've been busy. I love the RL dress on you too. I suspect the other is also really flattering, but that the overexposure of the lighting on the pic and maybe the pic angle makes it not as enticing as the RL. Either one would be perfect.
    Are you in the mood for silvery/pewter shoes?
    I just bought these at Dillards (amazing selection I'll add) to wear this weekend as stepmom of Bride.

    They are comfy enough for me to wear and still act as hostess at this wedding. By J Renee and pretty affordable.
    I'm a lot taller than you, but have the same figure issues, ie shapely ample tush and bustline. For this "black tie optional" wedding all the bridesmaids will be in long dresses as will I. I ended up buying a dress in the salon the day we went wedding dress shopping, at Sweet Elegance in Atlanta where they were absolutely wonderful. And I went with a mock wrap - silver, beaded. Still haven't decided on jewelry. sigh. Wedding is in three days.
    (why do they picture a 20-something in a dress meant for MOB?)

    I made my dresses for my two sons weddings, but making it this time was going to be a logistical nightmare.

    Have a wonderful time at your barn wedding.

  • kristine_ca
    8 years ago

    It's Ralph all the way, baby! I agree the V-neck really looks good, and I think the greater fullness in the skirt is more flattering and less business-y.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Thank you all for the support.

    I returned the other dresses and shoes today and found a nice necklace to wear with the dress. Now I just need shoes.

    Mlw...those shoes look great, and the dress is very pretty...but does it have a train? Is that something you can manage? I like the jewelry as pictured...the ring and bracelet...I think a necklace would be too much.... Best wishes at your wedding as well.

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Marie cate, the dress was from macys...

  • busybee3
    8 years ago

    haven't spent any time on this side for a long time, but happy to see a clothing thread to read!!

    yes, the RL dress is great! i tried on several RL dresses this holiday season and found his wrap style v does not work for me since i am not as endowed on top- your figure is perfect for it!
    pewter/silvery shoes will look great with it!

    am going shopping tomorrow- i have a black tie event at the beginning of may... i really need a whole wardrobe revamping-- i have alot of clothes, but nothing to wear!! so many are getting old, especially nicer clothes which are worn infrequently--i really struggle if i have to wear something other than jeans/gym clothes. i like looking nice, but the whole process of shopping and selecting clothes is difficult for me- pulling together a whole outfit and especially accessorizing. and, i absolutely cannot walk into a store like marshalls, sift through all the clothes and come out of there with a pulled together outfit- just can't do it! :(

  • maire_cate
    8 years ago

    Thank you for the source Annie.

    Will you need a wrap of some kind? I think the idea of flats for the ceremony and then something dressier for the reception - maybe you'd like to spice up your outfit with these? It has a nice think heel so you won't sink into the grass.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Silver

  • Annie Deighnaugh
    Original Author
    8 years ago

    Yikes! Silver boots ain't me, for sure! Though they certainly go with the farm theme.

  • outsideplaying_gw
    8 years ago

    Annie, I ordered this shoe a couple of weeks ago from a local department store but found it on Zappos as well. It is in 'Ash' which is actually more grey than it appears in the photo. It's very comfortable and sexy. Might not be the style you are going for but I'm planning to wear it with a dress to a May wedding. I have long slim legs and am tall, so I don't do heels.

    Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.zappos.com/tahari-nina-ash

  • Olychick
    8 years ago

    Well, as they say....it takes a village.