Thursday, January 06, 2005

Bride's Maid (or is that Groom's Maid?) update

Subtitled: Who knew bra shopping could be *fun*? [warning: no knitting content]

On March 12th, I will be in the wedding party when my brother marries knuknitter - an honor unlooked for in my 39th year. I am part of the groom's party, but I'm wearing the same dress as the actual bride's maids - in a different color to make me more groom-y than bride-y. We ordered our dresses on November 20th through Unique Bride in Burlingame, prompting a round of self-congratulatory & rather stunned emails titled "We got Vera Wang dresses!!!"

Well, the dresses came in Monday and I went for a fitting. This dress has spaghetti straps and a "neckline" that goes right under the armpits & around the back. Not the matronly type of dress I generally wear. So my stock of available "foundation garments" was totally inadequate to the task.

Now, I don't know about you, but I HATE bra shopping. As a full-figured gal, I spend a lot of time alone in dressing rooms trying to squeeze into a tiny selection of just plain awful bras. Small wonder that I hate, hate, hate, hate the lingerie department. After a very lovely specialty shop in Burlingame totally let me down, I thought for sure I was doomed to travel the globe hunting for just the right bra. I thought my new hobby would be ordering hundreds of dollars worth of useless models from the Internet and returning them in disgust.

Imagine, then, my surprise when a VERY helpful sales gal at Nordstrom helped me try on a bunch of not-quite-right strapless bras to assess my size, checked her computer and called another mall to put on hold the only strapless bra in stock in 3 counties in a large enough size. Knuknitter picked it up for me yesterday, offering a moment of hilarity when the sales gal asked my pixie-ish future sis-in-law... "Don't you want to try it on?" Um. Honey, did you see the size of that thing??

This morning, I tried this $70 wonder on this morning with the dress and damn if it doesn't fit perfectly. That sales clerk has earned my undying patronage. I will be driving to San Mateo for every bra I ever buy from now on. I absolutely can't believe it took ONE 30 minute trip to the lingerie department to get all set up. Boom. Done.

And what was the secret of this success? The Nordstrom lingerie gal had zero hesitation about stomping right into the dressing room with me and poking & prodding various body parts to check fit. And she knew her stock intimately (*g*), knowing which lines carry which types of strapless bras in what size. I swear, no more solo trips to bra land for me! Being waited on hand-and-foot (no comments from you in the back!) has serious advantages.

Next up on the wedding preparation front: shoes and wraps. "m rather dreading shoes, but the wraps will be fun to design & knit. We have some great Crystal Palace ribbon yarn that ties together the green of the bride's maids dresses and the brown of mine with the ivory of the wedding dress itself.


Blogger Abigail said...

I LOVE nordstrom. When I am not pregnant or lactating, that is my favorite place to buy bras.

January 06, 2005 9:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I caught a glimpse of your dress at the meetup (good to see you by the way) -- it's gorgeous! And in the brown, so classy!

Yay on finding appropriate underthingies! And shoes will be fun -- my only suggestion would be to make sure they have the appropriate heel for the wedding venue, i.e. no spikey heels if you have to walk on the grass (mistake I made last year!). Good luck!!

January 07, 2005 11:04 AM  
Blogger Wiz Knitter said...

This is a true testament to the power of the blog -- I am actually excited to be moving to San Mateo so I can give that particular Nordstrom salesgirl my eternal patronage. This is such a delightful, funny account of the dread of lingerie shopping that I have to make sure the bridesmaids read it!

January 07, 2005 11:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm dying laughing! For the record, even for those of us with "pixi-ish" figures, bra shopping is still the worst. My favorite experience was when I went to Nordstrom to buy a nursing bra (to cover what I thought were my quite large post-baby breasts) and I was informed that "sorry, we just don't carry nursing bras small enough for you."


January 07, 2005 6:21 PM  
Blogger Ilona said...

As a woman with huge feet (size 11 1/2, hello! they don't even MAKE an 11 1/2!), I have undying loyalty to Nordstrom for their huge shoe stock. That's where I have purchased all my nice shoes since I don't know when - including my wedding shoes. And it's also where I got my strapless bra for my wedding. I loves me some Nordstrom. Especially when stuff is on sale.

January 08, 2005 10:46 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Absoultely hilarious! It sounds like bra shopping isn't really fun for anyone, well-endowed or not (like me). Congrats on finding the right bra...and sales person!

January 08, 2005 12:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, now I'm seriously concerned. I had figured that I could go in to the Unique Bride and they would magically have the perfect undergarment solution. Yikes! I headed to the store in Los Altos this morning, but when I arrived, it was no longer there. Guess I will go with their suggestions in Burlingame. How difficult can it be? ;) Hee, hee.

January 08, 2005 1:41 PM  

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