Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Art of Recycling a Wedding Dress

As most are aware of, tis the season for weddings! Even though I’m not getting married any time soon, I thoroughly enjoy watching and reading about other people’s weddings. The party planner in me loves seeing the planning process and how everything turns out in the end. As most women are aware of, one of the most coveted things in a wedding is the bride’s gown. The search for the perfect dress can turn a perfectly normal woman into a deranged animal.

These gowns can fluctuate in price from $200 up to the six digits in some cases. Let’s be realistic, if you’re looking to downsize this is your prime opportunity. Sure you can camp outside David’s Bridal for three days before the annual sale and take out someone’s Grandma to find the right dress at a bargain price. Or you can browse the interweb to compare prices. The downside with that is, you can’t physically see the dress and for all you know, it will need another $300 in alterations. 

The average price a woman spends is between $800-$1000. That is without alterations. And if you’re anything like me (short and…curvy), those alterations can cost up to $200. So with all your (or your parents’) hard earned money spent on this dress…what do you do with it after your big day?

That question has a couple of different answers to it. You can do what most do and store the dress in plastic for two decades in the basement.  It will chill there until your daughter decides she wants to be Frankenstein’s bride for Halloween and “decorates” your lovely dress with fake blood. 

Or you can take a different approach to the dress dilemma. And try one of these newfangled ideas.

·         Renting a wedding dress
If the thought of not owning this priceless heirloom is distressing to you, then please skip this option. If you’re looking to have a gorgeous dress for your wedding and can part ways with it after; then this might be a good alternative for you. Renting a tux is as common place at a wedding as doing the Macarena. So why has it taken so long for girls to jump on the bandwagon? I have no idea. But stores are popping up all over the United States that offer this service for as low as $100! Designer gowns will of course be a little more pricey but nothing close to what you would pay to buy one. Every rental store has different guidelines, so make sure you do your homework before you rent a gown. And best yet..this dress won’t be sitting in your attic for twenty years.

·         Borrowing a wedding dress
If you’re against renting one, then you must think I’m down right crazy to suggest borrowing one. But I recently read an article (that can be found here) of 3 friends who shared 1 dress for all their weddings. Now, it is definitely rare to find three friends who fall in love with the same dress, but if it happens…make it work. 

·         Selling your dress to a rental store after the wedding
Who wouldn't want to re-use this dress?
These smart brides realized that after their big day they are never going to wear their dress again. So instead of storing it in the basement, they decided to essentially “sell back” their dress to a wedding dress renting establishment. You take your dress in, the saleswoman appraises it and tells you what they would buy it for, and you make the sale. You leave with some money in your pocket and some extra space in the basement. 

·         Donating your dress
If you really want your own dress but don’t feel the need to keep it afterward, there is no reason you shouldn’t donate it. Thrift shops or “second hand” stores are always in need of wedding dresses. You were fortunate enough to buy one, some other women don’t have that luxury. Why not let someone else enjoy the dress? Not only will you be doing a good deed, but maybe splurging for the $1200 dress you really want will seem more acceptable if you know at least two people will be getting to wear it. Just a thought…

Bottom Line:

Everything depends on you. Some women have been dreaming about their wedding day since they were young and won’t settle for anything but the best. Other women would be happy getting married braless and in sweats.  Although I understand the sentimental value a wedding dress holds, I personally find it to be selfish to store a dress you (hopefully) will never wear again when someone else can use it. If you’re under the impression one day your daughter will walk down the aisle in your dress…you might want to re-think that. Styles change and no young girl walks to rock the wedding dress with the shoulder pads (sorry mom!). 

No thank you...

Monday, July 11, 2011

Why I Love the Beach

I love going to the beach. Living on an island, I have had the pleasure of being able to swim in the ocean since I was born. I do not take this for granted and in the summer months, I try to go to the beach as much as possible. However, besides the swimming, there is another reason why I love beachin’ it so much. And that is the people watching. The beach brings out the unusual in people. Here are some things I have noticed:

Fat people in bikinis
 I’m all for having self esteem. Really..I am. But there is such a thing as taking self esteem to a whole new level. And that is when overweight people wear bikinis. There are plenty of other bathing suit options that will make the general public cringe when you walk their way. Prime example:

Nobody wants to see that. 

Black lady eating fried chicken
There are some foods that are beach staples. Bagels, chips, sandwiches, etc. I usually try to avoid hot foods because well…I’m already sweating and a hot pastrami sammich does not sound appealing to me. However, one glorious day I awake from my slumber to look over and see a lady pummeling fried chicken into her mouth fistfuls at a time. Just watching her made me feel ten times hotter and I needed to jump in the water.
This isn't the actual lady I saw. But close enough.
Men in tiny speedos
I understand that it’s all the rage in Europe for men to wear teeny, tiny Speedos. I’m not saying it’s pleasant to the eyes, but it is what it is. But here in America, we have these things called swim trunks. Not only do they cover all your junk, they provide some modesty for those who don’t want their hairy crotches to be seen by the world. 

Kids pooping in the water
The bathrooms at beaches are gross. They smell, are filled with sand, and are completely nasty. So I don’t really frown upon people peeing in the ocean. It might sound gross but well…when the urge hits you and you know there’s no way your gunna make it 20 miles to the bathroom…the water is probably the best place to let it fly. But having witnessed a little kid pooping in the water…it made me wonder if their parents took it a little too far.
You can just tell that kid is dying to poop.

Making out on the towel
I never liked going to the beach with a significant other. I like to lay there and tan and sweat and do my own thing. The thought of another body hovering around me and wanting to touch..not for me. But obviously some couples love to take their passion to the beach and that is when I witness the inevitable “towel make out.” Is it necessary to be cuddling on the beach in 93 degree weather? I didn’t think so

Saggy tattooed bodies
Tattoos are all the rage right now. It seems as if almost everyone on earth has at least one and loves to show them off. Which is all good and fine. Except when you see the 75 year old man with saggy skin and faded tattoos that all are congealed into one. Or the lady who had a rose tattooed on her boob when they were perky and they now sag to her bellybutton and the rose is more of a long stem that leads to nowhere. Gross.
Sweet someone's grandpa has nipple rings!

People fully clothed on the beach
Beaches are notorious for getting hot. Some would even say that was their whole purpose. So understand my confusion when I see guys who go to the beach in Timbalands, black jeans, and sweatshirts. Why bother?

Boogie Board Knock Downs
Everyone who has been in the water at a beach has had the experience of being knocked over. Some have more traumatic stories while others may have just simply fallen. I use to play a game with my friends while we were boogie boarding. You would spot a group of people and try to knock them down while taking a wave in. There was a point system associated with this game. I once got a whole Asian family. Most moral thing I’ve ever done? Not quite. Hilarious? Absolutely. 
Me on my board

Parents not watching their kids
I can’t count how many times I have seen kids run or fall in the water and their respective parent are nowhere to be seen. This makes me angry for more than one reason. The water is dangerous for full grown adults nevermind defenseless little tykes. Also, it is not the responsibility of a stranger to make sure your child doesn’t’;t drown. Just because there is a lifeguard on duty doesn’t mean they can see every single person. Watch your fucking kids!

People selling shit on the beach
I’m not talking about walking to the concession stand and seeing beach gear for sale. I’m talking about the gypsies that walk towel to towel in hopes of selling you a one of a kind shit rock necklace. Or better yet, the hobo that was selling sweatpants on a beach. In 90 degree weather. Leave me alone and make way for the guy whose selling ice cream bars. He’s really who I want to see!