‘…as soon as I saw it was just like…oh my god that’s just what I wanted’

This might seem like a very specific article this week, and well, I suppose it is. I think women have been choosing vintage style dresses for a very long time and either they have them hand-made in that style, they choose an old vintage dress and have it altered to fit or they buy a reproduction style from a bridal shop. It is a classic shape and style to go for.

I would like to introduce to you a very special person in my life, my friend Charlotte Upton. Charlotte married James two years ago in an incredibly beautiful stunning wedding in a gorgeous location in Central Park, New York. I think I could write a whole article solely on their fabulous wedding but I would like to concentrate on Charlotte’s sensational dress. Which was sort of not intended to be a wedding dress and she certainly hadn’t been purposely shopping for it at that time but worked so well.

When I saw Charlotte walking towards James on her wedding day in her dress it really took away my breath, to find such a beautiful dress that fit every inch of her body so perfectly was just amazing. The style fitted the wedding exactly and it just looked like it was made for her. I caught up with Charlotte to discuss the process she had when finding her dream dress and any problems she encountered and how she solved them.

Charlotte, your wedding dress was just so stunning, tell me the story about how you found it.

I was shopping in Loughborough and wasn’t looking for a wedding dress at the time as it was about a year before the wedding. I saw a dress in a shop window and went inside to have a look at it. I saw she had some dresses that could be ‘wedding dresses’, I looked through them and picked the dress out and knew straight away that it was the right dress. It was the only dress I tried on. Can you believe that?! As soon as I saw it was just like…oh my god that’s just what I wanted. The only problem was it was two sizes too big but they said it wouldn’t be a problem as they could alter it. I wanted them to put it aside because I wanted my mum, sisters and some friends to see it as getting the dress at that point wasn’t even on my mind, so I had to make sure I had their approval. There was no question, as soon as they saw it they loved it, just like I did.

Were you worried about having alterations? Did you think it might change the style and shape of the dress?

Yes I was worried as there were many pleats and I was concerned it would look different. However, when it actually came to it they couldn’t alter the dress so in the end we changed the top of the dress instead. The straps needed changing, they were thick and triangular originally but because I needed so much of that material taken out they had to cut it all off and put new straps on. I was also really worried because I thought it was going to be so much work that I was considering going to look for another dress, which was such a horrible thought because I wasn’t going to find a dress I liked as much as that one.

Did they do that for you in the shop?

No, I had to take it to a dress-makers who does those kinds of alterations and she brought in some lace and sequin samples and I chose what I wanted from there.

When you were engaged had you been thinking of what kind of dress you wanted, did you have any initial ideas?

I’d always fancied a Grecian type dress, I knew I wanted it slim, I did NOT want a meringue style dress and because I’m quite tall, I wanted it to just fall down over me. I wanted it to look like a Greek Goddess style. It’s the kind of style I like, it’s not the sort I tend to wear but I’d always imagined it to be like that. I knew I wanted it to be long, and I knew it needed to be close to my body and not kick out. I didn’t want anything traditional.

Was the colour important to you?

Yes because it had a gold sheen to it and I was sure I never wanted white and I had thought of something different to ivory and that dress had those exact things so I was really happy with the colour. I also surprised myself with how much I liked the detailing, if I was to have designed my own dress I would never have thought of that kind of detailing but it really added to it. With my dress I had to consider the heat of the day, I knew it was going to be hot in New York in August so that’s why the dress worked so well with the material and the detailing sparkled in the sunlight.

Had you always thought you would have found a dress so quickly, or had you not even got to that stage of thinking about it?

Well, I think I’d always imagined going shopping with my mum, sisters and friends and that never happened but I don’t regret it at all because it was right at the time. I suppose I missed having that glass of champagne whilst trying on dresses but I knew that the dress I had chosen was just so perfect I don’t mind that at all.

Have you any advice that you would give to brides who are about to embark on wedding dress shopping?

Yes! Don’t buy a dress until nearer the time. Buy one that you know for certain you’d fit into by the time of your wedding, one that you won’t need to loose weight or put on weight for. I absolutely love my dress but if the stress with the alterations could have been avoided by getting it later then I would have done that.