Here's to my first blog post in over a year and a half! I wanted to write this to give some insight into the wonderful experience I had whilst choosing my wedding dress. It seemed that an Instagram post just wouldn't do it justice!
As most of you will know, Saimon and I devide our time between Nadi, Fiji and Queenstown, NZ. I spent the best part of two months over the Summer working between weddings and influencer work, with some design thrown in there for good measure. Saimon proposed to me in Januarary of this year, and I knew that as our wedding was going to be in Fiji, I needed a dress that would be appropriate for the warm climate. As I am a makeup artist I have been priviledged to see an array of island bride's gowns and do my wedding dress 'research' on the job. I have seen a number of dresses that though are stunning, I thought would be far too heavy to wear on a 30 degree day on a remote island. This made me aware that I needed something a little lighter, simpler and easy to wear.
I started to do some research online through the usual channels, Pinterest and such. I found a gorgeous gown online that wasn't too bad of a price and looked to be what I needed. The problem, it wasn't made to measure and also based in Australia, so I wouldn't be able to try it on prior to purchase. As I was in Queenstown at that time and consistently chatting with friends about 'the' dress, I thought it was best if I did the whole 'bridal thing'. That being - go to a bridal store and try on a number of dresses just to get an idea of what I wanted, or to make sure what I was seeing online was what I did want!
Unfortunately (or fortunately!) there is only one bridal store in Queenstown with a number of dresses available for purchase and hire - Nemo Bridal & Couture.
My friend Becks (from Charlotte Lane) who has an eye for style and fashion accompanied me to Nemo to check out what they had on offer. She later told me that I was very rude when I exclaimed (wearing very fluffy dress) "do people actually wear this?!", to which I agreed was very rude and wanted to retract my statement immediately but alas, we had already left the store! (Sorry Sophie!).
I tried on a number of gown styles before deciding none of them were what I was after. I then spotted some slips that they had for hire, purposely made to wear under a wedding dress. Promptly I tried them on to gather an idea for what they might look like on.
Though the slips were too big for me, they affirmed that I wanted a simple, slip style dress with a small train and veil. After chatting to the lovely girls at Nemo, I was informed that they could make me a bespoke gown in the best silk satin and fitted perfectly for me. Once I received the quote (which was less than half the price of the original dress I found online!), I decided to go ahead with Nemo. The main challenge was that as I am based in Nadi, I would only have one fitting before heading back to Fiji and they that it may have needed alterations once it was finished. I didn't really feel I had much choice as bridal gowns are few and far between in Fiji so I put my faith in the wonderful Kristen, who was going to make my dress. I also informed Kristen that I intended on loosing some weight prior to the day so the gown may need to be made with that in mind.
Fast forward a month it was time for my first and only fitting. I headed to Nemo with Becks and my friend G. Nemo had made me a toile - which is a 'test gown' dress made of a nylon like fabric, which mimics how the actual fabric will fit and fall. I put this on and Kristen pinned it where it needed me be altered and I left feeling very excited.
That was back in March. In July I head to NZ for a quick week away from Fiji and Nemo had had my dress couriered to my Wellington address. I gasped with joy as I opened the box to find my gorgeous gown and veil packed perfectly. I couldn't wait to try it on.
As my dress has no closures or zips it had to go over my head. This was a bit worrying as I didn't know how it was going to fit. I had lost a few kilos since being back in Fiji and was unsure of what it may need.
The dress fit PERFECTLY! My mum and aunty helped get it over my head and align the lining with the outer gown. As you can see in the images it was perfect, my next challenge was underwear! When I was trying it on I was wearing black bikini style underwear so it didn't really fit the elegance of the gown. After a lot of trial and error (seamless slips etc.) I decided to go sans underwear with a strapless bra.
The wedding day has come and gone. And it was the best day of my life. I wore the gown of my dreams and could not have asked for anything better. Nemo exceeded all my expectations, were absolutely a pleasure to deal with (thank you Sophie) and I am pleased with choosing Nemo. The gown was perfect for an island wedding. I didn't feel hot and sweaty, but perfect in my dress. The colour was perfect against the Fiji backdrop and I will treasure it always.
Please see the pics below of 'the' dress and make sure to head to Nemo for your bridal experience.
Thank you again Nemo xx