No matter how many self-improvement projects you've scheduled on your calendar before W-day (you know, wedding day, our big moment) do not and I must request your full-and-undivided-attention here: Do not do anything rash.
If you do, you could end up with an irreversible regret that I can guarantee will be documented in albums, digital cameras, computer photo "libraries", throw-away camera glossies, DVD's and other people's elephantine memories for decades to come.
Let me define rash:
- A new hair color. (This could be good, this could be very bad.)
- A radical cut. Ditto.
- A fussy -- operative words "old-looking" up-do. (Not good.)
- No weird nail polish colors. What's the point?
- Ensembles that scream "mother-of-the-bride." This is a delicate subject, which will be covered at length in the future, but I suspect you have an inkling about my references.
- Coats and jackets that fly open at the slightest movement of air in outdoor photo ops or during a lively dance in which you will most certainly be participating.
- Anything strapless that requires that exceedingly attractive wiggly-winged jumping haul-up movement. You know what I'm talking about.
- Skirts that hike-up mid-thigh when seated. You may think that's what tables were invented for, but in my experience religious ceremonies often precede receptions.
- Bottom line anything uncomfortable that has you handling and adjusting stuff all day and night is to be avoided no matter how gorgeous you think you are standing motionless before a mirror while the salesperson enthusiastically endorses your impression.
- Corsages or any other live flowers on your body (see Dec. 10th post which discusses this at length). I say "live" because there might be a splendid location for a Chanel camillia for example.
- Killer stilettos. (As gorgeous as these Jimmy Choo shoes are, they are lethal in this context.) You haven't worked this hard to get this far to break your leg.
- A badly thought out hat. Little else will draw more attention to you -- in a bad way -- than a chapeau, so it better be great. We'll discuss. (Isn't this Philip Treacy hat fun?)
- Plunging necklines. Been there done that. Enough already. It's neither the time nor the place and perhaps that chest area is not as taut as once was. No offense.
- Realizing in the cruel light of day (or night) your bare arms days are over, do yourself and everyone else a favor -- cover them. Think sleeves or jackets. Shawls are not an option, they slip off and require constant adjustment (except on French women for reasons I've never completely understood).
- Putting your face into the hands of a makeup artist whom you will meet for the first time two hours before your grand entrance. (Schedule an appointment well in advance to see if you look better or worse with your daughter's designated makeup applicator. If you're not happy, scurry out immediately to find another and try, try again until someone gets it right.)
- A head-to-toe liquid tan. (Please see Jan. 2nd post wherein I confess to my most outrageous miscalculation.)
All of this is not to say you shouldn't experiment. One must. We're striving for perfection after all and with trials there will be errors. These "missteps" as I like to call them, must be experienced in private, witnessed solely by strangers or those one trusts implicitly (or better yet those over whom one has some sway like knowledge of terrible secrets from their pasts).
Moving along: What one must not do is experiment too closely to W-Day. The national U.S. average from proposal to final engagement is 15 months. As you know I had only nine months which is why I can tell you with the greatest concern and compassion: Listen to me when I implore you not to do anything bizarre to yourself that cannot be quickly and easily rectified or immediately rinsed off. Plan well and 15 months -- or if you're really, really lucky even longer -- should be enough time to obsess over every-single-detail until you can say (to yourself) without equivocation: "I look absolutely fabulous."
And don't forget: I'm here to help.