This post is overdue.  Should have gone out in June but I got busy.  I’ll just venture to say women already wised up: June in our part of the world is more of a washout than the “new life springing all around and so must we” ideal of the western bride. So I guess I am still on point, despite this delayed posting, because there are still so many clear days fore and aft, to have and to hold – err. save the date.  

Before my handful of friends start swooning, get drop jaw, or jump for joy – this is not an announcement! I have yet to find the highest bidder or The One hehehe.  A family friend once told me he ‘d gift me with a house and lot when “I do”, all for the joy of seeing my parents wail as they hand me over.  As the years and his hopes of my ever after (or maybe his riches, too) waned, that house and lot promise was downgraded to a kitchen showcase.  Ditto with my parents: a great sigh of relief would issue rather than tears.  At this point, they’d resort to raffling me off but I won’t have it hehehe. 

So this post is all about the wedding guest and what to wear.  I spent the better part of June at Gakuya, subbing for Kim who was everywhere else doing errands and going to meetings, despite heavy rains.  It was quiet in the shop, with clients mostly staying home to deal with school opening, settling down to a regular schedule or trying not to drown. I had plenty of time to plan my wedding guest wardrobe with the shops’ off the rack choices.

I’ve emceed at weddings or been part of the entourage so many times that I have gotten the hang of dressing up according to theme or time of the wedding.  I’ve been to a lot where people wear the most inappropriate things! Relatives, I find, are the guiltiest of dressing down! Out of respect for the bridal party, we should all be mindful we are dressing up for their important event that they deigned to share with us, a VIP worthy of a place setting.  I understand how economics or that polished look may not be “you” but you are, first, a valued friend expected to look as if you feel the same way about them.  It is one exceptional day in both your lives.

Personally, I like long dresses.  I love this one of pieced together century lace, with a dip in the bodice coyly veiled by embroidery, like flying buttresses in cathedral architecture (learned in Humanities class! Now, that’s appropriate hehehe).  With subtle accessories, it doesn’t scream bride-like. A sheer wrap takes care of modesty at church.

Opposite the day wedding look is this vampy but tastefully black strapless tube gown in tafetta "ribbons" with deep violet trim.  The layers are sewn on stretchy lining underneath so the ruffled gown doesn’t bulk you up.  It is actually figure flattering.  Check with the wedding couple though, if black is in or out. 

On regular days, I am a fashion gypsy, favoring long cotton skirts and tank or print top with a light jacket or cropped shrug.   I would go for a more sophisticated take on these if I can get away with it. If you have the personality (and the right body type) to carry off a simple tank top and a surprise of a long skirt, great! Bubble gum pink is so fun! This is a tafetta mullet skirt (long at the back, the only time mullet is fashionable is when its not your hairstyle) makes walking on a pink cloud possible, don’t you think?

This one in light olive and hint of gold with the clever pleating in the back and the pink budded vine appliqué is all of a piece! This is specially designed for a friend.  Young as she is, being a mom and managing a staff apparently qualifies her as principal sponsor.  This was a great choice for her, at once different, motif-bound and young-ish. 

If the bride doesn’t kill me for upstaging (or maybe this could be her wedding gown) and the motif just has to be within the conservative spectrum of sand, beige, nude, cream or off white,  I am up for this empire cut, ruche (pleating) charmeuse with pearls and crystal beaded appliqué curling up one shoulder. This is so un-godmotherly costume wise! I'm not ready to be one but if I really must - not supposed to refuse the honor (please tell me why???) - I prefer jewel tones. I'd rather be more fairy godmother like.

If I want to wear dress pants or a pencil skirt, I would wear it with something like this dove grey silk top.  I like how simple this is but of course the right seamless, so-not-there underpinnings (wow, hahaha) makes this work – also a liberal dash of confidence, toned arms and a modest bust line (very!).

If the wedding doesn’t call for long gowns or strictly formals, a long dress would do as long as they’re cut nicely and not so much resort wear looking (unless it is a beach wedding). Now if you have it in for the groom (Your ex? Hahaha. Why would you want to be there anyway) or aiming for one in the party, you might brave wearing this silk charmeuse in gradations of peach, coral and almost russet at the serpentine (how snaky hehe) hemline!  That is, if anyone will let you.

Dresses are iffy but if you find something that looks as regal as this one shouldered emerald green in duchesse satin with the asymmetrical hem and a figure saving (belly hiding) flap front, love!  I love the long, double strand of pearls, too – sets off the jewel tone of the dress and great skin. 

Cocktail dresses are iffy too.  I think its the length that spells the difference between club and reception cocktails.  Below or a little above the knee is more acceptable - and comfortable (would you want to be tugging or pulling all the time? I think not). Kim also says (and I agree) no matter how good your legs look, you could be brought down by the knee - bony? knobby? dark? ugh!

I like this brocade cream and gold shift that makes anyone look taller (you need custom tailoring).  Gold studs and cream, high-heeled peep toes lends more elegance. BTW: not all gold and glittery stuff is good - wow 'em, don't blind 'em, I'll say! Restraint is tasteful, unless the theme of the wedding is carnival night!

Now this is plum pretty! Maybe not my personal favorite but I like how it flatters any body type (just not the extreme range, ok?) I like the beadwork, too! I had a hand in beading another, but I didn’t get to take a picture.

Whatever you want to wear, think about tropical heat.  Though it is typhoon season and this is the first week since June that the skies are clear, the sun comes back every time fit to melt the rubber off flip-flops!  Which leads us to another best-dressed rule: no moons of sweat under arms and maps on the back so fabric choice is key - unless someone invents air-conditioned bubbles we could float in.  

Linens and textured silk are nice but not crease-proof and makes me feel "boxy".  Jersey fabric flatters the figure if you have it (mine is contestable hahaha). Full on bead work makes sitting down uncomfortable, too fussy and diva-ish.  Lace is always great but you need to find something that spells high romance and not window dressing (curtains!).  

Color choice is key - you need to consider your skin tone, body slimming effect, motif (if you must), how it photographs (of course! no need to be top model material but you shouldn't pass up the chance to impress your facebook connections), how matte or shiny or dull the hue on the fabric, how rich. If you are opting to show a shoulder, back or decollete, powder more than your nose (don't stain the dress) and bring a nice wrap or shrug or capelet to match ( nothing bulky and Baguio sweater like) when its chilly in or out. Heels forever!

Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, my own wedding. Not just yet ; )

P.s.  The squirrel came out and chattered at me, asking me to shoo the cat waiting for it to come down for whatever can be foraged on the ground.  Poor squirrel, I was told there’s only a few left, killed by stray cats.  I hope that won’t be the last time I see it.   


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