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Gaaaaaah, I am getting married in 6 weeks. Have no dress, no manicure, no make up. Help!

(57 Posts)
Hopefully Sat 04-Jun-11 10:13:00

I may be in the running for the least-organised-bride-ever award. There is an award for that, right?

Anyway, DP and I are getting married in 6 weeks. I gave birth to DS2 9 weeks ago (here's a tip: if you are struggling to conceive, just start planning your wedding. You will fall pregnant instantly). I look exactly as you might imagine someone to look who gave birth 9 weeks ago - my body is emphatically not buffed, polished and moisturised, I don't appear to own a cleanser apart from soap and none of my make up is the right colour (I was pale, interesting and working in London last time I had much call for it).

And so, wise MNers of both style and beauty, I throw myself on your mercy. Help me look, if not like a magazine bride, at least vaguely human on my wedding day.

A little bit of information about me:
* I am 5'6 and around 11st 6lb (a good size 14). I am 30-day-shredding (and BFing) and hoping to be below 11st in 6 weeks, so a big size 12/small 14
* I have ginormous BFing boobs of doom (32FF)
* I am an hourglass shape
* I have about 45 minutes a day to myself for all beautifying to take place (25 minutes of which is spent Shredding) thanks to DS2 not understanding that it's nice to occasionally go more than 8 minutes between feeds, and DS1 demanding attention the odd time that DS2 does manage it.
*There are going to be 120 guests at our wedding. I would like to not alarm them by looking totally rough
* Colouring - I am brunette with kind of hazel eyes (sort of multi-coloured pale green/brown/blue). I am 'clear and warm' according to /colour Me Beautiful. This essentially means lots of bright, clear colours, no cold, muted tones, and white is out. Pinks, (bright) blues, reds, teals etc are often good.
* I am 28. I used to be quite stylish and cool (I think. Possibly I was the only one who thought so, of course...).

Here is just a small selection of things I am panicking about:
* Being fat - I am about 1.5st heavier than pre-pregnancy and feeling fat. I have completely forgotten how to diet. Give me tips! We eat on a tight budget, so can't do atkins or anything clever.
* Hands - this is the one and only time in my life that my hands are likely to be examined/photographed/admired. They are currently somewhat grubby, unmanicured and dry. Should I start looking after them now?
* Feet - not too awful, but have terrible hard/cracked skin on heels. If I don't wear a full length dress they will be visible.
* I have that bumpy upper arm skin. Have read that foot cream helps. REALLY?
*My skin is crap - greasy, spotty, yet showing first signs of wrinkles. I need a good skin care routine. I used to use Eve Lom, and will splash out again if you tell me it's worth it.
* The dress - yeah, no dress. I don't really want to wear ivory, but would consider it in a non-weddingy style (I am definitely not a candidate for a white meringue). I am still toying with making it (am competent seamstress, but am already making clothes for DS and shirt for DP, and have six weeks), but if not will have to buy it. Could probably stretch to £500+ for absolutely perfect dress that could be worn again for occasional black tie things, would prefer £2-300. Dress doesn't need to be BF-friendly - I will go inside the house (marquee in relative's garden) to feed if necessary. Will probably be wearing proper underwear anyway, so easy-access dress will be wasted
* Make up - I used to wear a reasonable amount, have not worn more than powder/mascara/blusher for about a year. I like Clarins and Mac. Prefer stuff not tested on animals. What do I need?
* Hair - I'll be doing my own hair and make up. How?! What products do I need?
* Shoes - reception is in outside marquee (i.e. there will be walking on grass involved), so wedges/flip flops/ballet pumps seems sensible. all suggestions welcome!
* DS1&2 - what the hell do you do with your own child/baby on your wedding day? Am contemplating arranging a grandparent rota for babysitting. Suspect DP will end up with DS2 in the sling, as he does not deign to sleep alone yet (wedding night should be a laugh hmm grin). Will DS1 (2.8yrs) just stay up stupidly late? We are staying in the house, so don't need to transport him for sleep.

We have spent a blardy fortune on this wedding, and I know it will be absolutely wonderful. I would like to be able to look back at photos (taken by the obscenely expensive but wonderful photographer) and not think how crap I look. Help me!

catinthehat2 Sat 04-Jun-11 10:27:47


motherinferior Sat 04-Jun-11 10:30:26

I am not usually a fan of Restraining Pants, but feel they might save you a lot of hassle here, under whatever garment you see fit to wear.

motherinferior Sat 04-Jun-11 10:31:15

Oh and hands and feet can be very easily rescued. Believe me.

imopop Sat 04-Jun-11 10:34:03

Have looked at Monsoon bridal for a dress? Get some decent underwear.Shoes depends on style of dress. Go to a make up counter in one of the department stores like Mac and get a free makeover. They will show you how to apply the make up. Go and get a pedicure and manicure. Gel overlays are good last ages and dont chip so you can do it the week before. Go for a trail in your hairdressers and get someone else to do your hair takes the stress out of it. If you can do a grandparent rota on the day. By the way you are not fat!Let us know how you get on.

whoneedssleepanyway Sat 04-Jun-11 10:39:21

Well things I would say you should definitely do:

Get you hair cut (and coloured if you do that) a couple of weeks before

Have a manicure the day before, seriously even with hands in a terrible state they can make them look nice, between now and then put hand cream and oil on your nails every night

Have a pedicure the week before

I personally wouldn't stress yourself out trying to lose weight but would just go for a dress that accentuates all your good bits and that way you can get a dress that fits you now, by all means keep shredding etc but don't go on some mega diet, I think if you are BF it isn't a good idea anyway.

I don't think you should make the dress, I think this will stress you out even more, I would got an see a personal shopper somewhere and try on loads of things. There is a good one in Peter Jones in Sloane Sq. I went with my mum to get her outfit for my brother's wedding and took DD2 with me who was very young at the time (like 2 months) and it was fine, can you get someone to look after DS1 while you go?

Book a makeover at one of the beauty counters when you go to see the personal shopper, they do bridal makeovers at all the main ones (I think Bobbi Brown is good).

Does any of that help.

6 weeks is a reasonable length of time to get everything in order, I am sure you will look fabulous on the day.

whoneedssleepanyway Sat 04-Jun-11 10:41:39

Yes definitely second Gel nail polish, Jessica do one and it dries immediately so you don't have any of that flapping around for 2 hours afterwards not able to touch anything, last 2-3 weeks so you can get it done the week before (it is called Geleration) it isn't great for your nails so they may be a bit weaker afterwards but would certainly mean they look good on the day.

And yes yes yes get fitted for decent underwear.

franke Sat 04-Jun-11 10:56:39

You don't sound horribly fat, but if you want to you can definitely shed 6lb in 6 weeks. Keep up the shredding and just keep an eye on portion sizes. I'm about the same size as you and have been doing Paul McKenna - it doesn't suit everyone, but it has helped me to control the amount I eat; I lost around a stone in a couple of months and so far it's staying off. Don't bother with any food-restricting diet while you're bf (or at any time imo) - you'll be miserable.

As well as doing the manicure/pedicure thing, try to start with handcream now - use a blob after every time you wash your hands. It doesn't have to be expensive, I use a cheapo Aldi one. Ditto footcream after a shower and if you can bear to, wear cotton socks...

I think any skincare routine will help to improve your skin - even if it's just slapping on a bit of vaseline intensive care in the morning after a very gentle exfoliator. And don't forget your neckline skin - I moisturise and use a factor 50 suncream on mine.

Can't advise on clothes I'm afraid - I'm clueless.

bubbakin Sat 04-Jun-11 11:18:53

Oh how exciting, but also very manic for you!!

Mint velvet do a lovely ivory lace maxi dress here which with a simple bouquet & some simple accessories would be suitable for bride, bargain price, could be worn afterwards. Also suits flat shoes, maybe a lovely pair of gladiator style sandals... know they're not cheap but would get lots of wear out of them.

Also have a look on john lewis website for bridal, their dresses aren't the typical bridal sort so you could wear it again & they're within budget.

I think a bit of fake tan always make you feel a bit better about yourself & can help hide a few sins. Just enough to give you a little glow, so perhaps a spray tan a couple of days before.

If your hair is long enough then low side buns are nice, not too neat with maybe a bit twirled & pinned around. Could then put some flowers by bun...or a cream fascinator with a bit of height to it.

Yes organise for relatives to look after the children, maybe get 1 to be in charge & let others know that they may be called upon to look after them rather than doing a rota as such.

All the best & enjoy your special day x

ColonelBrandonsBiggestGroupie Sat 04-Jun-11 11:25:04

Hands and feet - Flexitol

Dress - Vivienne westwood: it will make you feel curvy and wonderful, however you currently feel about yourself

Make up - go to Clarins for a makeover and then buy what you like: deffo get Beauty Flash balm

Children - yes to gp rota/yes to staying up until they fall asleep

petitdonkey Sat 04-Jun-11 11:25:38

Ahh - very exciting for you but manic too!! Have you got any idea of the style of dress that you are looking for? I have a beautiful Monsoon evening-ish dress which could be both borrowed and blue!!!

Do you have any friends that do their make-up really well? I've done make-up for four weddings now, was thrilled to be asked and to be part of their big day. Ditto nails, if you don't want to go for a mani or don't have time - get a friend to do it. Start using cream and oil now, keep them short and neat and paint them a pale pink/nude.

MayDayChild Sat 04-Jun-11 11:26:15

Can you get to SE London?
Call my best friend Kay who is 39 wks pregnant and runs a wedding dress shop. She has loads of older sample dresses contacts for everything and an amazing blog.

Promise she will fix everything! And be sympathetic and thoroughly interested in baby!!!
Heading up the oops no spaces

motherinferior Sat 04-Jun-11 11:26:17

Also do remember Obscenely Expensive Photographer is under pain of death to make you look gorgeous in the pics.

I'd vote for Bobbi Brown for makeup help.

polyhymnia Sat 04-Jun-11 11:31:55

Lots of good advice already.

Hands and feet absolutely no problem - book in at a good salon now for manicure and pedicure the day before and start using hand cream and foot moisturiser every day from now (any reputable brand from Boots will do - Flexitol is good for cracked heels) . Invest in a foot file too unless your feet are so bad you need to go to a chiropodist.May want to think about a good salon tan if you don't prefer to stay pale and interesting.

Start a simple skincare routine - definitely worth it. If you like Eve Lom, I'd just go to a counter - Space NK perticularly good - and stock up on the essentials now. Think you need to exfoliate your upper arms in the shower, then you can use body cream.

Also, go to some make-up counters - Clarins, if you like it, Mac, Bobbi Brown who do great natural looks, and get some makeovers, then buy the products they use which you like. Space NK also excellent for this as they have a wide range of brands. Aim not to wear too much, as some brides do - just enough so you look like an 'improved' version of yourself.

Would normally advise going to see a good hairdresser asap, to plan your look with him/her and make an apoointment for the day, but you sound like you're confident doing your own. If so, book in for cut and colour a couple of weeks before.

No great wisdom on the dress, I'm afraid, except to say I'm sure you'll find a good choice in your size, but shoes with lowish wedges - perhaps in a silvery or nude colour -would be fine and pretty ballerinas could work too. Would avoid flipflops, unless you're going for a Mamma Mia look.

I do tend to agree with advice to use personal shopper for dress and accessories as it seems you have enough to do without dressmaking! Oh, and get excellent underwear - will boost confidence and you'll get lots of use from it after the day.

monkeyfacegrace Sat 04-Jun-11 11:38:34


Now this is totally random (Im a regular-not a wierdo!), but I have a brand new with tags wedding dress in a size 12/14 that I no longer need. Its GORGEOUS, and was £900. Id happily post it to you for £100, as I love the idea of it going to a fellow mumsnetter! I can email you photos if you want?

In case you may be wondering, it was going to be my dress, but Im getting married in Vegas so settled on a fushia puffball!!!

ColonelBrandonsBiggestGroupie Sat 04-Jun-11 11:40:27


Navy maybe not bright enough

The gold Phase Eight dress that's been on a couple of threads lately would be good too.

aStarInStrangeways Sat 04-Jun-11 11:54:06

Ped Egg is good for filing off that rough skin on feet. Hands are also easily rescued: buy lots of tubes of handcream and keep them by every sink, in your handbag/changebag, by your bed etc. so that every time you've washed your hands you can apply some cream. It will really help. The cream doesn't have to be fancy - I found the Aveeno handcream good when DS was a baby, or just plain old E45 (also good for feet).

You sound like you're a lovely shape so I would second the recommendations of some personal shopping advice. I bet you can find a fabulous dress that will make you feel great as well as look great, which is the main thing really.

Hair: I did my own hair and make-up and watched lots of Youtube tutorials for inspiration. Ended up doing a very simple half-hive, with the rest left down and curled into ringlets. I am not the world's most competent hairdresser by any means but it looked good and I felt like me, which is crucial to a person looking happy and confident on their wedding day IMO.

Also agree that I wouldn't stress too much about trying to lose weight - by all means tone up if you feel you want to, but don't wig yourself out furiously counting calories and cursing any little treat that passes your lips. In the few weeks you have left before the day, you could use the time much more profitably finding the perfect dress that makes you feel like a million quid smile

Good luck!

Hopefully Sat 04-Jun-11 12:50:21

Thank you thankyou! Haven't had a proper read through yet, but DS is gearing up for a feed, so I'll read all your advice and make lists of things I need to do. I love lists (except the ones my mother keeps sending me along the lines of "1. have you phoned caterer re canapes?, 2. Don't forget to book glasses, 3. are you still eating healthily?, 4. is that child on a bottle yet?" grin).

monkey have pm'd you, thanks for thinking of me!

Hopefully Sat 04-Jun-11 12:54:28

And keep 'em coming people! I need all the help I can get here!

I am nominating myself as MN bridal crisis of the summer. Wonder if I can get charitable status...

JoPayton Sat 04-Jun-11 12:57:31

Have you had a look at Hitched for some dress ideas?? I will confess that I am the features editor for the site so I am biased, but they have a massive fashion directory and loads of affordable designers - plus the articles we do are good for dress inspiration. It's totally free to use - hope it helps!

Ooh, and nails - I would fork out for a manicure and have gels put on a couple of days before the wedding. They are LOADS more natural than acrylic nails and they last for 3 weeks - your nail polish will not chip no matter how long you spend with hands in water/sterilising bottles etc. Any good local salon should do 'em - they're expensive but I can tell you as a busy mum of one they have changed my life (that's a bit dramatic, but I'm obsessed with these things)

Jo x (aka Fashion Detective)

tethersend Sat 04-Jun-11 14:11:03

I think this would be great for a wedding dress.

CMOTdibbler Sat 04-Jun-11 14:11:33

I'm useless at dresses - but how about booking a personal shopper at John Lewis, then you get to sit in their room with ds2 while they go and find dresses for you.

Rather than a salon, find a mobile beautician who will come to the house and give you a regular facial/eyebrow tidy/body buff/ mani/pedi over the next few weeks - much more time efficient. Gel overlays or shellac are the dogs when time is short - your nails grow underneath and they don't budge.

ColonelBrandonsBiggestGroupie Sat 04-Jun-11 15:50:28

bright blue

ColonelBrandonsBiggestGroupie Sat 04-Jun-11 16:03:22

Gold but poss a bit too tinfoilish?

ColonelBrandonsBiggestGroupie Sat 04-Jun-11 16:04:05

And I can now report that nearly all of the dresses on net a porter are really, really horrible!

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