Do you know Angelababy?

It seems that she is a Chinese star who wore a Dior wedding dress.

No one knows how much the Chinese superstar spent on her custom designer gown at her extravagant 2015 wedding to actor Huang XiaomingDo the math, as they say– 115 feet of ivory satin organza, 165 feet of tulle, nearly 100 hand-cut rose bouquets of Chantilly lace, not to mention the 10-foot train.  By the way, it took five months to create. One can assume that a massive chunk of the $31-million wedding budget was spent on bridalwear. Shame that the traditional Chinese costumes and rituals are being forsaken by wealthy Chinese. Many now go to Crete and Santorini for weddings and honeymoons (with their relatives in tow). Imagine a remake of my big fat Greek in Mandarin?

Another star’s wedding once fascinated the world. However it falls much lower on the price list. Grace Kelly’s 1956 wedding to Monaco’s Prince Rainier III exemplified Hollywood and royalty. MGM costume designer Helen Rose made the American princess’ dress from 100 yards of silk and 25 yards of taffeta. At the time it cost around $10,000, but today, the price tag would be closer to $85,000

  • P.S. SUGGESTION: New Bridal List: something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue plus garment insurance against stain, loss or theft.

Dream Wedding Dress?

OR Dream of a Wedding Dress with Online Interpretation

 My Celtic side makes me superstitious.

Standard interpretations learned at my grandfather’s knee include oppositions, e.g., if you dream of a wedding, you’ll go to a funeral!

I do dream of being in a wedding dress at least once a year. It is not always my wedding, either! I try to give my own twist to the dream by considering how I felt in the moment and upon waking.  If you ever look up dream interpretations, you may find something similar to what follows: 

NB The meaning varies depending on whether you are already married or want to be! PLUS how you feel about marriage in general! A few nuances are included.


Getting married in a dream

 To dream you are getting married may represent your commitment to or partnership with someone or something.

 OR  wish fulfillment, if you desire to get married in waking life. [Surprise?]


May represent a union or merging of the masculine and feminine aspectsof yourself.  

Your unconscious may be telling you that you have met the one you should marry.

Marrying your current spouse

May symbolize reviewing and questioning the status of your relationship. Consider how you feel – are you happy or unhappy about marrying your spouse in the dream?

May symbolize recommitting yourself and reminding yourself of the love you share.

Marrying your ex!!

May suggest you have learned from the experience and accepted the end of the relationship. (You may be recognizing the similarities between your ex and a current relationship.)

 A dream about a wedding where someone else is getting married may be dealing with issues involving your independence or commitment in a relationship.

 May suggest feeling jealous of the happiness of others. [FOMO?]

If you see others getting married, consider the main character traits of the bride and groom and how they interact with each other. It may be representing oppositional aspects within yourself that you are trying to accept and merge.

Other wedding-related dreams

 If you dream of a wedding dress or wedding ring, you may be evaluating a current relationship andconsidering the prospect of getting married; you may be considering making acommitment to someone or something.

Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. on

A dream about a broken wedding ring may symbolize fear that your marriage is in jeopardy of ending or may be awarning that you shouldn’t get married.

A dream of being at a wedding reception may represent a family celebration or a reminder of the joy your partner and family bring to you.

Happy Ending? Sweet Dreams!

If treasured, preserved; if cursed, stolen?

Recently, a magazine editor wrote: Today’s brides have plenty of options for what to do with their dress. Some donate or sell their gown, others repurpose the garment into lingerie or cocktail attire, and others ‘trash it’ at a ‘wild and wet’  photo shoot. Many brides, however, want to hang on to that dress that represents so much love, happiness and celebration.

As a formal bridal wear model, I shudder to think of a gown trashed or destroyed. Perhaps an ugly divorce might justify that treatment years later, though.

What  really happens to a used wedding gown?
If rental, returned. If treasured, preserved.
If cursed, stolen?

Mine was stolen (after the ceremony), but I intended to have it altered to wear at least part of it again. I never got to the preservation stage but always wondered about it. My tale of a stolen gown is not the practical process described herein.

Tradition and Superstition

My mother’s very ‘Princess Grace of Monaco’ wedding gown dated from the mid-fifties.  A practical woman, she did have the skirt removed from the bodice and used the lace bolero separately. This was a glamorous side of my mother’s life that I rarely ever saw. She was my ‘mum’ not a lady out on the town. Nevertheless, that gown’s remnants remained stored in a wardrobe bag alongside an apricot bridesmaid’s gown. The scent of mothballs overlaid with dust from electric baseboards and a touch of cedar pervaded the decayed lace.

As a child, I would beg her to let me try on these frocks, hidden away in a closet. She let me play dress-up with a few pieces. Never the wedding dress, though.  Celtic superstition and sentimental pride of ownership may have played a role.

A family friend’s young bride paid a small fortune to have her gown preserved.  Her idea was to create an heirloom.  Fortunately, the couple were blessed with two daughters.  Question:  Who gets the gown? Both?  This starts to sound like Biblical arguments over inheritance.

What is wedding dress preservation?

Sounds simple but the answer is not.  One thing for sure:  NOT SIMPLE DRY CLEANING

A wedding dress is usually carefully designed and extremely delicate, and can’t be cleaned like any old dress. Wedding dress cleaning and preservation is key to making sure the dress lasts a lifetime.

Gown preservation begins with an experienced specialist’s assessment and then a unique treatment plan according to the dress’s fabric, stitching and details, and analyzes stains along the hem  (essentially unavoidable on a ground-grazing ensemble) plus the entire gown.

Whether it’s for sentimental value or the possibility of passing it down to your future daughter, preserving your wedding dress is the best way to retain its color, fabric and shape. it’s easier than ever, now in fact there are even wedding gown preservation kits like the one from Wedding Dress Preservation by The Knot. This detailed DIY includes an insurance option.


Preservation refers to the special cleaning and packaging techniques. One key point is to ensure the removal of all the stains, including  hidden ones containing sugar that turn brown over time. This is a big and serious business. There is are various agencies, like the Association of Wedding Gown Specialists in the USA. Similar groups exist in other cities, provinces or countries.

Everyone agrees that you can usually wait until after the honeymoon to take your dress to a preservationist, but remember it’s better to take your gown in while the stains are fresh and not set in (especially if it’s stained with mud or red wine). if you wait years, your gown will need restoration rather than just cleaning!

Finding a Preservationist

Before choosing a preservationist, do a little detective work before the wedding. That way, if your dress is stained badly or damaged on your wedding day, a family or bridal party member can take your dress to the preservationist while you’re on your honeymoon. Ask friends and family, bridal shops or your wedding consultant for preservationist referrals.

A wedding dress is often one of the most important clothing purchases that a young woman makes.  One Montreal wedding boutique advertises preservation as a selling feature. This reminds me of fur storage.  People forget that a fine mink or other animal needs to be maintained in different conditions than your hall closet.

Overall, it’s not really difficult to maintain the quality of your wedding dress. In fact, my mother’s gown hanging from special ribbons in a cloth bag at the back of  a dark closet was not so bad. Here are a few simple things to keep in mind when it comes to hanging, storing, and cleaning the dress. Much depends on your lifestyle, and intentions, e .g. souvenir in the attic  or heirloom to a daughter.

Hanging the Gown Right

Wedding dress materials aren’t known for their strength and durability. Rips, split seams and/or other damage can be easily avoided by simply hanging your dress properly. Hanging a wedding dress is different from hanging a regular dress. The weight of the wedding dress can easily rip or tear if used on a regular hanger. Instead, small loops of fabric sewn into the interior of the dress should be used to hang the gown safely. These loops are placed on the strongest seams in the gown. These offer sufficient support for the weight of the gown and avoid any possible damages.

Cleaning the Dress

Before picking a dry cleaner, make sure that  all of their clients’ clothes are processed on site and that they do their work by hand instead of using an automated system. Try to narrow down your search to dry cleaners specialized in wedding dresses. They will be more familiar with the material especially if it’s intricately designed with beads or gems.

Take a few minutes to learn about the options and check local suppliers first before your decide who to trust with your wedding gown. Bridal boutiques usually are run by experienced owners who have seen a few weddings and can guide you.

Here are the three basic options with their respective benefits:

Sealing Benefits

  • May be acid-free environment (check for lignin-free)
  • Easily stored
  • Protected from dust and light

Boxing Benefits

  • May be acid-free environment (check for lignin-free )
  • Easily stored
  • Protected from dust and light
  • Can be inspected and admired
  • Can be refolded periodically

Bagging Benefits

  • Acid-free environment
  • Easily stored
  • Protected from dust and light
  • Most easily inspected and admired
  • Does not need refolding
  • No permanent creasing
  • Best air circulation
  • Needs minimal maintenance








NO capitals onedresoneday

Explanation: The real title is One Dress, One Day, but I saw a bridal blog with the name using that punctuation. This was not mine! Oh no.

OneDressOneDay Blog      @onedressoneday

One Dress One Day is a blog for all brides. Enjoy things that are traditional, modern, unique, and creative to help you create the perfect wedding day.

Yes, I deal with a wedding dress  but I felt like a counterfeiter making Channel, Pierre Cadrin or Luis Vuiton. Just like one of my characters who trains others to sell stuff on the street. This kind of selling happens anywhere but especially in  NYC or in capital cities like Paris, Athens, and, of course, Barcelona. Here Francisco is on the street training two Latinos selling cassettes of pirated foreign films and music.

Acting like a patronizing big brother, Francisco was selling his unique expertise. His innate ability to scheme and scavenge was worth more than most loot, even the gown. The two Salvadoreños under his wing were heavyset twins, villagers ignorant about life in a town, let alone a European capital like Barcelona. Stepping in and out of the shadows, they sold pirated films like Robocop plus compilations of international singers. They had no idea who the performers were but hissed names like Ricky Martin and “Yanet Yackson” to passersby. They were held responsible for all inventory crammed into plastic shopping bags and then into schoolboy backpacks. Francisco coached them in basics like how to dump the backpack and run with the plastic bags or where to hide other material on the street. Desperate to survive in Spain, they had to learn fast who was friend or foe. Hand signals, whistles and other tricks had to be learned, too. An old cellmate from an overnight prison stay supplied the pupils while Calif himself remained untouchable because the cops never saw him take any cash and he had nothing illegal on him. Francisco took a percentage of sales every so often.



Dictionary/WIKIPEDIA Rush

Ever look up a word in the dictionary or Wikipedia to discover more than you expected? As a writer and translator, I do this regularly.  Here is my recent quick reminder of that experience.

My annotated overview of the WIKIPEDIA entry on

Wedding Dress

A wedding dress or wedding gown is the clothing worn by a bride during a wedding ceremony. Colour, style and ceremonial importance of the gown depends on the religion and culture of the participants. In Western cultures, brides often choose white, which was made popular by Queen Victoria in the 19th century. In Eastern cultures, brides often choose red to symbolize auspiciousness. This post focuses on the Western tradition.


Wedding gown circa 1891

Weddings performed during and immediately following the Middle Ages were often union between not just two people but two families, two businesses or even two countries. Many weddings were more a matter of politics than love. Brides were therefore expected to dress in a manner that cast their families in the best light and befitted their social status during the ceremony. Brides from wealthy families often wore rich colours and exclusive fabrics, e.g. wearing blue, scarlet, purple, and layers of furs, velvet or silk. The poorest of brides wore their best church dress on their wedding day. I did know that many women in many parts of the world were buried in their wedding gown as it was their finest clothing. I had been shocked to learn that women used to marry in black as it seemed so funereal.

Until the 1960s, wedding dresses reflected the styles of the day. Veils have come and gone, risen, lowered, or been little more than a hairpiece (tantalizer). From that sixties onward, wedding dresses have often been based on Victorian styles. There was also a trend to medieval or renaissance theme weddings. Ethnic dress has also been revived, notably Celtic (with grooms in kilts) but also African and Austrian.

The first documented instance of a princess wearing a white wedding dress for a royal wedding ceremony is that of Philippa of England. In 1406, she wore a  white silk cloak bordered in fur when wedding  Eric of Pomerania. 

This was not a widespread trend, however: prior to the Victorian period, a bride was married in any color, black being especially popular in Scandinavia.

White became a popular option in 1840, after the marriage of Queen Victoria. Illustrations of the wedding were widely published, and many brides opted for white in accordance with the Queen’s choice.

Even after that, wedding dresses were adapted to the styles of the day. In the early 1900s, clothing included a lot of lace or frills which was adopted in wedding apparel. In the 1920s, wedding gowns were typically short in the front with a longer train in the back and were worn with cloche-style veils.

Today, Western wedding dresses are usually white though “wedding white” includes shades such as eggshell or ecru. (My house painter suggested a shade of white called ‘antique wedding’ which was matte and off-white.) Of course a guest should never wear white to a wedding.  It is poor form.  A beige might pass, but better to wear any other colour than white.

Later, many people assumed that the color white was intended to symbolize virginity though this was not the original intention. Blue was associated with purity, piety, fidelity and the Virgin Mary.

Current Bridal Trends

About 75 percent of the wedding dresses on the market are strapless or  sleeveless, in part because such dresses require less skill from the designers and seem easier to alter.  (It also seems that some women want to look more seductive or glamorous on the big day.) However, the sleeved wedding gown as well as wedding gowns with straps have both become more popular in recent years. A shawl or sleeves may be required by certain religions.

Having modelled many gowns,  I do not recommend the strapless gown as it can droop. Two problems arise. First, the dress tends to look tight on the bride. Second, the boning required to keep the bust supported and the ribcage held may become uncomfortable. One quick fix is to have a seamstress attach with elastic ‘wings’ of fabric even with decorations to connect the bodice to the upper arm/edge of shoulder. An easily removable lace or tulle shawl also should be worn over the shoulders.

QUICK FASHION FLASH: Jean-Paul Gaultier has a great collection of wedding gowns from the finales of his fashion shows.  Love is love! This exhibit remains a must-see. 

Photo of pale pink gown from LOVE IS LOVE at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 2017.

One Day One Dress!?! NON, pas possible

My title #onedressoneday may have brought you here. If you typed One Day One Dress you would reach an informative, friendly French wedding site.  Not mine but interesting for a former Italian bridal model like me. I find the “Say Yes to the Dress”  show insulting because it shows contestants/brides shopping for a gown in a group/gaggle.  Not a good idea.  This website offers ‘mail-order bridal dresses’, so to speak.  Note: Fine classic examples are shown and La Esmeralda is  a showstopper! Prices are much lower and there is a guarantee.  Somehow I struggle with not trying on a few dresses and ensuring correct fit even now. When young with a sample size figure, I once ate too much pizza for lunch and the dress was snug on the runway or showroom podium. Of course, One Day, One Dress does not have the same ring as One Dress, One DayOne Day evokes someday, too.  I remember romance and Snow White’s singing of “Someday My Prince Will Come”, even after my 29 years of marriage.

ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour
ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour
ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour
ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour
ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour
ESMERALDA - Sensuelle et romantique - Robe de mariée Collection Glamour


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Honeymoons on Film

One Dress, One Day features a honeymooning couple in Barcelona in 1990. Within 24 hours, they can’t wait to leave!

Honeymoons remain fashionable in Hollywood. Many honeymoon-themed films have been made over the years, including several in in idyllic locations. Although every honeymoon, like every couple, is different, you’d be surprised by the insights you can get (not to mention amusement) in watching how others’ romantic vacations begin and ultimately turn out. Overall, it is surprising how many movies  include a wedding or honeymoon, e.g., The Sound of Music, 10 and the various weddings in the Godfather films.  Cue theme music!

Once Upon a Honeymoon  (1943) starring Cary Grant and Ginger Rogers classic WWII love story. Grant stars as a radio reporter named Pat O’Toole who is investigating Austrian Baron Van Luber, suspected of Nazi ties. Meanwhile, Van Luber marries an American burlesque girl named Katie O’Hara a social climber. O’Toole follows Van Luber and O’Hara around Europe, falls in love with Katie, and discovers that Van Luber is indeed a Nazi. Dance meets Propaganda?
Honeymoon in Vegas (1990)

This film tops most people’s list in any straw poll or cocktail chat.  Nicholas Cage, James Caan, and Sarah Jessica Parker play. Betsy and Jack head to Vegas to finally tie the knot. Before they say “I do”, a rich gambler arranges for Jack to lose $65,000 at poker. The gambler will waive the debt for a weekend with Jack’s fiancé. As expected, Jack becomes jealous. Doesn’t this sound like the Redford film Indecent Proposal ?

The Honeymooners Classic 39, Volume 1  (1955-56)

Although they never strayed far from their grim one-bedroom apartment, Honeymooners Alice (Audrey Meadows) and Ralph Kramden (Jackie Gleason) proved through 39 black and white episodes that you can live on love and a bus driver’s salary. The Honeymooners was based on a recurring skit of the same name that had been part of  Gleason’s variety show. Almost a socio-historical course that reflects another time in America. Could be used in marriage counsellor training courses.

The Heartbreak Kid (2007)

This is a remake of the 1972 romantic comedy of the same name! It features both Ben Stiller and Michelle Monaghan who meet on the street following a minor incident and soon get married. However, on the honeymoon, Eddie (Ben) realizes just how poorly matched they are. He  finds his perfect match in Miranda, vacationing at that honeymoon destination with her family. Note: Much of the movie was filmed in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.  Amor, Amor  + LOCATION, LOCATION!

The Heartbreak Kid (1972)

Lenny and Lila, two Jewish New Yorkers, have just gotten married. On the three day drive from New York to a Miami Beach, honeymoon, Lenny begins to be bothered by every little thing about Lila. His belief that the marriage is a mistake is strengthened when he meets student Kelly Corcoran, a beautiful blonde Midwesterner on vacation in Miami Beach. Neil Simon and Elaine May worked on the screenplay. Talent+Talent. Many wonder why the Farrelly brothers’ remake was ever made.

Haunted Honeymoon (1986)

What a comic couple,the (late) Gilda Radner and (late) Gene Wilder. This 80’s comedy centers around two radio stars in the Manhattan Mystery Theater who decide to marry. However, Abbott (Wilder) develops speech impediments after his proposal, putting his job at risk. Abbott’s uncle wants to treat him with a form of shock therapy and decides the perfect time is at the site of their wedding, a mansion in upstate New York. Spooky or silly?

Just Married (2003)

This  is a vehicle for Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy who head as  newlyweds to Europe for a magical honeymoon. Unfortunately, the trip spins out of control when the girl’s parents send her ex-boyfriend to ruin the young marriage.  Not the usual twist!

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011)

This film stars the usual Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, and Taylor Lautner.  This movie centers around Bella’s marriage and honeymoon with Edward. The couple travels to Rio de Janeiro and a private island called Isle Esme [Spoiler Alert: note name of future offspring] off the coast of Brazil before a chain of events soon impacts their lives forever. Of course, everything is forever in the Twilight universe

Honeymoon in Vegas (1990)

Funny, heart-breaking, with irresistible Elvis Presley music and Hawaiian scenery may inspire you to start planning a honeymoon there. Reminds me vaguely of Billy Crystal and Robert de Niro in Analyze This!

Just Married (2003)

Although the script is questionable, actors Brittany Murphy and Ashton Kutcher are charming in this everything-has-to-go-wrong-on-our-honeymoon romp. Venice, almost like a character, provides the backdrop for several scenes. Sad note: the beautiful, talented Murphy died in 2009.

Post-Script:   Hollywood influences weddings and honeymoons. For more on how movies affect weddings (gowns, venues and decorations) and honeymoons, check out online “7 Movies and a Regression Model to Predict How Austenland Will Impact Weddings” by Carmen Feliciano.