Saturday, October 13, 2012

long ago...

peace, baby
 me ... forty years ago today

my mother made my wedding dress for me...

it was white velvet with little lace butterflies that were each sewn on with three pale blue elongated pearl beads all over the bodice and cuffs
the butterflies were $1 for each yard
each yard had 36 butterflies
i kept going back to buy more and more yards

it took 100 of them...

yards, that is...  

by the time she'd sewn the last of three thousand
 my mom was done with those lace butterflies and told me to make the veil myself... 

and so i did... 

it was yards and yards of layered tulle with tiny lace sewn all around the edges 
and then gathered onto a white velvet and satin juliette cap that was covered with those same butterflies and beads... 

but it smushed down my hair and i took it off as soon as the ceremony was over...

if you look closely to the far right you will see the eXMan...

 and my sister in her blue velvet dress that made her eyes as blue as the deep blue sea...

the eXMan and i were engaged on monday and married on friday...

yes ... friday the thirteenth 

i thought it would make for an easy explanation if things happened to go wrong...

which they did... 

frequently... 

and permanently twenty-three years later... 

no one can say that i gave up easily...

it wasn't a shotgun wedding ... but the dress had been in the works for nine months... 

the eXMan was on a ship off the coast of North Vietnam...

and i was here...

not engaged... 

but i figured that odds were good that i'd eventually marry somebody
and when i did, i wanted my sister to be my matron of honor
 and i wanted her to wear blue velvet
which meant that my dress had to be velvet, too... 

i was working as a clerk at AT&sTink for seventy-eight dollars a week 
velvet was expensive
 and there were those yards and yards of lace to pay for
  it was a lot of money for a working stiff
so i bought the fabrics and notions over those nine months and my mom worked in starts and stops till she had everything she needed... 

my dad had just died and the dress gave both of us something to focus on in our grief...

she did beautiful work...

"It is not uncommon for slight acquaintances to get married, but a couple really have to know each other to get divorced."
anonymous

5 comments:

Molly said...

You look lovely, and what a work of art that dress was! My dad used to say [not original to him, I'm sure] that youth is wasted on the young! But if we waited to really know the person we married we would all be doing it [or, likely, not doing it]in our seventies or eighties! And then the population explosion would be solved----easy-peasy!

Jennifer said...

Wow, didn't you look just gorgeous.....and I remember the style well too. Everything was butterflies and daisies then. It's easy to be wise in hindsight,isn't it?

Mama Spark said...

You were a beautiful bride and you are a beautiful person now!

ranette said...

Gorgeous smile Dianne!!! Love the story.

Gran - Knot-y Embroidery Lady said...

Very, very precious. Beautiful dress and a beautiful person you are.