How to Prepare for Your Big Day to Avoid Major Wardrobe Malfunctions
If you want some context to this post and to understand how your wedding day can turn into a series of unfortunate wardrobe malfunctions, you can get the deets in Bridal Bliss.
Anyway, here are my pro tips on how to prepare for your big day to avoid major wardrobe malfunctions and years of relentless booby jokes.
Allow enough shipping time for shipping. Many factors affect the process of a bridal garment arriving at your door. Prevent shipping delay issues from impacting you by ordering ALL the items you’ll need well in advance.
Order 2 yards of extra fabric in the bridal party colors whenever possible. This will come in handy if someone needs a bolero aka/shrug or a shawl for extra coverage. This can also be used to create modesty panels aka dickies for the front of a dress, corset back panels, and straps if a party member's dress doesn’t fit and cannot be let out. The fabric can also come through in a pinch for the child who misplaced their flower girl sash or ring bearer tie. Those small items get lost easily and often.
Require bridal party to wear proper undergarments and foundations and test them out before the big day. In as much as you like to think your friends do not require that level of micromanagement, it never fails that there will be a bra that peeks above the bustline of the dress or a red thong panty that shows through. Lovingly suggest Nude, blush, or grey toned seamless underwear for the occasion. Less endowed ladies tend to go without a bra which is fine but suggest breast petals which can be purchased on Amazon or anywhere that bras are sold to prevent the “headlights” effect. For bustier women, proper bra sizing ensures the brides look polished and the “girls” will rest in the space of the dress that is designed to accommodate them as opposed to breast looking sad at waist level. Consider using bra clips (found at Walmart or anywhere bras are sold) to convert your bra straps to meet the needs of the dress. You may also use heavy clear vinyl straps. Spanx and slips might seem old-fashioned, but they create a smooth silhouette and prevent garments from clinging to the body as well as prevent the see-through effect for sheer dresses.
Prevent shoe damage and twisted ankles when walking on grass by using high heel guards aka heel stoppers. You may order them online from companies like Solemates, GoGo Heel, and Trend Stoppers sell them usually in boxes of 6 sets. Walmart and Target also offer their own brands for this product.
Dress weights. I recently saw a fashion commentator discuss the Royal Wedding. In that interview, he stated that the Queen has weights sewn into the hems of all her garments, so her dress won’t fly up and reveal all of her “bits”. Be like the queen. If you are wearing a short or billowy dress or if the forecast indicates high winds, you can prevent the Marylyn Monroe Effect (unless you’re into that sort of thing) by having garment weights sewn into your hemline or you may apply the adhesive weights on your own.
Use fashion tape to adhere gaping necklines to skin so no one gets a free peek when dancing.
Have extra earring backs on hand. Bridal party ladies will have their nails freshly done which makes putting on earing cumbersome. Often the earring backs get dropped and lost.
Have a sewing kit which contains
a) Scissors—do not risk ripping a garment by snatching a tag or loose thread. Simply cut it.
b) Sewing needles
c) Black, white, & clear sewing thread. The clear thread is to replace any beading that may fall off in a conspicuous place.
d) Safety Pins
e) Large pearl hat pins for corsages, boutonnieres, and hats
f) Lint roller
Have a steamer and an iron on hand. Garments are typically pressed and steamed upon pickup, but that press does not always survive the travel process. For soft wrinkles use steam.
Purchase static spray. Most bridal garments are made from synthetic fabrics which easily build up friction and create static cling when walking. Static cling spray can fix this problem.
DO NOT BUST YOUR ZIPPER! Often-times bridal party dresses have invisible zippers. The teeth on invisible zippers are thinner than those on regular zippers and the pulls have smaller metal grips. When there are intersecting seams (usually found at the waist) the zipper is competing to function against the 4-8 layers of fabric intersecting at that point. Usually the zipper stalls and fails to go up. The bridesmaid panics and swears she hasn’t gained any weight. Those helping her instinctively tug harder on the zipper. DON’T DO THAT. Also, do not rub soap on the zipper. That is a zipper hack that does not apply here.
What you do is warm an iron. Take a pillowcase (unused and free of hair oil) or some other thin fabric or even paper towel. Lie the fabric over the intersecting area of the zipper and press the iron on that area for a few seconds. You may need to do this twice depending on the thickness at that area. It is better to do this process twice than to hold it once for an extended period. This warming process will relax the fibers of the fabric, relieve their tension and reduce their resistance against the zipper. Once done put the dress back on and it will zip with ease. If there is slight resistance, remember to pull the zipper head pulley up not outwards.
If there is water on a dress use a blow dryer to dry it. Rotate the dryer in a circular motion. Dry the outermost perimeter/edge of the stain and work your way inward. This will prevent a watermark from becoming a water stain.
Ms. In Stitches