Wedding dress n°1

Today I’m opening a series of posts about our wedding, that will soon have happened a year ago. Some of you that have been reading this blog for some time or stumbled upon an old post might wonder: “But hasn’t she talked about her husband before March 2012?”. Indeed, I have. This was actually our second wedding. Let me explain something to my non-french readers (or you can skip to dress pictures below ^^ ). In France the only way to be legaly married is to be married at the city hall by the mayor or the mayor’s assistant. Any other ceremony is only for your own satisfaction/beliefs, it won’t be legal. And to be married in a catholic church (for example) your have to arrive that day with an official paper proving that you got legaly married first. It is therefore very common to have two ceremonies, first the legal one (which is rather quick) and then a religious one, usually happening the same day or a few days appart. In our case, the two happened four years and twelve days appart. When we got engaged 6 years ago we were living in Japan, so we planned to wait until we got back to France. But at the beginning of 2008 it appeared that we had to get legaly married to be able to realise our plans. We therefore decided to quicken the legal marriage, which meant preparing it in less than one month, in Japan. You can easily guess that none of our relatives that didn’t live there could attend. So we decided at that time that we would only do a quick official wedding for the papers, and that we would have another “real” wedding with our family and the rest of our friends when we came back.

The French embassy address on the GPS screen

Funny thing is, both of our weddings happened in March (we didn’t plan that). Our legal wedding anniversary was last week, so I thought I’d share pictures of the dress I wore then before talking about the second one. It’s not totally irrelevant to this blog because even though I didn’t make it myself, I did design it and had it made by a professional wedding dress maker.

Even though this wedding was at first motivated by administrative necessities, it was the first and only time we were to be legaly united and recognized as husband and wife by the law, so we felt we had to play the part so that we’d feel like getting married (all the more since many close relatives weren’t there): we went for a real french legal wedding at the embassy (instead of just signing wedding papers at the japanese city hall), nice outfits and have a day that we would remember. I wanted to keep the traditional big white dress for the french wedding (you’ll see the irony in that sentence with my later posts), especially since at first we thought we would have to go there by train, plus I had a very small budget, so I went looking for an elegant but simple long dress that would be suitable (at that time I didn’t imagine making it myself). And guess what? The solution I found within my price range was to have an empire dress made by a designer specialized in wedding dress, that worked two streets appart from my home! She was adorable and very patient, making sure everything was perfect despite her basic English and my poor Japanese. Here is a little glimpse of its creation.


First, my inspiration (in purple and green). Rental dresses that I saw in a shop window in Harajuku and fell in love with, which a dear friend convinced me to try even though they were way out of my budget. Then my first sketch and some color tests.

sketchcolor testscolor test

Choosing the final color combo was really hard… Then the designer suggested some fabrics and to use lace at the neckline and down the front and we got that final design:

designer final sketch

Then she constructed the muslin and we had several fitting sessions before getting to the final dress (the sleeves took some time to get right).

muslinsecond fittingthird fitting

And finally here is the dress all done! With pictures from the D-day taken by our friends. In real like it’s way more green than you can see here. The color is hard to get right on pics and it didn’t help that those are taken with poor lighting.

So here was my first wedding dress! ^_^ I had the pleasure to be able to put it back for a few pictures by our official wedding photographer last year, and to wear it for the brunch we did the following day.

More to come soon about wedding n°2!


Wedding dress n°1 — 9 Comments

    • Merci beaucoup ! ^^ Je vais essayer de ne pas attendre un an de plus avant de poster les photos de l’an dernier…

  1. So beautiful!
    I don’t seem to be able to get tired of seeing those pictures and reading the story behind this lovely dress. ^^

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