This weekend was my brother’s wedding. My brother is the youngest of the 4 “kids” so this was the last shindig.
In June last year, while holidaying in Melbourne, I bought my dress and shoes. I spent more on my outfit than I did on my own wedding dress (and it was in the 4 figures), but this outfit I’d get a lot more wear out of.
I wanted to get properly dressed up and I realised that I’m lacking in the “extras”. I didn’t even own any nail polish. I had one lip liner and if I were to apply the same standards of “best by” to my makeup as I do to baking ingredients, it would have been tossed out about 9 years ago.
I don’t wear makeup to work, but I always apply all of the toners, moisturisers and serums. At my age you need the serums 😉
I’m a bit of a plain Jane. I’m not looking for sympathy or pity, nor am I hoping someone will tell me otherwise, I’m just saying it how I see it. I’m actually mostly just fine. This is who I am, if I didn’t like it I’d do something different.
To be honest, I’m lazy with makeup. I don’t like the time it takes, I don’t like how heavy it makes my face, I don’t like that my eyes always water. And after looking at the photos we took on our cameras, I don’t like how it accentuates the fine lines! So it suits me to not wear it.
But there are other things I could do to add a bit of pizazz and I don’t do that either. I hardly wear earrings, and when I do it feels like I’m re-making the hole. It hurts, and most of the time I’m tearing those earrings out well before the end of the work day. I’m a bit sensitive. Nothing new to me, but it explains why I don’t make any effort to dress up.
I do like nice clothes, and I love to have great shoes. But all the rest is an effort and not really something I’ll go out of my way to do.
Kade, my sister-in-law (the beautiful bride), worked in fashion for most of her working life and she always looks stunning, even when she’s casually dressed during the weekend. My eldest sister and her lovely daughters always look polished. Here’s a fun example. On Friday we started off the wedding weekend with clay shooting. Thursday evening when Mum and my sisters were together (my sisters and I were making cheesecakes as part of the dessert table – recipes will follow) and we got onto the subject of what we were wearing, I said I wasn’t wearing anything more than I’d normally wear during the weekend. After all, it’s clay shooting. So I turn up in my long shorts (a well known outdoor, expensive, brand, but still shorts) and jandals (in my defence they’re pink) and my sister and nieces, along with Kade are all dressed in lovely summery dresses and still manage to clay shoot without any disadvantage due to their choice of clothing.
I just don’t think the same way about how I look. I don’t socialise very much, I’m an introvert, though I’m quite comfortable yapping on the blog. I don’t need to be seen by anyone during the weekend and I don’t need to look good for anyone. Which may be a bit unfair to Mark. I’m relaxed and happy lounging about at home, and I know how to dress nicely when the occasion requires it.
My friend Jo was aghast at my comment on Facebook saying that the nail polish I had bought, coincidentally matched my one lipstick. She couldn’t wrap her mind around a woman having just the one lipstick. I must update her to explain that in Mark’s jacket pocket, last worn for Anna and James’s wedding in the UK in May 2012, he found another lipstick. Actually I found something I had been looking for in my makeup bag, last used for Anna and James’s wedding. It wasn’t makeup though 😉
I want to come back to the nail polish. I bought it on Monday, I also had to buy nail polish remover because I couldn’t remember having any (I found it today when tidying up the vanity cupboard). Applying nail polish wasn’t any more fiddly than I remembered, and I’m pretty sure I’ve not worn any in many many years, but it immediately made me feel different.
I felt delicate. That might be easily explained as having to touch things lightly so as not to smudge the nail polish. But it really did make me feel refined.
While at our usual 6 weekly hair cut my hairdresser found me a fascinator, which I wore at the back of my head as a hair clip (because remember I’m not all that fancy ;-)). All sorts of things were coming together, but I never would have looked for anything for my hair, in fact I’d told Bee (my younger sister) that I wasn’t wearing any headwear. I didn’t have any desire to wear anything in my hair, I was satisfied to leave my hair just the way it normally is. And you may ask how that is. Well I pretty much towel dry my hair, put a bit of curl product in it and about 5 minutes later am walking out the door to work. Yep, I’m a no fuss type of girl.
I managed to tease my hair and twirl it like my hairdresser had shown me, and I wore that hair clip and I felt good about it.
I even wore pantyhose! Although that’s not totally uncommon, depending on what I choose to wear to work, and usually it’s dependant on whether I’m visiting with customers or not, I’ll wear pantyhose. Not that I like it, of course 😉
So I survived having to be glammed up, and I even received a surprise compliment from the lovely (obviously!) older gentleman who lives at Castle Claremont (the location for the wedding) who, while Mark was standing next to me, said I looked like Audrey Hepburn, he said I had class. That comment about Audrey Hepburn is not the first time I’ve had that comparison made. But it only comes out when I dress up. Maybe I should do that more, because Audrey is a very fine lady. However I can show you a photo of Audrey and I together (Madame Tussauds in London), and we are so far apart. She of course looks fabulous, I was less than 24 hours off a 36 hour journey to the other side of the world with about 4 hours sleep. I looked like death warmed up.
The wedding was wonderful and the day was perfect. As I said at the beginning, my brother is the youngest of the 4 of us, there’s a 9 year age gap between him and I, and I’ve always had a soft spot for him. I spoilt him during visits back home (I was living in Dunedin) and I would happily help with anything he needed. During his speech he mentioned something he recalled as he was at the airport ready to leave Christchurch to study at the Auckland University of Technology (communication studies). He recalled a conversation with “one of his sisters” who said to him “don’t bring an Auckland girl home”. Now I have no recollection of that conversation, but I knew in my heart it was something I could easily have said. I asked him later which of us had said it, and he confirmed it was me. Well Kade is not an Auckland girl, though that’s where they both work/live, she’s a Timaru girl, a town my family has lived in, but not where Randall and Kade met.
So while this post is not about the wedding (there’s a social media embargo on photos until they post some themselves), it is about things that happened to me during the preparations to the wedding day, things that made me feel different about myself, and things I’m not sure I’m totally comfortable with, but may warm to.
The head thing is back tucked inside a box and the makeup that really should be tossed out, is back in the place it hides in the wardrobe. I’ve yet to remove the nail polish but the dress has been hung back up, the shoes placed carefully back in the box (if you ask nicely I might admit to how much I spent on the shoes) and other than a few photos to remind us that we scrub up ok (with some time and effort) we’re all back to normal here.
Talking of shoes, the wedding was at 3pm so we had time in the morning for a wander around Timaru. I managed to buy two new pairs of shoes and some perfume. I had left my usual perfume (Dreaming by Tommy Hilfiger) at home (I clean forgot to even bring it out ready for packing), that’s my only “thing” that I will regularly wear that makes me feel pretty.
Now, about that perfume, I almost didn’t buy it because of the bottle. I want an uncluttered but refined bottle and this one has a bold plastic collection of daisies that just aren’t me, plus it’s a size that is unsuitable for packing when I travel.
So there you are, even pretty bottles of perfume make me feel out of sorts, I just want the simple no fuss look. The type of look that just hides in amongst the crowd and doesn’t draw attention to itself, but when it’s noticed it’s noticed because of its classic looks and elegant lines. Suits me down to the ground.
While we wait for the all-clear to post photos of the wedding ceremony and the beautiful bride and dapper groom, here’s some photos taken during the weekend.