Almost twenty years ago my aunt prepped for her big day in the midst of absolute chaos. She recalls her parents' Long Island home filled with crazed people running around to get dolled up and down the aisle in time, no one thinking twice about what the commotion was doing to her nerves. It was a free for all—even the bride had to compete with her 'maids for the bathroom mirror! Last spring a cousin of mine dressed for her wedding at our aunt's home and it was perfect: Remembering how her own day started, our aunt limited traffic through the house, sent the dogs away for the weekend, left a basket of fun, mindless celebrity magazines in the bride's room and had light snacks and champagne at the ready. The atmosphere was completely calm. So was the bride.
A few weeks ago, when I was a bridesmaid in my friend's wedding, it hit me
again how important those hours before the ceremony are. My friend arranged
for the hair and makeup stylists to come to us at her soon-to-be in-laws'
home, where it was more comfortable than sitting in a busy salon. We also
started the beauty process well before we needed to, so there wasn't any
rushing at the last minute, no race to the altar. The bride was totally
relaxed all morning, happily lounging around in her "Soon to be Mrs.
Viagrande" tank. Watching her, I couldn't help but think of my own wedding
day and what I'll do to keep cool. Whether or not a little chaos will rattle
you, what's your plan for your last few hours as a single lady?—Michaela
Garibaldi, assistant managing editor, Elegant Bride