I remember vividly in December when my new friend Elaine, shocked her heart out knowing that I’ll wed in March but still didn’t have any dresses, didn’t book any make-up artist, didn’t have a venue, no caterer nor invitation cards – practically my wedding was just an idea.
There was nothing I could present to her that could prove that I was going to get married in March apart from that there was this man I once called fiancé. I freaked out a little, but optimistic that Allah will help my good intention. My wedding was only in my head – white bride, untypical bridal dresses, a make up that will make me look like I’ll only look that pretty once, my best friends of 13 years to be my maids and a separate occasion just for my friends.
Of course there should be somebody to start something for me while I sulked in Oxford, disapointed that I could not go back any earlier than 2 weeks before the wedding. I had to take chances on something most girls wouldn’t dare put a risk on, and I was so stone headed on one thing in particular – what I would be wearing.
I knew that I wanted to wear something different than those lacey, heavily beaded kebaya or kurung that are so beautiful but let’s face it, every second bride in Malaysia wears almost the same thing. Not that it’s bad, but as the time nearing, the desire has turned into a dream to wear something that is so personalised, something that says something about myself – whatever statement I was trying to bring.
I started collecting designs that I like, compiling it like mad for my future designer to take inspirations from. It wasn’t easy, especially all you had was the internet and telephone. I found a few, but none of them emailed me anything I wanted to see being put on my body. I almost lost hope and was ready to settle for some second hand rented dresses from Man Kajang or Dzull Classique or anything eye-pleasing I could grab when I come home 14 days from the big day. That was when Kak Dhira, my friend who used to study in Oxford told me she has this friend.
"She’s Unaisah Azlan, a fresh graduate in fashion from some private college I cannot remember and apparently she can sew" said Kak Dhira. Apparently. She was my last resort. I spent 5 minutes writing her my unhopeful email of this and that – mermaid skirt with pleats, chiffon layers and yadi yada.
She emailed me her sketches, and my heart said, "I’ve found my dresses!". I truly did, and not only I found them, I could not choose three out of 3 pages sketches she sent me. I wanted it all ! It was like she visited my brain and put it all on papers. I finally came to my senses and chose one each for nikah, sanding and the dinner reception with friends and dealt my budget.
Man, I was really taking the risk. There’s this one girl unavailable in Google that I just knew virtually, put my RM1.5k cash in my sister’s hand to buy some materials with. I only had Kak Dhira’s words to hold on to. Only God knows how I felt. Every time the anxiety overtook me, I kept picturing her sketches in my head. I mean, if she can sketch that good, she must be able to sew that good too right? I was living in denial hell for 2 months before my wedding and it didn’t do any good.
I fare welled Oxford and friends and flew home, and the minute I touched down I was in a car with my friends ambushing her house in Shah Alam. No, I didn’t actually ambushed, she knew we were coming. I swear my heart dropped on my toes when I saw that my wedding dresses are still a bunch of tracing papers. And yet again, I had her words: "InsyAllah siap, I am confident we can get it done in 2 weeks."
And two weeks exactly it was.
The sanding top was delivered to me the night before 8th March. I was overjoyed. The dresses I wore were dream came true. Even though everything else like shoes, headgear, tudung, veil, bracelets came from all over different places, they worked out perfectly as if they were being made as a set. My nine aunties didn’t get it, I bet most other people will never too. But I did. That’s all that matters. At least I could sleep on the night of 9th March thinking, I had my dresses. And I knew I wouldn’t look the way I wanted to if I had played it safe.
Hik. So happy!