I’ve been a huge fan of vintage and retro shops for many years and I’m delighted to note that these days increasingly brides in Glasgow are checking out what’s availabe in some of our fantastic West End vintage shops.
A very good idea if you recognise the allure of preloved gowns and choose to look resplendent in a beguiling outfit of satin and old lace. A search for a wedding dress that is romantic, unique and full of historic charm can prove to be a challenge and you won’t come across row after row of similar gowns in every size – but that’s half the fun. The best approach is to start out with an open mind as there’s a fair chance that what you initially had in mind will alter as you just never know what you’ll discover once you start wandering down the vintage trail.
I didn’t take that route for my wedding dress when I got married in 1991 in a lovely ivory, raw silk dress. I picked it up for a song because the tiny buttons that ran all the way down the back had been damaged. I purchased the dress in a posh bridal shop and saved quite a few hundred pounds by simply replaced the buttons with a zip.
I loved the dress but truth be told I was was probably more thrilled with my ‘going away outfit’, which I bought in Glasgow’s wonderful Saratoga Trunk. At that time the shop was located above the Albion Arms in Hope Street, before the building was damaged by fire. It’s now located in Hydepark Street.
My outfit was beautiful – a 50s black lace sheath dress with a scalloped neckline and a black velvet flared coat with an exagerrated roll collar and one huge button at the top. With it I wore a black beret with a huge bow and leather ankle boots. I thought it was very glamourous and, apart from the dress, I wore the ensemble almost every day during our honeymoon in Dublin,
It proved to be so eye catching that on a day trip to Dun Laoghaire I caught the attention of some people who were making a film about the life of Samuel Beckett for Polish Television. (Samuel Beckett came from nearby Foxrock and is said to have found inspiration on the harbour at Dun Laoghaire Bay, where a bronze plaque marks the spot.) Jim and I were walking on the splendid harbour when we were approached by the filmakers. We were pretty much alone apart from half a dozen fishermen all wrapped up in their oilskins and woolly hats – in contrast to me in my finery.
My acting talents weren’t stretched much as all I was required to do was stand looking out to sea. Still we gained a quirky little memory courtesy of my retro attire. Perhaps this has influenced me as I reckon that all vintage weddings are destined to be memorable occasions.
Recently I spotted some exquisite vintage dresses in Glasgow’s West End in Circa Vintage, 37 Ruthven Lane, off Byres Road, Glasgow G12 9BG also further along the lane in Annie’s Attic, Ruthven Mews. Some of them may need a nip and tuck and thoughtful accessorising but if you have a yen for bygone styles, whether it be Victoriana or 40s, 50s or even 80s fashion, your fairytale outfit could cost much less than you had budgeted for – and be much more likely to cause a stir.
Vintage Wedding Dresses Glasgow