June brides are all atwitter. Can you blame them? They have to fork out all this dough for a frock they’ll only wear once, and which will more than likely spend its remaining life crammed in a box-a fusty reminder of some annoying wanker to whom they’re no longer married. It wasn’t always so.
In the late 1960’s and early 70’s, people rarely got married-and when they did, it was always incumbent on the bride to drag up in some alternative, anti-traditional mode, like a sun dress with smocking or something. Then the preppy Gen Xers and Yers arrived, vaunting the values of their grandparents and heralding the return of old-fashioned nuptials, which was all quite novel and refreshing, especially if you were in the bridal-cake or frock business.
For the last 10 years, traditional bridal style-cream-puff crinolines and poufs-à-go-go-has been the norm, but change is in the air.
Twenty-first-century brides are finding it a wee bit retarded to spend piles of cash on a frock when, for the same amount, you could fly to Marrakech and have a week of self-indulgence and shagging at La Mamounia Hotel.
This is not, I hasten to add, a rallying cry to return to the hippie-dippie approach. Here, therefore, are some alternatives to that old get-married-in-a-field-holding-a-dandelion stuff:
1. Wear someone else’s dress. Who’s keeping score? If you wore the dress of a same-size chum, how would anyone ever find out? And if they did, wouldn’t they think you were just the canniest, chic-est, hippest chick on earth?
2. Red! Red! Red! It was good enough for Winona Ryder in Beetlejuice -not to mention half the population of China-and it’s good enough for you. A gorgeous red wedding dress has manifold advantages: People will say, “Why is she wearing red? It’s not like she’s such a major tramp or anything,” as opposed to, “Can you believe that old slag has the audacity to wear a pure white dress?” Post-ceremony, simply slice it off at the knees-leaving the seams raw- et voila ! A sassy, deconstructed frock with matching stole for fall cocktail parties. For a chic, red chiffon Lady Macbeth/Goth number with long medieval sleeves, go see Korean designer Haneza at 93 Grand Street, 343-9373; expect to spend about $2,000. Meanwhile, budget brides should check out the selection of dragon-embroidered Chinese wedding dresses at Pearl River Mart, 200 Grand Street, 966-1010.
3. Do a Bianca. The best wedding outfit of all time was Bianca Jagger’s simple white Yves Saint Laurent suit with short skirt and floppily glam white hat, which she wore in 1971 when she and Mick got hitched in Saint Tropez. The one drawback: Such an ensemble has to be perfectly constructed, so you may have to shell out some shekels and kiss off the Mamounia. “This is a fantastic look, but it has to be tailored to perfection so it looks tough,” said bridal czarina Vera Wang, whom I caught between frantic fittings. “It cannot look sweet. Bianca wore it with platforms, but I would go with a pointy stiletto sling-back.” A Vera Wang suit in grain de poudre (the same lightweight wool that Yves himself always used) will set you back about $4,000. Call 628-3400.
Bianca may or may not have taken her Y.S.L. to the cleaners, but she definitely took Mick there when she hired lawyer Marvin Mitchelson to extract her divorce settlement. (The trouble began the morning of the wedding, when Mick-whom Bianca would later redundantly dub a “penny-pinching Scrooge”-presented his bride-to-be with a prenup, which must account for her glum expression in photos of the occasion.) Anyway, I was delighted to find out that Mr. Mitchelson is still practicing in Los Angeles; his number-just in case-is 323-874-0554. Have a fabulous life!