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#MyWeddingXperience – I Made My Own Wedding Dress & It Wasn’t Funny!

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todimu jolayemiFirst of all… Introduction!!! Families met and sat on 13th May 2017, they picked a date – December 30 2017. I had enough time to prepare. 6 months was more than enough to do all my paparazzi.

Instagram observation became my hobby and I started surfing the internet for trend updates and placing orders for the grand bridal appearances. I have designed and redesigned my wedding dress over the years but now I know I have to stick to one. I knew what I wanted. A classic dress! Something with less drama and more details. It was that simple – or so I thought.

I went fabric shopping and I got two fabrics of choice, I kept them and I was attending to other bookings and brides, after all its my wedding and I could make my own dress at my convenient time.

November came and I had dotted the necessary I’s and crossed the T’s but for the sewing (the delaying spirit of a typical Nigerian tailor possessed me; for my own wedding dress!). I had cut the fabrics earlier and kept them for sewing later.

I finally got around to working on the dress in the first week in December. After some embellishments on the fabric, I decided I wasn’t liking it so I stashed it in my ‘not a waste but waste’ basket so I can use later for something else.

I moved on to the second fabric and I actually finished this one. So I wore my dress in the studio, and guess what? It looked so ugly to me that my day quickly became disorganized and frustrating.

I called my bobo to tell him what was be falling me and he said “why don’t you show this dress to someone else; your tailor friends and you will see it’s not as bad as you think”. But guess what? I didn’t do as instructed, because I saw no bit of good in the dress already and I hated every piece of it so I brought the dress down to pieces and stashed in the ‘not a waste but waste’ basket again.

That night I told boo and big sis that I was going buy a wedding dress and hubby said “You can’t afford to do that. You make people’s wedding dresses for crying out loud, what kind of message are you trying to pass across to your customers?” Big sis said: “My friends are patiently waiting to see your wedding dress, don’t let them down”. On hearing all these, the frustration doubled and I cried uncontrollably with tears gushing out like a tornado and the mucus like that of a baby (I had a little misunderstanding with hubby that night so it helped the tears come faster). I did this for about an hour and when I was soaked in my own tears and satisfied crying, I started looking for bride’s wear vendors on Instagram but I could not find anything good, and the second season of ‘tears of a bride’ started again, and I went to bed.

I wanted everything to be just perfect, little did I know I was never going to see perfect until…

The morning came and I wielded my power of positive confessions, spirituality was top notch at this point and I felt great, positive and motivated. Then with some money in my purse I dashed out for an official meeting after which I went on another fabric shopping.

The making of the third dress started and I took my time this time around. It took me weeks even till the wedding week and deliberately, I was not in a rush. Everyone in my family became a dressmaker because the dress had to be hand detailed in every bit and two days to my traditional wedding, I finished the dress but just left it on a mannequin to sit pretty.

This time around, I liked the outcome. On my traditional wedding eve night at around 10pm, my younger sister came to me and said, “try on your dress now, abi?” So I did and guess what? The dress was just the length of a teblik’s and I almost went crazy. It was not full length!


What happened to my measurement? Have I grown taller? Am I going crazy? Tears welled up in my eyes and my sister said quietly “no no no no don’t cry just calm down, remove this dress and let’s see what really happened “. So I did and we discovered the problem and the solution at the same time.

Apparently, my seamstress, whom I had given the fabric pieces to put stay for firmness had applied it wrongly. Oh! Did I mention that my other seamstress left just few weeks to the wedding? And the other seamstress works part time – #TrialsOfABride.

Together my sister and I started undoing the error and fixing the back buttons and fitting and refitting. We were on this till 4am. I told my sister to go to bed that all that’s left now is to wash and dry clean which I will see to myself. The poor darling, who was also my maid of honour, was tired already but hey! She’s not the bride so she’s got to take her beauty sleep. I washed it in warm water and gently spinned it in the washing machine and left the damp dress to dry under the fan.

Everyone woke up in the morning not knowing that I kept night watch and having packed all my stuffs, we zoomed off to the hotel to dress up for my traditional wedding ceremony. I have had enough stress than to add staying at home and not having my privacy in these near moments to worry about.

I boxed my wedding dress and veil and I had my sister take the box to my designer friend who had a steam iron. And while makeup was ongoing, my dear friend called me to tell me that she had burnt my veil.

Surprisingly, this time, I didn’t even flinch. I simply asked, is my dress still intact? She answered “yes” and I said “please pack it so my sister can come pick it up.” I was only out to enjoy the evening’s event and didn’t set my eyes on my dress until late night when I settled in my hotel room. Luckily, I had made two wedding veils- one for the gram and reception because it did not fit for church, as my church doesn’t accept veils longer than your bra length – and the other for the solemnization service.

The one for the solemnization service got burnt and my sister and friends were asking, “what will you do to this church veil now?” I simply said, “I will rock it in it’s burnt state, the holy spirit will take people’s eyes away from it and so was it!”

All night I kept my calm, went to bed but wasn’t still happy because my dress wasn’t looking well ironed so I told Bolanle, my friend, that I needed to call laundry service to fix it but she and my sister advised against it so I just went to bed. I woke up around 4am, my heart beating fast and feeling insecure because I wasn’t sure if I will be getting the bridal glam I wanted, so I went into the rest room sat still on the toilet seat and said quiet prayers to my God.

On getting out, I discovered my wedding dress was gone! I hung it right in front of the wardrobe before I went to bed last night. I hurriedly went to Bolanle’s bedside and tapped her to life to ask her but she answered with a smile, “its with the laundry guy.” My heart that was almost in my mouth returned to it’s position and we started getting ready to walk me down the aisle.

Daylight came and my husband-to-be came up looking fab. I could count more than 15 photographers with the talented boss, Yemi Ajala taking the lead role. I felt like a celebrity and now the bridal feeling had started to hit me, then the glorious moment came when I slipped on my dress with make up done by the best artist, @femistouch and my hair queenly done by the badass #trhairsured by Tolu.

I started hearing from different angles, “your dress is beautiful and classic” and that is goals for me! Now let’s go and get me married to the love of my life; my Banjyte imagery of life!

My name is Todimu Jolayemi and this is #MyWeddingExperience!

Check out my wedding photos in the slides above

Are you looking for a place to share your #WeddingExperience? Email us on: [email protected]

Read also: The Glamour & Turnt-Ness Of Zainab Balogun’s Wedding

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