NZ Woman's Weekly

Kerre Woodham’s altar ego

The pressure’s on. There’s just three weeks to go till the Irishman and I tie the knot, and I’m running out of time. Formal invites have yet to be sent out, prompting one of my dear friends to ask discreetly if the wedding was still going ahead. If things were proceeding, she asked, had we been forced to cut the number of guests and had they fallen off the list?

I was able to reassure her that she and her husband were still on the very small guest list – but she had to remember that this was my wedding, and it was by nature going to be a little haphazard and unorganised.

As further evidence of my lack of organisational ability, I told her that I haven’t got a dress yet – or shoes. The dress I’m relaxed about. Tanya Carlson, who made my daughter’s wedding dress, is going to whip one up for me. And even then, if something happens and the dress doesn’t get made, I have loads of lovely ones I could wear.

I know The Dress is something a lot of brides give a great deal of thought to, but I’ve spent most of my working life getting into glamorous and gorgeous gowns. There isn’t the same special thrill for me in designing and wearing a beautifully made wedding dress. And let’s face it, I would look totally ridiculous at the age of 48 prancing up a sandy beach in a white, strapless number – all pearls, organza and tulle. So the dress, I’m not so fussed about.

The shoes are a little more problematic. I’d love to go barefoot but I’m too short and my Irishman’s too tall. We’d look ridiculous. And I feel better in high heels too. But they have to be the right sort of high heels because I don’t want to sink into the sand. So over the next few days, I’ll really put some effort into finding the perfect shoe.

My other goal – to lose the 10kg I’d intended to lose last year – looks like being an impossible dream. Well, I certainly won’t have time to lose 10kg in three weeks.

The flying around the countryside at the end of last year, the book writing and then the holiday season put paid to that. I may have to get married in a muumuu. But let’s face it – this is not an arranged marriage where the first time my bloke sees me is at the ceremony.

He’s not going to gasp in horror when he lays eyes on me on the day. Any gasping of horror has been done when he’s encountered me unexpectedly naked in the shower. Or wandering into the laundry clad only in a bra, trying to find a clean pair of knickers.

He knows what he’s getting and he’d far rather I was relaxed leading up to our wedding, than stressed out, snapping and sweating the small stuff. Because really, that’s all it is. Minor details. The main components to a good wedding have all been organised.

I have an excellent groom that I have spent 15 years, well, grooming. I have a venue – a gorgeous bach on the beach belonging to close family members. I have an alternate venue, in case it all turns to custard and the wedding day dawns stormy and wet.

I have local caterers who are reported to be excellent. I almost have a marriage licence and I definitely have a marriage celebrant. We have good wines ordered and non-alcoholic drinks sorted as well, so that we all last the distance. And I have close family and friends coming, who I’ve known for more than 25 years who will be there to love and support us.

What more can a bride possibly need? (Actually, if you can think of anything, drop me a line at the Weekly – it’s not too late!)


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