Staying Shiny

My life as a Uber-geek in a Bridal world

"Does anybody even notice..."

I've had a couple of songs stuck in my head for weeks now that seem to be summing up m feelings lately.  Both of them are from the Buffy episode "Once More with Feeling". (Points for the geek half right?)  Maybe it's because I'm having a bit of an early mid-life crisis from turning 30 recently or maybe it's the holiday season or maybe it's the crappy weather but any way you slice it, I'm feeling a bit out of sorts.  I started this blog to have a bit of an outlet for myself and I don't know if anyone is even reading anything I write, but I'll continue on for now and just blog for me.  Maybe it's time for me to make a change in life.  The only problem is, I don't know what to change.  I have a great job that I love (most days) and an awesome hubby, great friends and wonderful family.  I do wish we had a bigger place, but it's so hard to find something affordable here.  I'm feeling a bit in a rut and I'm hoping to find a new outlet to stop that.  Maybe it's time to start painting again.  I'm not sure what I need to change, but something'f gotta give...and soon.  I don't know if anyone out there will ever see this, but I promise to try and at the very least get tis song out of my head.

(Buffy)         Every single night, the same arrangement,
                    I go out and fight the fight.
                    Still I always feel this strange estrangement,
                    Nothing here is real, nothing here is right.
                    I've been making shows of trading blows
                    Just hoping no one knows
                    That I've been go - ing through the motions,
                    Walking though the part,
                    Nothing seems to penetrate my - heart.

                    I was always brave and kind of righteous,
                    Now I find I'm wa - vering.
                    Crawl out of your grave, ya find this fight
            Just doesn't mean a thing
(Henchman) She ain't got that swing.
(Buffy)          -pause-     Thanks for noticing.
(Demon & Henchmen) She does pretty well with fiends from Hell
                    But lately we can tell
                    That she's just going through the motions
                    Faking it somehow.
(Demon)      She's not even half the girl she...owww!

(Buffy)         Will I stay this way forever?
                    Sleepwalk through my life's endeavor.
(Handsome Young Man) How can I repay - (Buffy) Whatever!
(Buffy)         I don't want to b - e
                    Going through the motions,
                    Losing all my drive.
                    I can't even see
                    If this is really me
                    And I just want to b - e    a - live.

A sad day for the world of entertainment

Yesterday I was watching football and logged on to Twitter only to be met with a shock.  Leslie Nielsen had passed away.

While I may have found a lot of his work schlocky, there is no denying he had made a huge contribution to the world of entertainment.  From his work in "Gunsmoke" and "The Man From U.N.C.L.E" to "The Naked Gun" and my favorite "Men With Brooms" his has left us with a large list of films that make us laugh.  I am proud that he is a fellow Canadian and that there are many people out there who will always remember and love him.  It's funny how just knowing that he was in a film, even as a bit part, meant that you knew there would be slapstick laughs and crazy low-brow humour ensuing.  Sometime pure cheese is all you need to brighten your day and it's sad that he won't be around to make more films to brighten more days.

But to top it off, another great contributor to the entertainment world passed away as well.  Acclaimed director Irvin Kershner also passed away.

He is best known for directing a little film called "The Empire Strikes Back"  He also directed Sean Connery in the James Bond flick "Never Say Never Again"  I hate it when we loose multiple good people in the same day.  Here's hoping :

"He's in a better place."

"A better place? What is it?"

"A construct to help cope with grief, but that's not important right now."

Rest in Peace Leslie and Irvin.  You will both truly be missed.

You never forget your first Doctor

I got my copy of Doctor Who Series 5 the other day and I was stoked,  But I have to admit that as much as I love Doctor Who, I miss my Doctor.  It's so true what they say about Doctor Who.  You will always love the first Doctor that you watched.  For me, David Tennant will forever and always be my Doctor.  I have watched episodes now featuring every Doctor I can find and while I admit that Tom Baker is a sweet ass Doctor, he will never be the same for me.  Christopher Eccelston rocked as a bitter and jaded post-timewar Doctor and Matt Smith has his charm as the Doctor who is back to just enjoying life without alot of the problems from his previous incarnations, but no one will ever be David Tennant.  He had charm and style and grace and poise and it didn't hurt that he is amazingly attractive!  I will always love Doctor Who and am happy with the direction that Stephen Moffat is taking the series and I can't wait until next season's episode written by one of my favorite authors Neil Gaiman, but I miss my Doctor!  I'll write more on the different Doctors another time but for now, I'm gonna throw in "Blink" and just get nostalgic.

Really Brides??? Really??

So today was one of those days that I thought WTF???  Do you really think the world revolves around you just because you're getting married and spending money?  Don't get me wrong, I strive to make every bride feel as special as possible no matter what her situation or budget but there is a line people!  Employees at Bridal stores are just that...employees.  We are not miracle workers (although sometimes we do can) and we have lives outside of our work just like you do.

Let me fill you in on where this all began today.  Last week we had a bride come in searching for her dream gown and, as often happens, she came in without an appointment.  We always strive to serve everyone whether they have an appointment or not so we shuffled things around a but and were able to fit her in.  Her consultant worked tirelessly with her to help her find the perfect gown for her and it was well within her stated budget (under by $700 actually) and was able to find a gown in stock that would need very little done to it which helped with her tight timeline.  In case you are unaware of how things work in bridal, it typically takes between 4 and 6 months from the time of ordering a gown for it to arrive in the store and sometimes takes 2 months for alterations as the seamstresses can be very busy working on multiple gowns at a time.  So when this girl...we'll can her "Jane" came in with a wedding date of February, her consultant jumped into action and pulled out all the stops to not only find a gown that would work, but one that she would love.  Jane seemed very pleased at the end of her shopping with everything until she got to the register.  Suddenly she wasn't feeling so sure about the price of the gown and wanted to shop around.  We allowed her to put the gown on hold and told her she might want to go check out our outlet store when she got a chance as the gowns there are sold 25 - 50% off and are still really great gowns.  Keep in mind dear reader that this was at 5:15 pm and our stores close at 5:30....and she came in at 3:00.  Jane the proceeded to go to our outlet store and demand that she be allowed to try on as many dresses as she wanted because she "was going to be spending alot of money in our stores so we should stay open late for her."  Our outlet consultant didn't want to be rude to her or make her feel like we didn't care so she proceeded to help her shop for gowns until almost 6:30.  The stores have now been closed for over an hour and she still hadn't made a decision.  We decided to hold 2 gowns for her until she could make a decision so she wouldn't feel pressured.

That brings us to today.  Jane had decided on the gown from our main store and had booked an appointment to see our seamstress for alterations at 4:30.  She slowly sauntered into the store at about 4:45.  My seamstress usually only works until 5 pm as she has young children at home and needs to get back to them so we had already made an exception by booking her in at 4:30.  To top things off, she didn't bring shoes with her and it's very difficult to hem a gown if you don't have shoes.  We have a large selection of shoes avaliable for purchase so now Jane decided to start shopping again.  We finally find a pair of shoes that are the right height for her (she was very specific) but once again she balks at the price.  Now she wants to go look for shoes at our outlet store....5:00.  I let her know that she is welcome to go shop for shoes and I would be happy to reschedule her appointment with our seamstress for another day so she wasn't rushed.....nope...Jane wants her alterations done today.  So we settle on shoes and now I remind her that she needs to pay for the gown in full before we can do any alterations on it and she is fine with it...until I tell her how much the gown is.  Now she starts accusing me of changing the price on her and trying to rip her off.  I calmly show her the original tag on the gown with the price and show her it's the same as what her invoice says plus tax.  Now she is freaking out because of the tax.  Where we live, there is ALWAYS tax on everything.  We have no control over it.  Her friend calms her down and she hand over her credit card to pay for the gown.  Once again, even with the taxes added this gown is still $650 under what she said she wanted to spend.  So now we have shoes and a gown and it's time to get her in the gown for alterations...5:15

Our alterations appointment are booked in 1 hour time slots.  Jane had an exception made for her as she didn't need major alterations done on the gown so she was booked for half hour as the later time was better for her and my seamstress could do the pinning in half hour....had she been on time and prepared.  Now my seamstress in already 15 minutes late getting off work and she still hasn't started her job.  I get Jane into the gown and then she drops the bomb.  Jane wants the alterations completed and the gown ready for pick up by next week.  Alterations take time...even when you are really good at them.  And we have tons of other dresses being altered as well.  EVERY bride gets equal time no matter what they spend or when their wedding is so when you come in and demand that everything be done to your timetable that means taking time and effort away from other brides.  Jane doesn't need the gown to be completed for next week because of something like she is moving and won't be back before the wedding or the wedding is in another country and she is flying out, she just wants it done so she can have a photo shoot done in the gown....without her send out to people for Christmas with the invitation to the wedding that may or may not be in February or June or maybe in 2012 now because they haven't actually talked about when the wedding will be or where it will be held.  REALLY?!?!?!  We are bending over backwards and working into our own personal time and leaving our families so that you can do things now because you just feel like it?  People please promise me you will have a little consideration for employees at any store you go in to.  They are there to assist you and hopefully help make things easier for you, but they are not slaves or punching bags.

Thank goodness very few Brides are actually like Jane.  And a huge thank you to all the ones who make my job and my life easier by being polite and considerate!

I love people's creativity

A Very Potter Musical
I came across this video by chance and after watching part one I went on to watch the entire musical and then the sequel  I was fascinated by the creativity and brilliance of all of the people involved in this project.  It is truly a fanboys tribute to something they love and it is extremely well done.  Great writing and fun actors.  I wish I could've seen this live.  If you are a Harry Potter fan you should check this out.

Disney Bridal - a new direction

Almost every little girl dreams of being a Disney princess when they grow up.  We all have a favorite.  It could be Belle, or Snow White, or Jasmine or Sleeping Beauty.  Disney decided to help make those dreams a reality a few years ago by getting into the Bridal industry.  It seems like a very natural progression to make and has been highly popular.  Now you can get married in your favorite Disney princesses wedding gown and why not?  It was a brilliant move.

Disney originally hired Kirstie Kelly as the designer for the line.  The idea was "what if the princesses were alive and getting married today?  What would they wear?".  The gowns were not a direct copy of the ones in the movies, but rather "inspired by".  I was really excited when my store originally picked up the line.  The gowns were (for the most part) gorgeous and the fabrics were brilliant.  Things went along very well for quite a while and then we started having a few problems.  Just little things here and there...beading not quite right...changes in fabric without notification....and very long shipping times  Not too long after we were supposed to be receiving the newest collection of gowns I made a shocking discovery.  Disney was dropping Kirstie Kelly.  There was no notification.  No reasons given.  Just a broken link to a webpage and a notice that a new designer was taking over the line.  The end of an era.  A good friend of mine had really wanted one of the Belle gowns and I now had to break the news to her that she couldn't get it anymore.  Sad day.

But out of the ashes of the Kirstie Kelly fall out, Disney had hired a new designer.  Alfred Angelo is now designing a line for Disney!  I have mixed feelings about this.  Alfred Angelo is a recognizable name and has a lot of clout behind him so I think alot of the little problems from before will disappear.  I know the line will be a lower price point and I like that because I'm all about the budget.  I like that the new line will be accessible to pretty much every price point.  I do know that I will miss the awesome fabrics from the previous collection and I will miss the amazing people that used to work for Kirstie Kelly.  But I have seen a preview of the gowns that are coming and for the most part, I like them and I think Brides will like them too...and the price.

Here are the new gowns and my impression of them.  Keep in mind, I have yet to see them in reality as they have not arrived in store yet so things may change once that happens.

In case you couldn't guess, this is Ariel.  Pretty much what I was expecting.  Mermaid cut, sweetheart neckline.  I am intrigued to see what it looks like standing up.  I think this will be great on taller girls, but really tough on shorter girls and very tough for the plus size girl.

Belle has always been my favorite and to me this gown falls short of the mark.  I can see where the influence comes from but am a little less than impressed with the execution.  To me, Belle is a pick up skirt.  While the overlay is nice, I would like to see a little more.  Just not doing it for me.

I really need to see this one in person because I am just not getting Cinderella from this.  But that could just be the photo.  I expect a full ball gown and this is looking a little flowy to me, but once again it could just be the picture.  I do think it will be a good gown for all body shapes with the cross detail at the waist.

Love the idea for this gown.  Jasmine is represented very well through this. However I can already tell you I dislike the fabric.  This is going to snag, show your underwear and require a deluxe bottle of static guard at all times.  That being said, I think this will be an awesome gown for destination weddings.  You can't see it in this photo but the back is amazing!

This is my favorite of the collection.  I don't know what it is about it but I love it.  I hope the shoulder strap is optional to open it up to more Brides tastes, but this is going to be a very flattering style.  

While many people are not going to get this gown at first, I think it may be the best thought out of the collection.  The stand away flowers on the bust and skirt are apple blossoms.  Brilliant idea.  This may be a hard gown to wear if you have a short torso, but should work well to hide hips and other problem areas.

Once I get to see them in person, I'll review them again...until then the fashionista in me bids you adieu!

Survival of the Dead : Review

Let me start by saying I am a HUGE zombie fan.  And I love Romero flicks.  However I have to say I was a little bit disappointed with this one.  It felt as though this lost a little of the "of the Dead" charm of the previous movies, but I did still find it enjoyable.  It still held alot of the fun and silly moment of previous films, but it seemed to be lacking some of the soul and social commentary.

"Survival" is the latest in the Romero "of the Dead" films in case you are living under a rock or are unaware of the impending Zombie Apocalypse.  It was preceded by such classics as "Night of the Living Dead", "Dawn of the Dead", "Day of the Dead", "Land of the Dead" and "Diary of the Dead".  Each of these movies have had their good points and bad points, but there has always been a tie that binds them.  The us vs.them factor. This movie has it's moments of that, but it's schlocky acting made it harder to swallow.  I loved that the main character was a bit part reprise from "Diary" and he was one of the better features of the movie, but the cheesy Hatfields Vs. McCoys type storyline that exists between the survivors of the island really took away from the point of the film.  I enjoyed the idea of someone teaching zombies to eat another food source and found that it was an idea that tied the journey in all of the films together.  I wish they would have spent more time exploring that.  There were alot of little things that did really bother me though.  There were a few moments where I felt that people got entirely to close to zombie without even the hint of getting attacked.  The fear factor was totally gone.  And don't even get me started on how wrong it is that there was a zombie riding a horse.  First off I don't believe for a second that a horse would let a zombie anywhere near it, let alone ride it.  Even if you make the argument that perhaps the character was on the horse when they turned, the fact that the zombies were continually doing what they used to do in life without stopping would mean that the horse was ridden to death about 4 weeks before the movie started.

With all of this being said, it was still an enjoyable film and worth watching if you are a zombie film fan.  I give it a 6/10 and would happily watch it again on a cold day when I am in need of a zombie marathon

Reconciling my two sides

My name is Faeriegoddess and I am a geek.  I like gaming and sci-fi and comics and horror and zombies and all things Doctor Who.  Yet I am forced to deal with hiding my geek side like a secret identity on a daily basis as I work in the fashion industry.  Not just any fashion industry either...I work in Bridal.  That's right, I spend 8 hours a day every day helping girls find the wedding dress of their dreams and dealing with all things shiny and sparkly and rainbows only to come home at night and watch zombies devour people or roll dice to slice a monster myself.  It's funny how the two sides seems to work together so well some days and other days they are very opposed.  Today was a day where my two sides came to odds.

As I was getting ready for work this morning, I saw a delivery guy leaving my house without actually delivering my package.  I tired to catch him but the mad amounts of snow on my doorstep prevented that.  I watched him drive away with my autographed copy of Level 26: Dark Prophecy by Anthony E. Zuiker drive away.  I have been waiting for that book for a while and now it looks like I will wait some more.  Work was pretty slow for most of the day due to the snow storm, but when a Bride cam in to shop I jumped into action.  I work at a full service boutique which means that a day at work for me is very much like an episode of  "Say Yes to the Dress".  She picked gowns.  I helped her try them on.  I went to bat for her when her friend didn't like the gown as much as she did.  I dressed her up in all the finery that comes with being a bride.  She cried.  Her mom cried.  Her friend sulked.  And another wedding dream came true.  It's very rewarding to help someone realize a dream that many girls have from the time they are very young.  Here's a little secret though....I've never been one of those girls.  I wasn't one who dreamed of my wedding day, or pictured the perfect gown or any of that.  In fact, my own wedding featured dragons as centerpieces and a sword cake cutting.  So as I spent the day helping girls find their gowns and dealing with pretty fabrics and shiny tiara's I found my mind drifting to the book that drove away.  A book about a serial killer and the man who hunts him down.  I found myself giggling silently that I was thinking of such violent things while working in such an enchanted environment.  As the sun set on another day in bridal I had to find a way to relieve the screaming geek inside so I headed out to my local gaming shop after my shift ended.

I love my local game shop.  It's quaint and friendly and has some kick-ass decor.  When I got to the shop I discovered that a delightful surprise waiting for me.  My Doctor Who collectors set of action figures had arrived!  All 11 doctors in a display case shaped like that Tardis.  HORAY!!  The geek in me was appeased. To top it off, on my way home I made a detour to the hardware store to pick up a portable heater and in one of those random bins of sale junk I found a copy of "The Sarah Jane Adventures" season 1 for $4!  Ahhh the geek is satisfied for at least another day.

And yet I wonder...will my alter ego even interfere with my daily work.  Will I be able to remain my uber-geeky self while working in the fashion industry for a long time...or will one of my sides win out and remain the only one like a girly version of "Highlander"?  Only time will tell.....