Real Women, Real Life Try-ons

In Weddings by Joni

These real women real life try-ons are a set of short videos showing me trying on various outfits I have ordered online.

They are useful for you if you’re over 50 and want to see what these Mother of the Bride outfits really look like on an older woman.  My YouTube channel is I’m Mother of The Bride.  Hit the Subscribe button and YouTube will let you know all the other videos in the series and when a new one comes out.

Each real life try-on has a page of notes on this site.  You’ll find details about the fabric and the fit  and how much I paid.  I’ll add links to retailers so you can order the item if you like the look of it. Click here to go to one of the earliest listings, the Phase Eight Faith dress.

So what is a Mother of the Bride real life try-on?

I’ve been trawling online stores for an outfit for my daughter’s wedding this summer.  But it gets quite dispiriting to see all these beautiful dresses and know that on me they will simply not look as they do in the online images.  Even though stores categorize dresses as Mother of the Bride, they are still mainly modelled by very young women.

Truth is, ladies, our figures are not what they were 30 to 50 years ago!

So I decided I would try some of these great outfits on, at home, with regular lighting, and video the results.  These try-on videos will appear on YouTube regularly – if I can get the ordering done fast enough – for the next few months.

I want these videos to be useful to real women.  Yes, I know I could pose in a way which makes me look better.  And that’s what models do.  But how useful, honestly, is that to you?  So at the cost of looking a bit unspecial or worse, I am modelling these outfits with my normal hairstyle, minimal makeup, bare legs and simple home video set-up.

The results will not be stunning.  Plenty of YouTubers make stunningly beautiful videos but that really doesn’t help typical older women.  No, my videos will be authentic.  A real woman, in a real home, in a real outfit without flattering touch-ups.

 I hope you will find them useful. 

By the way, I’m learning how to make these videos as I go along so please forgive my early attempts when I’m looking the wrong way or the sound isn’t great.  I’ll get better, I promise!

How do I measure up?

Let me tell you a bit about myself so you know what you are viewing.  I am 70. I fluctuate between 9 stone on a really good day (126 lbs, 60 kilos) and 10 stone (140 lbs, 64 kilos).  In the first video in February 2019 I am 10 stone.  So I am overweight for my height. I have never had much of a waist and now have almost none. 

I am 5’2’’ (157 cm) so a petite for most designers.  But as so few petite styles exist I mainly have to buy standard and get them altered.  On the videos I will say if I am trying on standard or petite.

Like most of us my upper arms are droopy.  My upper legs are – well let’s not even discuss that!  Fortunately mid-knee level is the shortest I will be modelling. 

I have mid-length hair which is in good condition but falls very flat without some waves.  So in some of the videos I will tie my hair back, in others I might have let my hair down.  But as I can’t stand the smell of hairspray it will be flopping all over the place.  Sure, when I’m mother of the bride this summer I will get the hairstylist to twist it into a loose low up-do and apply enough product to get it through the day, but for these real life try-ons, it’s just me, without the stylists.

As I may have to send some of these outfits back to the retailer, they won’t be ironed before I try them on.  If I decide to shorten the hem then this will just be loosely pinned up.

Why real women, real life?

If you’re thinking it’s a pity not to do the best for the dresses I try on, I understand.  But let me tell you a story.  Ten years ago a big women’s magazine somehow found me and asked me to come to a photo shoot.  They were doing an article on the different stages of a woman’s style as she went from 20 to 70.  I was going as Ms 60.  Well, I love to see how these things are put together so I warned them I was not the model type but said I’d love to come along if they understood that.  They were enthusiastic.  They said they wanted real women. 

But when I got to the studios, I was flabbergasted.

They put me in a dress which had a hem stuck in place by tape and clipped at the back to hold it in shape.  My hair was thickened with dry shampoo then put into rollers and sprayed hard.  Then unrolled and backcombed to within an inch of its life.  Then more spraying.  And there I was, twisting half around to minimize my waist, as the photographer did his work.

My God, you look wonderful, Joni, said a friend when he saw the magazine.  Well, someone looked wonderful but it wasn’t me.  Nobody lives like those photos.  It’s a fairy story we are being told even when the article is supposed to be about real women.

So that’s why these Mother of the Bride try-ons are going to look less than super.  But I hope once you get used to seeing a real woman on video modelling a dress you will find it useful for picking out an outfit that might be just right for you.

I give the date of when I try on clothes as details such as price, stockists and availability might change over time.  If you can’t find the outfit it may be temporarily out of stock so it’s worth enquiring or looking again in a couple of weeks.

Well, I hope you enjoy watching the videos and reading more details on this site.  Leave a comment if you have ideas on how these try-ons could be improved and recommendations for designers you think I should highlight.