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The hunt for (slightly) macabre frocks

Nice, now do you have it in a bright-red bunny print?
Nice, now do you have it in a bright-red bunny print?

So this is one for the “cheerful reading experiences of the year” awards: how to go shopping for suitable funeral attire.

Oh yes. Guess what happens when you ban the usual low-key black attire from a funeral because you prefer to celebrate the recently deceased in bright, happy colours? Sartorial chaos. And Forever New’s horribly depressing dressing rooms with disfiguring lighting and deceptive sizing, of course. (I hope they read this and do something about it. My self-esteem cannot take much more, especially since I love their stuff so much.)

I hit the malls in search of the perfect outfit to wear to my dad’s memorial celebration. And here’s what I learnt. Read it and weep… (Or not. I’d prefer if this one had people ruefully grinning rather.)

  • Answering the condescending/ overly enthusiastic/ vaguely interested shop assistant’s question of “and what are you looking for today?” with “a dress for my dad’s funeral” causes them to scatter like cockroaches from a lightbulb
  • You’ll find the perfect dress – but it will consist of three different dresses, one with the right cut, one the right print and one the right price. Yup.
  • Those oh-so comfortable, stylish wedges you rock at the office? They’ll leave you with feet so blistered and bruised that you look like you’ve contracted leprosy. Thus, not comfortable for walking in a mall.
  • Combining that beautiful, demure, pale-pink dress with your pasty-pale skin will make you look like a pink polony.
  • Not one of your favourite shops will have anything remotely suitable in stock – despite them having everything fabulous in store just last week, pre-life-changing event.
  • You’ll learn to hate the colour-blocking trend.
  • No, it really isn’t suitable to pick the glittery, sequined, lacy cream number with the cute matching bolero, even if you did ban black.
  • Bunnies on a dress somehow still feel suitable, even for a funeral.
  • It’s hard to accurately judge your appearance in the mirror if you’re crying.
  • And it’s hard not to laugh when you come out of the dressing room with your tear-stained face and somebody asks “did it really look that horrible?”
  • You’ll end up buying Haagen Dasz, driving home and hauling out your whole wardrobe to mix and match something. How frugal am I?

Yup, I can just hear my dad: “what on earth are you wearing?”


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