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thursday thirteen!!! only 2 days late… and a loving tribute to Cocoon Silk, the most beautiful wedding dresses on the West Coast

October 31st, 2009

i thought it was gone, but it’s not — thursday 13, alive & kickin’… so i’d better write one, eh? In honor of Halloween and my baby sister’s impending nuptials, I present:

The Wacky Mommy Thursday Thirteen, Halloween Edition, with an emphasis on WEDDING DRESSES

1) my sister, when we were in the middle of wedding dress shopping today, “You know who hates shopping more than us? Mom. Mom hates shopping more than we do.”

2) she does. our mom hates shopping. my sister isn’t keen on shopping and i’m not, either. especially since i have more boob, hip and BUTT now. Awwwwwww, it’s the New Old Wacky Mommy Body.

3) Did I tell you Happy Halloween yet? No? Happy Halloween! We’re celebrating by eating miniature candy bars, chocolate chip cooky bars, and later, we will have some kind of non-chocolate related feast for dinner. Steve is drinking a Red Stripe and I’m enjoying my 2nd nice glass of white wine. Abymes Vin de Savoie, 2008, from France. me: “mmm, this is nice!” steve: “honey. it’s cheap white French table wine. you need to branch out from the pinot grigio.” he’s right, i do.

4) My other new favorite: Trevisiol Prosecco Venteto, Extra Dry, from Small Vineyards, Seattle, Wash. We drink it with a splash of grapefruit juice, with a sugar cube dropped in, in a sugared-rim martini glass. (that idea was from Brian Boitano. i love his show, “What Would Brian Boitano Make?” on the Food Network. This Amaretto Prosecco Sour also sounds good.)

5) i believe my mom and sister are coming over to have Halloween dinner with us and take the kids out tricker treating. fun!

6) Do you celebrate Halloween? Day of the Dead? Some kind of harvest festival? Please advise.

7) OK, back to wedding dresses. My sister, just six weeks shy of her wedding date, has been a little nervous about the whole “wedding dress” portion of the occasion. I was, too, after we visited a stuck-up shop (i will not include their name here). (oh, what the hell of course I will. Tower Bridal, not to be confused with Tower Records, at the Water Tower at John’s Landing. Really should have read the reviews first, which included this gem, under the heading, “Don’t Shop Here” — “I will never ever recommend this place to anyone. When I went here looking for a dress they were nothing but rude to me. I didnt have a crap load of money to spend which can become a problem when looking at dresses. Some bridal shops dont like dealing with people on a budget and this is definately one.” I do not care if she can’t spell, that is one zinger of a review.)

8) So. They were rude there. I especially loved when the sales associate sized me up with her eyes, glanced over at the maid of honor dresses, glanced back at me and gave me a look like, “It’ll never work.” Here’s the thing: I’m not a size 2. I’m not even a size 10. The point is, I still like to look good. Who doesn’t? And it’s my sister’s wedding! Outfit us, alright? We went to a vintage place in Northwest Portland. I found two great purses, one for me, one for my sis. Then we went to another vintage place. Neither place carried wedding dresses. “It is kind of a niche,” we were told. A niche. Would it kill you to have a rack with a couple of dozen wedding dresses? Apparently it would. It would kill them, and then they would be dead and they couldn’t sell their moldy fake-fur coats and ’70s retro Marimekko knock-offs.

9) Discouraged and with no prospects, we went to Sushiville and had a delicious lunch. (For those of you keeping score: Tower Bridal: two thumbs down; vintage shops, thumbs akimbo (cuz of the purses); Sushiville: BIG thumbs up.)

10) wandered down 23rd Avenue. saw a wedding dress hanging in a window of a boutique, Cocoon Silk. “Wanna check it out?” “OK.” Full selection of dresses, scarves, shoes, prom dresses, party dresses, dresses for little girls, big girls, mothers of the bride… jewelry… Oh. my God. “Do you have this in my size?” my sister asks, about gorgeous dress after gorgeous dress, each one more spectacular than the last. “Well…” the salesclerk tells us, “Those are samples. We custom-make the dresses for you. It will take about three weeks? That’s how we do it in Cambodia, you make the dress to fit.”

11) That is how we all three, my sister, my daughter and I, all are completely won over by Sovanna Yun, whose family is now sewing our dresses. Black cocktail dress for me, with a blue shawl, decorated with peacocks, sequins and fringe; for my daughter, a blue dress with a matching silk ruffle bolero jacket; and my sister will be the one in white (it is a secret, thus I cannot describe it). The Red-Headed Guy is wearing a vintage suit; my husband and son will be in black.

12) That’s Cocoon Silk, and they have two locations in Portland. You can also just send them your measurements and some cash and they, in turn, will send you a stunning dress. You know how he made me feel about my body? He made me feel beautiful about my body. It’s a good body. It’s not perfect, it’s scarred, it’s too curvy — but it’s what I’ve got.

13) So… no attitude from this place. Just beauty. Go figure.

Happy Thirteen and Happy Halloween, y’all! Best wishes to my sis and her guy.


  1. LIB says

    Ali & I get to go wedding dress shopping soon. We, also, do not like shopping–but I think this will be an exception.

    November 1st, 2009 | #

  2. Vixen says

    I loved Tower Records growing up. Somehow that makes me think I should never trust a place called Tower Bridal though. And I guess I was right.

    Score in the end though, and that’s what counts!

    November 1st, 2009 | #

  3. The Other Laura says

    What a lovely adventure and a happy ending!!

    November 1st, 2009 | #

  4. WackyMommy says

    LIB, I highly recommend that place.

    Vixen, absolutely.

    TOL, i live for happy endings :)

    November 1st, 2009 | #

  5. Leslie Gould says

    I love this post! Love to you and your sis–hope we can see photos of the dresses when they come. (:

    November 3rd, 2009 | #

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