60s Surfy Beachy Breezy Boho California Bride


That's it. That's the search term I have typed into Google anytime I have even ventured to daydream about my wedding day. And if you have ever searched such a thing in the past 5 or 6 years, you have probably seen this dress: Grace Loves Lace's beautiful Hollie.

For a long time, I only ever pictured getting married in this dress. And since I first laid eyes on it, I've been obsessed with literally anything that Grace Loves Lace puts out. I don't think I have ever even seriously entertained the idea of being anything other than a GLL bride.

Until today. Today, when I have narrowed it down to not one but two GLL dresses that I am painstakingly, melodramatically trying to decide between.

Sadly, neither of the two is the Hollie (let's be honest, that dress would have fit my 27-year-old bod a lot nicer than my 32-year-old bod), but both of them are perfect in their own right. And I am so torn between them that my fearless bridesmaids have even gone so far as to suggest that I look at.... other dresses.

They have a point. If it's so hard to decide then maybe neither of them is The Dress?

So, for the first time since the very beginning of this wedding planning process, I typed in my search term again. And I didn't totally hate what I saw.

This is a generous concession for me. Wanting to float around in a Grace Loves Lace gown on my wedding day is literally the only bougie wedding fantasy I have allowed myself to regularly indulge in. Everything else about the wedding aesthetic has been negotiable. Even the beach ceremony, though barely negotiable, is something I have to remind myself not to get too attached to in the event that weather or logistics get in the way.

But everything else? Negotiable. The rest is just about Ryan and I and having the people we love all in one place for one magical day.

Still, tonight I pretended my only non-negotiable was actually negotiable and I shopped around online.

As it turns out, it is really hard to meet my "surfy boho beachy but not cheap, sexy but not immodest, flirty, fun, pretty, 60s or 70s vintage vibes, like maybe mid-century? and flattering for my type and oh! something that looks like Goldie Hawn would have gotten married in it" standards. Nevertheless, here they are:

Rue de Seine

I had never heard of Rue de Sienne before tonight and I'm glad. While I love their dresses, based on the prices I see on pre-owned bridal sites, these dresses are definitely not in my price range. My favorites are the Haze, the Ash and the Zara, because the lace on these is droolworthy.

Dreamers and Lovers

I actually did go to a fitting at Dreamers and Lovers' Torrance shop in LA. While I liked their dresses, most of them had zippers and fabric that refused to give... two characteristics of wedding dresses that give me such ridiculous anxiety. Looking tonight, I think their website definitely has more options than the ones that I saw and tried on. Some favorites are the Daisy, the Anais, the Amy, the Freya, the Rosina and the Cecilia.

Mora Surf Boutique

These dresses from Mora Surf Boutique are mostly sold out, can't fit me and are probably more casual in person than they look online... but there is something easy breezy about the My LoveHe Loves Me and the Laced Heart.


What's not to love about BHLDN? They're part of Anthro, they're affordable and have plenty of boho, vintage styles like the Kieran, the Lombardy, the J'adore, the Conrad, the Felix, the Joplin and the Pearson. Unfortunately, they're also usually sold out of my sizes and I've read plenty of alteration nightmares involving these dresses.

Kites and Butterflies

This was another LA-based designer that I stumbled upon tonight. I'm not a fan of the off-white, the ribbons, and the deep V's in most of their styles, but I thought the Rena, the Ada, the Birdie, the Cielo and the Page were all pretty beautiful.

Lillian West

Lillian West has some cute boho styles as well, like this one and this one.

Claire Pettibone

Claire Pettibone is an LA-based designer with a whole section of boho dresses like the Castiloga and the Laguna.

And that's not all! Flora, Watters and Lihi Hod all have beachy, boho-y options as well hidden among the likes of their classier dresses. I'm sure if I kept trying tonight the rabbit hole would be endless. 

However, it's almost midnight and all this dress "shopping" has me closer to falling asleep than saying yes to the dress. Which is not great considering I have to decide by noon tomorrow. 

Twelve hours... the clock is ticking.