I have made it through to the other side alive. My first foray into Slutty Fancy Dress is over and done with and whilst I wouldn’t exactly call it a success, I wouldn’t say I have been scarred for life either.
I gathered a few observations during the night which I would like to share with you all;
- We went for a makeover at Shu Uemura in the afternoon of the hen do. This was a good call because at least it was one less thing to worry about on the night – we know we looked good. Plus we could choose wicked awesome false eyelashes. Most people chose lovely, subtle, classy eyelashes. Me? I chose massive black feathery ones.
- SFD requires alcohol. For me at least. I would love to be possessed with the kind of self confidence that allows people to strut into a bar in a groin skimming dress as if it’s no big deal, but alas, I am not. Alcohol helped me stop feeling quite so conscious.
- BUT. Be careful to not drink too much alcohol. We saw an incredibly inebriated Queen of Hearts at the end of the night and SFD + Copious amounts of alcohol = Very unclassy looking person.
- And on that note: When did Manchester become a hive of Hen Nights?! I don’t remember that from uni days at all. It’s kind of disappointing and tacky but my guess is they’re mainly in the area we were in and a small trip further afield would be L-plate free.
- BUT having lots of other Hen Parties around also in fancy dress took the pressure off somewhat. There are other people you can a) smile knowingly at and b) think to yourself. “Well at least I don’t look as bad as that.”
- Until the alcohol has kicked in and all the other Hen Parties were around I kept reminding people to “Fake it until you make it” – pretend like you don’t care and eventually you’ll stop caring. You can’t go out in SFD and look embarrassed about it, you have to forge ahead and just pretend this is a normal, every day activity for you.
- If you are wearing something as short as I was, get a pair of hotpants. They will make you feel better psychologically just knowing they’re there. The thought of people seeing your pants is less horrifying than the thought of people seeing some hotpants. Which is ridiculous I know, but it’s the same as letting people see you in a bikini over your bra and knickers.
- When you buy said hotpants, make sure you actually see them. Don’t just ask in the shop if they have black hotpants and have the shop assistant say “No but we can order some in for you to come and pick them up.” Then your housemate will kindly go and pick them up for you and send you the following text message “Got your hotpants for you. Did you know they were leatherette?” I think I died inside a little bit when I read that message.
- Going to The Birdcage was a good call. Mainly because it was mostly full of other Hen Parties. Yes this does mean an awful lot of tacky Hen Party paraphernalia flying about but it also means a distinct lack of men. Being around other women made me feel much less self-conscious. Had we just been in a club I would probably have wanted to kill myself, or the gobshite trying to feel me up.
- Younger blokes will do their best to perv discreetly. Older men will just openly turn into slobbering fools.
- When the Maid of Honour announces that she’s got a drinking game where you all have to pull the name of an Artist out of an envelope and then down your drink whenever a song by said Artist is played during the night – do not pull Michael Jackson out of the envelope. Seriously. That man was responsible for too many good songs. I had to be given a reprieve at the end of the night before I ended up in need of a stomach pumping.
- Knowing that the Hen had a good time made my feelings about SFD pale into significance. At the end of the day, this was about showing a friend a good time and she wanted to do fancy dress. As far as I’m concerned, that’s what I had to do.
Overall I’m glad I did it. I had a good time and I feel it’s something I can tick off some kind of mental list. I don’t want to look back and regret things – I already do that looking at pictures of a much younger, thin me, saying “Why did you cover yourself up girl?!” I feel I’ve been given a second chance now that I’ve lost the weight and at least I’ve taken advantage of that.
Have I changed my mind and become a devotee of fancy dress? Erm....no. I think it’s ridiculous (not to mention expensive). But being a good friend is more important to me than my feelings about wearing polyester and looking a bit of a twat.
(I don’t think you appreciate quite how slutty this SFD was. I would love to share a picture with you but I’m just not brave enough. I’m still praying that my brother doesn’t log into Facebook and see pictures of his little sister looking like Alice in Wonderland was never meant to.)