Of all the things I choose to have and to hold on my wedding day (bouquet of roses, my husband’s hand), my Granny’s pearl beaded bag is the one thing from my past that will be in my clutches the night I begin my future as a Mrs. With its tiny silver chain, rows of intricate beading and simple frame silhouette (complete with a Mad Men-approved change purse clasp), this delicate bag makes me think of my Granny and the countless evenings that she would have carried it; winding the chain around her slender wrist to let the bag elegantly hang down at her side.
On a recent visit to my grandparents place, my Poppa shuffled out from their bedroom with two elegant evening bags. I immediately recognized them both: The first, a beautiful-needlepoint bag from Austria. The second, the ivory beaded stunner fit for a true lady – bride-to-be or otherwise. This was the one, the one that would be with me on my wedding day, even if my aging grandparents couldn’t make the trip. The ivory beaded bag will be there. It will hold the tissues to wipe away my tears of joy, my lipstick – the one that will be forever known as my wedding day colour and a powder blue floral handkerchief that I bought for my Granny when I lived in Japan (seemingly many moons ago now). “You take it”, she said. “It will be your something blue”. As a little girl, I always thought I would carry a white satin confection on my wedding day. But now, when I shut my eyes and dream of the Big Day, the picture has finally become clearer – the groom’s face has come into focus, the venue looks familiar and my dress is just as it should be. And there, in one of the snapshots of my mind is my Granny’s beaded bag. To have and to hold, forever and forever.
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