Nos­tal­gia: wed­ding dresses

When Jim and Ca­role Ann Stans­field cel­e­brated their golden wed­ding they found they could still get in to their orig­i­nal wed­ding out­fits

YOURS (UK) - - News - By Katharine Woot­ton

It was Oc­to­ber 1, 1966, and the church bells were ring­ing, when Jim Stans­field stood in front of the al­tar ner­vously await­ing his beau­ti­ful bride. Dressed up to the nines in his best wool suit, he was over­whelmed when he saw Ca­role Ann com­ing down the aisle in a trail­ing white wed­ding dress that fit­ted her per­fectly. Under her veil, she wore her hair in a Six­ties-style bee­hive. Jim couldn’t be­lieve how won­der­ful she looked. He felt ex­actly the same when, wear­ing his orig­i­nal wool suit, he watched her walk into their 50th wed­ding an­niver­sary party wear­ing that same dress! Jim and Ca­role Ann, who met at a so­cial club for the com­pany where Jim worked, first had the idea of try­ing on their old out­fits when their grand­daugh­ter, Hay­ley, came to look for some old pho­tographs and spot­ted the for­got­ten out­fits in their loft. “Hay­ley sug­gested I try my dress on even though it had been up there un­touched pretty much for 50 years. It was quite smelly and had some makeup and mud stains on it from the first time I wore it, but I washed it twice in the wash­ing ma­chine, once with some stain re­mover, and then I ironed it. “The only trou­ble was wash­ing it made it shrink at which point I thought I’d never get in it!” says Ca­role Ann. Nev­er­the­less, she gave it a try and was amazed to dis­cover it fit­ted per­fectly, just as it had done on her wed­ding day. In the mean­time, Jim had his suit dry cleaned and found it was still a great fit. The dry clean­ers even com­mented on what a well-made suit it was. With the out­fits look­ing as good as new, they de­cided they would wear them for their forth­com­ing golden wed­ding an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions. “Wear­ing the dress brought back so many lovely mem­o­ries,” says Ca­role Ann. “On my wed­ding day, peo­ple kept stand­ing on my long veil and at the an­niver­sary party, the ex­act same thing kept hap­pen­ing. “Ev­ery­one was so happy to see us in our out­fits,” adds Jim. “And many peo­ple there had been at our orig­i­nal wed­ding which was lovely.” So what’s the se­cret be­hind stay­ing the same size all th­ese years? “I re­ally don’t know!” laughs Ca­role Ann. “Jim does a lot more ex­er­cise than me but then we tend not to eat too many pud­dings or cakes or fatty foods.” As for the se­cret be­hind their lon­glast­ing mar­riage, Ca­role Ann says that’s much eas­ier to an­swer. “There’s al­ways laugh­ter,” she says. “We don’t ar­gue very of­ten and even if we do we usu­ally fin­ish off laugh­ing at each other. “We grew up in tough times when we learned to ap­pre­ci­ate what we had,” says Jim. “And when you’ve a wife like mine you cer­tainly do ap­pre­ci­ate it.” Their wed­ding out­fits have now been care­fully packed away back in the loft in spe­cial bags and Jim and Ca­role Ann are look­ing for­ward to get­ting them out for their 60th wed­ding an­niver­sary.

Jim and Ca­role Ann have stood the test of time – in every way

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