What they don’t tell you about finding your wedding dress

Last weekend I went to shop for my wedding dress.  As a disclaimer to my post, I want you all to know that I hate shopping.  I really do.  I buy the majority of my goods online in order to avoid any mall situations and to be done with it.  I know it’s shocking, but it’s who I am.

That being said, I love the people I was with while shopping for my wedding dress and I love the dress itself.  BUT…the process was not the romantic cutesy stuff I was used to seeing on tv.

Without further ado, here’s a list of the top 5 things they don’t tell you about shopping for your wedding dress:

1) You don’t get champagne.  Maybe I went to a unique bridal salon, but I was expecting free champagne and instead came face to face with a “No Beverages” sign.  This was probably the biggest disappointment of the whole deal.

2) You don’t daintily step into each gown you try on.  For the majority of the time you will be sweating like a pig from shimmying your way into 100 pounds of fabric over and over again.  Then the consultant will pull you this way and that way trying to synch your fat into an hourglass shape and manhandling you with the “modesty panel”.

3) Your consultant won’t be Randy from “Say Yes to the Dress”.  My consultant decided that I *needed* a white gown, even though I repeatedly said I wanted my dress to be champagne.  After trying on 30 white gowns, I finally bought the ONLY one she brought me in champagne.

4)  You will be forced to try on things you hate.  I was expecting some of this, but I didn’t realize how violent the reaction between my body and chiffon would be.  I mean, I was stuck somewhere between looking like the ghost of Christmas past and toga party.  It was a lose-lose situation.

5)  Everybody will cry the “ohmygodthisisit” cry and you will not understand.  You will feel like, “Maybe I will never feel that about a dress.  Maybe I’m being too picky.  This really isn’t The One, is it?  Can I go home yet?  I am going to wear a pantsuit.  Seriously, why is everyone crying about this dress?”

And then…finally…when you think all hope is lost…you will find Your Dress.  The One.  The Ohmygodthisisit.  And your friends and family will agree with you because it will be the first time you have smiled all afternoon.  And you will sigh a sigh of immense relief because you know how beautiful you feel and how happy you are going to be on your wedding day.

What’s your dress shopping story?  Or, are you looking forward to or dreading dress hunting?

-Mads

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30 thoughts on “What they don’t tell you about finding your wedding dress

  1. Your dress on anyone else would not be nearly as beautiful. It is truly your dress.

    I was also very disappointed that we were not served champagne. How rude!!!

  2. I’m glad you found one you love! Sorry your saleslady wasn’t communicative, though.

    I am looking forward to it, but hope to max out at 2 stores. I don’t have the patience, and would hate to bother my family/friends for more of their time.

  3. No moment was so relieving as the one where you finally decided it was smile-time.

    David’s Bridal was equally as unromantic except with more of a cattle call feeling. And a sales associate who was dressed in a manner to suggest that I wouldn’t trust with any clothing opinions.

    p.s. The “Modesty Panel” was the best 🙂

  4. My mother made my dress. It was a champagne satin pseudo-replica of Princess Di’s dress – complete with the fluffy sleeves and the ruffled neckline. Don’t judge – it was 1982. When My Baby got married, we looked a dresses for 3 days, never finding the perfect one. Then she goes out with the future MIL and calls an hour later with “I FOUND IT! I LOVE IT! I WANT IT!” Really? With the MIL in an hour? That’s just wrong. Of course she got the dress & looked fabulous and that’s what really counts. I’d love to see yours! Can you e-mail your minions a photo so Jonathan doesn’t see it on the blog? Pretty please? PS – have you picked a date yet?

    • Oh man, my mom would have lost her sh!t if I found the dress without her.
      We’re getting hitched over Memorial Day weekend in 2012. It seems so close, but I think the sooner the better. Not only does that mean I get to be Mrs. Jonathan, but it also means I get to stop planning 🙂

      • Yay! Memorial Day!! I found my dress in one day. I knew what style I wanted. I detailed that to the saleslady, and she brought one to me. I tried it on & bought it. One dress. One try on. I was out of the shop w/a dress & veil in under an hour. Then I went next door to DSW and bought shoes. My mom & I had so much time blocked off, and we finished in about 60 minutes. So we went to lunch and toasted to our success.

        Then my poor grandmother spent the better part of two month removing the lace trim from the bottom and hemming it for me. God love Grandma!

  5. You are SO TOTALLY RIGHT about dress shopping!! My first trip dress shopping I specifically told the woman I wanted NO sparkles. She brought me ONLY sparkles no matter how many times I told her I hated what was in her hand. My second trip I went with my size 00 cousin (who was also looking for her dress). While every dress fit her like a glove, they used some sort of clips from Home Depot (bright orange color mind you) to hold the dresses on me. It was fabulous. I thank God I found my dress quickly!

  6. I buy everything online too! Wedding dress shopping wasn’t fun for me. I went to about 10 different shops and ended up going back and buying a dress from the very first shop. They had to make it smaller around the waist for me, but the made it too small. I was so worried it was going to rip!

  7. I haven’t done it personally, but have gone with a couple friends. By the end of it, we were all stressed out…so I’m a little nervous about having to do this myself in the future. Perhaps I will wear a white hoodie and yoga pant set and call it a day.

    • I think some brides do find it to be super fun. I’m sure it’s not painful for everyone haha
      A modesty panel is basically a giant slab of fabric to cover up your bum if the dress doesn’t fit you perfectly. They use it in fittings so your family and friends don’t get an eyeful. And yes, they hold it in place with giant orange clips.

  8. My aunt picked out my dress! I just wanted a simple cream colored pants suit, as it was my second marriage and I didn’t feel like being fancy. But she brought over this champagne halter gown with a sideswept train and I just died right there in the dressing room.

  9. I’m like you: I do most of my dress shopping online. When I went dress shopping, I show the saleswoman all the dresses I wanted to try on. And of course, she threw in a few more that looked absolutely nothing like what I wanted. I wanted to say, “I don’t want to waste my time with these,” but of course I tried them on anyways.

  10. I went to a “regular” clothing store (“regular” because it is a designer’s store and I would never shop there) to look at their brand new bridal line which they were keeping in the basement hidden from all sights. I looked at a few dresses on a computer and asked them to bring out 3. The lady at the counter insisted on another one. I said “I hate it” and she brought it anyway. After trying my 3 choices -and having the whole store look at me, because after all I was trying wedding dresses in a regular clothing store and had to go to the main store room so I could see myself- that crazy woman still wants me to try on the hideous dress. “But I hate it!” “But it’s my favorite!” “But it’s hideous!” “Stop offending me and try it on!” “You’re not my boss!” “Try it on!” etc etc etc. Finally, I try it on. I fell in love.

    I left the store empty handed because I certainly couldn’t buy the dress in the first store I went, and certainly THE DRESS couldn’t be something I had hated just 60 minutes earlier. I went to a thousand different stores, and dreamt for three nights straight about “the hideous dress”. And 6 months later got married in it and felt like a million bucks.

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