Big news, all: I found my wedding dress!
My mom came into town for a week, we made a bunch of appointments, tried on a lot of duds and we eventually FOUND it. Bonus: we put a deposit down so it’s partially paid for. Now that that’s done, I get to try and get a little more trim before I’m scheduled for a fitting in June.
If there’s one thing I’ve never felt in my life, it’s fat. But, whoo-ee, shopping for my wedding dress made me feel like a big ol’ whale. Anyone else find that to be a bit ironic?
Over the course of two days, mom, a few friends and I went to five different bridal salons where I tried on somewhere between 30 and 40 dresses. I was surprised, though, that some of these salons didn’t have sizes that fit me, a size 8, or a size 10 in wedding dresses. There were lots of shops where I couldn’t find dresses larger than a size 4.
I had thought that the dresses these salons kept on hand were supposed to run larger and then I would be “clipped” into the dress (have excess material pulled back) so that I could see how it actually looked fitted to my body. At least, this is how it works in movies and in the one episode I’ve seen of “Say Yes To The Dress.” (It must be true then, right?)
At one salon, a vain effort to yank the thing over my head was followed up with the instruction to “hold the dress up to my body to get the idea.” It was clear that these people expected me to make a decision using my best judgement and high hopes and then arrange for the salon to custom make me a gown from scratch. This would obviously cost me and make the salon a lot of cash so as a result I couldn’t help but feel that I was the target of a big scam. Sadly, this sales pitch was delivered to me at multiple bridal salons.
Side NOTE: My self-esteem was really put to the test when my mother said I looked “awful” and called the dress I was wearing “horrible” when I expressed some emotion towards it. Mumma Sue obviously didn’t care for that one…. You can file this incident under “one of the most traumatic moments of my life.”
I kept running into another issue: These same two dress shops seemed to ignore my notes on what I considered to be my ideal dress. I wanted a vintage-inspired dress, lace, A-line fitted, with small cap sleeves. Of course, I didn’t at first know these magic words, but I felt I did a decent job articulating what I was looking for.
For some mysterious reason, sales associates kept pulling these strapless, poofy ball gowns off of nearby racks. Initially I felt that I should be polite and respect the expertise of the stylist–But it became clear that my interests weren’t being put to heart. That quickly got old. I didn’t want to look like a Disney princess. I wanted to look like ME.
At one shop I politely expressed that these kinds of dresses weren’t QUITE what I was asking for. Her reply? “Honey, you don’t know what you want.” OH REALLY!? I almost wish I would have been a bit meaner after that. Instead I was sweet, thanked them for their time and left.
I’m happy that I didn’t lose myself to frustration or burst into tears. I kept my chin up and later that same day, I fell in love with the dress that I will be wearing on my wedding day. I can’t really reveal any details about it– you’ll all just have to wait until September to see it.
I’m overjoyed that I found the perfect dress, that makes me feel like a goddess, but I’m also VERY happy the search over. I never would have gotten through this without the support of my friends.