Post # 1
I found the dress of my dreams. It is a local designer’s own creation, and I have not seen anything like it after months of looking. I love the dress, and I have given the designer half the deposit along with a signed contract. Initially, she made remarks that I need to lose 4 pounds. Fine whatever, most brides choose to lose weight. I am by no means overweight, and wear a size 3/4 comfortably. I ignored her comment, and I really felt the dress looked beautiful on me. I went to her salon to look at bridesmaids dresses, and mentioned I needed a dress that runs in plus size for one of my friends. She asked if my friend really needed to be in the wedding.
Recently, I tried the dress on for some friends. We all thought it looked lovely despite being a sample. In front of everyone, the designer pointed to my hips and said "what are you going to do about this?" Then she proceeded to at length tell me how I absolutely need to get Spanx. I really felt beautiful up until then, now I feel crushed. If I did not pay a deposit of $1200 and did not love my dress, I would have taken my business elsewhere.
My fittings will be coming up and I don’t want to hear anymore cruel comments. I don’t want to go into my wedding feeling insecure. How can I get the message across that her comments are unwelcome. I don’t want to anger her to the point that she takes it out on my dress.
Post # 3
- Wedding: June 2010 - Ceremony: Catholic Church, Reception: Hotel Ballroom
MsMarch, I’m so sorry. Nobody should have to deal with comments like that, least of all if you are someone who is paying for a service that your dressmaker is supposed to provide!
Do you absolutely have to take your dress to this designer for alterations, or can you pick it up at her shop when it’s ready, and then take it to a reputable seamstress elsewhere?
If you have to have your alterations done there, I would suggest saying calmly (but firmly!) that you don’t appreciate her comments and feel that they’re inappropriate / not professional. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, maybe bring someone (your mom, your MOH) along who would feel comfortable making this type of statement. Good luck!
Post # 4
So sorry you’re having to deal with someone who is obviously far more used to dealing with dress forms than real women! I second the previous poster’s advice. Have your mom or FMIL say something if you don’t feel comfortable!
Post # 5
Wow. What a BIA!
You need to be straight forward. You’ve already ordered and put the deposit down on her dress. Call her up or go down there and simply say, "look, I respect that you design these clothes, but I need you to respect that weight is simply an issue you are not allowed to comment on. I don’t think it’s your place at all to comment on whether or not I need to lose weight or make judgemental comments about my friends that hurt their feelings." and leave it at that. If she says something to you again, just say, "i’m sorry, that’s inappropriate". Being told something is inappropriate is like being scolded. Stand up for yourself and your friends, you don’t deserve this crap treatment!
If you handle it tactfully with a cool head, you should be just fine. And do not let one person get you down. There is always one of those stupid people out there willing to put you down. Heck, I had lots of implications that my ample sized busom made me look porno in some wedding dresses and all you can do is look at them and go, "really?" and look incredulous, like it’s the most absurd thing you ever heard. Othewise, they get to you and they know it!!!
Your designer makes me mad. How come peoples’ ugly sides come out AFTER they got your money?
Post # 6
OMG I’m so sorry! (((HUGS))) That’s kind of my nightmare. I know I need to lose weight before I even go dress shopping (I’m workin’ on it… ) and I feel like every bride feels a bit insecure about weight when they are shopping for their dress because it’s the day you want to look your best. I can’t believe the NERVE of that woman! You definitely should put your foot down (or get one of your mouthier friends or relatives to say something) because this b***h needs to know that it is not cool OR good business to insult her customers.
Also, you should find your BM dresses elsewhere. I’m glad you’re in love with your dress, but I think the less business this woman gets from you the better.
Post # 7
I’m assuming that b/c it’s a local designer, your "fittings" are part of the design process? As in, start with a muslin pattern, then a few more fittings along the way? If not, then def. find another seamstress. If yes, then I agree with PP about having a friend/relative come along to make it more comfortable. And also just be upfront and say that you love the way the dress fits and don’t intend to make changes to your body.
I’m so sorry you’re going through this. I hope she takes the hint!
Post # 8
Clearly this woman has serious issues around weight and appearance, which is likely closely related to her wanting her designs to look a certain way. I would step carefully around this with her while the design process is taking place because she may get even weirder on you and you want a good dress to come out of this, right?!
After all is said and done, I would give her some professional feedback, by phone or even through letter, as in "I love the dress you designed me but I have some feedback for your shop on the customer service I received. I did not care for the comments that were made about my weight and about my bridesmaid’s weight. I was able to shrug this off because I like the work so much and because for me, weight is not a big trigger issue. However, that isn’t going to be the case with many other brides. It is a stressful enough time without the wedding dress shop giving dieting demands!" Part of this is also that the community of brides really talks to one another too, and this type of information could harm her business.
Seriously, I would walk out if someone said that kind of thing to me. I would be SO MAD. It sounds like you really shrugged it off. Good for you!
Post # 9
after my final fitting i would tell her where she could shove her needles ;)….
Post # 10
I agree she sounds a bit nutty so tread lightly. I would perhaps just simply tell her that you appreciate her suggestions but you are quite comfortable with your body. Or try "my fiance would kill me if I lost weight! he loves my shape and can’t stand bony women!" I find often that if you blame something on your man people back away.
I also agree that a well written letter about her customer service skills would go a long way after you have your dress in your pocession. Good luck!
Post # 11
I agree with everyone that you’d be better served elsewhere. But if that’s not possible, you can bring this up to her in a non-threatening way. You could say something like this at your next fitting:
Last time, you mentioned something about my weight. You know, I love the dress, but I have to ask you, did you mean to make me feel insecure and anxious about looking good? I’d like to know because this wedding is important to me and I don’t work well with people who aren’t kind or thoughtful.
Using this type of phrasing offers 5 benefits:
- gently brings up the subject
- tells her how she impacted you
- asks for an explanation
- suggests next steps if the behavior continues
- empowers you to stand up for yourself
Definitely bring along a friend, your mom or MOH as backup in case you feel emotional or overwhelmed. Designers tend to think of themselves as artists and may be less skilled at dealing with clients. That’s not an excuse, just a reason to know how you want to interact with vendors early on.
Let me know if you want to read my article, 7 Questions to Ask Before Selecting Vendors. All the best!
Post # 12
I guess I’m a chicken. If it was me, I would proably not say anything until after I had the dress. I certainly would stop doing anything extra with her, such as buying Bm dresses. You can at least sabe your girls from her evil clutches. But I’d be nervous that she’d go off, if I said something. When the dress comes in, I would pay for it, take it and run. But when I had the dress in my hot little hands, I would tell her off and make sure I let everyone know how insulting she is.
Post # 13
I’d tell her that she’s a seamstress and that I’m paying her to sew…and to sew only. If I wanted a fitness trainer I’d go to the gym. But since she’s not a fitness trainer or a dietician she needs to just keep on sewing and keep her opinions to herself.
I mean seriously…I would love to be a size 10 let alone a friggin 3 or 4. Is she insane???
Post # 14
Oh how awful.
I think I’d need time to pick my jaw off the floor if someone said something to me like that.
I guess she’s giving you her brutal opinion – but you’d think she’d figure out a way to do so with a little more tact. How is she staying in business?!?!
Some people are just ‘blunt’. Since you decided to stay with her, you’ll just need to deal with her rough exterior and have your BM’s give you extra kuddos (10 nice things for every 1 thing) 😉
I wouldn’t worry about feeling like you are going to go into your wedding looking anything less than amazing. She sounds like the ultimate perfectionist who will make you look like you stepped out of a magazine page!
Post # 15
Thank you ladies for the great responses and advice. I laughed hard reading some of them. Great idea to take someone else along for the fitting who will politely tell the designer to keep her mouth shut. She is supposed to do all the alterations, and I guess if she continues, I will tell her I am moving far away and take my dress to be altered elsewhere. I feel much better armed with a survival plan now; thanks bees!
Post # 16
I’m so angry FOR you! What is wrong with people?!?!
It would be great if you could make her feel really bad, like have your Mom pull her aside and tell her that you just recovered from an eating disorder and that they are so proud of you for finally being in a good place with your body.
BTW, I don’t mean to make light of eating disorders, it would just be a really good way of making her feel HORRIBLE.