- 9 years ago
- Wedding: October 2010
i know there is supposed to be a whole lot of excitement surrounding dress shopping, knowing that you found “the one” and all…but i feel like i have had a very different experince compared to this “norm”- due to a number of different key bits and pieces:
first all, one key item to note is that i am not a standard sample-size girl. my street dress size is a 14 or 16, so my bridal gown sizes tended to be larger. while not a huge issue, this definitely provides a very different dress-shop searching experience- trying to find places that carry more than really ugly bag-looking dresses.
my Maid/Matron of Honor and bridesmaids are also all married, so whereas when they were getting married, i was all excited and wanted to hear/be involved with everything, they are (understandably but still disappointingly) less enthused, which hasn’t been a huge help to get me all pumped up.
Now these tidbits having been shared, i am not going to go on feeling bad- just wanted to set the tone…
So when i started the whole dress shopping experience, i started with David’s Bridal. a safe spot where i knew they had plus sizes. i went alone. i know what i like, i know what looks good, i mean business and didn’t want to get all caught up in it all. I must say, though, for all the bad things you hear, my experience there was very positive. for the first time, i felt like a bride (super suprising to me too)- all dolled up, albeit in a multitude of dresses that were not quite for me, but STILL beautiful, veil and all…this got me to thinking that maybe it WAS possible to be that type of bubbly bride who looks stunning and finds her dress and loves it the moment she sees it!
after DB, i decided to research various dresses. i must now state my frustration when i would go to a store which had specific dresses on its website, ask to see a dress, and then be told “sorry, we don’t have that one…but we can show you another one which is very similar.” ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! i was so frustrated…i thought i was being very organized- i had my list with my numerically-rated favorites, cost research having been done, ready and waiting to try the dresses on. it wasn’t even that they didn’t have a sample that would be too small…i couldn’t even SEE the dress to know if i thought it would be for me or not. that part i really hate.
At some point here, after having gone to a couple more stores, i started thinking that i would just order a dress i liked, without trying it on, since there seemed to be minimal selection. i was sick and tired of this process, causing me more stress and more tears than i thought were necessary. my sweet fiance kept listening to me, and wanting to help, but didn’t know how. not a fun time.
On an off chance, a friend of mine mentioned this place in Brooklyn where she had gotten her dress. She is a non-sample size as well, and mentioned that they had quite a good variety. The place is Lestan’s Bridal. Not much to look at, not in the best area, a bit far out, but it was worth a shot (and my fingers were crossed). i tried a different tactic this time…still went alone (besides my fiance who drove and waited in the car- again, a complete sweetheart!), but did not have a list of dresses…. What a different experience! i tried on like 9 dresses, the woman who helped me, Collette, was wonderful, not pushy, and regular (in the best of senses). i was soo soo happy and had found 2 finalists that were even below my budget!! i came out of the store jumping for joy, a large smile pasted to my face, and all giggly. 🙂 life was good.
so that was back in november…the next stage was for my mom to come to town and see the dresses again with me. this happened yesterday. since november, one of the samples had been sold from Lestan’s, and after much searching, i found it in the size and color i was looking for in a shop about an hour away in long island.
Our first stop was a bust. we got to the store…i was already in a bit of an “off” mood, and we were asked to wait a bit since all the dressing rooms were taken. this was no problem, and i was so excited to be there with my mom (finally!). Then a girl comes out wearing the dress i wanted to try on. after some time, i got the sample, put it on, and everything felt wrong. i felt like a big sugary confection, and could not wait to get out of the dress. we left, me in tears, very sad that this dress (which up until that point i had preferred) was so bad. the question was then whether the other one would be good, or if i had just wasted all this time, and would need to start looking again.
So store #2…we walked in, and a chaotic sample sale was going on. by this time, i came to realize that the fewer people and the less crazy it is around me, the better i am. they still had the dress (thankfully), but no free dressing rooms, except for this triangular closet (i am not lying- it was a closet). my mom and i looked at each other like “here we go again”, but i went anyways. WELL…the dress on, i came out to the mirrored area. it was beautiful! perfect! it was “me”, and fit like a dream. 🙂
as cheesy as it sounds, i felt like a princess, and i am so so happy. i didn’t really think i would feel this way, and am suprised by it. what a roller-coaster this dress search is…and i know that my search was on the very low-key side. i cannot even begin to imagine what it is like for others….
I just wanted to share my joy and maybe give some support for others who aren’t having the “time of their lives” while looking for the perfect thing to wear.