Post # 1
It is hard for me to pinpoint the exact reason, but I am not excited at ALL to go looking for my dress. My wedding is next September and I just keep putting off the “dress hunt”. I think part of the reason is I truly hate trying things on, I hate how my body looks in every item of clothing I wear, and I also am dreading the whole “emotional” part of dress-shopping where my mom will see her “little girl” all “grown up” – ugh! Sorry if I sound completely heartless, but I just do NOT want that experience. I am leaning towards shopping alone, or possible bringing my fiance as he is the only one I feel comfortable trying things on in front of.
Has anyone else had this experience of dreading dress shopping? Any advice for a girl that just does not want to go? 🙁
Post # 2
jenuine88: my first dress shopping experience was completely ruined (really long story). But, after that I went dress shopping alone and I really enjoyed going by myself. When I eventually narrowed it down to a few dress I went with my mom, aunt, cousin, and SIL. I think going alone is a really great option if you are comfortable, the sales people really liked it too because I could try on dresses I liked and they didn’t have to deal with outside opinions and suggestions.
Post # 3
- Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast
I dreaded dress shopping, too. The idea literally gave me nightmares. I decided to shop alone and went in with an attitude of “let’s get this over with.” Despite my apprehensions and untraditional shopping plan, I had a fantastic experience. It was just me and the attendant, no pressure, no need to entertain anyone, no need to show dresses I felt meh about, etc. I found my dress in one day of shopping (boutique #3) and it was perfect for me.
Post # 4
Just wanted to say, I totally get you. I’m not looking forward to trying dresses on either. I think what’s helping me the most is to keep in mind that I can wear whatever I feel most comfortable in…that it’s about what I like and what I feel pretty in, which may not be a traditional wedding gown.
Post # 5
jenuine88: I don’t have any good advice, other than to say that you have to do whatever is most comfortable for you. The whole dress shopping thing can be pretty unenjoyable and even a little bit traumatic — especially if you are not someone who enjoys shopping for clothes, in the first place. If it’s super important to your mom that she go with you (for example, if she is going to be upset at not having the experience with you or something like that), maybe you could go on your own first. Without telling her or anyone else you are going. That way, you can try stuff on in more privacy, decide what you really like on you, and then go back with your mom to try on the specific styles you already know you like. (I hope this makes sense. I’m not sure I expressed it very well.)
I felt the same way about dress shopping. There’s a lot of pressure surrounding the dress and the search for the dress. There’s some sort of societal belief (tradition? fantasy?) that all women are supposed to be excited and thrilled about shopping for a wedding dress. I did not feel that way at all. From the moment I got engaged, I dreaded the idea of looking for a dress. Partly because of my own body image issues, but also because I had a very specific idea of what I wanted … the dress I knew (in my mind) I wanted was not something that was going to be in style … and I knew I wouldn’t find it, no matter how much I looked. The whole process felt like a huge waste of time as well as a huge blow to my fragile self esteem.
I ended up going, though, because it was SO IMPORTANT to my mom. When I told her I didn’t want to go look for dresses, she was crushed, and I relented. It was not the most fun experience I’ve ever had, and (as expected) I didn’t find anything I wanted. But it made my mom happy, so I was glad I did it, in the end. It was a really good memory for her. After going to a couple of places and one bridal fair (which was terrifying — ha, ha!), I ended up having my dress custom made. The seamstress fused together the different bits and pieces that I wanted from various dress styles, and it was beautiful. (I did actually cry from happiness when I put it on, even. It was very emotional.)
Sorry for the super long reply. I think I’m feeling overly chatty today. I wish you the best of luck with your dress hunt. And, above all, every happiness in your wedding and upcoming marriage.
Post # 6
I went alone and was happy to be able to decide myself without anyone else imposing their view on me. So often we read “dress regret” stories on this site from brides who bought in an emotional state, often swayed by the reactions of thier mothers, sisters etc.
I think your plan to go it alone or take your fiance is a great idea. Go to a huge store with a big range so you don’t end up trawing lots of different shops on your quest. Once it’s “mission accomplished” go celebrate with a coffeeor a wine! ( then post your pic on wedding bee!)
Post # 7
jenuine88: I felt the exact same way, I hate shopping in general and have a hard time finding things that both flatter and feel like my personal style. Thankfully my mom is not the type to get sentimental or teary eyed or make a big deal over me in a wedding dress whatsoever becuase I couldn’t stomach that scene myself!
But I do have some advice: Do not procrastinate. The more you procrastinate the more anxiety will grow and it will turn into a bigger monster than your current feeling of kinda “meh”. I put it off for so long and I got myself way too worked up over it in the process. When I finally went I was pleasantly surprised. I did take my mom with me because I thought she’d give the most honest opinions and our taste is actually kind of similar. It was helpful having her because for example, the first salon we went to was kinda scumy, dingy depressing interior, dresses were dingy, had loose threads and were just kind of beat up. If I had been alone I might have accpeted that, and shopped there and not found anything and had a horrible experience. My mom took a look around and said let’s get out of here.
Either go alone or bring a friend/fiance with you. But do not drag your feet. Get out & start the project. I went to 3 salons in one day and found my dress at the third salon. That salon had superior staff and I think that made a big difference. Do some research, read reviews, particurly about the staff and general ambiance of the store. For me, and probably many who dislike shopping, that was the key to my success. Also, wedding dresses are so structured and so helpful to figure flaws I assure you that you WILL like how you look in some. From there it is just a matter of finding the one you love the most. Also keep in mind that you can do some personalization to any dress. I could not find a dress that didn’t either have a train or a big puffy skirt. I chose a fairly slim dress and had the long train cut nearly all the way off, I left just enough that I thought might help to resell the dress. And the seamstress did a very pretty, kinda bubbled hem on the back so there was no train when I wore it. I also had a black belt with a rhinestone applique sewn into it. You can change necklines, cut or add sleeves, add or change belts, etc. etc.
You don’t have to be excited, and that is okay, nothing wrong with it. Everyone is different. But DO get going! And good luck 🙂
Post # 8
I can’t speak to your emotional anxieties with re: your mom, but I can say that I also dreaded dress shopping because I’ve never found a long, formal dress that looked good on me.
What I didn’t know was that wedding dresses are a class apart, FAR more flattering on the whole than any other kind of dress I’ve tried (including very swank formal wear). Many of them are also heavier fabrics with boning; they do a lot of the work of shaping and support that regular dresses don’t. In short, don’t knock ’em til you’ve tried ’em — you may find yourself as pleasantly surprised as I was.
(The exceptions were the lightweight dresses from BHLDN and Claire Pettibone — those, I found, were just as unflattering to my curves as I’d feared.)
Post # 9
Wow, I am overwhelemed by these kind responses and the number of people who can relate to me. Thank you ALL for your advice. I am leaning towards going alone, and to hear that many of you did that makes me SO happy! I will have to break the news to my mom and she will be upset, but she also understands how I am.
Thank-you bees, so much 🙂 – and I will get going on this soon!
Post # 10
jenuine88: I really wanted to dress shop, nbut at the same time didn’t want all the big emotions around it. I ended up going alone to 3 times and one time my SO’s aunt came along. In the end I bouthT 2 dresses. As ample for $131 anD a used gown for $1050 (orginal price $1800). I am wearing the second one and love it. I showed my mom and she really likes it too.
Dont feel bad if you go alone. I found it really nice to find something I want and not feel overly judged.
Post # 11
Also you can take your mom once. The first time you go and absolutely do not buy a dress that time. Let her have fun dressing you up, than go and fine ‘the one’ alone!
Post # 12
I would go alone and find the dress you love, then maybe bring your mom or whoever else to see it. That way you feel confident in your desicion, and not made to be nervous or influnenced by others. Also do some homework and check out designers and styles you may like so you’re not overwhelmed in a store on your first go.
Post # 13
jenuine88: I dreaded dress shopping, too! I don’t wear dresses EVER, and i have only 2 dresses in my closet (both maxis). I passed by a DBs on my way home one night and decided to go try on dresses since I was alone. It was SO MUCH FUN! I went to 10 other boutiques, and I found out what I liked/didn’t like in PEACE! Good thing I didn’t bring my mom because when I showed her, she told me I looked like a mummy
And I chose not to bring the Fiance – I want it to be a surprise (he has no idea of what I’ll look like that day) 🙂
Post # 14
I went on several shopping trips (mostly alone) and had the most fantastic time. Also, it is a great excuse to wiggle out of buying something if your saleswoman is being over-pushy. 😛 I did as another Bee suggested and tried on dresses until I had narrowed it down to one or two gowns, then brought along a friend to get their opinion for the final purchase. Worked great for me.
Post # 15
jenuine88: I know exactly how you feel!!!! I HATE clothes shopping in general, and I’m not really a girly-girl, so I found the wedding dress shopping so daunting. My Mum isn’t girly-girl either and wasn’t terribly interested in dress shopping, so that made it worse! I bought a dress online and it ended up terribly… oh it looked so awful. I was so sad after that. I eventually dragged my Fiance (now husband) along to a bridal outlet and there was only one lady that saw me in my undies! 🙂 The first dress I tried on was the one and I could buy straight off the rack. Done and dusted. Don’t regret a thing!!!!!
Also, my Fiance kind of forgot what the dress looked like between me trying it on and the wedding day. I think some guys can forget an outfit kind of easily… so if your SO is like this, don’t be worried about bringing him along! It’s always different with hair and makeup and jewellery on the day too. 🙂