SF Bay Area wedding gown shopping

posted 10 years ago in San Francisco Bay Area
Post # 3
148 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2008


I went to the following places:

1) Alexandra Bridal (SF)

2) The Wedding Party (Berkeley) 

3) Amy Kuschel (SF)

4) Gesinee’s Bridal (Concord – just saw Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses here)


#1 was very high-end.  I wasn’t crazy about their samples and wasn’t ready to even try on the $$$$ dresses.  It was kind of stuffy, but if you like Melissa Sweet and Vera Wang, they had a nice variety (but not a ton of dresses overall).

 #2 had a few great simple gowns by Nicole Miller and other designers.  The Bridesmaid or Best Man dress selection is amazing.  Great vibe, very friendly.

#3 was my favorite – reasonable price range ($1500-$6,000)… My dress is an Amy Kuschel from eBay and I love it.  In fact, I loved nearly all the dresses there.

#4 was a nightmare.  I would not buy a dress from them – the woman helping us was on drugs.  They did have a ton of Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses to try on though, and that helped me make that decision.

Good luck!



Post # 4
7 posts
  • Wedding: August 2007

I went to:

(1) Glamour Closet in North Beach SF- this place is great because they sell designer wedding gowns at outlet prices. These are like overstock dresses. You can find all major designers here and all the dresses are brand new. Only drawback is that the dresses are off-the-rack. Friendly service.

Website: http://www.glamourcloset.com

(2) Bridal Galleria – Embarcadero in SF – LOVELY dresses but it was too expensive for me. There are some people who have complained about rude service here but I got a friendly consultant. There were 2 dresses I fell in love with here but it was beyond my budget.

 Website: http://www.bridalgalleria.com 

(3) David’s Bridal – Colma-I did not like their service here. I got yelled at because I touched one of their dresses even though it was still in the plastic bag and my skin never came in contact with the fabric of the dress. I was just looking to see if it was something I wanted to try on. I understand if I was touching the actual dress but this woman went berserko on me and acted like my hands were covered in oil. I didn’t see much here.

 Website: http://www.davidsbridal.com 

 (4) Trudy’s – Campbell- bought my wedding dress here. The woman I worked with was mean though and I almost vowed never to buy anything here when I found the dress I liked. Everything is reasonably priced here and they have a huge selection. This is where most of my friends buy their dresses.

Website: http://www.trudysbrides.com 


Post # 5
71 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2006

I tried three places:

#1:  Clarissa in Walnut Creek:  http://www.clarissabridal.com/

Hated the whole experience.  It’s a high end place with expensive dresses and VERY pushy saleswomen.  I did try on one dress that I LOVED, but it was so far out of my price range I couldn’t even entertain the idea.  It really upset me that they would bring me a dress so far out of my range.  

#2:  Gesinee’s in Concord:  http://www.gesineesbridal.com/

Hated the experience there as well.  They run you through like herded elephants – they’re very busy and not very nice.  HUGE selection though.  

#3: Bride’s Corral in Livermore

This is where I got my dress, a beautiful Maggie Sottero.  It’s a drive for most, but this is where we were getting married anyway so I was spending a lot of time out there (and I lived in Danville at the time).  The two older women who have been there for many many years aren’t necessarily the cheeriest people I’ve ever met, but were very very helpful and only did what I asked.  We chose the dresses off the rack ourselves, and if I tried something I liked they would bring me more like it, but only in my price range.  

The women there are very matter-of-fact and to-the-point, which I appreciated a lot with my personality though some might see it as mean.  Their service was great, too, and we ended up ordering our tuxes and flower girl dress there as well.  The Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses we picked there, and almost ordered, but I ordered them from a shop near my hometown in South Dakota for half the price instead since 3 of 4 of my BMs live there. 

On an added note, Bride’s Corral is in a place that doesn’t look like it would house a bridal shop, and they do have a lot of outdated stuff there.  But they also have good prices and a large selection of great new styles, too.  I am from a small town, and the ONLY bridal shop near there is identical to this one.  That is part of why I liked it so much. 

Hope This Helps, and good luck! 

Post # 6
59 posts
Worker bee

I just started dress shopping in the greater Bay area–I went to Trudy’s, and actually thought my consultant was really nice & helpful. I was impressed with their selection, and my consultant made a point of showing me a variety of dresses that were both in my price range & had some facet of design that I liked. My friend also shopped there for her wedding, while she was still "open budget" shopping and said she had a good time (though that’s not where she ended up buying)

Since we were in Campbell, we also stopped by a place called Elegant Lace–wouldn’t recommend it.

I’m planning on going next to the Wedding Party in Berkeley and possibly to Bella Bridesmaid (http://www.bellabridesmaid.com) in San Francisco since I’m interested in some Nicole Miller & Jenny Yoo designs…

Post # 8
60 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2008

Hi 🙂

Just thought I’d add to the conversation!  I went to:

1. Amy Kuschel: Loved loved loved my experience there; my dream dress was actually the Rachel dress.  Good, attentive service; not pushy at all.

2. Jin Wang: Beautifully architectured dresses. Jin’s dresses are more ball gown and I had, at that point, grown to love trumpet/mermaid dresses. Nicole was the person that helped me, really sweet.  Ended up to be much too expensive for me (4K+)

3. Marina Morrison: Bad service from the get-go. Girl on the phone first asked me what my budget was and since I wasn’t sure yet, I replied that I was hoping not to spend more than $3500 and she shot back, "well our dresses start at that price range".  Yuck.

4. Alexandra Bridal Salon: Originally I had crossed them off my list, as the Romona Keveza 559 and Melissa Sweet Lia were on the high end of my price range, but I ended up buying my dress here because of a sample sale that took place the following week!

Good luck! 


Post # 9
58 posts
Worker bee

I recommend Saks Bridal.  Excellent service, exceptionally knowledgeable staff.  The woman who helped me really listened to what I wanted and delievered.

I did not like Amy Kuschel.  Also, do NOT go to Neiman Marcus bridal.  Very bad experience.

Post # 10
323 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Here’s where I went: Gabrielle’s BoutiqueThis is a MUST stop. http://www.gabriellesbridal.com Located in Los Gatos, this is where you go for personalized and boutique service. I found my dress here, spanish designer La Sposa. She has an awesome selection of Melissa Sweet, Yunko, La Sposa, etc. The prices were unbelievable. My dress was under $2k, fully beaded, excellent craftsmanship.

Marina Morrison – http://www.marinamorrison.com Dresses average $4-6k. Great for trying on Reem, Vera, Carolina Herrera. Out of my price range but a wonderful ‘wedding dress shopping’ experience. I have heard mixed reviews but they were lovely to me.  (even though the dresses were out of my budget)

Saks – Union Square. I fell inlove with a $9k Carolina Herrera here. They have a surprisingly HUGE selection. And the prices match it! Go here, if nothing more than the experience. Wonderful service.  

There’s also Glamour Closet and Haute Bride. The best advice is try on EVERYTHING until you get a sense of what you like.  

Post # 11
383 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

got my Henry Roth gown from Trudy’s – and my BMs bought their Jim Hjelm gowns from Trudy’s bridesmaid store right next door…


Post # 12
161 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I second MrsH – Glamour Closet.  It gets mixed reviews, but I REALLY had a great experience.  My dress was ~60% off (Pronovias – $800) and soooo wonderful.  No appointments necessary.  They are samples, so street sizes 6-8 typically.  Good luck!

Post # 13
1 posts

I was dreading shopping for a gown (strange, I know) and ended up putting it off until a couple of weeks ago when I went on a whirlwind shopping tour of the Bay Area to the following places:

1.) Neiman Marcus – I met with Stacey who was incredibly nice and not snooty at all. She made my first experience trying on wedding dresses wonderful. I liked two Vera Wangs, both priced around $5k.

2.) Glamour Closet – Definitely somewhere to check out if you are a sample size. I didn’t find "the dress" here, but there was a good selection.

3.) Shadows, San Anselmo – they have a small selection of low- to mid-priced gowns. There were two gowns that would have worked nicely for my venue, both by Casablanca and both around $700.

4.) Trudy’s – My Maid/Matron of Honor got her dress here and I heard that there was a great, affordable selection so made the drive to check it out. It might have been my salesperson, but I had a *horrible* experience. After describing what I was looking for, in detail, the person brought almost the exact opposite dresses for me to try on. After already being disappointed having tried on one too many monstrosities, the lady zipped my skin in a zipper which left me bleeding!! Would not recommend.

5.) Bridal Galleria – they were having a Vera Wang trunk show when I was there, so there was a 10% discount if the order was placed that weekend. I had a really nice experience. I found them super helpful and not snooty at all. The dresses I tried on were 3-5k. My 2nd and 3rd favorite dresses were here.

6.) Marina Morrison – I went here looking for a Lela Rose dress, that I found out was close to 10k. I had a good experience here as well, although I was intimidated having to walk out on the stage in front of everyone to check out the dress in front of the large mirror. Most dresses were between 3-6k.

7.) Jin Wang – I finally found my dress here. I think most of their dresses are around $4k. I met with Jin Wang herself, and what I loved the most is that she was able to modify any of their dresses to meet your needs (ie. adding straps to a strapless dress). I loved the whole experience, the setting, the personal feel. She’s super nice — try to request an appt. with her personally.

Hope this helps!! Good luck!!!



Post # 14
57 posts
Worker bee

I’m surprised Bay Area Bridal in the Peninsula hasn’t gotten mentioned.  If your dress is available here, it’s probably cheaper than anywhere else.  They always run late and the service is inconsistent, at best, but it’s not a bad place to consider when you’ve gotten your dress picked out.

I loved Jin Wang, but they have a limited selection and the dresses didn’t work for me.  I found my dream designer (Enzoani) there.

Papers and Petals in Burlingame had a few hard-to-find designers, but the owner was late, rude, and zipped my skin into a dress!!  Avoid this place if you can.

My Trudy’s consultant got excited when I liked an expensive dress, but then every dress she pulled after it was awful.  I couldn’t help but feel she was pushing me towards the higher comission dress.

David’s Bridal sucks – I get argumentative just at “Hello”


Post # 15
31 posts
  • Wedding: August 2010

Tomorrow I’m going to Nouvelle Bridal in Palo Alto and Trudys in Campbell. I hope I find something at one of those places. I’ll check back in and let you gals know how it goes!

Post # 16
818 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2009

Elegant Lace in San Jose is a good one too. If possible, ask for Maria. She’s the best!

Leave a comment

Find Amazing Vendors