Post # 1
So I’m on the hunt for a dress. I have a binder full of images that I’ve clipped, and I had an appointment at Wedding Atelier in nyc yesterday. Now, a lot of my images are a little different… like I’m inspired by vintage retro styles (love Candy Anthony) and am considering a tea-length dress… but I do also like some more mainstream styles as long as the dress does not weigh 15 pounds or have a ton of beading or lace. I was excited about my appointment because they carry two designers I really like, and they were having a sample sale. I’m to the point where I’ve researched a ton online, but haven’t actually tried much on yet.
So I start my appointment by showing my binder of images to the saleslady, Zoya. She sighs and tells me she doesn’t think they’ll have much that I’ll like. I was like, well you have Melissa Sweet and Cymbelline, right? I definitely want to see what you have by them (I had images from both in my binder). She says ok and we start going through the samples from the sale.
There isn’t a lot that I like, but we pick out 3 to try on. There was a dress on display that I loved, but when I asked about it, Zoya said, "oh that dress doesn’t look good on anybody, you don’t want to waste your time on it" I was surprised and said that I’d really like to try it anyway, and she was like, "Trust me, you won’t like it." I was surprised and disappointed. But I let it go.
We go back and try on the sample sale dresses, and she said that we would look at the dresses from the rest of the collection afterwards. The first dress was actually really pretty and looked great on, but I just wasn’t in love with it. The other two were definitely not it. So I change and am ready to see the rest of the dresses, when the saleslady says, "you know, there really isn’t anything you are going to like in our normal collection. Here is a list of when our trunk shows are. You should really come back for them. Your wedding isn’t until March. You have time." I was shocked. I had made the time for this appointment and was looking forward to seeing all their dresses- not just what was on sale. I left feeling really discouraged and well… I felt rejected. But silly for feeling this way and not putting my foot down. I felt thrown for a loop- I wasn’t expecting it all to go that way.
I’m wondering if I could have done something to put off this lady? I was quick, I didn’t take up much of her time. She never seemed annoyed or judgemental of me. Should I have thrown a bridezilla-ish fit insisting on trying on whatever I wanted and demanding to see the rest of their collection? Should I hide my binder full of unconventional wedding images- perhaps they frightened her? Should I have gotten more dressed up? Is there some weird wedding code thing that I didn’t follow? Is is normal to have experiences like this? Am I just being a freak and overthinking the whole thing?
Would love to hear anyone’s two cents~
Post # 3
The worst exerience I had in a bridal salon was where this little old sales lady took me into a room, and asked me to undress while she goes find a dress. So there I am sitting naked waiting with my friend for this lady to bring me a dress every 5 minutes or so. Most were dresses I didn’t like. i.e. a halter dress when I wanted strapless. first she tried to convince me I would look great in the style, then she would tell me all the alterations I could do to make it look good on me.
Anyway good luck. First I ended calling shops to see if they would even have what I was looking for, i.e. I would tell them the designer and style of a couple I really liked. Then for general browsing I ended up going to shops where you wouldn’t get yelled at you just go through dresses yourself, like RK bridal. I ended up getting my dress the Bridal shop in Mamaroneck.
Post # 4
I would second RK Bridal, although they do have a dress limit they seem a lot more down to earth there.
Post # 5
I went to 2 bridal salons and got completely different treatment at both of them. Try a different place and see how it goes.
Post # 6
I haven’t gone dress shopping, but from other posts and reviews in my local citysearch..I’ve noticed a lot of bridal shops are snooty. If you come in knowing what you want, it’s like you don’t defer to their judgement/style only? I can see trying on some other styles, since some can be altered (strapless can add straps, etc.) but it still seems odd to me….I’m going the week after the 4th, so hopefully things will go well!
Post # 7
uh, no….that is so odd. they should let you try on whatever you want, no matter what! if no one else liked the dress, and they didn’t want anyone to try it on, they shouldn’t have it out on display. she probably just didn’t want to take it down. You might have to go to several salons, but you’ll find one you like and you will most likely find what you are looking for somewhere that the sales people are nice helpful and there to make sure you find what you want. If the store rubs you the wrong way just trying dresses on, don’t buy anything from there. It probably won’t go well during the rest of the dress buying experience.
Post # 8
There is definately something wrong. I don’t know if it’s just the salon’s style, or your saleslady, but I wouldn’t go back. Or if you do, I would ask to speak to the manager first, and let her know why you were disappointed with your first visit.
I also had some very specific interests in a wedding dress, most of which were not in line at all with the typical dress. I wanted NO beading, NO sequins, NO lace, NO big skirt – just fabulous fabric, well designed and draped. I did not want anything strapless, or a halter-style, or anything slinky looking. (I told the saleslady I was not going to walk up the aisle with my dad in something that looked like floor-length lingerie.) And my absolutely limit was $1000. So clearly there weren’t going to be a lot of dresses in the store that were anything like what I wanted…
Nevertheless, the saleslady put together a small rack of gowns (about 6) for me to try, and added a couple (and took away a couple) as we talked about each dress and what I did or didn’t like about it. And the third dress was my dress – it was perfect, and right in the middle of my price range.
And that’s what the service should be like. You shouldn’t have to try on 50 dresses if you know what you’re looking for. They shouldn’t downgrade your taste, even in the very subtle manner you described. And I’m not sure what is with having a dress on display that they won’t let you try… that’s just plain odd.
I’m sorry your experience was so disappointing. My first dress shopping appt was actually horrible, but I just loved my second appt, and that’s when (and where) I bought my dress. So keep looking – and remember that in any store with any customer service ethic, nobody will ever make you feel odd for knowing what you want, even if it is a little off-mainstream.
Post # 9
I guess one other thing I might recommend is to see if you can sort your "binder full of images" down to maybe a half dozen photos that give an overall idea of what you want. I’m sure you weren’t showing her your whole binder, but the whole "brides with binders" thing is I’m sure a bit of a scary thing for the vendors. Too many pictures can make it hard for them to sort out what you really do want, and of course you don’t want to spend your whole appt showing them photos.
Post # 10
Sounds like a mismatch and miscommunication between you and this particular saleslady. Perhaps she misinterpreted the intent of your binder of images. For you maybe those images were intended as a starting off point, not a limiting point. But if the saleswoman was lacking in imagination she might have interpreted them as specific demands, which she knew she couldn’t fulfill right then, so she gave you info on trunk shows.
Still, she should have listened to you and been more accommodating! If you wanted to try on that dress that “no one likes” then you should have been able to. (If everyone hates it why do they have it on display anyway?)
You definitely didn’t do anything wrong, though. Maybe next time tailor the images you show the salesperson to what they carry in the store. Like you did before, say you want to see dresses by designer X and designer Y, and that if they have them, you have photos of particular dresses by these designers that you especially would like to see, but if they don’t have those the pictures you have are meant as inspiration, and point out details you like (strapless, not 15 pounds of beading, etc). I’m sure you’ll have better luck next time 🙂
Post # 11
That was tacky and terible customer serivce! It sounds like she was judging, but not you so much as you rpocketbook. You wanted to come during a trunk sale so I feel she assumes you’re unable to afford most of whats in the store – and especially the dress on the maniquin. (Think Pretty Woman…)
It’s completely unfair for her to decide when you should look for your dress, and to assume what you can and can’t afford.
I would call and complain to the manager, explain your sheer disappointment and while she wasn’t outright rude her attitude and wording wasn’t appopriate.
You’ll have better luck next time.
Post # 12
you might want to try adriennes, veka or kleinfeld, assuming the wedding atelier is somewhere near your price range, those places should be too. I was treated really well (wearing jeans and converse) at all 3, though adriennes was the only place where i wasn’t getting dressed and undressed with a saleslady in the room (if you care about that).
veka, especially, has unusual dresses and is small enough that you don’t really need to bring in pictures because it’s easy to browse (i didn’t bring in any photos to any appointments and it worked fine). the owners are also just lovely people, and i think they may be having a sale at the moment.
Post # 13
Thanks everyone for your comments and encouragement- I feel sooooo much better now! RK is definitely on my list- and great advice about paring my images down- they probably are a bit overwhelming to leaf through. I’ll keep my chin up and get back out there.
Post # 14
- Wedding: September 2008 - A tiny town just outside of Glacier National Park
In my experience, if you want to avoid feeling railroaded by salespeople, just tell them that you don’t need any help. If you insist, they will shove off.
Post # 15
I would have unleashed hell on that lady!
I’m not a bridezilla…I’m a bitch…I made the time, I want to see everything I want to see. I would have questioned her loyalty to the store since she doesn’t seem eager for me to spend my $$…and they ways to tackle that craziness are endless…
I would have bee put off buy stood my ground to be honest.
I do believe that when they think you’re not gonna buy anything from them they don’t take good care of you…maybe by showing your folder she realized you have "special" taste…and chances are…you won’t buy from her so why bother.
Horrible salesmanship (not sure if that’s a word) don’t get discouraged tho…and next time stand your ground! You’re actually on the right time frame to go gown shopping.
Post # 16
* I would have been put off but stood my ground to be honest.