I have a confession to make – my dress was the first thing I figured out in the whole wedding planning process. Yes, even before the ring. Assuming you aren’t set on only one venue and aren’t buying off the rack, the dress will honestly set your timeline – so I like to think this was a wise move. The dress I chose ended up taking five months to be made, so definitely a factor.
I made an appointment around Christmastime last year, wanting to take advantage of my parents being in town for the holidays. My sister had such a wonderful experience at Lovely Bride that I always knew that I wanted to check them out. I honestly didn’t really think about trying other places. I’d read the staff is amazing there and the selection extensive, but dabbling into the realm of “more reasonable”.
Know what you want, and stick to it. I recommend making an appointment if you’re even thinking you’ll need one. You can always cancel, whereas you definitely can’t squeeze yourself in for something last minute. Before going in, I had been looking at bridal magazines and all over Pinterest, so I had an idea as to what I wanted, but honestly didn’t know if it really existed. Knowing that was key, as it helped the sales associate narrow down options for me (as well as my mom!). If they hadn’t had what I wanted, I would have continued on in my search.
Don’t fly this one solo. The appointments are only an hour long, which going in seemed like a lifetime, but totally flew by. I recommend you bring at least one person with you – preferably two – as it is a bit overwhelming. I walked over to the racks and I could see … nothing. It was just a big massive blob of white. Everything looked the same. Nothing made any sense. And looking at the tags only made it more confusing, because no one will ever be able to explain to me how the pricing on these things works, but that’s besides the point. Thankfully my mom was on it, as she was able to quickly grab several dresses which were perfect for me, including what would end up being the one.
Don’t let other people’s questions make you question your decisions. I tried on six dresses. Only six dresses in one store – and that was all it took. I later had questions from friends asking if I second-guessed my decision, to which I replied, “not for a second.”
There was the one which was too corset-y for my taste.
Bit too Mermaid Parade-esque for my taste. (I was torn on this one, but remember you have to maneuver a very long day in this get up. I chose wisely!)
In the end, I went with a dress by Rosa Clara (I’ll share pictures in a subsequent post). It was everything I wanted that I’d yet to see in any of the bridal magazines I couldn’t put down. After I put in my order, similar styles would start to pop up. I didn’t entirely choose it for this reason, but I loved that my sister also bought her dress from Lovely Bride and it was also by Rosa Clara’s Soft line. As an added bonus, Rosa Clara is a Spanish designer. Loved that little nod to the amazing country where I spent a summer studying abroad during my undergrad studies.
Looking for some more inspiration going into your appointment? Check out my Brooklyn Bride Pinterest board for more ideas!
Lovely Bride – 182 Duane Street – 212.924.2050