Oh goodness, the dress.
I was so excited to go wedding dress shopping. I was definitely one of those brides that watched a million episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress” and yelled at the T.V. when those silly girls let other people sway their decisions or if they refused to try on a dress. I’d get into it. So when it was my turn to go shopping I was so excited. Unfortunately, half my bridesmaids lived out of the state so it wasn’t really an option to have all the girls get together for an outing.
I went shopping three times. Once with a couple friends, then again with my mom, mother and sister in law, and a third time with my mom, mother and sister in law, and my aunt. The first time around I thought I had found the dress, but my momma wasn’t with me, so it didn’t feel quite right buying it. I went home and showed her what I thought was “the dress” and she was not impressed. I was angry and sad that she didn’t love it as much as I did. The second time was a quick trip to a really horrible salon and where I hated every dress. And the last time, I picked it. I seriously am horrible at making decisions for myself and take other people’s opinions in high regard, so dress shopping was tough for me. It’s not like picking out a new pair of shoes or a shirt to wear to a party. This one is a big purchase.
When I found a dress I liked (and my mom liked), I was exhausted and overwhelmed. It’s tough trying on those huge heavy dresses and then hearing everyone’s opinion (and I do mean everyone.. other people in the store will undoubtedly come up to you to comment on the dress you’re wearing) all at once (or possibly even worse, people not saying anything at all). So, I found the dress and immediately started to freak out, and not in the happy, excited way I should have been. The ladies in the store kept coming up to me asking how they could help, bring me water and pillows and such. Yeah, I was freaking out. They handed over the paperwork to buy the dress and I started crying. So much so that the woman selling us the dress actually asked if we wanted to come back later. Yes, the woman who should be pushing me to purchase the dress told me to walk away! And I definitely wish I would have done that. When you sign those papers purchasing your dress, it is a done deal. In size 24 font, bold letter, italics, and underlined, it says “nonrefundable and final purchase” in about 10 different ways. You want to be sure.
So, here’s the tip… regardless if you are freaking out and crying like me, or you are totally sold and super excited. Go grab lunch. Sleep on it. Walk away and come back. Your dress is a huge decision, no need to pick it in one day. Tip #2, Pick a good salon. I would hugely recommend the bridal salon I went to (Bella Rosa). I loved them and they were so nice to work with; they wrote me letters, sent me swatches, walked me through fitting, and picking the dress up.. they were fabulous. And tip #3, go read this article from Southern Weddings. It’s super helpful and practical!
And as always, just ask if you have any more questions!
OH, and I should say. Even though I was FREAKING out and hated my dress right after I purchased it, I ended up loving it. Momma definitely knows best and I am glad she talked me out of the other dress. In fact, the first thing my dad told me when he saw me on my wedding day was, “THIS is the dress that you were upset over!?” It was perfect for our day, our setting, and for me.
The dress was originally strapless, but I added lace straps (I wanted to dance without having to pull up on my dress all night) and the lace belt. It was quite a bit extra, cost wise, but definitely worth it! The straps were actually removable, but I left them on the whole day. So, when dress shopping, remember you can always add and take parts away, just ask!
My accessories were my favorite part. Michael and I both wore these yellow converse for the reception.
Lindsay got me these earrings from Anthropologie. I LOVED them, but they were really heavy and actually tore my earring hole from jumping around in them all night, and people tugging on them while giving hugs. Definitely something to think about when picking out jewelry!
I wore these blue sparkly Toms as my “something blue” for our ceremony.
Thank you Katelyn James Photography for the amazing pictures!!!