Monthly Archives: February 2012

Please use me! I like it!

I do!

I like to be used.  That’s what I’m here for!

Your Bridal Consultant will ask you if you want her to come in and help you try on your gowns.  You need to say yes.

I hate standing outside of the dressing room while I can hear the bride inside grunting and groaning trying to get into a dress.

 

 

I will knock a couple of times and ask “can I come in and help you?” and I get a short fast answer of  “No!  I’m ok!”.

Look.

I don’t WANT to see you in your unmentionables.  I WON’T judge your body.  Honestly, I don’t even look at you when you are getting in a dress.

I just DON’T want this to happen to one of my dresses

Seriously, what is this picture?

I can’t even tell you how many times I have gone to clean up a dressing room after a bride won’t let me in to help her and the room is trashed.  I mean TRASHED!  The dresses are on the floor, zippers have been ripped out, beading is coming off, it drives me nuts!

Look, I don’t care what you do in your own room

But it’s not going down in one of mine.

Not on my watch!

Whew.  I feel a lot better saying that.

Anywho, the real reason I want to be in there is to help you get the gowns on.  These gowns are hard to zip up and put on.  Also, if you don’t have someone helping you, it will take 3x as much time to get the gowns on.  It is also a good time for me, as your Bridal Consultant, to get to know you and your wedding better and, in turn I can find you your perfect dress.  You also don’t want anyone from your Bridal Party helping you because you want them to kick back, relax and see you in all your glory when it is zipped up and fits perfectly.  Dresses look really different once they are zipped up.

So, let me in!  Let me help you!  I promise it will be a good thing for all of us involved.

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Cast of Characters

9 times out of 10 you will have these personalities in your dress shopping Entourage.  They are interchangeable and at times, overwhelming.  Not every group has all of these personalities represented, but you will be able to recognize the ones that are.

Let’s go through them, shall we?

The Loving Mother

Ahhhhh, the loving mother.  The person in your group who is there to hold your hand throughout the whole process.  The one who listens to what you want and lovingly, not in a mean and pushy way, gives you their honest opinion.  This personality is always aware of you feelings and what you personally love.  Even if they don’t personally like your dress, they know you do and that is all that matters.  The way that you will know what gown they love is by the tears they start to shed as you come out to the mirror.

Want to hear something funny?

I would say that only 25% of actual Moms are the Mother personality in the group.

The Know-It-All

 

Oh this is a fun one.

The Know-It-All.

This person has already gone through the wedding planning process or isn’t engaged, but has watched Say Yes to the Dress religiously and has a stellar Pinterest Wedding Board entitled “Dream Wedding”.  They know everything.

They will tell you what you like.

They will step on your Bridal Consultant’s toes.

They will make you try on gowns you don’t want to because they want to see THEIR dream wedding dress on.

They will take total control of everything.

Their favorite gown on you?  Oh, the one they picked out.  Of course.

The best way you can handle this personality is by humor.  You will offend them if you tell them to put a cork in it.  You also want to show them from the beginning that you are in control.  You want to listen to them and tell them that you will consider their ideas, but end it at that.

It is your wedding after all.

 

The Excited One!

 

Everything is so exciting!!!

Look at this dress!!!

You look AMAZING!!!

Try on a veil!!!

And the most popular

I can’t believe you’re getting married!!!

Every dress is their favorite.

This person is awesome.  Don’t change anything about them.

The Green Eyed Monster

The Jealous One.

She will be on her phone the whole time.  She will throw out snide remarks.  She will give you back handed compliments.

The dress they love is normally the one that they are super silent about, but can’t keep their eyes off of.

Shockingly, this person is either a mom or a sister.

My only suggestion is to just consider the source.  You know why this person is jealous so just phase her out and have fun.  If it keeps getting worse, before you go to the next store, go get a drink and pull her to the side and ask if everything is ok.  Tell her it seems like something is wrong.  Are you tired, hungry, want to go home?  This will let her know that you are onto her and it’s a nice way to say “knock it off”.

 

Those are just a few personalities that you might encounter.  Be prepared for them and just know that Bridal Gown shop can bring out the weirdness in people.  But, most importantly, have fun!

Because if you’re happy, everyone else will be too!

(I want to know this Bride.  I think we would be friends.)

(And I want to help steam her dress out for her.)

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I Interrupt This Regularly Scheduled Post for a Special Announcement

How can I not talk about it?  I’m not only in the Fashion Industry, but I’m a dress designer for Heaven’s Sake.

I’m just like everyone else when it comes to people talking about their favorite gowns.  I don’t care.  Especially when it comes to this one here:

Why would I want to take fashion advice from her.  But, I guess it’s all relative, right?

Anyway, I’m just going to show you my favorite and my least favorite.  (Drumroll Please)

FAVORITE

Oh how I wish this was on a different Celebrity!  I’m not the biggest Cameron Diaz fan, but I am a fan of her figure and style.

This Nude (which I would call a light blush pink) Gucci gown is stunning!  It took my breath away.  It was perfect on this fair skinned, blonde girl.

This gown is very hard to pull off.

If you look closely, you can see that there is no boning in this gown which means, that unlike most gowns, there really is no structure in the bodice.  Boning helps to keep your tummy in and your bust tight and high.  Obviously, Cameron does not need any of that.   I mean, look at those arms!

I also loved that she down played her jewelry.  One of my biggest pet peeves is when you have a gorgeous dress and then the stylist messes it all up with tons of jewelry and crazy hair.  This was simple and elegant.

Speaking of hair, don’t you love Cameron’s short hair?  It suits her.

Onto my least favorite.

Someone get this girl a sandwich.

We know, we know!  You haven’t eaten for years and you’re super proud of how bony your leg is, but this was getting annoying.  The sad thing, was that this black velvet Versace gown was beautiful, but it is amazing how a gown can fail just by how the person wears it.  It would have been much more seductive and beautiful if her leg would show just once in a while she was walking.

Less is more ladies.  Less is more.

Oh well.

Anyway, that is my favorite and my not so favorite.  Thoughts?

Now, back to your regularly scheduled posts.

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Your New Best Friend

You step into my shop.

This is the part where I come in.  Or someone like me.

If you have been following this blog, you know that I am a Bridal Consultant.  My job is to know what is hot in Bridal and Wedding trends.  I brush up on these things by going to Market (where we meet with designers to buy their gowns), go to fashion shows, knowing women’s body types and what looks good on them and studying what Fashion Forecasters say are going to be popular this season.

This is from the Pronovias Spring 2011 Fashion Show in Spain. This is the most beautiful fashion show I have attended to date. I'll talk about this later, but it was AMAZING

Now doesn’t that sound like someone you would want to be chummy with at this point in the wedding planning process?

Well… a lot of people look at me more like this

I’m not quit sure why.  I’m happy.  I smile a lot.  I am pretty funny (or at least I think so).

I guess I understand though.  You see me as someone who will lie to you in order to have you purchase your wedding gown from me because, let’s face it I get a nice bonus if that happens.  You think I will only tell you what you want to hear.  You think I will never leave you alone to converse with your Entourage.  You think I’m going to use high pressure sales on you and convince you into buying a gown that you don’t want.

Oooooh ok. So THIS is how you see me.

I get it and I honestly don’t blame you.  We have all been there.  And yes, I have met Bridal Consultants who make me want to rip my hair out because the way they sell is so tacky, BUT most of us are not like that.  Most of us are fun, kind and ready to help you find the perfect dress, even if it isn’t at our shop.  Do you know how many times I have called another store for a Bride to see if the dress she loves is available there for her to purchase?

A couple.

No, but really, I have always led my Bride’s in the right direction, even if that direction is not towards my cash counter.  I never give my personal opinion on a gown unless I am asked by the Bride to give it.  I never tell a Bride she looks beautiful in gown unless I mean it.  I am your guide through this dress buying process and I am there to listen to where you want to go, make suggestions and then take you to your final destination.

So be nice to your Bridal Consultant and trust her.  Don’t say to her ” We’re just looking” and brush her off because, let’s be honest, you aren’t just looking.  You are engaged and need a dress and like I’ve said before, the wedding gown buying business is a whole new experience.  You don’t just walk into a restaurant and tell your server “I’ve got this” and start getting food from the kitchen.  You let them help you the whole time and guide you to the best thing on the menu for what you’re craving.

BUT, I am not your servant, so don’t treat me like one.

So, let’s be friends and have fun while we have this short time together.

Who knows, you might even invite me to your wedding.  It happens more than you think and it’s my favorite part of my job.

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The Conversationalist

Your Mom is in the front seat talking about colors while your sisters and best friend are in the back seat talking about the ugliest bridesmaids dress they ever wore.  You are all armed with your favorite warm beverage and are ready for a fun day of dress shopping (just remember to get rid of that nice warm beverage before you enter the store).

Everyone is together, confined in a small space with no distractions.  Seize the moment.

It is time for the pep talk.

Every smart bride has one with her Entourage.  The intention of this conversation is to get everyone on the same page and know what your goals are for the day.  Let them know about all the research you have done and that you have a pretty good idea of what type of gown you are going for .  Tell them that you are open to try on different styles, but if you really don’t want to try a certain gown on, you won’t.  You only have a certain amount of time and you want to spend that golden time trying on gowns you are truly interested in.  If there is extra time, then you will try on gowns that you are iffy about.  And don’t be antagonistic with this conversation or make it too formal.  It just needs to be a quick pow wow before you divide and conquer.

There is always one wanna-be Bridal Consultant in the group that wants to take over.  Be aware of her and make sure that you validate her ideas, but don’t let her be a bull in a china closet.  We will go more into how deal with her in another post.

After the quick pep talk, let them know how much you love them and how excited you are to spend this special time with them.  You only want good vibes going around that day so you want to end on a positive note.

Here you are.  Your first shop.  You are prepared and you are ready.  Go, Fight, Win!  (Please don’t fight.  It’s always awkward when that happens).

 

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Check Me Out

A website called Wonderful Wedding Wraps Daily featured one of my posts on their website!

Go take a gander.  It’s a great website.

Click here to check it out!

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Assembling Your Team

You may be asking “we’ve done our homework and made our appointments.  Now what?”

And I say “great question!”

The next step might be the most important, who are you going to bring to your appointments to help choose your wedding dress?

I know a lot of brides have always imagined having their mom, sisters, grandma, his mom, his sisters, his grandma and all 25 of her bridesmaids come to ooohhh and aaaahhh over how beautiful she is in all of the gowns she tries on.  It sounds like a fun little party.  Something you will look back on with fond memories.

How about we look at this bride’s entourage  and see how her little party turned out.  Click here to see how fun it is.

I am sad to say that I have seen this happen more often than not.  What ends up happening is that they forget about you and what you want and start thinking about what type of wedding gown they would wear and pressure you into it.  All of a sudden they are making you try on things you don’t want to and they start bad mouthing everything you love.  With every person you bring, it just adds another opinion and the day normally ends with hurt feelings, even tears.

The funnest and happiest groups I work with are small in size and the closest in relationship to the bride.

So, here is your plan:

1.  Do not tell everyone and their dog that you are going to go try on gowns.  If you don’t tell them, you won’t have to have the awkward “your not invited” conversation.

2.  Of course you invite the important people: mom, sisters, MAYBE your best friend (even that gets iffy) and no, your in-laws do NOT need to come.  It’s actually better if they don’t.  My mother in law did not like my dress when she saw it, but by then it was too late.  She ended up loving it at my wedding.

3.  Grandma can come to an alteration fitting after you’ve purchased it.

4.  Really?  The Fiancé?  The only Fiancés  that I have seen come are either really possessive, really opinionated or they have been dragged there by brides who want to hear how pretty they are and they are looking at the door the whole time.

5.  In the end, try to bring no more than four people with you.

Follow these rules, when it comes to your Bridal Gown Shopping Entourage, and I promise

you will be as happy as this Kate Spade model.

I would be this happy  if I had that purse too.

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The Appointment

I am standing there in the middle of our shop where an MOB (Mother of the Bride) is screaming at me.  When I say screaming I’m talking about high pitched, veins coming out of her neck, Christian Bale kind of screaming.

As I am standing there with a pleasant look on my face patiently waiting for her to calm down and get everything out so that I can help them, I knew I wasn’t the only person she had done this to today.  The mother then looks at the Bride who is eyeing the dress of her dreams in my shop and tells her that they are leaving and never coming back again and that they are going to tell all of their friends never to to shop here.

The door slams and I go back to the Bride I was helping before they came in  and she looks at me and says thank you.

Do you want to know what happened?  What I said?  Well, here it is.

“Hi Ladies, how are you?  Do you have an appointment with us today?”

Pretty shocking, huh?

They were angry that they did not have an appointment and that I was already helping a Bride and wouldn’t have a room available until later that day when I would have loved to help them.

The reason the Bride I was helping said thank you?  She had just been to a shop that only did Walk-Ins and got zero time and attention.

I wish that I could say that this was the only time that this every happened, but it has happened a lot.

Can you see what I’m getting at here?

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT TO TRY ON DRESSES!!

Why, you ask?

1.  The shop will be expecting you and your room will be ready and waiting.

2.  You will have your Bridal Consultant to yourself and they will wait on you hand and foot.

3.  The shop will already know what gowns or types of gown you will want to try on because of the phone conversation you had prior to your appointment.

4.  You will be able to cut any stress you might have in half.

And most importantly…

5.  You deserve it.  You deserve to have the best possible experience with all of the bells and whistles.

Let’s rewind to how you make your appointment.

You’ve looked through your Magazines and know what gowns and designers you want to see and try on.  Go online to the Designer’s Website and you can click on the Store Locator and find the stores nearest to you that carry the designers you love.

Then, pick up the phone and give the stores a call!

Easy, huh?

STAY AWAY FROM SATURDAYS IF YOU CAN!

Saturdays are ridiculous for all Bridal Shops.  They are so busy and have so much going on that everyone is kind of running around like chickens with their heads cut off.  If you are at a real good Shop, you will never know how stressed they are behind the scenes, but it will still be kind of crazy.

Take a day off of work and spend that whole day going to different shops and trying on gowns.

Best days to go try on gowns?  Tuesdays and Thursdays.

So what did we learn today?

Get on the horn ladies and make your appointments!

I promise you’ll be glad you did.

And so will your mom.

 

 

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Study Hall

When it comes to shopping for your wedding gown, the process starts way before you step into the boutique.

I always find it funny how many Brides I work with that can not tell me what types of dresses they think are beautiful or know what they want to try on when they first walk in.  Now, I know what your thinking “well, isn’t that why we are here and what you are supposed to help us with”, and yes, you are completely correct.  As a Bridal Consultant it is my job to hold your hand during this whole process, but it is nice when there is a jumping off point.

The other reason why it is important for you to study up on wedding trends is because the style of your gown largely determines the style of your wedding.

For example:

This gown.  It is a beautiful Pronovias wedding gown with layers upon layers of silky organza over a satin ball gown.  Now, would you want to wear this getting married on a hot beach down in Mexico?

No.  You wouldn’t.  It does not match your venue, you will be hot as hell and you will end up looking a little weird trying to tromp around the sand in this bad boy.  Don’t get me wrong, I have sold gowns like this for beach weddings before, but it doesn’t mean it’s right.  If you do your research you will know to not even waste your time trying on these gowns for a beach wedding.

So do you kinda see the importance of studying up on trends?

Now, here is your homework that I’m giving you.  I want you to buy some of these magazines:

You get the idea.  These three are my favorite.

I want you to curl up on the couch, or in your bed with a hot drink and thumb through these.  I want you to look at the weddings.  I want you to mark the pages of the things you love and not just dresses, but EVERYTHING that you love.  Flowers, colors, centerpieces and more.  When Brides do this and they bring the magazines in to me and we look at them together, I can find any bride’s dream dress because I can see their vision.

When I was getting married, going through magazines was one of my favorite parts.

So have fun!

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Valentine’s Day: Time to Open the Floodgates

Oh Valentine’s Day. It’s a day of love, tenderness, flowers and Proposals.

Lots of Proposals.

So many Proposals that my palms are sweating and I have a tinge of anxiety as I drive to work the next day. You might ask why I feel this way and the answer is that busy season is officially upon me. This means that 30 minutes before the stores open there is a line outside the door of Brides, Mothers of the Bride’s (or MOBs as they will always be referred to) and Bridesmaids. We pretend not to see them until the clock hits 10:00. We then take a deep breath and let them in.

This is when my adrenaline hits and I’m ready to go.

There is no stopping until September when the slow season comes and I can finally relax a bit.

Now ladies, shopping for a wedding gown is a very different shopping experience. It isn’t like going Nordstrom and purchasing this springs new Joe’s High Rise Skinny Jeans in Baltic

I love these jeans.

Anyway

Shopping for a wedding, particularly your wedding gown, takes preparation, study, time and attention. As Brides, we all go in thinking that this is going to be like the movies. We are going to LOVE every dress we try on. We will know the right dress when we see it. We will feel beautiful and love our bodies.

I’m sorry, but this isn’t how it goes down for most of us.

For the next few days I’m going to tell you how you can make this shopping experience wonderful and truly enjoy this once in a lifetime (hopefully) experience.

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