Thursday, January 29, 2009

Dress Hunt

The last two weeks I have been on the hunt for a dress. Not just any old dress but “the dress.” The one that you dream about from the day you learned what a dress was. You dream of what it will look like, how it will fit and how you will feel wearing it.

I have heard over and over from multiple people that “I will just know” when I put on the right dress. After 6 shops and probably 25-30 dresses later you begin to wonder. I just wasn’t having any luck. Sure I was finding gorgeous dresses, sure I was finding dresses that fit but I hadn’t found the dress that had it all.

While on this journey I came across some very interesting bridal shop rules as I like to refer to them. Each shop has surprisingly done things a little differently than the last. A few of these rules were just too out there and weird that I had to write about them.

I encountered probably one of the most control freak bridal shop assistants EVER. I knew I was in for it when she was guiding my every move from the moment I walked in. She did so by saying things such as “Why don’t you come right over HERE and look at THESE (specifying a specific rack) dresses. Once I had picked out about 5 she said “Ok why don’t we get started on these and see where we get.” [This annoys me. I want to do one task and then move on to the next. I want to look, then try. Not look, try, look, try. That is annoying. Let me have my process people!]

It got even more comical when we went to try them on. She gave me strict instructions on what to put on and then informed me that she would help me from there. My mom was there, of course, and so she just started helping me. I think the lady heard the unzipping and the rustling of dresses and started freaking out. There was only a curtain between us and she kept asking “Can I come in!? Can I come in!?” I thought she was going to rip down the curtain. We were promptly informed that they have “certain” ways of putting on the dresses and that they prefer to have a bridal assistant help to put on the dresses. My mom was then banished from the room and I had to awkwardly change from dress to dress with a complete stranger [Not a fan. Although I became somewhat immune to it by after a few shops]

At another shop I knew I was in for it the moment I walked in and a 70 year old women greeted us. I just prayed to myself that I could put the dresses on myself. But of course that was not the case. What would be the fun in that!? So I proceeded to have a 70 year old woman help me try on dresses [at times I thought the dress was going to be too heavy for her little arms to hold up]. The kicker at this place was that you had to wear white gloves. Yeah…gloves. The old lady wasn’t wearing any. Riddle me that Batman.

Other places consisted of me having to take my shoes, going through a magazine rather than being able to look through the rack, writing down the name of the dress and having an assistant bring it to me. Some of these rules made sense and some didn’t (Gloves?) but I guess each place has the right to run their business how they choose.
  • If I were to create my own shop I would let the girl look through the rack herself (looking at a picture in a magazine and looking at the actual dress are two totally different things and you don’t want someone who has no idea what you like looking for pick out dresses for you. That is absurd).

  • She could have her own room with a large mirror in case she didn’t want to come out in the open and put on a show for the bazillion other brides in the shop.
  • I would avoid making brides have an appt if possible. People have crazy schedules and sometimes you just have to go look when you have a spare minute.

  • If there needs to be special care taken when trying on the dress I would instruct the mom, friend or whomever on how to do it so they don’t have to feel all uncomfortable with some random stranger in their dressing room. If they’re alone I will provide a long slip so that they can at least be covered and decrease embarrassment.

  • Last but not least, I would give the bride some space. When she tries on the dress and she looks as though she is trying to decide if she likes it and she just wants to have a word with her mom in privacy to get her opinion without the SALES person standing right there to combat every complaint or worry she might have I would give them some space. Also, this space would give them the opportunity to look at the price tag without feeling like they have to sneak a peek while I am not looking. [Price matters and if something is completely out of your price range then it is better you not fall in love with the dress].

That is just how I would do it if it were me.

The happy ending to this whole process…I found it, THE DRESS!


Chelsie said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Congratulations on getting your dress! That is always the best feeling knowing you have your perfect dress. :)You will have to show me pictures of it!

Brock and Rachel said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

You found it??? I didn't scroll down far enough on my phone to see that line! I read everything else. Maybe you should just forget the PR thing and open up a bridal shop. I want to hear about it.

JMadd said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I had some interesting experiences too, and a few breakdowns when pushy saleswomen were a little too up in my business. I found that just telling them to back off and let me do my own thing worked. At one place I actually said, "if you want to make a sale, you're going to let me do this my way." At the time, I didn't see myself as a bridezilla, but now I'm a little embarrassed.