The wedding dress hunt

Me-Matt-1It’s fair to say most women dream of this moment, where they finally get to start hunting for their perfect dress. It’s hard to know how long it will take or how many shops you’ll need to look in before you find that life changing dress that has your heart racing and tears spilling from your eyes.

So before me and my mum went to find my dress I had a rough idea of what I wanted. I was hoping to find an elegant dress with straps that was fitted down to the hips and then flared out a bit. I was planning on going for white because I knew most people including the hubby would think I’d opt for Ivory. So with that in mind off we went. As you know I ended up with an Ivory strapless dress. Even after I bought my dress I still tried on others even though I knew that was the one. It was purely an excuse as I’d never get the chance to try them on again and unlike most women I found my dress in the 1st shop we went into hehe.

My body type is probably an hourglass so I didn’t think a fishtail or a super tight straight kind of dress would suit me. However at a wedding show I tried on a few different style dresses and although I wouldn’t have chosen these to wear on my big day I was pleasantly surprised at how nice they looked. Only problem with these style dresses is they are hard to walk in and dancing would have been off the cards.

I thought you may be sick to death of hearing about my journey so I recently asked a few of my female friends to share their dress hunting stories. I’ve not named a couple because they are getting married soon and we wouldn’t want to spoil the hubby’s surprise now would we.

DanielleDressDanielle Bridge

“I didn’t have any idea what sort of dress I wanted to have and was therefore open to any ideas. We started the search in February and the wedding was in June! Ha! Ha!

The search was on!

I took my girlfriends to a local bridal shop in Stevenage and tried on a number of dresses that they all picked out for me…one stood out! A 50’s style tea dress, simple corset with elaborate embroidered daisy’s on the sticky out skirt and it had pockets! Lol….

relaxed, quirky, a bit different and most of all, comfy.

So with my mind made up I put the dress on hold and booked another appointment to try it on with my mum. In the meantime I had booked two other appointments. Mum and another girlfriend came with me to the first shop and I tried on about 4 dresses, one of which made me cry! It was soft, feminine with a band of flowers over one shoulder.

 I felt very vulnerable in it and very girliefied…totally different from the tea dress. We had decided that this was the one…, it was nearly 3 times the cost of the tea dress though.

We then out of courtesy went to the second appointment at Morgan Davies. We could only try on about 3 as my turnaround was too short to order one (4 months!). Most of them were a no but Mum had picked one out, totally bling and big and I didn’t fancy it on the peg but the owner said to try it on.

So I did and BAM there it was… I didn’t feel vulnerable, I felt powerful and special. I didn’t cry but I wanted to strut my stuff in that dress.

So there it was, we bought it on the spot as it was a sample. At £500 bargain. Doug wasn’t expecting my fairy-tale wedding dress in fact, he knows me so well, he was expecting a 50s style tea dress! Ha! Ha!

I am so glad that I went against the grain and wore my dress after all you only get one day to dress like a princess and I think my dress fit the bill….!!”

Danielle is my cousin and I also thought she would opt for a 50’s style dress so when she walked down the aisle in her stunning princess dress my jaw hit the floor and then the tears came. She looked magnificent and oh so confident. I was so proud of her for going against the grain and wowing us all. Well done Danielle I love that you followed your heart and didn’t do the expected because it’s the unexpected that has our hubby’s stunned hehe.


“I choose something that I wouldn’t normally go for, mind you the 1st one I bought was cute, then I went off it and bought a 2nd one lol but my heart wasn’t really into that dress either. So I went to a wedding fare not to look but one caught my eye. I tried it on and it was the one.

It’s perfect, and its ivory, I’ve looked in every wedding shop and couldn’t find one like it.”

I asked my friend if she felt she bought her 1st and 2nd dress to early and she responded with this:

“Yep defo got the 1st one way to early, I wasn’t really looking nor was I making a big deal of it. I wanted a small quiet wedding but hey my husband to be changed my mind.”

I think this is a very interesting situation because my friend ended up with 3 dresses. 2 that she bought perhaps too early and then the final dress which she wasn’t even looking for. I think this proves that you need to take your time when buying your dress its incredibly important so you do not want to rush your decision. Browse around until you find the one and trust me you will know when you find it. Another interesting point is my friends hubby to be is planning the wedding a bit like Don’t tell the bride but she got to pick her own dress. I’m very keen to hear about her big day and hope she will be willing to let me share her story with you.

Anonymous – this lady has not bought her dress yet but I thought I would share part of her journey so far as it is interesting because in this case money may play a part in the decision process.

“I went dress shopping last weekend with mum for the first time! I crammed in 4 appointments over 2 days as mum was visiting for the weekend so I wanted to get in as much as we could do together. I thought I didn’t know what I wanted when I started and felt like I had a very open mind but when I went in the first shop I was instantly drawn to lots of lace and tulle and ended up trying on lots of similar things. However half way through the second shop, after more lace and tulle, I tried something completely different and very simple and instantly realised that that was much more me and felt comfortable and happier in it – mum said she could tell as I was standing differently and had a big grin on my face. I’m heading back tomorrow  with my bridesmaids to see my top 3 which are in 2 different shops – one that’s quite a big shop and then one which is more of a boutique and only had about 30 dresses – the owner must choose well though as I loved almost all of them in there even though there was so few of them! I’m hoping with fresh eyes and seeing them all in the same day I can make a decision – it’s so hard though because I love all 3. One is in the sale and I just wish I didn’t know that in a way as I don’t want the cheaper price to cloud my judgement about how much I like each of the dresses. I just wish I still didn’t have to wait a whole year to wear it now….whichever one I end up choosing!!”

I think she is making a really smart decision here by going back with fresh eyes to view all of her choices. It is tough when you take into account the prices, you cannot help but sway more to the cheaper dress. I had the same issue I didn’t want to fall in love with a super pricey dress because I didn’t think it was fair on my mum who paid for my dress on her own.

I’d love to hear more stories about your dress hunting antics.

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