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Wedding Dress Shopping 101

Take three types of friends;

The Assertive and honest one;  Maybe annoying on nights out when they drag you from club to club but when wedding dress shopping this friend will be invaluable! Telling the shop staff to get this that the other and keep a lid on the other attendees.

The kind One; The one that will tell you, you like beautiful but maybe the cut  of the dress isn’t right and maybe you should try this one. Won’t tell you, you look fat or ugly as from personal experience this can ruin a whole day. But will be constructive and encourage a positive atmosphere and if you’re lucky enough take you for coffee after!

The grounded sensible one; they will point out that although Manolos and the two grand tiara are striking, they unfortunately will cost more than the reception and that’s just madness. They will also point out the stuff you don’t see about the dress until you’re at the reception and people are standing on your fabulous three meter train and ask to have a popper put on to hold it up!

10 Essential things to take with you.

  1. Cold Water
  2. Some  supportive underwear
  3. A strapless or multi way bra
  4. Deodorant
  5. Cut outs that you have seen
  6. An open mind about styles and colours
  7. Your mother in law to be (She will love that you included her)
  8. The above mentioned list of people
  9. Hair bands and a brush
  10. A note pad and pen (to write down catalogue numbers prices and ratings)

Wedding dress shopping is a mine field, if you google your local area check their wedsites for things such as ‘by appointment only’ and their comments. We went to one shop that I had googled with good reviews and opening hours so that said to me that you turn up and look at the pretties. With friends and survival kit in tow we rang the bell, no answer, rang again, its raining now. Final a man came to the door asked what we wanted. After asking to come in a take a look around we were looked up and down and asked to wait there. Came back, we’ve just had  a delievery so you can’t come in. I’ll take your name and call you when I can fit you in. Needless to say I never heard from that dress shop even if I had I don’t think that it would have been the place I would have found a kind considerate atmosphere to make one of the if not the biggest decision of the wedding.

After another couple of disasters such as stores closed when advertised as open  we found ‘The Bridal Boutique’ Southend On Sea best kept secret for an amazing friendly service. We were given hot drinks whilst we waited for another girl to finish even though we didn’t have an appointment!

Ten minutes later I was in the first dress, although ooohs and ahhhs all round the lady the shop (Nikki) said very politely that perhaps, if I didn’t mind, she could suggest a different shape that may well work better for me, if I would like. (Perfect way to say , it’s not great!)

After two dresses that were stunningly made that made me feel like the belle of the ball she came out with the New Ellis dress. It was my size. She gave me a knowing smiling as she saw my face and gave me the hoop and bolero whilst lacing up the back. Even when she was putting the dress on I knew. I know that’s silly, its material after all. These thoughts and feelings were only further cemented after seeing my Mother in law and Mum’s face when I walked out. I felt like a bride. Love at first sight.

After a fitting and measurement session the order was in. 6 months Nikki said, they are all made to order. I left the shop feeling that my normal clothes were rubbish and I wanted to wear that dress forever. Further to the feeling I was so glad that I had given this responsibility and my money to a shop that honestly cared about my wedding and how I felt. Since then we’ve had an amazing after service, they kept me updated every now and again, the delivery is scheduled for Tuesday would you like to come in a see it?  Ami the dress is here do you want to come down when you can? Your dress is ready Ami we can’t wait to see you in it again! They have recently opened a mother of the bride/groom store across the road and my mother in law is DYING to get in there and try on all the fabulous dress they have.