First things first: this was the first dress I tried on, and this is the dress I chose. Only mine doesn’t have the little arm sleeves.
Honestly, the experience was HARROWING! We went to the popular bridal shop down the street from my house, just GC and I, and my initial intention was to just go in and figure out which silhouette suited me best.
I got paired with the only WOC consultant, which was a blessing because she got us right away. She pulled 6 dresses for me to try, three sample sales and three standard dresses. Given our timeline, and my disinterest in white dresses, she wanted to make sure we got something that would work.
The first dress (pictured) was actually a blush color under ivory. Plus sparkle tulle! And pockets! Idk how many times I mentioned putting random stuff in my pockets - house keys, my phone, loose change...
The next few dresses were similar tulle skirts with lace bodices, which just did not work for my frame. Being a shorty, it was very easy to overwhelm the look with too much detail. So after the first round, two of the dresses went back, and two more came back in their place. One was technically a prom dress, and the other was the wildcard. The prom dress was nice, but even with a veil it was mostly a prom dress. And it tracked glitter everywhere, which I really didn’t want to do in an outdoor wedding. The wildcard was meh. I’m glad I tried it on, but not for me.
So once I decided my top 2, I put both dresses on, with veils this time! Honestly, putting the veil on with the first dress was the closest I got to getting a little emotional, and that was a really quick choking up. The second one didn’t have the same impact. Once I took the dresses off we discussed a bit about what I liked and didn’t like, and due to the timing issue (we are planning a pretty short engagement), my consultant brought her manager over. This is where shit went sideways.
We mentioned to my consultant that a) we hadn’t really had breakfast yet, so we wanted time talk it over, and b) we just really needed to discuss it. When the manager came over to check on things, she ignored our hesitation and made me put on the dress a third time! Then, while in the dressing room with my consultant, I quietly asked if we could just put a deposit down to hold the dress. So then she went to check, and the manager came into the dressing room and asked why I wasn’t feeling putting down a full payment on the dress. I told her I was 75% there, and then she kept asking me what it was about the dress that couldn’t get me there. So I insisted again that we just do a partial deposit, and she agreed. Then, she kept pushing me to get back out on the platform and hold the big, “I SAID YES!” sign next to my dress. When she was gone, my consultant told me I don’t have to do anything I’m not comfortable with. And so I didn’t because wtf.
In the end, I genuinely do love the dress I went with. Had I not been pressured so hard, I probably still would have purchased it. But that definitely put a damper on the whole experience. When it’s her turn, GC and I are going someplace else. As her sister put it, “She needs a whimsical woodland fairy gown made in Iceland or some shit like that.”