Picking out a wedding dress is one of the most exciting, and stressful, things on a bride’s to do list. Today we’re going to share with you our personal experience of wedding dress shopping with our sister. It was an honor to help her pick out her dress and we’re happy to provide you with a few vital tips we learned along the way.
My sister Christina has been living overseas in Germany for the past 3 years. Planning her wedding involved a lot of emails and Skype sessions. (Yay for technology!) To further complicate the planning process, none of the bridesmaids lived anywhere near each other. One bridesmaid lives in WV, one lives in NJ, and the other lives in Japan. It took a lot of coordination for the entire bridal party to be in the same country, let alone state. So what did we do?
Well in October 2015 our cousin Stacy got married and we were all together in NJ for four days. This small window of time allowed for us to schedule Christina’s wedding dress shopping while we were all together.
About a month before the wedding I set up the appointment for Christina, at Group USA at the Philadelphia Mills mall, since international phone calls are truly a pain with the time difference.
Tip: Make sure to schedule an appointment with the wedding dress shop ahead of time. They will assign a sales associate to help you and the time will be formally blocked so you don’t feel rushed.
Besides her sisters, Christina asked our aunt, our mom, her best friend, and her future mother-in-law to join her for the dress shopping experience. The picture below of our group is blurry but it’s a moment in time I want to remember.
Upon arrival we had no idea that Christina would use this as her opportunity to officially ask us to be her bridesmaids. She gave us all a nicely wrapped package with a gorgeous bracelet inside and a note asking my sister Kelly to be Maid-of-Honor, me to be Matron-of-Honor, and her best friend Maria to be a Bridesmaid. It was a very sweet gesture to officially mark the beginning of our roles as bridesmaids.
So here’s the part of the story where I tell you a true bridesmaid confession. Upon going to the rack to select dresses I sort of steam rolled my sister. Sigh, you’re probably thinking, what in your right mind would make you do that?
Well, “big sister, I’ve already been married, I’ve done this before” mode kicked in. My Aunt pulled me aside to let me know Christina was upset and I reacted by obnoxiously saying I wasn’t doing anything wrong. ::Face Palm Here:: Eventually Christina went to try on dresses, the moment passed, and I eventually apologized for being a jerk.
Tip: Even if you’ve been married before let the bride have her experience. Don’t pull the sales associate aside to make suggestions on dresses and keep your opinions to a minimum. Only give advice on the dresses once the bride has tried them on and wants everyone to state their thoughts.
In total Christina tried on 5 or 6 dresses. The dress above (runner-up) and the dress below (the winner!) were her two favorites. We all liked the “runner-up” and did the typical Oooo and Ahhh when she came out from the dressing room wearing it. “The winner” was clearly that because it made us all cry, BOTH times she tried it on. I had to keep looking away so that I didn’t do the ugly sobbing cry.
Tip: Make sure you have a basic knowledge of dress designers and what the price range is for the type of dress you’re looking for. That will help you know if the bridal shop pricing is within the correct range.
Tip: Most bridal shops won’t let you take pictures of the bride in the dresses. Why? According to blogger Jennifer at 2morrows dress it’s because they don’t want you to shop the internet for a lower price or have a knockoff dress made. I have pictures of the last two dresses, because she was going to buy one of them for sure.
To make sure the dress was comfortable she sat down in it. I told her she looked like a princess. Even without wedding day hair and makeup she looked amazing.
Then we couldn’t help but get a group shot with the bride-to-be in her dress. Christina was quick to remind me not to share any sneak peaks of the pictures with anyone. Of course I have approval now that it is 3 months past her wedding.
So how did the bride look on her wedding day? Absolutely stunning! See for yourself:
I hope you enjoyed hearing about my bridesmaid experience dress shopping with my sister. It is certainly something I won’t forget anytime soon.
What do you think about the dress Christina picked? Have you ever had a bad bridesmaid moment? Do you have any tips for wedding dress shopping? Share with us in the comments.