A few weeks ago I had the wonderful experience of shopping for bridesmaid dresses with my bridal party. Actually, it wasn’t so wonderful at all – it was really more like the most miserable experience thus-far in the wedding planning process. But it was fun to hang out with my girls and get their help and advice, anyways!
Unfortunately my oldest and dearest friend who is serving as the Matron of Honor couldn’t be there, but she still managed to join in the process by doing a little re-con work for me the day before by heading to David’s Bridal to try on the entire list of dresses I had been attempting to choose from. She sent me all sorts of pictures so I could see each one actually on someone in order to narrow the choices down to my favorite few. It was so much fun having her involved in the process this way, and it was the next best thing to going together, which isn’t possible since we live in different states!
Being a somewhat traditional person, and seeing as how Captain America and I are going for a more classic look on our big day, I opted to choose one style of dress and one color – instead of picking out a selection of favorites and letting each girl pick the dress she liked, or having the dresses be different colors, as is often a popular decision these days. Luckily they all actually liked my choice (yes, some even used the word LOVE – pretty good for a bridesmaid’s dress, I’d say!) and it looks adorable on all of them, so hopefully we’ll avoid the stereotypical dreaded dress after all.
Here was the original choice, a tea-length dress in the color “Peacock”:
Surprisingly, the dress itself wasn’t even on my radar, initally. I’d always thought I wanted my bridal party to be in strapless dresses. But because my dress is going to be strapless with some ruching, I really wanted to make sure whatever dress I chose for the bridal party would compliment it – not compete with it (I would show you a picture, but Captain America hasn’t seen it yet!). Once that decision was made, I couldn’t help but be drawn to looks that weren’t quite as “matchy-matchy.” That’s when the dresses with straps began to stand out to me, and this tea-length dress with y-neckline caught my eye. Not only is it classic and elegant, but it also has pockets(!) and the cotton fabric will be perfect for an outdoor wedding in September. In fact, I didn’t even have to see it on any of the girls in real life – after only seeing a picture of it on my Matron of Honor via text, I was immediately sold!
Unfortunately, when I went back to David’s Bridal with the rest of the girls for their fitting, I was informed that that particular dress style wasn’t available in ANY of the colors I’d originally liked and chosen! I was crushed! Apparently they usually ask brides to place the order for their bridesmaid dresses 6 MONTHS in advance – we’re not even having a 6 month engagement! The rest of the dresses take at least 12 weeks, and since we didn’t even have 12 weeks until the wedding, I was limited to a pretty small selection of colors and dress options.
After having the girls try on a different dress in the original peacock color (and having it look horrible), I decided I would have to sacrifice my dream color, in order to have my dream dress. It took a little thinking and a lot of anxiety for me to finally compromise my original vision, and choose the first dress in two new colors – “Petal” and “Mercury”. Now the girls will all be in the same dress (like I wanted in the beginning), however they won’t be in the same color, instead their dresses will be alternating in the colors below:
And I think they’ll look pretty fantastic when all is said and done. I’m also really loving the idea of having our groomsmen have gray vests and pink bow ties or vice versa, so this new idea is actually really growing on me, even though it was far from my original choice.
Once I finally made that decision, however, I was informed that I only had 12 hours (from about 6pm to 6am) to place the order – or else they still wouldn’t arrive in time for the wedding! I have never been so frustrated, anxious, and rushed in my life, as I was the day I tried to organize four different dress orders in two different states in about three hours, since the store isn’t even open between 9pm and 6am. And the staff was surprisingly rude and unhelpful – not just at the store I went to, but also the store in California where my Matron of Honor went as well – making the experience all the more stressful and irritating. They were so condescending, as if they thought I was the most ridiculous person ever known to mankind for trying to plan a wedding in less than two years, (seriously – SO sorry I’m not one of those crazy girls who planned their entire wedding before they were even engaged…NOT! Although now I understand why they do it!).
The only reason I gave them my business was because in the end, it was still easier to get the dress at a chain store since it meant all the girls could get fitted and get the right dress, even though not everyone lives in one place. All the same, I will not be returning to David’s Bridal for anything in the future – I’m definitely not trusting them to alter my wedding dress even though I bought it through them – nor would I ever recommend a bride attempt to work with them during the wedding planning process. If you’re looking for a dress, go anywhere else – anywhere in the world!
Walking away from this crazy experience, however, I’m so grateful that I have such a great group of friends who are there to support me during this journey, regardless of how aggravating it might be at times, and who will be there to help make our day the best day ever! I couldn’t have picked four better ladies to have by my side as I say “I Do” to the man of my dreams.
Have you ever been a bridesmaid in a horrible dress? What kind of dress(es) did you choose (or do you envision) for the bridal party in your wedding? What were (are) your colors? What were the deciding factors in your choices?
Get the look! – Short Cotton Dress with Y-Neck and Skirt Pleating
Check out the rest of our wedding style on my Pinterest page! – If you’re Captain America, a member of the wedding party, or related to the bride and groom, please DON’T click this link! There are a couple of surprises for you we’d like to wait until the big day to share with you!