When thinking about what mystified me (and still does) about wedding dresses, I realized that its because they are so regal and gorgeous. It's like a prom dress- it's something that you will only wear once and you hope will make you feel absolutely stunning when you do. It has a sort of stigma that goes along with it.
So, when Austin and I got engaged, one of the first things I wanted to do was try on dresses. Since almost half of my bridesmaids live out of town (or state) I wanted to wait to try on some with them. However, I did sneak in a few other shops (mainly stores that were boutiques and would probably cost way too much (but when else am I going to have the chance to try on wedding dresses??).
(one regret....not getting a picture of my entire bridal party!!)
I learned a lot during all the shopping and trying on though....
1. My maid of honor is amazing. She maid these cute signs for everyone with us to hold up!
2. As much fun as I had (and knew I would) it's also very exhausting. I spent so much time searching, putting on, and taking off dresses that eventually I just needed a break. The day I went with my bridal party, we made a day of it and went to 2 places. In total, I tried on about 10 dresses in the span of 6 hours. At the end, I cried. I was just over it.
3. I brought people with me that know me and that I knew would point out the good and the truth. Luckily, all 5 of my bridesmaids (including sister and future sister-in-law), mom, and future mother in law were able to make it. I wanted them there to share the experience because they know my taste (so they could help pick out dresses that I might have not thought of) and they knew when I liked it or hated it (because they know my reactions). They also refused to tell me what they thought about something until I told them my thoughts first. I couldn't have picked better ladies to surround myself with that day.
4. Wedding dress sizes are different from what you are use to in regular dress sizes.
5. Don't compromise. My friends, mom, and step-dad kept telling me this and I refused to listen at first. I kept thinking, but it's cheap and I can turn it into something I'll love. The reality was, the costs of these changes would make it just as much as any other dress I was looking at. Now, I also wasn't in the market for $$$$, so knowing my limit and staying within it was easy, I just kept trying to pick cheap over me liking it. In the end, I waited it out until I found THE one. Best part? I didn't have to compromise.
6. Okay....so going back to waiting it out.... if I think about it and do the math, in total I went to 5 different stores (but a store I visited twice and another I visited three times). It was a lot of time spent. But I'm glad I didn't just pick the first one I liked, because the one I LOVED came later.