The fail stories are still entertaining, which is why I am sharing them.
The trouble with finding a wedding dress started the first time my mom and I went in search of one. We signed up for an appointment at Alfred Angelo at a bridal fair, thinking "It's way too soon to start looking for a dress, so we'll just cancel the appointment later." Well, I never did cancel that appointment, and so one evening last January, after a harrowing day at work, we arrived to check out some gowns.
Here is some good advice... when people say you should look your best when trying on wedding gowns, they are right. Do NOT go try on wedding gowns when you a) forgot to wear deodorant that day, b) have greasy hair, c) are not wearing any makeup, d) are tired, e) are hungry, and f) on a day your school had a serious lockdown at the end of the day because of an incident in the parking lot.
But there we were. I tried on the first dress. It was nice, but not right. I tried on the second dress and wow! It was beautiful! It fit well! It sparkled! It had lace! And had I been feeling better about myself right then, it could have been my dress. In fact, we went back to look at that dress several times, eventually driving the sales lady to hate us (I'm sure).
The dress that could have been.
A few days later we went to another bridal shop. This shop was much more comfortable and way more fun. It also had dresses that were more like what I was looking for. I found one I loved! It had lace! It sparkled! It had a great trumpet fit! But my mom hated it. It was not fun.
The other dress that could have been.
I continued the search for the perfect dress at (sadly) a few other shops, and found one that just might be the one! It had sparkle! It had a unique lace petticoat! It didn't overwhelm my petite stature! Just one problem. The only way to make it short enough for me would have been to cut off much of the lace part at the bottom that I loved so much. So the search continued.
The other other dress that could have been.
At this point, I'd been searching for a dress for about 3 months. Pretty sure nobody (mother or bridesmaids) wanted to continue the search. And I was out of time, because many dresses take 7+ months to come in... and the wedding was just about exactly 7 months away. So I looked online, and called bridal shops to see if they had the dresses I liked online. One shop had one of the dresses. I rushed there after work one day and they almost didn't let me try it on. It was a size 18! I tried it on anyway and fell in love instantly. Like "OhmyGod. I'm-a-princess-and-this-is-my-dress!" I called my mom to come the the store right away and she did, and agreed that this was my dress. We found a veil that matched perfectly and thought everything would be fine and dandy.
Did anyone mention that our sales lady was way past the age of being able to carry and zip up wedding gowns? She wrote everything down, and we checked it, paid the deposit and thought things would be fine. Then the dress came in.
The sales lady tried to tell me the dress was too small and she couldn't zip it up. That's an awesome feeling. To be "too fat" for your wedding dress the first time you try it on. In reality, she just didn't have the strength or dexterity to manage the zipper (but the damage to my psyche was done). Also, the veil was wrong! So wrong. Like poofed out to here and trailing out to there wrong. And the sales lady just said, "Oh well all we can do is bustle the veil." Bustle the veil? I don't think so lady.
Luckily, when I went back to show the manager how wrong the veil was, she agreed that it was not at all what I'd been expecting and fortunately was able to get the right veil in a few days before the wedding. The alterations lady was not so helpful. I was very clear about making sure the dress was trumpet shaped (since it appeared more a-line). Finally it got taken in as far as it needed to be, but there was another problem! The bust line was cut unevenly, which there wasn't really anything they could do about. But the bust was also too big on one side! And it was very obvious! And these infuriating people said they would not alter it to fix it. So on the wedding day, my mom and bridesmaids had to try to safety pin my dress tighter so there wouldn't be a horrible gap in the chest. The safety pin didn't hold, so in many of the pictures there is a gap and/or my bra is visible. So disappointing. Also, I don't have a nice professional photographer photo of the dress, or any nice photos of me in the dress showing the details of the dress (which shouldn't be surprising). At least it was a beautiful dress, even if it didn't fit perfectly. I wish I had a good reason to wear it again.
The dress that was.