It’s been a ritual in my house before we even had children. Friday nights for me have always included a glass of Pinot Grigio, a comfy couch, and binge watching numerous episodes of TLC’s popular show Say Yes to the Dress. Oh how I wish I knew Kleinfeld’s existed when I got married over 13 year ago. There’s something so magical about watching someone find their dream dress, and the romance of marrying their true love.
Then there’s the drama, you know the 15 people that brides bring with her to the bridal salon, who seem to want to tear down her self confidence. I never understood why people are so rude, or why brides bring so many people! I mean hello? Of course they are all going to have annoying opinions.
But now that I’m a mom, I watch the “wedding dress show” (as it’s been dubbed by our daughters) with the girls by my side. Each week the three of us cuddle together and are smitten by all the beautiful gowns. And as I sit shaking my head in disbelief, I repeatedly tell them, “I promise you can pick your own dress. It’s what you want, not mommy.” So when the time comes for our girls to walk down the aisle, I’m now prepared with what not to do when wedding dress shopping with someone you love. Thank you Say Yes to the Dress for teaching me these ten important lessons. Someday I will pull out this post and make our daughters read it prior to finding their dream dress.
- Shop Alone – Or with a small group of people who you really trust. Don’t feel like you have to include everyone in your life. This is a special moment, please only bring friends and family whose opinions truly do matter to you.
- People are Assholes – There are so many people in this world that are insecure, and they unwittingly put others down to build themselves up. If someone insults you, it’s up to you how you take it. Most likely it’s their jealousy, so bury it and keep your head held high.
- You Need a Randy or Monty on Your Side – Seriously, these guys make the show…and the appointments. New York, Atlanta or anywhere in between, every girls needs a person like Randy to stand up for the bride.
- Cheap Dresses are Pretty Too – Yes we all want the Pnina Tornai dream dress, but let’s be real, $10,000 for a dress you wear for four hours and sits in a box for 30 years is a lot of dough. Think of all the crap you could buy for your new house, or the awesome honeymoon you could go on for that price! You can find deals on the sample racks or shop sales. It’s not the label that matters but the total package.
- Don’t Try on the $30,000 Dress – Just don’t OK? Of course it’s gorgeous, but if you wouldn’t test drive the Rolls Royce, then don’t put on that dress. Stick to your price point or you will be devastated. This goes for house hunting too FYI…
- Play Mind Games with Your Entourage – If you really like a dress, then try on two super ugly ones before the one you love. That way when you come out in your favorite everyone will oooh and aaahhhh.
- Champagne is a Girl’s Best Friend – Before she messes with their heads, why doesn’t the bride just get the entourage a little tipsy? It would make it so much more fun don’t ya think? Or perhaps in vino veritas would be even worse? Only one way to find out.
- Get Jacked Up in the Dressing Room – Everyone looks beautiful in a veil and tiara. If you really like a dress and you think no one else will, get jacked up in a veil and jewelry in the dressing room. Then wear it out onto the runway and no one will say you look ugly. Unless you really do look ugly of course…
- Trust You Gut – If you feel great in the dress and you love it that’s all that matters. It doesn’t matter what jealous cousin Susie thinks, ignore the b***hes!
- If Mom Cries You’ve Found Your Dress– Seriously, every single time the mother of the bride cries that’s the dress the bride picks. Except my kids will be seriously screwed because I cry at everything…even preschool chapel.
Thank you TLC for giving us this epic show every week. It allows those of us who are old and married to re-live our romantic fantasies…and boy do we love the drama. You may have struck out with Honey Boo Boo and The Duggars, but please don’t ever cancel the wedding dress show. It has become a family tradition that we can’t live without. Keep finding the crazy families and we’ll keep tuning in each week!
Love it! If only we’d had all this knowledge before we got married 😉 Although I’ve gotta say, spending anywhere near $10,000 for a dress seems like complete insanity to me!
Jen Gregory says
I’ve always preferred to shop alone, and believe it or not, I found my wedding dress on a shopping trip (with an appointment) all by myself! p.s. I love binge watching the show, too, but my boys show little interest in watching with me. 🙂
Janine Huldie says
Been a while since I watched this show, but totally reminded me why I did and how much I loved it, when I was a bride-to-be back in the day! 🙂
Elaine A. says
I haven’t watched in a while but I do love seeing them in the one they chose. And then wished I had gotten married when big bows on the butt weren’t a thing… ;-p
The Dusty Parachute says
I had the perfect wedding dress shopping experience but that’s because I only took my mom. She was the perfect second opinion, so there was no need for a 3rd, and a 4th….
I loved watching this show; and you have fabulous tips here. I always love the ending montage when the wedding vows are shown and the bride says she’s so glad she said “Yes” to the dress.
I also love this show! It wasnt around when I got married either, probably a good thing! I bought the first dress I tried on.. and took the sample since it was 40% off! ha! I def learned a thing or two watching this show esp since I have been a bridesmaid 6 times… so I keep my mouth SHUT when I go with them to try on dresses!
I’ve only seen it a few times but it was a great guilty pleasure. I lived in California when I got engaged and I went wedding dress shopping alone. I had always thought it would be an east coast spectacle with my mom, two sisters and friends, but no. It was just a lonely store in California. Wah!
I’ve never watched this show but I like the lessons you’ve learned! Shopping alone is when the best shopping happens, for me anyway! AND Champagne IS an ideal accent to most situations.
This is a fun post! I don’t really watch the show, but I have caught it a few times!
The Imp says
We’vve caught a cpl of episodes. I quit watching b/c of how badly the brides are treated by their supposed to be loved ones!
Tove Maren says
Ha ha ha – I love your tip of trying on two ugly ones before you show your friends and family the favorite one!
BTW – they don’t have a lot of maternity wedding dresses… I MAY be speaking from experience!
Hah! I love that your girls like the show too. I went alone to get my dress and it was assembled and made for only $800! My mom never saw it until it arrived by mail 2 weeks before the wedding. She cried.
haha That’s so cute you all watch it together! I used to watch it all the time, but I think I may have watched it too many times when I was engaged that I can no longer watch it. I was really lucky that my mom and the rest of my “entourage” were so nice and supportive of whatever I wanted. I mean, I don’t understand some of these people! It’s no wonder so many people suffer from insecurities with their own family members and friends putting them down.
never watched this show. got my FABULOUS dress for a total of 150$ LOVED.
I am from an extremely codependent and somewhat narcissistic family. I watch this show mainly to observe the relations because it is so obvious when a mother or father really just doesn’t want their daughter getting married so they come up with all of these bogus excuses about why the dress is so ugly. I have a very jealous sister as well that wants be to always be two steps below her in everything, so it is interesting when everyone loves a dress and the bride’s sister only has ugly things to say about it.
I know that it will be very difficult for my family when my SO and I announce our engagement. This show gives me insight on what to expect and who to take with me to view the dress. Given that I only have a codependent, narcissistic mother that can’t even bear the thought of me ever losing my virginity and a jealous sister that is only happy if I have second-best at everything, I will likely pick my dress by myself and maybe even elope.
Sarah Fuller says
Love watching the show and totally agree need Monty or Randy on your side.
Never seen this show. Never been shopping for a wedding dress. So why am I here? To publicly thank the stars that all the man really has to do is make honeymoon arrangements, rent a tux (no entourage necessary to help), and get your butt to the church on time.
Jennifer Corter says
I really love number five! “If you wouldn’t test drive the Rolls Royce…” hahaha. Love it.
I secretly love this show. There’s just something magical about wedding dresses, no? I may have overspent on mine (not $10k overspent, but definitely not cheap) and I have no regrets. Though, I think your #6 tip is spot-on! And getting them tipsy. There’s always a reason to enjoy some champagne!
I can’t agree with you more on your tips! I went alone (not by choice), but I was SO glad that I did. I actually ended up choosing the first dress I tried on! If I had brought all the girls with me, it would never have happened that quickly!
And I will never, ever, ever, plan or control my daughters wedding or dress choices. I reserve that for the actual groom 😉
So what’s funny is that I actually got my dress from Kleinfeld’s. They have a collection that is less expensive and I asked to see that show room only. We had an amazing experience there. Even thought I wouldn’t try on the 30K dress, I was like you suggest, only willing to try on what I could afford and still had a grand old time. When we found the dress, they brought in champagne and I feel like a million bucks. It was pretty amazing.
That’s what I was missing! The Pinot Priggio!!! Honestly, I too binge watched when I was planning for our wedding and your lessons couldn’t be more accurate!