Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Big Girls Don't Cry, Part I

Alright, I finally did it. I went dress shopping. I'd been engaged for 13 months, we're getting married in less than 6 and I hadn't set foot in a bridal shop. After many people almost fainted with anxiety over the fact that I hadn't tried on dresses yet, I gave in and went. As of today I've been to three shops. I think I may have found the one (or two). But, I would like to look at a couple more places just for fun. Yes, I said fun.

I was dreading dress shopping for a number of reasons. While I'm actually pretty comfortable with my plus sized body, putting this plus sized body into a white sleeveless dress was something I wasn't so comfy with. Secondly, I hate the idea of a twenty two year old size 0 salesgirl trying to convince me of how amazing I look in something that I can clearly see looks like crap. And lastly, I wasn't convinced that many bridal shops would even have a sample large enough for me to try on. I was scared!

A couple weeks ago, I randomly had a Monday off from work. Since one of my bridesmaids is now on maternity leave, she was available and really wanted to come. So we set off for David's Bridal with the intention of "getting ideas". I was fairly certain I wasn't going to find my dream dress there based on some previous experiences, but I knew they would have larger samples and I just needed to get my butt into a dress.

Two hours into our shopping trip, I was in tears. I'm not sure if it was the lady helping us, or the really horrid dresses or just sheer frustration with myself, but I cried. Now that I think of it, it was definitely all of the above. The lady helping us sat down and looked at the pictures I had collected of different ensembles that involved a simple strapless gown with a lace bolero. I mentioned that I may like a billowing skirt with a few pick-ups. She then proceeded to bring me the most hideous beaded gowns with huge skirts. I went with it, afterall I was being open to all of the possibilities.

Six dresses, two veils, one tiara and silk flower late, I politely told her I was ready to leave. She hadn't presented me with a single strapless, simple dress. I could feel myself brewing. Once back in the car, I felt my tears coming.

Like I said before, I am actually pretty comfortable with my body. But my arms are a whole different story. My arms are very, very big. I never, ever where anything sleeveless, so trying on sleeveless gowns was only making me realize how far I have to go to get these arms in shape. I don't know what my expectations were, but clearly they were not met. I felt like I wasted two hours of my life trying on dresses that would never work.

Above are pictures we took of the "good" ones. There were a few others that I don't care to remember.

Part II coming soon!


  1. You know what? Just keep trying things on. I was the opposite and didn't want to try on any strapless dresses but the two I liked best were both strapless.
    I don't know how you feel about the kind of strapless that laces up the back, but I tried on one and the girl tied me in and seriously it made such a difference! Now that you've tried on some different silhouettes you probably have a more clear idea of what you want in a dress. So go somewhere else and tell them you want to try on only dresses that are that. ps. I cry every single time I go jean shopping without fail.

  2. I know exactly how you feel. I cried in my car once my friends left after first trying on dresses. I fit into nothing, everything was just horrible, and when I found my dress it felt so good. Then the seamstress ruined it and I was busting out of the top of my dress at the wedding. I went from LOVING weddings, to not wanting to think about them. That dress just wasn't right. You have time, and when you have the right one, you'll feel beautiful and happy and want to twirl. Be patient...it wont be that bad. :)

  3. The second from the left looked amazing!In fact you have a awesome body! Seriously!!!! I totally had the same feelings with my arms and eventually found a dress that was so flattering and I loved it!

    You will TOTALLY find your dream dress but iit definitley takes time. Starting at David's bridal is always a good idea to get ideas and then you can go into other places and say " I want a strapless sweetheart neck..blahblahblah" cuz you will know more what you want!

    Good luck sending wonderful amazing dresses your way :)

  4. Ugh. David's Bridal is NOT FUN. It has nothing to do with you or your body, I promise! I went there & tried on a few (awful) dresses while a (horrible) saleslady helped me like she really knew what I was looking for, and quickly left when everything looked horrible. The next place I went I found two...TWO dresses that I loved! The one I ended up getting was completely different than anything I'd imagined...strapless, white & w/ jewels all over it. I wanted an plain ivory dress with straps! :) So yes, keep trying, and you will look beautiful. Of course, I'm sure you already do, no need to buy a wedding dress to be gorgeous. ;)

  5. I am SO excited that you went! I'm sad your first experience wasn't the best, but truthfully - DB can kind of do that to a girl. I'm not sure their "consultants" have much vision, just a sales goal in mind. I agree the second dress looks best and I can't wait to see Part II!


  6. First off - since you already know how I stand on the matter - you DO have time. Thankfully, it seems you may have found Her (can't wait to see!!), but I totally do agree that dress #2 looks fab on you (hourglass figure I tell you!). I just know that it wouldn't work as well with a shrug or wrap - I think I remember you wanting one.

    Did you go back to David's? Where did you find Her? I am on the edge of my seat! ;)

  7. totally understand...my arms look like popeye on crack (only with fat not muscle) my dress is simple and strapless and i'm having a simple thin fabric bolero made along with the lace one that matches my dres...i have stretch marks so i might not want the lace so i'm doing the ...gosh i dunno how to describe this material.....like a super thin semi translucent sweater material?
    Best of luck with the dress i hope u find a better person to help! BTW what state are you in?

  8. I think y ou are built ,ike me and I seriously went dress shopping under the threat of death! I went in saying i want v neck plain and I left liking sweetheart neckline strapless...try on some you woudl not necessarily think you will like. I am a size 18 I have a DDD chest and the corset lace up gowns are AWESOME and the sweetheart neckline is great for making sure you do not have a uniboob...hope my suggestions help...YOU WILL find a dress.

  9. I would think that David's Bridal is a bad place to start! My friend went there after Alfred Angelo and didn't see anything remotely close to what she loved at Alfred Angelo. And DB kept relentlessly following up with phone calls until she finally told them that she was definitely not going to get a dress from them. The salesperson at DB didn't really seem to get a sense of what she was looking for at all. It kind of felt like a waste of time. =\

    hope that makes you feel better about your DB experience.

  10. I had a the very same expierence at DB. On a second visit the sales woman actually made a comment about how i didnt fit into the dresses that only went to size 16. It was horrible and i never went back.

    Dont get discouraged. I wanted something different and fun with a cute short sleeve lace bolero as well. I ended up with a great dress from $599 and i am going to have a lace bolero made by our seamstress. You should look at the watters & watters website. My dress is their wtoo collection style eva. Cant wait to hear how it goes.