28 Mar What to expect from a bridal appointment.
What actually happens in a bridal styling appointment?
Feeling nervous about looking for a wedding dress? Never stepped foot in a bridal shop? Wondering how you will ever be able to choose your gown? Then this is the blog for you…..
It is never too soon to start thinking of your bridal style. Start exploring bridal magazines, Pinterest or designers websites for inspiration. We would suggest starting with Hayley Paige, Ellis Bridals and Phil Collins Bridal because not only are they our favourites, but between them they show a huge variety of what is available.
Try not to become too fixed in what you are looking for. If you are a first time bride, the likelihood is you have not worn a bridal gown before, so you may be surprised with what you like once you have one on.
With current trends, also consider what colours of gown you may like. Hayley Paige, for example, produces gowns in shades of ivory, blush pinks, pale blues, greys and lilacs. If a coloured gown isn’t your style, this isn’t a problem as most styles will come in ivory as well as the sample colour.
Getting booked in:
Maidstone in Kent is the ideal place to do your bridal shopping. There are a number of boutiques within a small area who all cater to different tastes, so it is possible to do 2-3 appointments in a day and make it a fun day out with the girls. Most boutiques prefer you to make an appointment to ensure they are fully prepared for the week ahead, so try to book 2-3 weeks in advance of when you want to go out to avoid disappointment at being told they are fully booked. Weekdays are traditionally quieter compared to weekends, so if you are planning to visit on a Saturday, you may even need to book a month ahead!
Our appointments last around 90minutes, however it varies from shop to shop, so when booking ensure you are spacing them out during the course of the day, leaving spaces for much needed coffee stops between to discuss and process what you have just tried on. The last thing you want is to be rushing between appointments with no time to consider what you have just seen from ne shop to another.
We do not charge for appointments unless we have a particular event on in store, but again, this varies from boutique to boutique. Some stores take a deposit which they return to you on the day, so double check this at the time of booking.
On the day:
Bridal appointments are one of the few where you do not need to arrive 5 or 10 minutes before and wait around. A boutique will love good time keeping on the day so try to be a prompt as you can, and be aware that if you are late, it is possible that they will take the minutes off your allocated time in the changing rooms if they have appointments booked in after yours. Once you arrive in our store, you will receive a friendly greeting and be invited to get comfortable in our private bridal suites. After offering you drinks (we do prosecco on arrival, but most boutiques don’t offer it until you have placed an order so try not to be too disappointed), we will ask you for some contact information; this is the information that we need should you place an order or what we will use to contact you after the day (more on that later). During this stage, your stylist will ask what sort of styles you are considering for your bridal gown. This is when all of your previous research will come to good use as any good stylist will mentally run through all the dress samples to help you find the closest one to what you are describing.
We typically start an appointment with the bride choosing 3 gowns to try on. When wearing each gown, you will be asked questions about what you like and don’t like about them. This is so the stylist can again find a gown that matches your preferences so be honest with your answers- you won’t hurt our feelings if you say you don’t like something!
Once your initial gowns have been tried on, the appointment could go in a variety of directions. Perhaps you have found a favourite so should try on similar ones just to clarify your decision, perhaps you didn’t like any so try on something completely different. The more gowns you feel the need to try on will eliminate what you don’t like, however if you try on too many it is easy to become confused and overwhelmed so consider each gown before you agree to try it on.
Occasionally a bride will say to us “can you select something to try on for me?” We love it when this happens because we have seen the gowns on people with a variety of shapes and sizes so we know what will flatter your figure. Quite often, the gown we choose is the one a bride will order for this very reason- why not be brave and try this with a stylist you feel a good connection with?
Once you find a dress you like, some boutiques will begin the ‘hard sell’ at this point and try and get you to commit. Although we want you to buy with us, we understand that sometimes you need time to make a decision. We will offer you the chance to try on veils, hair pieces or shoes while you are in your favourite gown as this will help you see the completed look. If we believe you may choose to buy the gown, we may even take your measurements (bust, waist, hip and height) and discuss which size you would order the gown in so you wouldn’t need to get undressed again. As our gowns are made to order, not made to measure, we will decide on a size that is your ‘best fit’ and place the order with the designer immediately after you have paid your deposit (50%).
Please appreciate that a sale of a bridal gown is as exciting for us as it is for you, so should you leave without purchasing a gown, we will call you a few days after your appointment to see how you feel since and if you purchased elsewhere.
If you do order with us, then excellent choice as we personally ensure every #vebride is well looked after and forever in our #vefamily!