In case you're wondering, "why would she fly all the way to Oklahoma from southern NM to try on dresses? Why not just try on dresses in NM?"... let me tell you this: When you're looking at designers like Monique L'huillier and Priscilla of Boston, you don't look in southern NM. You don't look in the El Paso area. You can't. I would have liked to, but they just don't carry those designers anywhere there!
In my dress researching before the visit, I turned to the web and found my first wed-blog. In it was a picture of a dress that looks remarkably like the POB 2902!
The bride, a sweet eco- and vegan-minded girl named Amanda, told me that her dress was a Maggie Sottero named Libby. She chose this dress because it's vegan! No silk = vegan! Best part is, it's less that $1000! I told my mom I'd fallen hard for the POB 2902, but that we should try to find this Libby dress while I was in Oklahoma.
You know what I learned from this? Bridal magazines leave out a lot of content. Yes, they're tomes, but they're hand-picked tomes. I had never before seen this Maggie Sottero dress!
All the while, I was feverishly looking for a used POB 2902 on preownedweddingdresses.com, oncewed, and eBay. I told myself that if a decently-priced gown became available, I'd snatch it up!
What's decently-priced? For me, my budget was about $2000, give or take with alterations. Before you think this is outrageous [-ly large... or small, for that matter], consider this: My mom's wedding dress, in 1981, cost $700. It's sitting in her closet still. A simple inflation calculator will reveal that $700 in 1981 is equivalent to about $1600 now! Room to spare for alterations! Isn't that price difference crazy?? Moreover, I don't really want my wedding dress to sit in a closet for decades (even though I've obsessed over it already for decades), so I'm going to sell it after the wedding.
Getting back to the story line - I went to my mom's house in May to try on dresses!
We found a salon that sold the Maggie Sottero Libby, but like many a bridal salon, they didn't allow pictures to be taken. I really don't understand this. I know they're worried someone will create a knock-off dress with just a photo, but honestly, if someone can create a decent knockoff with just a photo, I say let them try! Plus, it's not like there aren't millions of photos of the dress already on the net.
So - I don't have a photo of me in this dress.
It's ok, though, because I really wasn't too impressed. I wanted my wedding dress to feel natural, à la L'huillier (though I didn't know it yet). This dress had way too many sequins for me. It was blindingly shiny. I also discovered that I needed a "sweetheart" neckline if I was going to go strapless. D-cups on a 5'2" frame don't squish so well into strapless. My mom said this style made my boobs look like a loaf of bread.
The sales lady at this salon was incredibly nice, though. I was pretty clueless about the current styles (being stuck with middle school sketches and POB 2902), and she told me about lace. Lovely lace. They didn't carry any higher-end lace gowns at that salon, but I made a mental note to do some internet troving when I got home.
After this first fitting flop, my sister and mom and I decided it would be a grand idea to get lost in David's Bridal. I only have one picture.
Mr. Bear Cub - NO PEEKING!! GO AWAY!
... still there Mr. Cubbie? Scram! ;)
You can see from my expression that although this is a perfectly fine dress, it just wasn't for me. I gave the big D an honest shot, though - I must have tried on over 15 dresses that day!
I was pretty bummed. How the hell was I going to find a dress before we left NM in August? I didn't really hold much hope for finding a great dress in Chile - Señorita L'huillier? I don't think so.
I finished up my first weekend of being engaged with my family, and went home empty-handed to NM. I now had a mission, though - find a beautiful lace dress.
And then I happened upon weddingbee, and I got all the inspiration I needed.
Were you able to go dress shopping with your mom, or did geography make that difficult? Did you get discouraged the first few times you tried on wedding dresses? What inspired you to find the wedding dress you ended up chosing?