Finding a bride a wedding dress that lives up to a lifetime of expectations is a sort of small miracle. Thankfully, the world is full of talented designers, tailors, and bridal shops that make magic happen on an everyday basis. While all bridal shops will tell you their ultimate goal is to have customers leave with their “perfect” dress in hand, they might also tell you that some brides make the process harder on themselves — and bridal consultants — than it needs to be. To get an insider take on the ultimate bridal shop owner pet peeves, we caught up with Mara Urshel, co-owner of one of the ultimate wedding dress destinations Kleinfeld.
1. Holding on to a preconceived perfection
According to Urshel, nothing is more frustrating than “the bride who thinks she already found her dress because she has a photo from a magazine or website. She walks in with a photo that she has been holding onto for years and has her mind set on that dress. 90 percent of brides who come into Kleinfeld saying, ‘this is the dress,’ end up trying on the dress and being let down. They need to keep an open mind and realize that they are looking at a photo that was most likely re-touched, on a perfect model with the proper hair and makeup.”
2. Trying an over-budget dress “just to see”
“The worst mistake a bride could make is insisting on trying on a dress she loves when it is over her budget. Do not do it to yourself. Be honest with your bridal consultant and be sure to include alterations and accessories in your budget. Do not look at gowns that are over your budget,” Urshel says.
3. Not wearing the right undergarments
According to Urshel, your bridal appointment is not the time to go commando. “Please be aware that you will be changing in front of a bridal consultant you have never met before and you must wear underwear. We will not allow you to try on dresses without wearing underwear, it is unsanitary.”
4. Shopping prematurely
While it may be hard to resist the urge to get a head start, do not “go shopping before you have the ring or a fiancé!” Urshel says. She also suggests waiting until “you have a date or venue because this often dictates the styles of gown you want.”
5. Trying to please everyone
According to Urshel, it’s extremely frustrating when a bride is “looking for validation from everyone in your entourage — they never seem to agree. I suggest shopping with up to three close friends or family members whose opinions you value and trust. Be sure to select guests who have your best interest at heart.”