Even though I have watched countless episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress”, I had no idea where to start or what I really wanted for my wedding. All I knew was that I wanted a simple, elegant yet sexy, timeless dress. I also knew that I was not going to pay more than $1,000 for it. But how do you find the dress that really represents you in this endless sea of gowns?
So I started out by going to David’s Bridal to try some dresses on. Nothing in there really suited me, so I went to a couple of more stores which led me to my dream dress….an all silk Paloma Blanca fitted, modified trumpet simply beautiful dress! I felt like a million bucks in it. Unfortunately it was over $2,000, twice the amount that I was willing to pay.
So what did I do? I picked up the phone to cry and tell my friends about this perfect dress. Some of them said “Just get it”, others said “That’s ridiculous to spend that much on one dress”… What to do? What to do?
In the end it’s my call to my friend Lucie which helped me the most. She had just gotten married in San Francisco and had a budget wedding. What I didn’t know was that she had her dress made. “Custom made?” I said, “wouldn’t that be more expensive?” Well as it turns out it isn’t…They can purchase the fabric at wholesale, and there is no need to pay for alterations since the gown is made to fit your body.
I looked up dress-makers in the Atlanta area and found a woman specialized in wedding dresses, her name is Ona. I showed her pictures of my dream dress and she said she could do it for $800. I said let’s do it. Through the fittings which took place over the course of several months, we saw the gown take shape and I even made changes/suggestions along the way. For instance, I absolutely wanted to have a green sash to honor my Mother’s memory; it was her favorite color. It was so much more fun to take part in the making of my dress than to just buy it and never see it again until the week before the wedding.
I ended up with an amazing dress which I loved and which was really “me” since I actually took part in making it.