Two months finally came and went and one Friday night I found myself on a plane bound for Burbank Airport. It was a dual-purpose trip: first and foremost, it was a celebratory birthday visit in honor of Goodlaff Bridesmaid Sunrise. The second purpose was my much-anticipated trip to Dolly Couture to finally try on the dresses I fell in love with!
Saturday finally came and Bridesmaid Sunrise, Bridesmaid Cosmo, Sister Goodlaff, and I met in front of Dolly Couture's gorgeously-retro storefront:
We had the store to ourselves, and Dolly herself was helping me find dresses to try on. We talked briefly about my favorite styles, and then just jumped right on in with the dress that led me to Dolly Couture in the first place--the Beverlywood:
I loved it in pictures and I loved it in person. Simply put, it's a really classy dress. I felt so glamorous in it, and loved the taffeta (there's just something about the shiny fabric that gets me). I did like the buttons on the sleeves, but I was really looking for a strapless dress. Luckily, there were more dresses for me to try on!
Here we have the Milan (and BM's LK and CP there in the background, debating the merits of the dress). If you look closely, you'll see I'm doing a little bit of preening there: it's because the tulle skirt made me feel like a ballerina--I might even have my feet in third position (actually, I'm pretty sure that's because the shoes that Dolly had let me borrow to try on dresses were a bit too small, and I was trying to give my toes a rest--same difference, right?). The fluffy skirt on the Milan had me swooning, but it wasn't "the one."
After trying on almost every dress in Dolly's collection that was even remotely close to my size, I began asking her about customization options. I showed her this terrible Photoshop mockup (I didn't even save it on my computer, that's how bad it was...) that I had done of the top of one dress I had liked and the bottom of the Milan, and after asking if the top could be taffeta, she put me back in the Beverlywood, grabbed the skirt from the Moon River, and we got this:
That's my dress! I know it's hard to have to wear one dress and hold the bottom of another and try to imagine it, but when I saw myself in the mirror, I knew that was it. Taffeta ruched top, tulle bottom, tea-length, corset back--perfect.
When I left Dolly's shop I was unbelievably relieved: I didn't ever have to try on another wedding dress again...
That said, it's a little unnerving purchasing a dress that you won't get to try on in its final form until it gets to your door. I've seen the top on me and the bottom on me, but not the two sewn together in one cohesive dress. I will be waiting on pins and needles for that package to arrive.
It's really because of Dolly and her staff--not to mention all the amazing feedback from her brides--that really makes me feel comfortable doing a custom dress and not buying a dress "off the rack." I love that my dress will be designed and made just for me--it feels so incredibly posh! And, it gets better--even though my dress will be custom, it's not going to break the bank; in fact, it comes in at about half of my slated dress budget (more for shoes and accessories!).
Did any of you opt for a customized wedding dress? Did the process make you nervous?