bridalexpert

Archive for December, 2008|Monthly archive page

Speak No Evil

In Uncategorized on December 29, 2008 at 9:51 pm

So I’ve come to realize that no matter how careful you are, brides will always take what you say the wrong way.  Today I received a call from a pissed off bride who was yelling about how I apparently told one of her bridesmaids that she’s fat and should lose some weight.  Umm….I’m pretty sure I didn’t say that, but then again, anything sounds plausible in the mind of a bride.  So after a few seconds I knew which group she was talking about. It turns out the bridesmaid was ordering a dress and wanted to order a smaller size than what she measured for because she was planning on losing weight for the wedding. Now what I told her was “Wait until the dress comes in.  If it fits, then you don’t have to go on a special diet.  If you think it still feels tight, then worst case scenario is that you’ll have to lose a couple of pounds, which you have plenty of time to do.” I thought what I said sounded fine, and the bridesmaid agreed with me at the time.  So why the hell did she complain to the bride the next day? She was the one who mentioned going on a diet, not me.  And I only gave her advice because she asked me for it. And by the way, where in this conversation did she hear me call her fat?!?

So I explained everything to the bride, who seemed to calm down. Then she brought up another complaint.  This time she wanted to know why I recommended that one of her bridesmaids order a size 18 dress, when the bridesmaid normally wears a size 12 (allegedly.) Ok, so when we determine sizes that a bride or bridesmaid should order, we first take their measurements, and then compare them to the size chart of whatever designer they’re ordering from. So if someone was ordering a dress from Alfred Angelo, I would take their measurements and then show Alfred Angelo’s size chart to the customer.  This is done for two reasons.  First, to see what size she should order.  If her measurements are placing her between two sizes, we would recommend the larger size to play it safe, since it needs to be altered regardless.  The second reason is because a lot of girls order smaller than what we recommended and then accuse us of not telling them to order larger when the dress comes in and doesn’t fit. And not just that, but we also make each customer sign off that they were shown the size chart for their designer, and that they understand why we recommended the size we did.  By the time a customer orders anything from us, we’ve made her sign her name about 5 times.  Three of those times are just to acknowledge the size she’s choosing.  The smallest details are written on their receipts, so the customers can’t claim ignorance about something.  We highlight so many areas on our receipt that it looks like a bus full of 2nd graders got a hold of  some highlighters and went to town on our receipts-that’s how anal we are about making sure that the customers are aware of EVERYTHING.

So back to the story, after the bride finishes lecturing me on my measuring skills, I tell her that the bride’s waist measurement is much larger than her bust and hip measurements; therefore, we recommended a size based on that.  I also told the bride that the size the bridesmaid did order was going to be about 4 inches too small when it comes in. Finally, I mentioned that the bridesmaid ordered the same size as our sample dress..a dress that she couldn’t even zip up all the way.

“If she wants to risk ordering a smaller size, that’s her choice,” I tell the bride. ” We just recommend a size to her, but she’s the one who has to wear the dress.  We just want her to look good on your wedding day.”

Now the bride sounds a little worried. Like maybe her stubborn bridesmaid didn’t make such a wise choice after all. The bride now asks the basic questions that always follow scenarios like this one. What happens if the dress is too small?  What if she doesn’t lose enough weight? What if she gains weight? I answer with the standard responses.  “It’s a risk she’s choosing to take. We can’t force her into a size-it’s all her choice.”

The bride thanks me, and I know her bridesmaid is going to be getting a call very soon.  It just bugs me that we explained all of this to the bridesmaids, who acknowledged that we discussed everything, but then they still go running to the bride with complaints? Complaints that are insanely inaccurate? I wonder what would happen if I just walked into where they work and complained to their bosses about false comments that they said to me…maybe that’s what I should do.  Just randomly show up at their work one day and go on a rant about how they called me ugly and told me to wear a burlap sack whenever I leave my house. Sounds like a plan to me.

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Let it snow…or not

In Uncategorized on December 20, 2008 at 7:40 am

So the past two days, we’ve heard nothing except how much snow the Midwest was going to get.  Snow, sleet, hail, rain, hailing rain, snowy sleet…nothing short of an icy Armageddon. Don’t leave your houses, don’t drive anywhere, don’t even take your dog out to do his business…that’s pretty much the message that was being relayed to us by tv stations everywhere.

So of course we had virtually no customers come in.  Just a bunch of us standing around and staring at the snowless sky.  The hours slowly passed by and …nothing. It eventually snowed late that night, but it was definitely not the hyped-up and much feared blizzard that we were told to expect.  I know that businesses everywhere were frustrated as well, but I imagine we’ll be in for a lot more false alarms down the road.

Shut Up!

In Uncategorized on December 16, 2008 at 9:21 pm

One of my biggest pet peeves are when customers don’t know when to keep their mouths shut.  Case in point: I’ve been working with this bride for the past month.  She’s been in our store at least half a dozen times to show her friends and family the dress that she was going to purchase.  She had narrowed it down between two and did the same little test that she did for everyone.  She would put them both on, ask her friends and family to tell her which one they liked better, and then ask them why they liked it better.  She already knew which one she loved more, but it was obvious that she wanted everyone to agree with her too. Even a stranger off the street could tell which dress she liked better just by looking at the expression on her face.  One by one, each person told her that they loved the second dress on her, solidifying her choice even more.

Until the aunt arrived.  Now, the aunt wasn’t alone.  She was with the mom, the bride’s sister’s, and the maid of honor.  Obviously, this was decision day for the bride.

So the bride started her routine, not telling her family which dress she was going to put on first.  So she came out with Dress #1 and showed her relatives, who all commented appropriately on how she looked.  She went back to the fitting room, where I helped her with THE dress.  We fixed her hair, put in a veil and tiara, and took about 10 minutes longer to come out of the room than with the first dress. Hint, hint.

So we all walked out of the room, the bride with a huge smile on her face, and looked expectedly at her family, waiting to hear their responses.

Gasp! “Oh my God.” Her mom put her hands to her mouth in prayer-type fashion.

“It’s beautiful! You look amazing!” Her maid of honor.

One by one, sisters clamored over the bride, interrupting each other with more comments about how wonderful their sister looked, touching the dress, examining her train, her veil, and talking about all the pictures the bride would have to take on her wedding day.

Everyone was in agreement with the bride. Everyone except the aunt.

“Auntie, what do you think?”

The aunt, with a fake smile plastered on her face, said “You look very pretty.”

…..

“But I don’t know.” Uh-oh.  I knew what was coming right away. And the look on my bride’s face was indescribable.  To this day, I’ve never seen a smile fall so fast into a look of shock, annoyance, and hopelessness.  The aunt seemed oblivious.

“It just seems like to much lace for my taste. I don’t think it’s the right dress for you.” She continued with her “I don’t like this and I don’t like that” pointing to different areas of the dress, while the bride just stood there dazed.

YOU IDIOT! I thought. That’s one of the worst things you could ever say to a bride.  I wanted to bind the aunt’s mouth with the train that I was holding. “How do you like the lace now?” But this was no time to fantasize.

I desperately looked at the rest of the family, hoping that they would say something to the aunt that I couldn’t say in my position. The bride’s mother was glaring at her own sister with pure hatred.  The sisters had become quiet and the maid of honor was looking sympathetically at the bride. No help from them.

“Well I think you look absolutely stunning.  It’s obvious that this is the dress you’ve pictured yourself getting married in.” I said. “And that’s all that matters.” I firmly added, looking directly at her. She nodded.

The sisters chimed in right on cue. “Yeah, you look great, sis!” “Jeremy’s going to be speechless when he sees you!” The mom at this point was whispering heatedly to the aunt, who was looking very apologetic now.  Yeah, I thought, rip her a new one!

The bride bought her favorite dress that day, but with a little less excitement than she had planned on.

So my word of advice: Know when to keep you mouth shut, ladies.  In the end, it’s not your opinion that should determine what the bride is going to wear on her wedding day.  At least, it shouldn’t be. In my case, my bride happened to pick two dresses where both of them would have looked beautiful on her wedding day. And in truth, there were many similarities between them.  So for the aunt to pick apart the gown just to have her own words heard is nothing short of a person who doesn’t use her brain very often. Sure, you can give your opinions, and in the case where a dress really looks hideous on your bride, it may be very tempting to say something.  But LOOK at the bride first.  Read her expressions. Does she really want your opinion, or does she want you to agree with her? Is she beaming in a dress that YOU would never be caught wearing? If so, then keep your f**king mouth shut!