The Woodland Events Blog

  • Kimberly Lakenen

Saying "Yes" to the Dress

Updated: May 12, 2020

Today's blog is a guest post by Kimberly Lakenen, Woodland Events Intern and owner of It's the Little Things Events.


When it comes to wedding dress shopping, you’ve heard it all before:

  • Know your budget before you start to try on dresses and do not try on anything that is not in your budget!

  • Factor in alteration costs to your budget!

  • Have your hair and make up done up at least a little to help create a vision of the full look.

  • Bring shoes similar to the height you imagine wearing your dress with.

  • Bring any heirlooms you will use with you so that it matches.

  • Wear pretty underwear and a strapless bra.

  • Make sure you can sit down in your dress and have a bathroom plan!

  • For more peace and quiet when shopping, book a day during the week!

But I set out to hear from the experts themselves so I sat down and interviewed Jamie Pickel and Kayla McCarthy, sisters and owners of Raffine Bridal in Woodbury. They gave me the run down on what to expect in your appointment at their shop.

What to Expect at the Shop

When you arrive, prepare to be met with a series of questions. But don’t feel overwhelmed! These are the stylist to see where you're at and get started with helping you. They’ll ask if you’ve already started your shopping, set your budget, chosen your venue, and what color scheme you may have in mind for your wedding. At Raffine, they always do this at an initial consultation with the bride and no additional guests.

While you are dress shopping, always keep in mind that even if you come in with a picture of exactly what you want, good stylists will always give a few recommendations for styles that would compliment your body as well. You are under no obligation to go with their chosen styles; they just like to make sure that you have the opportunity to visualize a variety of options on you.

Trust Your Stylist!

Ever wonder how the stylist knows what's best? They go through long hours of shadowing and get specific training on all of the dress types, the designers at their stores, how to best style someone, and how to help you in and out of all of the dresses!

It might feel uncomfortable at first to dress in front of the stylists, but their professionalism will help you every step of the way! They’re also amazing at mitigating tensions between a bride and her family if they have different visions for the dress!

Decide Who to Bring

Now, mainstream media has made it seem like it's the new trend to bring the whole entourage when you’re dress shopping, but these wedding professionals recommend that you keep it small -- closer to 4 guests. This helps them get a better sense of what you as the bride want, instead of taking the opinions of so many guests. It's also recommended that you do not visit more than two bridal shops a day, to avoid overwhelming yourself with options.

Other Tips

I also made sure to ask some questions you might have been wondering!

If you’re looking to lose weight before the wedding, what size dress do you order?

These sisters recommend always ordering the size that you are the day that you order it! Dresses can always be altered up to two dress sizes whether its up or down!

Is traditional pure white still in?

Nope! About 85% of brides are going with off white now a days!

How do I choose when there are so many options?

Have someone take pictures of you in each dress! Later, you can compare each dress side by side to narrow down your options or pick the winner if you're torn between two dresses. It's much easier than relying on a mirror to see each dress one at a time.

Do you pick the groom's wear first or the bride's?

Always choose the bride's dress first. It's recommended that this be done about 9 -10 months before the wedding.

Lastly, and most importantly...

Do you keep trying on dresses if you’ve already made your decision?

Absolutely not! When you knew it was a yes, it was for a good reason, just like when you said yes to your fiance!

Raffine's best advice for brides? "Don’t overthink things; it’ll feel natural when your vision is coming to life."

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