Posts in the 'dress shopping' Category

BHLDN’s New Annabelle Dress May be the Answer to Your Wedding Gown Quandary

Annabelle Dress

Truth: It’s no secret that I love BHLDN. I’ve always had a little crush on Anthro, but when BHLDN was introduced a few years ago, I died. There have been days where I’ve lost hours ogling sweet styles and dreaming up different weddings based on their lines. And while the prices can be a little high, the quality is soooo wildly worth it.

So when I got an email yesterday introducing the new Annabelle gown, designed by Jenny Yoo, there was no way I could keep it to myself. YOU GUYS. This fantastic frock can be styled in 15 different ways. While it is touted as a bridesmaid dress on the website, I can’t help but think how gorgeous it would be as a beach wedding dress or gown for an easygoing restaurant reception. Also, it’s available in white, soo … you know, that makes it easy. At $260, it’s also a steal for a wedding dress! And you can change up the look between your ceremony and reception. So much bang for your buck!

Would you be open to wearing a “bridesmaid” dress as your wedding gown? Which style of the Annabelle dress is your favorite?

{Real Bride: Carrie} The Rest of the Dress Saga

Last time I talked about dress shopping, I shared my internal conflict over this flattering but perhaps too traditional David’s Bridal dress:

David’s Bridal Allover Lace Trumpet Gown

If you recall, I had originally envisioned myself in a short white dress with a little bit of funk.  Then I stumbled into this gown on a “just for fun” shopping trip with my mom and bestie.  I tried it on and, “Bam!” I felt like a bride.  Next I agonized over my simultaneous disdain for David’s Bridal and love for this dress.  I pondered looking for a used dress online and many of you told me to go for it.  In fact, in the days following that post, I came *this close* to buying a used version in my size off of Recycled Bride.

What I didn’t tell you last time is that all along, there was another dress…

One day, months ago, before I even took that trip to David’s Bridal, I was wandering through Etsy in search of short wedding dresses.   Somehow, looking through pages of dress pictures that didn’t really strike my fancy, I stumbled upon one dress that made me pause and look closer.

It was short!  And cute!  And a little bit vintage but still a little bit funky!  All of a sudden, I was enamored.  It turned out that the dress was made by a super-talented designer, the lovely Iselle of The Little White Dress.  To torture you, I’m not going to tell you which of these dresses is the one, but here are a few of her pieces.

“Chloe”

“Imani”

“Annabelle”

“Elisa”

“Ivanka”

One of these dresses (sorry, I’m really not going to tell you which one) literally made my heart flutter.  I had to get more info!  And that’s when I discovered THE BEST PART!  Iselle is based in San Diego!  “OMG, it’s meant to be!” I thought.  I was hesitant to buy a dress online without trying it on, but because we now live in San Diego, I contacted Iselle and arranged a visit to her studio to try on a sample of my dream dress!  Of course, I was terrified that the dress wouldn’t wow me in person and I’d be back at square one.  Luckily, despite all my stress about whether it would actually look good on me, I LOVED IT.  Waves of relief washed over me as I realized, “Yesssssssss!  This IS the one!”  Mission accomplished!

Plus, Zach and I totally stole a page out of Dana’s book and negotiated a labor exchange with Iselle, the dress designer.  Although totally worth it for the awesome hand-craftsmanship of her dresses, the $500 price tag was a little high for us!  So, we figured, “It doesn’t hurt to ask!” and inquired if she’d be open to discounting the dress in exchange for us helping her out with something.  It turned out she really needed help building a website, and Zach just so happens to be experienced in that area!

Basically, I am thrilled that my dress-finding journey has reached a successful “end.”  (Nearly the end since the dress isn’t actually made or in my hands yet.)  I am so so SO glad that I held out and ended up getting a dress made by a small, independent designer, and one that fits my initial vision much better!

Has anyone else gotten a discount by offering up your labor or skills?  Anyone buy their dress off of Etsy?  Which one do you think is “mine?”