Charlotte will be marrying James on 26th August 2018 at The Brewery, in London, UK.
THREE FACTS: (1) James proposed to Charlotte in Florence… on her parent’s 36th wedding anniversary (aaaah – we love that!) (2) They are planning a Jewish urban-rustic wedding in East London (3) They have already decided on their wedding hashtags — it’s #dropitlikeitshart !
We are so inundated with programmes about brides saying yes to the dress nowadays. Admittedly you can find myself, my mum and grandma watching this together. Since both my sister and I became engaged my grandma, who is 93, is totally and completely hooked on watching these programmes. With a huge health scare this year we could not be more fortunate that she is still here and was able to see my sister walk down the aisle. She is completely defying all doctors, and we are all hoping that she is still here to me and James get married next year.
As someone who is hugely decisive about clothes in general, I live and breathe for fashion. I know what will suit me, and really I have been looking at my wedding dress for about six months or more before I actually tried it on. I am not sure I am the most typical bride when I say that I only tried on four dresses.
I had left the one I had been staring and dreaming about until last, and I knew instantly it was the one.
Do your research
I had my mum in town and we headed to Pronovias in Bond Street last November. This is very early to try on a wedding dress, but it was from the 2016 collections and is now no longer being sold.
Pronovias is not like the programmes you see, we were sat down with our consultant and told her what dresses I would like to try on, and she brought them to the fitting room, there was no raiding through aisles of gowns. One dress even came with a disclaimer about the price, you only live once and you might as well try on the most over the top and pricey dresses — even if you know it may not be the one.
My advice to other brides would be to do your research. Look up bridal boutiques and high street shops in your area, what they are about, what they stand for. I knew that Pronovias was right for me, but it is not for everyone. Also check if the shops you are going to ask you for a fee when you book an appointment for trying on dresses. Some boutiques will put this money towards your dress once you purchase.
What to do before dress shopping
Make a secret Pinterest board, and put together a total look and feel for your wedding style. This can include dress styles, veils, shoes, and your bridal party. You will notice that you come across a trend and styles you are naturally drawn to. Including your bridal party will make you look at the total picture. Think about your body shape and what you are naturally drawn to in your personal style. I also did research lots of wedding blogging websites, of course STG, but some of my favourites are Wedding Sparrow, Bridal Musings and Style Me Pretty.
Make sure when going to your appointment that you feel your best, most confident self. And you almost resemble what you will look like on your wedding day. I made sure my hair was super clean, which for me was a big mistake as all the veils I tried on kept on slipping out of my hair — nightmare!
Take into consideration the alterations! Between me trying on my dress the first time, I have now nearly lost a stone in weight and an inch off my waist. So I went and tried on my wedding dress again this year, I was told to maintain my weight as let’s just say it was quite loose!
Some good advice…
I would advise to take minimal people to your bridal appointment. You don’t want your judgement to be clouded by other people’s opinions of what they think you should wear, this is your one day to shine. It’s also okay to not well up and be overcome with emotion when you find the one. It should just feel so natural and like you never want to take it off. However disappointed my bridal party was that I didn’t bring them, they will all be coming to my first dress fitting in May.
My one big bit of advice is when you have found the one — stop looking! I did have a nervous moment where I couldn’t remember how I looked in it, and needed to try it on again. I couldn’t wait 14 months to try it on again! I was extremely lucky that they had it in already, and all my doubt subsided and I haven’t worried about it since.
Most importantly, just have fun with it and enjoy yourself — this is a once in a lifetime experience to find the dress of your dreams!
Click here to read all Charlotte’s planning posts to date.
Charlotte & James’ Wedding Vendors booked so far:
Venue – The Brewery
Photographer – Adam and Hannah
Videographer – AT Motion
Caterer – Tony Page
Florist — Funky Flowers
Band and production – Creation Showband
Bride’s dress – Pronovias