Monday, June 28

Wedding Gown Woes

Last week I mentioned that after a three-month waiting period, my Maggie Sottero wedding gown had finally arrived. So this past Saturday I drove 45 minutes to see it in person and I have to admit I was a bit nervous on the entire ride there. It’s scary to pay hundreds of dollars for something that is ordered to be custom-made as opposed to knowing exactly what you’re getting when buying off the rack! But once the shop owner pulled the gown from the bag, it really looked beautiful. The color was great, the detailing looked fabulous. My hairpiece from Etsy and sexy new heels even matched the dress perfectly. But after stepping into it and getting all corset-tied in, I noticed the dress was too big in the hips. Are you kidding me?!, I thought. Week after week I watch wedding shows where brides buy their gowns too small, thinking they will lose weight and be able to fit into them when the time comes. Who honestly buys a custom-made gown that is TOO BIG? I do, apparently. 

When we’d placed the order, I’d felt as if I was in-between sizes so I’d decided to go with the larger size of the two, thinking it would be easy to have it altered if necessary. But of course it would be my luck that where the dress needs to be brought in – through the midsection and especially the hip area – there is a lot of detailing on the side that makes it very expensive to alter. And then… why did the train seem so much longer now? I didn’t remember the train being quite as long when I tried it on, but now the train on my gown seemed really lengthy. Definitely not something I was hoping for considering I could have forfeited the train look altogether and been fine with it. I also noticed that part of the (very noticeable) detailing on the front of the gown didn’t quite look the same as the picture of the gown in the catalog or on the website. I’m not talking about beading that could be randomly place with the same general look – I’m talking about something so obviously different that it really changed the entire look of the front of the dress. So now I was looking at changing the sides of the gown to make it smaller, making the train much shorter, having it hemmed to my height, and altering the detail on the front to match the example picture. Seriously?! Can I really afford to alter my entire gown? I might as well have doubled my gown budget if I was just going to alter the entire dress for the same price. I just couldn’t stop thinking, Why in the heck didn’t I order the smaller size?

Ok, the train wasn’t quite this long… but it certainly seemed like it!

First thing this morning, I telephoned the boutique to talk to the owner about how the front of my dress looks different than the model photo. She said I have seven days to issue a claim with the gown, but this short timeframe window poses a real problem. I’m going out of town for this entire upcoming holiday weekend, and I live too far away to make it over to the shop on a work day. So tonight I’m supposed to take photos of the dress to email to her so she can compare it herself and see how different it really looks. Then, I have an appointment with the seamstress on July 11th which is when I’ll bring the gown back in for them to compare it in person. And if it’s determined the dress was in fact constructed with a blatant error, the dress has to be sent back! What?! Let me get this straight: I ordered the dress in March, had to wait three months for it, and with my wedding now only three months away, I have return it for several more weeks? What a nightmare!!

Did anyone else have issues with their dress after they had to order it from the manufacturer? How did you handle it?


  1. Oh, I’m so sorry! I’ve known a few brides who discovered that the measurements were off and also that the detailing on their particular gowns didn't match up exactly with the samples they tried on. Mine had a few slight differences in the embroidery on the lace, but it wasn’t significant enough to alter the entire look of the dress. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you’re able to resolve the issue without a lot more stress and expense!

  2. Ugh, how annoying! First of all, just know it will all work out and you will look beautiful on your wedding day. But man, if you're the least bit uncertain about the dress I would totally file a claim if you can. I also read in one of my bridal books that if you paid for the deposit with a credit card, you have a certain amount of protection. According to the book there's a federal regulation "C" that entitles consumers to receive refunds if the merchandise delivered doesn't live up to what was promised, fyi. Hopefully you won't need this info but just in case... :)

  3. OH NO!!! That sucks! Hopefully it will all work out! Either way, I know you will look stunning on the big day! :)

  4. I know what you mean. I didn't feel like my dress looked right when I picked it up either. There's just something about ordering a gown so far ahead that plays tricks with your mind. Unfortunate about the sizing issues. I went with a corset so I wouldn't have to worry about specific fittings in the mid section but when I ordered my gown, the shop owner kept insisting I should get a size 0. I am super tiny and skinny for sure but I just knew something was wrong with a 0. So I opted for the 2 against her suggestions and was so glad I did. It was perfect! All I needed was to add the bustles and hem the bottom a bit.

    I am hoping this works out for you quickly and easily. Sounds like it could be the cause of some hard core nightmares. Try not to let it get to you until you make sure it's not going to be a smooth process. Just be firm on your time lines and desires. I know it will look amazing!