First comes love, then comes marriage. And in between? Hours upon hours of wedding dress shopping — and all the stress, fights and over-consumption of Champagne that comes along with it.
But here, Nara Ragimov, manager of the ultra-luxe bridal salon at Bergdorf Goodman, and Joan Joffe, one of Bergdorf’s top bridal consultants, reveal how to shop for your special day like a pro. Take a look:
Leave the entourage at home
“Brides love to share this moment with their closest friends and family,” says Joffe. “But please remember this day is all about you.” Ragimov and Joffe recommend bringing no more than two or three guests.
“Too many people distract the bride from what she really likes,” explains Ragimov. “The sister or friend, maybe they’re imagining themselves in a wedding gown. [The bride] often walks away a little bit disappointed because in some cases, they maybe have already decided on something, and then they have this huge crew and all the opinions that come along with it.”
Ditch the hot pink thong for the day
“Always make sure to bring along nude or skin tone undergarments,” advises Joffe, who says turquoise and fuschia underwear will show through the white dress.
Although it’s difficult for brides to imagine walking down the aisle when they look straight out of a Britney Spears video, bright underwear is better than no underwear.
“Sometimes they come in without underwear, and the bridal consultants here, they don’t like that,” says Ragimov. “So we make them buy a pair of underwear. It’s not sanitary!”
Take it easy with the champers — and make sure to eat
With engagements comes loads of celebrations (and drinks) — and often, bridal salons offer the lady-of-the-moment and her gang some complimentary Champagne. Ragimov, however, advises not to have more than a couple glasses.
“We’ve had girls who come in and want to play with a lot of their friends, and they’ll keep asking for more and more Champagne, because they want to make this a whole experience,” she says.
And be sure to have a bite to eat beforehand.
“Every few months we get a bride who turns pale white and feels faint,” says Ragimov.
“Maybe they didn’t eat, or they’re dieting or nervous, or they’ve been standing for a long time in their dress,” she adds. “But it’s important to stay hydrated and nourished.”
Honesty is the best policy
Joffe says to be upfront with your bridal consultant when it comes to your tastes, size and budget.
“On occasion, we do get that bride who will say, ‘Don’t order it in a size 8. Order it in a 6, because I am going to lose weight,’ ” says Ragimov. “We discourage them from doing that, because there is no guarantee that they will lose weight.”
Instead, buy the size you are right now. “Better the dress comes in bigger than smaller,” adds Ragimov. “We can always take it in.”
And while Bergdorf Goodman is known for its array of high-end designer bridal gowns, including one $90,000 Oscar de la Renta gown a bride purchased a few years ago, not everyone has an unlimited budget.
“We don’t ask our brides when they come in what their budget is. We leave it up to them to tell us because we don’t want to offend anyone, you know?” says Ragimov. “Everyone has a budget, whether it’s $5,000 or $15,000. So if the bride is upfront with us in the beginning and tells us, ‘This is what we’re looking for,’ we’re able to work with her on the price.”
Be nice — or else
“We always kind of laugh because the customers that give us the hardest time, the bridezillas, the high-maintenance brides, oftentimes we hear that they got divorced really quickly after the wedding,” says Ragimov.
“I personally have worked with several brides like that, where they were just so difficult, I had to take over from their original bridal consultant. In several cases, I have bumped into them at the store, and they tell me, ‘Oh, it didn’t work out.’ It happens quite often. It just goes to show if they’re tough, they’re not only tough on you — they’re tough on everyone.”
Original article and imaces from the NY Post