If there’s one part of the wedding planning experience I was most nervous about, it was buying my wedding dress.
If you’re new here, hey! I’m Felicia, a 23 year old bride-to-be living in southern Ontario. I got engaged in late 2020 to my boyfriend of 7 years. After setting a date in 2023 and waiting 2 years, there are only 18 months left and the countdown to the wedding is officially ON.
To be honest, I’ve been going through this whole wedding process blindly. I have no siblings and I’m the first of my friends to be married. Which means I’ve never been on the planning end of a wedding. It’s proven to be quite the education, lol.
Hopefully, this little peek into my dress shopping experience helps another bride-to-be feel a bit less anxious about her upcoming appointment. Keep reading to find out how I planned for my wedding dress shopping trip and what happened when I actually went!
I spent quite a bit of time researching prior to the shopping trip.
First things first, I needed to determine what I envisioned my dream dress to look like. This was actually quite a long process!
If you rewound the tape to 5 years ago, you’d find me dreaming of ball gowns, big skirts, and anything that looked like it was created by the costume department at Walt Disney World. Given that I was initially planning on getting married at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, this totally completed the princess vibe.
Now, I truly can’t imagine myself in a poofy dress. Oh, how times have changed.
I wound up falling in love with more romantic silhouettes, with lace motifs and off-the-shoulder straps. I spent months scouring the Internet (thanks Pinterest!) in search of dresses that fit the vision in my mind.
Next, I had to find boutiques where I could shop for my dress. Luckily, I live in southern Ontario which is a very popular location for weddings and there was no shortage of shops to choose from.
I set my first appointment at Crème Couture, as they received glowing reviews online and they’re a Madi Lane Bridal retailer. Madi Lane Bridal is an Australian wedding dress designer that sells gorgeous, high-quality gowns for the modern bride. Each dress comes with beautiful lace appliques and their silhouettes are so dreamy.
After doing my research, I knew that I had to, at the very least, try on some of their dresses. So, off to Crème Couture I went!
The big day—heading to the bridal boutique!
For awhile, I wasn’t even sure I’d make it to my wedding dress appointment. After two years of successfully evading COVID, my fiancé and I were both struck down by it just three weeks prior to my appointment.
Unfortunately, I was quite ill for a couple weeks. Luckily, I bounced back just in the nick of time for my appointment to go on without a hitch!
My party consisted of my mum, my future mother-in-law, and my maid of honour. These gals were so supportive and wonderful during my appointment, which made it all the more fun.
Crème Couture is located in a mall in Guelph and can I just say that it’s the most beautiful mall I’ve ever seen?! All four of us were shook when we rolled up, hahaha.
Straight away, the team at the bridal shop were so lovely and quickly got us setup. The shop was split up into two separate rooms, one of which was for special occasion dresses and the other bridal gowns. Just when we thought the shop couldn’t be more beautiful, we saw the bridal gown area and… my god. It was exceptional.
I met my bridal consultant Michèle who took care of us for the two hours that we were there. After introducing herself, she asked me what style of dresses I was interested in looking at and after giving her a description, she immediately pulled a Madi Lane dress for me to try on.
Little did I know that that very first dress ended up being The Dress…
Despite myself and my group (and even my consultant!) falling head over heels in love with the first dress I tried on, I ended up trying on about a dozen dresses. Almost all of them were Madi Lane but I did try on a wide variety including a ball gown, mermaid, strapless, long-sleeve… It was a ton of fun!
Here are some of the dresses I ended up trying on that weren’t “the one”:
At the end, I had two top contenders that I tried on again, although it was SO hard to narrow my choices down. After trying on both it was a super close call… but the first dress I tried on that day was the obvious winner. I wish I could share it here with you! But of course, that’s a secret I’ll be keeping until the big day 😉
Overall, the day was magical and everything I ever imagined it to be. Although I never expected my wedding planning to be in the middle of a global pandemic, I was lucky enough that our mask mandate was lifted the same week of my appointment.
While I’m continuing to wear my mask as a personal choice, I did feel comfortable enough to remove it to try-on dresses which made the day feel a bit more normal.
I’m so excited to continue planning for the big day and now that I’ve picked my dress, it’s all feeling so much more real. And I can’t wait to share the process here with all of you!
If you’re a future bride- or groom-to-be, or just feeling a bit nosy (no judgement here!), make sure to check out all my wedding-related content here!