Choosing a wedding dress for yourself or a relative is a serious undertaking, in line with the big day itself.
I accompanied a close friend who was helping her daughter select a bridal gown and accessories this week, and approached it with great trepidation.
The young lady in question was a plus size 16 and had been fed with horror stories of all gowns being a size 6-10 with no support for ‘real women’ sizes and snooty shop assistants shaming you into crash diets and expensive designs.
Claire, the bride to be had booked an appointment with a local Wedding Shop, Love Me Do Brides in Park Street, Kingston.
I arrived early and as I had a long journey from my Buckinghamshire home, was dying to use the bathroom. I crept into the shop apprehensively, to be warmly greeted by two lovely ladies, who were ready to receive the bride to be and her companions. They pointed me to the restroom and then made sure I was comfortable on one of the squashy settees and offered me refreshments as it was a very hot day.
When the bride to be and her mum and auntie arrived – they were completely geared up to help in any way possible. They were also incredibly helpful in helping us to cuddle and feed Claire’s young four month old twins who were brought along to share the big occasion.
The bride to be was very quickly put at ease as she tried on the dresses, her size not even slightly an issue. In fact many of the dresses were too loose, and so her confidence was rapidly restored. They assured us that all sizes are catered for.
She tried on a total of ten dresses, and loved eight of them – but finally settled on a stunning lace featured gown, which enhanced her curves and accentuated her good waistline.
She explained to Jo, the personal dresser who had been designated to look after Claire for the hour’s slot, that she was on a Slimming World diet, and so was advised to have the final alterations done close to the Wedding Day as they had a seamstress on hand to turn it around in 24 hours. They even offered to do a last minute steam of the garment.
She rounded off the session by selecting a pair of lovely high heeled, cushioned satin shoes, for extra comfort, a tiara and a veil – the latter of which she hadn’t even considered.
As there was a sale in store, the total for the entire package was only £730. The dress had by chance been reduced from £1,200 to £599, the shoes were half price at £25 and the veil and tiara made up the rest.
Our young bride to be left the shop elated and full of confidence, a wonderfully successful outcome.
I had a chat to one of the partners, and she told me that although the outlet premises are neat, their stock is extensive and constantly updated. They have been going for eleven years – and I can see the reason for their success.
I am quite sure that many other bridal outlets provide an equally supportive service – but I would personally recommend this small Kingston upon Thames outlet – and it would even be worthwhile to make a special journey, however far away you are, as their unique approach and care would be hard to compare.