so. i've sort of been avoiding talking about this because...i'm...kind of...embarrassed. (well, that and i had to get the fiance to swear up and down that he would not EVER, ever, ever be lurking around this here blog...at least not until after the wedding...)
if you've been following TTO for the past few months, you'll know that 56 posts ago i shared that i bought my wedding dress. i also 'fessed that i bought it at a designer sample sale.
and then i haven't said much about it since.
i feel justified in sharing this experience as a 'newbie mistake' because i honestly went to the sample sale thinking i'd just try on a few dresses and call it a day. i mean, that's what i did at glamour closet (the ONE other bridal store i've ever been to). tried on dresses. called it a day. so never in my wildest dreams did i think i'd walk out of amy kuschel's sample sale after having entered just 1 hour earlier, with dress-in-hand, having bore a 10% hole in my budget. i shocked my friends, i shocked my mom, i shocked the fiance, and i shocked myself. in fact, it's been a few months and i'm still shocked.
so listen up, newbies, mmmkay. there's this THING called the 'sample sale trap'. and uh, while i obviously wasn't prepared to deal with it and had to learn a $1000 lesson, i'm thinking maybe my experience could help you save a few bucks (and potential heartache).
first, go to the sample sale knowing how much the dresses retail for. the blunder i made in my research was two-fold. 1) i didn't do enough. 2) i assumed most of the sample sale dresses would be of the lower priced assortment. not so, my friends. and why did i make that assumption in the first place? i don't know. maybe it had something to do with this other THING called 'wishful thinking'.
on a related note and second, throw away all scale-awareness, newbies. 30% off $3000 brings the price down to $2100. which i knew was way out of my budget. but after a few of those in a row, i somehow ended up at the point where i was like...wow, i'm getting the deal of the century with 50% off $2000! what i failed to remember was 50% off $2000 still meant the dress cost $1000. which was much more than i was planning to spend.
third, understand that a wedding dress sample sale is DIFFERENT from normal sample sales. no really, it is. i thought a wedding dress sample sale would be like any other sample sale i'd been to.
and it's so not. (what can i say. i was a newbie. i made a mistake.)
a normal sample sale doesn't do 'appointments only'. a normal sample sale doesn't have a dedicated sales associate fawning over you, offering affirmation after affirmation that that ONE dress you thought looked awesome does indeed look (more than) awesome. a normal sample sale doesn't have said sales associate helping you in and out of silky smooth luxurious-feeling gowns (dear sales associate: sorry for exposing myself to you no less than 20 times. only my future husband should have to endure such evils). can you see where i'm going here?
the attention, the lovely lights, feeling so pretty and feminine (neither of which i feel on a daily basis), and the staring that goes on when a dress looks 'soo right'...can get the best of your sensible judgement. so unless you're prepared to have these emotions and talk yourself out of it within 15 minutes (which is about how long i had before i had to say yes or no), just don't even go.
at the end of the day though, i acknowledge that it's my fault for listening to my inner shopaholic self instead of taking a second to imagine how i'd feel being out 10% of our wedding budget on a part of the wedding that wasn't really a priority for either of us.
which is why i'm saying i robbed myself. oh, i guess you could also say that i robbed the fiance as well since he wasn't part of this decision (oops! but i only had fifteen minutes!!).
anyways, lesson learned. and just so you know, my intention is to either sell the dress or donate it after use.
moment of zen:
i was totally tacky and didn't bother to hold in my astonishment uponst learning how much the dresses cost (see first point in lesson learned). and i kept saying out loud..."wow. these dresses are way out of my price range! i re-e-e-e-ally don't want to spend more than $500!" the sales associate eventually and understandably got tired of hearing it and asked "...then what are you doing at a sample sale?"
to show you my boobs?
moment of zen II:
couldn't end this post without showing you my dress. ready?
hm. thanks amy.
Thursday, October 23, 2008