We have a "No Grit" policy in our boutique (you're welcome), but we also have a commitment to the idea that an informed bride, informed mother of the bride and prepared maid/matron of honor will make for a happier wedding day. Stress comes in many forms, but late gowns should never be one of those stressers. So bridesmaids, this one is for you! Here are some helpful bits of info - BT's Nitty Gritty - to help you and then some images of the gorgeous maids gowns we're carrying this year at our boutique..
Bridesmaid gowns generally take about 3 months, give or take, when ordered for regular delivery. If you want them in the 5 to 8 week delivery range, it's do-able, but there is an extra fee. Always, plan!
We offer more than 80 styles in our boutique and curate the selections based on trends and what we know our clients tend to love. Each of the styles comes in over 70 colors for chiffon and satin and 10 or so colors for lace. We have a LOT of options.
For this reason, we do not stock multiples of dresses. They have to be ordered and when they are, they are cut and made then. There isn't a warehouse with thousands and thousands of variations and colors and sizes just waiting. Can you imagine the number of combinations? Me either!
All the bridesmaid styles range in size from 0 to size 30 and there is NO up-charge for plus sizes.
The average price for a bridesmaid dress is $165 and BT Brides get 10% off their maids' dresses. All dresses in the same bridal party get ordered at the same time so they all come in at the same time and are all cut from the same dye lot. This is important if you are among the uninitiated. Dye lots change, so dresses from different bolts of fabric can be a shade off in color. This also means that the color you see in the store may vary SLIGHTLY from the delivered product.
You will mostly likely need alterations - most people do - so don't fret when your gown comes and needs a little in here and a little out there. The most common dress alterations are in the bust line, the hem, and straps and at BT we do not profit from the alteration process so you can rest assured that the dress size we recommend is not because we think we are going to make more money through alterations. We're here to help. We aren't players! We give guidance but ultimately our customers choose their own size based on their measurements and the manufacturers size chart. As with all other formal dresses maids dresses run 1-2 sizes smaller than our regular clothing size.
As your wedding planning progresses, we encourage you to gather your ladies and plan a visit to us. Make it a fun date, of sorts, and make some decisions. If you already have an idea, fabulous. If you are just getting started, we're here to help!
Glitz & Glam Photo Shoot
Bridal Traditions loved being part of the Glitz & Glam photo shoot with Wayfaring Wanderer. We love collaborating with others in the wedding industry and enjoy seeing the latest creativity from other vendors, stylists, photographers and experts.
Our task was a simple one for this particular endeavor - we provided the tux. But we love the results and wanted to share them with you all.
We love The Great Gatsby elements of these photos and really everything that the vendors provided to complete the full picture and vibe of the shoot. Brides take note: if you have a theme that you love and find your gown with us, commit to it and get the right vendors to support your vision.
The full list is at the end!
Some of BT's favorites from the photo shoot!
Photography - Wayfaring Wanderer
Venue, Hair, Makeup, Catering - West Glow Resort & Spa
Cake & Dessert - Ugga Mugga Bakery
Florals - Millefleurs
Dress - Did Someone Say Party?
Rentals - A Bushel and a Peck Rentals
Transportation - Air Haven
Jewelry - Old World Galleries
Tux - Bridal Traditions
Dinnerware - Miss Match Rentals
Models: Ashley & David Eskridge
What Else We do at BT!
It is WAY MORE than sell gowns and calm excitable nerves.
This blog is just a little taste!! We hope you'll stop by, share this post with friends getting married and remember these options if you are a bride to be, a former bride, prom-goer or someone who needs a gift.
All dresses purchased at Bridal Traditions come with a free initial pressing upon gown arrival, including stock dresses that are purchased off the rack. We offer pressing services even if you DIDN'T buy your gown from us.
AND, we offer re-pressing & spot cleaning for an additional service fee.
YES, MA'AM! We do that too. We know that not everyone thinks to preserve their gowns, but we want you to consider it. Ladies often come to us with their daughters and say that while the daughter may never have worn her mother's gown, they wish they'd saved it for a friend's daughter or niece who loved the design. Preservation is the best form of sharing and recycling.
Our cleaning and preservation at BT is offered through Wedding Gown Preservation Co, which includes $25 off this service as part of our BT Love-ups program if you bought your gown from us. Didn't buy your gown from BT? No problem. We'll take care of you, too!
Our gift corner is FILLED with goodies for the bride and groom, for your supportive sisters and bridesmaids and anyone who wants to present you with a little love.
Bridal Profile - Reina Branch
Reina Branch married her love Dewey Kilby at 16 Hands Farm in a gloriously rustic country ceremony this passed fall 2017. The bride described it as "mason jars, burlap and lace." It was also incredibly well thought out, as the reception images will prove.
"We had an outdoor wedding with a rustic county look. Our venue was nestled in the
mountains of West Jefferson, NC. We got married with a gorgeous barn behind us and
surrounded by trees filled with fall colors. Our wedding was more beautiful than I could
have ever imagined. There were lots of happy tears and you could feel the love in the air."
"I always knew I wanted a fall wedding. I personally think fall is the most beautiful time of the year and I love the colors. My dad joked about what kind of daughter [of a football coach] would get married on a Saturday during football season?" He also joked that he would be wearing an ear piece during the wedding, but Reina knew better.
Reina and Dewey's story is sweet, but it also shows fortitude and maturity. It began when they were in middle school. They were good friends, but always said that the friendship was too important to mess up with a serious relationship. That worked for them as adolescents.
But that ship sailed in high school! During their junior year, they began dating and while both admit that they had their ups and downs at those young ages, all those milestones, struggles and adventures solidified their love and trust in each other and strengthened them as a couple. Reina told us, "there is nobody I would rather be with than my high school sweetheart."
Ready to marry, Reina came to us wanting a gown with sleeves, A-line in shape and without the poofiness of a ball gown. She also didn't want a body-shaped gown and was looking for something classic in ivory or off-white. This won't be the first time you hear us say this: things change when you move from your head to the actual buying stage.
"I never thought I would end up with a strapless dress and it was actually what I fell in love with the most."
"I loved the way the gown looked on me and I felt amazing in it. It was the perfect combination of simple but elegant. I could just see myself walking down the aisle in it. I loved my custom veil with the blusher I added to it. Best decision! I also had these beautiful glitter shoes that were super comfortable.... no heel so I wouldn’t trip and they made me feel like Cinderella."
"I tried on tons of dresses that I thought I wanted and finally Kelly said, "let me
pick something" and it was the dress I ended up purchasing. Kelly knows me best
after all these years shopping at her store.
Kelly has always been my go to lady for anything and everything I’ve needed a dress for since Junior Prom. I knew I would find something amazing at her store and I knew I wouldn’t be able to trade her genuine passion for helping brides for anything else."
These two adults, now a nurse and police officer, live in Asheville, NC and spend their time making spontaneous weekend trips and hiking in the mountains that surround the city.
I feel as though I have watched Reina and Dewey grow up after the years we have spent with them creating milestone memories. I LOVED working with Reina, I am excited to share her photos and story and I wish her and Dewey nothing but fun, adventure, love and happiness for many, many years!
BT Experts Weigh In
You've got a room full of smart women .... and they are all wedding gown experts. You with me? Now picture that they've determined the 5 most important things you need to consider when brides are ready to shop for a gown.
Want to hear more? The experts weight in!
Do not try on more than 10-15 dresses total.
Honestly, trying on fewer than 15 is even better. It becomes overwhelming when you have had dozens on and begin to want to cobble something together. You'll find that you end up wanting the lace from that dress, and the bodice from the other dress, with the hem and sparkle from "that other dress from two days ago" or the one you saw that one time in the magazine. Unless you are a designer, you don't know how this "dream" mosaic will even look or how to find it. It ends up blowing the budget and you get frustrated and lose the magic. After the 10th dress, the next one is "just another white dress."
Have your funding ready.
Brides will come in to get a sense of what is out there, what looks good on them and may be surprised to find their gown that very day. When they do and cannot then make a payment it's disappointing. Brides shopping for their gowns should always expect to find their dress even if it's the first time they've tried on gowns. Make sure that you're ready to buy when you are ready to shop.
Don't get stuck in your head.
A dress is not a logical decision. It is a heart decision, and as long as you stay within your budget you should be open to finding a dress that perhaps you didn't expect to find. Be open to being surprised and newly excited because you may fall in love with something unexpected. We've seen tomboys in ball gowns and girlie girls in more minimalist styles, gothic chicks in frills and the most modern young women in something akin to vintage lace. Be YOU and you will be beautiful. (Write that down!!) Have an open mind and heart!
It's OK to stray.
.... from what you were absolutely certain you had to have. Marriage is filled with change-ups and shifts in new directions that lead to unforeseen happiness. We sage experts know. It's ok to stray from what you thought you would look best in or fit the idea. Looking at pics of others in dresses is completely different from seeing yourself in the same dresses. Go with what fits YOUR body and personality.
Don't judge a dress by how it looks on the hanger.
This is a big one and the proof is in the images above. The dress on the hanger is the dress being worn on the right on her wedding day. The exact one! We see girls go flying past dresses on the racks because at first blush it doesn't say to them "hey!! I'm the one you saw in the magazine." If it has potential and some of the special details that you love, try it!
Your dress is out there, but by out there, we don't mean on the other side of the planet in some shop you'll never find and for money you don't have. And that doesn't mean you need to order from some shady online site. Those swindlers are out there as well and they are ready to take your money and send you a poorly constructed gown that doesn't fit or look like the one on the website.
Take into consideration these 5 tips and you'll find the right gown for your big day. We're sure of it!