Anya's Bridal Boutique came highly recommended by many people, when it came to looking for my wedding dress. Set in the beautiful Hampshire countryside in a rustic barn, it really does offer a unique and magical experience for every bride. Their warm and professional approach, creates the perfect experience that every bride is looking for.
Having had a really bad first experience trying on wedding dresses in a different store, I was really nervous about my appointment. I took all four of my bridesmaids and both mums, determined to make it a really fun and positive experience. I was warmly greeted by the staff and a sign personalised with my name. The girls made me feel so at ease and talked me through all the different styles and designers. I was given a basket full of pegs to go pick out six styles that I liked as a starting point. I had never put much thought in to what I wanted my wedding dress to be like so it was a bit of a challenge to find just six.
After trying on a lot of different styles and picking out features that I did and didn't like, I hit a bit of a road block. I asked if any of the designs could possibly be altered but the lady quite rightly pointed out that if I wanted to make such changes to the dress, then it wasn't the dress for me. She clearly knew her stuff and could see where my mind was headed as she then came back with a wild card option. It didn't look much on the hanger initially but I tried it on and fell in love instantly. It's true what they say, when you know, you know.
My dress was a beautiful lace Pronovia called Mariluz with capped sleeves, an embellished sweet heart neckline, backless feature and a long train.
It had the most beautiful embroidered lace that hung in delicate layers.
I was able to attach the train to a hook so that it didn't get in the way for the first dance and the dancing that followed. Despite some difficulties using the bathroom (which I think every bride experiences in their wedding dress) I felt like a million dollars and felt comfortable throughout.
Overall Anya's was the most incredible experience I could have ever wished for. I only wish that I could do it all over again. Thank you ladies for a wonderful experience that I’ll treasure always.
Tips when looking for The Dress
Where are you getting married? Is it abroad on a beach or a formal stately home? What season will it be set in? Different styles of wedding mean different styles of dress. It’s important to think about what kind of dress will be most appropriate.
Set a Budget – If you’ve done your research it may not come as a surprise to you that buying a wedding dress isn’t cheap but it doesn’t have to break the bank. Agree a budget before you shop around. Don’t forget to budget for shoes and accessories aswell.
Start Early - It's never too early to start trying on dresses as it will give you an idea of what you like and don’t like. It can take up to 6 months for a dress to be made to order from a bridal boutique so it’s better to start looking sooner rather than later.
Underwear - Make sure to wear appropriate underwear, preferably something neutral that won’t show up under a dress. Bring a good quality strapless bra.
Labels - Don't get too caught up with designer labels. Choose the dress not the label, and stick to a price range that's realistic for you and your budget. Try not to be too disappointed if you don’t find the one at your first appointment. You may look at hundreds of dresses and try on dozens before you find 'The One'.
Be realistic - Also decide on a size that is also realistic. If you have chosen to slim down before the big day, buy the dress at your size now, therefore the dress can be taken in, whereas if you put on weight it is more difficult to to release the dress (seamstress speak for "make it bigger"). A dress that is too small is far worse than a dress that is too big.
Most importantly - shopping for your wedding dress should be a once in a lifetime experience. Enjoy yourself!
Photo Credit: Martin Bell Photography