Dress Shopping, The Generic Edition by Meg Keene So, I finally swallowed my pride, along with some past bad experiences, and waltzed in the door to David’s Bridal. I’m a bride trying to keep on a budget, after all, so pride is overrated. I was expecting everything in the store to be a sparkling, princess, A-line poof – and I was wrong. David’s Bridal is in the business of creating designer knockoffs, and business is booming. I told them I was looking for long and lace, and off they trotted. They came back with a few dresses priced from $250 on up. One of them (from their “couture” collection) was $1000 and perfectly lovely. In case I wasn’t picking up on the fact that this dress was COUTURE, it was called Monique Lou(huillier of course, was implied). I put on the dress, and I can absolutely tell you, it was a nice dress. Full stop. There was not a thing in the world wrong with it. I looked lovely in it, the lace was nice, I looked like a bride. And yet, somehow, it left me with a empty feeling in the pit of my stomach. I looked like A BRIDE, ie, a dress up doll of a bride. I looked like a bride, but I didn’t feel a thing like myself. My inner sass, I’m afraid, was completely muffled. So here is the crux of the issue. I don’t believe in wedding perfection. I don’t think that you need to have some life changing transcendental “oh mommy” moment when you put on a dress. I have a great life, thanks, I don’t need to find my moment of zen in a wedding dress store. But I do think that we each deserve to feel fabulous on our wedding day, and on my wedding day I would like to feel fully, absolutely, and radically like myself. And I’d rather wear a amazing cocktail dress then a beautiful wedding dress that doesn’t feel a thing like me. So, for gods sakes, you lucky brides with the dress in the closet, tell me there is hope (even if it does not live in David’s Bridal.) And if you don’t have a dress, you should try ye old David’s Bridal. My neurosis should not stop your bargain shopping! Picture: this homemade dress, this dress has sass. via Our Labor Of Love. Meg Keene Founder & Editor-In-Chief Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. She has written two best selling wedding books: A Practical Wedding and A Practical Wedding Planner. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and two children. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit MegKeene.com.