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Monday, April 30, 2007

Getting Fitted for your Wedding Dress

It's time for a bit of a rant today. Why on earth do wedding dress designers and bridesmaid dress designers have such a different sizing system from High Street shops?

I'm sure if you have tried on some wedding dresses already or been fitted, you will know exactly what I am talking about...

Here is an example - I am a UK size 14 normally (US 10). I was in the wedding dress shop for my fitting, in my size 14 jeans (which were actually a wee bit loose on me), getting measured up for my dress.

Basically this means that you are measured on your hips, upper hips, waist, under bust and bust. You are then recommended the size from the designer's sizing chart according to your measurements. If one of your measurements happens to be half an inch above a certain size, then you are recommended the size above. This is fair enough, as they can take dresses in, but can't take them out, so you need to be sure that you end up with a dress that either fits you perfectly or is too big.

So, I was measured up for my dress and recommended, guess what? A size 18!! All my measurements were a 16, which is equivalent to a 14 in the high street, apart from one measurement which was slightly over, so I had to be recommended an 18.

I ended up ordering a 16 because a) I am planning to lose at least stone before the wedding, b) The size 14 sample dress on the shop was half an inch away from fitting me and c) Most of my measurements were a 16 anyway.

My point is, why on earth do wedding dress designers have such a bizarre sizing system? Most girls would love to come into a shop to be fitted and told, well actually we need to order you a size 12 (or whatever size is smaller than your current size).

I didn't particularly care too much, as the main thing is how you look, but the lady in the shop was telling me that she has had girls who were in tears after being measured - some who have returned a few weeks later, a stone lighter after a crash diet!

On Saturday my bridesmaids were all fitted for their dresses and again, they had to order dresses that were much bigger sizes than they normally wear. They are all size 12 and 14, but had to order size 16 dresses.

Anyway if you are in this situation yourself, don't feel bad as it happens to us all. I was told that nearly all bridal dress designers have a sizing system that is one size higher than the highstreet (e.g. size 12 = size 14 bridal). The most important thing is that the dress fits you on the day and you need to be sure that you don't order a dress that is too small, as if this happens there is nothing that can be done. I was told that dresses can be taken in a size and a half or more, so this means that you can go down from a 16 to a 12/14 or an 18 to a 14/16.

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