(Please note, this series on brides comes from my book. You can buy the book here.)

The majority of brides are happy, sweet, in love with their dress, and appreciative of the BAS (bridal alterations specialist) work. There are a few brides that can give you stress, but they are really few and far between. A huge part of dealing with these few, fretful brides is to be confident that your work is impeccable. You are less likely to take their drama personally if you know your work is spot on. Frankly, it’s not about you, it’s about them. Let me put these brides into a few categories. Granted, each bride is a unique individual, but I’ve seen the same behavior over and over. Understanding the bride helps you be the calm in the storm.

“The Sly Ones” 

The most dangerous bride to work with is the bride who keeps shopping after she has bought her dress.  She has found a new dress she wants to buy and is trying to convince her mother that the dress she has already bought is all wrong. Sometimes it starts out feeling like a hunch as you hear her talking with her mother in the dressing room. Sometimes it’s easy to tell. 

The mother tries to convince her how lovely she looks in this dress. The bride picks and criticizes all sorts of things. The mother reassures her daughter that the BAS can fix all those things and make her happy.  I’ve been around too long to play this game. 

If I get the feeling that things are going down this road, I will flat out ask 

“Have you found another dress you like better?”  

If the answer is yes, then I say,

“I don’t want to get involved with this decision, but I will not touch this dress until you are very sure that this is the dress you are wearing to your wedding. Let’s reschedule your fitting for next week and let you two figure this out.” 

I have bent over backwards trying to restyle a dress to look like the bride’s new favorite dress. And then, she still picks it to pieces and is in tears because her mom wants her to wear this horrible dress and she still wants to wear the other dress. 

Then it gets really ugly. Mother doesn’t want to pay for a new dress, nor does she want to pay for the alterations on a dress her daughter refuses to wear. So she can be mature and pay me, or she can go after me and the shop where she bought the rejected dress. Mother starts criticizing all the work done to the dress, even though it was what they asked for and has been done beautifully. Then they go after the store saying that I damaged the dress and want a refund. It’s so messy and dishonest. The bridal shop sees right through it. They have had to deal with these brides too. 

I had a bride who loved 2 dresses. She bought the one that I altered extensively for her. She hugged me and thanked me for doing such a beautiful job. Two days later, she showed up at the bridal shop. Asked if the other dress was still available. When they brought it out, she said that I ruined her dress and wanted the other one.  The store knew me well and began questioning her about what exactly I ruined. She tried to wiggle out of the lie. 

Then she finally admitted that the dress was lovely, but she really wanted the other dress instead. She ended up buying the other dress, which fit perfectly. She could have ruined my reputation just because she didn’t want to admit that she had changed her mind. That definitely got under my skin for a few days.

One more story, this experience was crazy sauce.  Bride A buys a beautiful dress from the shop I worked at. A few weeks later, she comes back with a friend (Bride B) who just got engaged and tells her this is the best place to shop. Bride B begins trying on dresses. 

We have her try on a new gown that has just arrived in the shop. Bride A’s eyes pop out when she sees how lovely Bride B looks in this new dress. Bride B absolutely loves this dress. She thinks this is the one. Bride A loves the dress and asks Bride B if she can try it on. Bride B reluctantly lets Bride A try on the dress. Bride B is not happy with Bride A trying on dresses. Especially this dress. Bride B wants to think it over and shop at some more stores before deciding. Out they go to continue shopping.

A half hour later, Bride A rushes into the store and wants to buy that dress quickly before Bride B comes back for it. The shop owner says no. Bride A complains that the dress is for sale, so she should be allowed to buy it. The shop owner says absolutely no. Bride A walks out in a huff.  A few days later, Bride B comes back to the shop and buys the dress she loved so much. We are all so happy for her and of course say nothing about her “friend”.


This is the second part in a series about brides. This is taken from my book, “The most important dress a woman will ever wear” Buy it today.