The Expert Tips & Advice is an interview series with local wedding professionals. We talk about trends, ideas and advice to make wedding planning easier for the couple.
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Choosing the perfect wedding dress is an important detail for every bride planning her wedding.
So, how do you make such a big decision? Heart to Heart manager, Rochelle Jeffers talked with us about picking the perfect wedding gown.
Rochelle’s advice to brides is start dress looking early. “Brides should start dress shopping about a year before their wedding,” Rochelle says. “Once the bride has picked out her dress, ordering can take about 6 months for it to come. Then she should allow two months for alterations.”
Tips For Finding The Dress Of Your Dreams
Rochelle feels dress shopping should be about the experience. Heart to Heart will help you find a dress like the one you want. It’s fine to come in with ideas and images from Pinterest or magazines to give them an idea of the style you like. While Heart to Heart doesn’t carry every single dress, they have a wide variety of styles. Rochelle knows the selection of dresses they have and says, “Describe the dress you want and I can go find it in the shop.”
Heart to Heart loves that they help educate brides on the fit and style of wedding gowns, Rochelle says. “Dresses fit differently on different body types. Also, how a dress looks on the rack is not the same as it looks on you. Keep an open mind and try on different styles.” Heart to Heart has a large selection of dress sizes, including up to size 26. Regardless of body shape, they want brides to be able to try on dresses in their size and to love how they look.
What sets Heart to Heart apart from the competition is brides can look, touch and pick out any bridal dress they want to try on. Plus, there’s no set time limit or number of dresses they can try. “They can try on the whole store, if they’d like,” says Rochelle. “It’s a big decision and can feel overwhelming, so I want the bride to be able to see all the dresses she wants, so she’ll know she’s making the right choice. I want her to be happy.”
With that in mind, Rochelle suggests you limit the number of dress shops that you plan to visit on any particular day. “Arriving to your third dress shop of the afternoon, tired and hungry, won’t be fun.” It’s also sure to induce “decision fatigue,” where you’re too tired to make any more decisions and all the dresses start looking alike. If you plan to visit several dress shops, it’s best to start fresh another day after visiting one or two.
Another tip is to discuss money. “Some brides are afraid to discuss their budget, but they really should be willing to say it.” Rochelle needs to know your dress budget to be able to help you find the best dress while staying within your means.
“Current bridal gown trends include lots of lace, a-line and sheath.” Rochelle also says “fit and flair” style, similar to mermaid or trumpet, is popular with brides. “Brides want to be comfortable today,” says Rochelle. “They tend to not want a lot of tulle or crinoline. Most brides are tending towards straps and sweetheart necklines.” For bridesmaids dresses, the popular colors are wine, plum, navy and blush pink.
Rochelle has been the manager at Heat to Heart since her father, owner Scott Jeffers, bought the bridal shop in April of 2016. What she loves about weddings is connecting with the bride. “We develop a year long relationship,” she says.
Rochelle is passionate about customer service. She’s always updating posts on Facebook with new inventory photographts so brides can see what fresh styles are in the shop. She feels like the dress shop is her home and the people that come in are her family. Open 6 days a week, Heart to Heart takes appointments every day. Walk-ins are welcome, but Rochelle recommend setting up an appointments for weekends, when they are especially busy.
A’s to my Q’s: Rochelle says…
Weddings and happiness go hand-in-hand.
You should never get married without a great dress shopping experience.
To have an unforgettable wedding, sometimes you have to be open minded.
Electric Slide, Chicken Dance or watching from the bar? Chicken Dance!