Buying the dress (an illustrated adventure)

June 15 | Guest post by Christy

You might remember Tribe member Christy from her illustrated venue search. This time around, Christy finds her wedding dress! She took notes again, and by "notes," we mean iPhone drawings.

I went to Kleinfeld's Blowout Sample Sale in NYC. I didn't really research where to buy wedding dresses in NYC, but a) I work kinda near it, b) I heard it had a show on the TV, and c) Kleinfelds is the fancy princess dress store and I very much wanted a fancy princess dress. Unfortunately I do not have the same budget as a fancy princess, so I bought a VIP pass to the Kleinfeld's Blowout Sample Sale.

At first I wasn't going to go, because when I hear about bridal sample sales, I think of roaming, semi-feral packs of friends all wearing matching t-shirts and clubbing each other to death over the first spotting of what might be a Vera Wang.

The VIP pass was on a sample sale website, and it gave me access to the sale before they opened the doors to the public with my own consultant and my own dressing room. Fancy!

Instead of rabid bride madness, everyone was so lovely and nice to each other. There was peace across the land of dresses. There was still that vague sense of urgency that all sample sales have, but even then no one seemed to be going for any of the same dresses I liked, so it was okay.

I even got to play dress up with sparkly hair things!

I think the only people there who didn't seem to be having fun was a surly looking mother-like woman in the hallway that seemed to disapprove of All Dresses*.

*Not my mother, obviously, because my mom is super awesome. She loves the pictures I sent her of my dress.

My consultant, Elena, was so great! I brought in a picture and was all "THIS ONE" and she pulled everything that was remotely within my budget and description. She actually found a dress that was so like the picture, I thought it was the same one until I realized a shiny thing was on the other side! That was the one I tried on first, and it was definitely the dress. Still, we tried on allll the other dresses just to make sure. But the first one was it. I pranced around in it for a while in the store and people smiled at me in spite of me quietly singing "I'm a priiiinceeeeess" in high pitched voice. Here it is!

I promise, it's really pretty.

[related-post align="right"]The cameras were around and I saw bits and bobs of television happening, but never came into direct contact with it. I've watched the show a handful of times and recognized a few people, and they were all very nice. Two behind-the-scenes tech guys held the door open for me when I was leaving with my dress, so that was useful.

Everyone was very cheerful and happy for me when I was carrying the dress out. The girls in line, instead of descending upon me with deafening screams of "WHY IS SHE IN THE STORE BEFORE THE SALE STARTED?" started cheering and clapping for me. It was disturbingly sweet and I thank them for accepting me as one of their own.

  1. Admittedly, I was hoping for more carnage.

    Still, this is awesome! Thanks for even more cutesy bootsy doodles that make me irrationally lustful for an iPad.

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  2. Tribe member Christy needs to start her own blog of awesome stories & drawings :]

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  3. I love it. My worst moment dress shopping: sitting in a dressing room in a big ugly wedding dress crying in the mirror while my mom tried to convince me everything would be ok. And um…did I mention I was 37 years-old at the time? So lame. I finally did find a dress…but oh the pain! I am not a wedding dress shopper by nature!

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  4. I love this story! And congrats on saying "Yes to the Dress" :)

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  5. You make dress shopping sound such fun- I can't wait to start! I love your posts- can't wait for more updates!

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  6. I'm starting to think sample sales have gotten an unfairly bad reputation. My sister bought her dress at one too and she seemed to enjoy herself. I didn't ask for any details of the actual dress buying process but it sounded pretty relaxed and fun.

    Also I love the picture with "There is only joy in the land of sample dresses". All shops having a sample sale need a sign up, covering at least one wall, that says exactly that.

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    • They got that rep for a reason! The other bargain brides don't want you showing up! *;)

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    • There are some distinctly different kinds of sample sales. (1) "VIP" sample sales, like the one Christy went to, have a limited number of patrons, meaning that there are sales reps to help everyone. Everything is organized and tidy. (2) There are sample sales that are much, much smaller that happen alongside normal dress sales and are barely a blip on the store's radar. (3) And then there are MAD DASH FREE FOR ALL DRESS SALE 2011!!!!1! sales where the sale is hyped up, brides line up smushed to the glass, then they're let in all at once, first come, first serve style–whoever touches the bargain first gets it. That's the sale that happened after Christy left, and the one that made brides wonder how SHE got in first.

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  7. Christy, I just ADORE your drawing style and approach. Come shopping with me?

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  8. I love this so much. Jealous because I wish I could draw AND I wish I could go to Kleinfelds! Please, more posts from Christy!!!!!!

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  9. At first i thought about attempting to make my own dress, being the crafty bitch that I am. But then I saw the dress I wanted. The dress I HAD to have. Miracle of miracles, the local dress shop just down the road JUST got with the company that made the dress, so I could order it through them – and at a much cheaper price than the one I found online.

    The dress ended up perfect. And everyone at the wedding thought I HAD made it, because it suited me so well. I was left feeling flattered because (a) I looked amazing in it and (b) people actually assumed I was THAT good at sewing. Hah.

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  10. Oh wow that's actually kind of cool, that all the brides are happy for themselves and for all the others!

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