Your Day, Your Wedding: Finding a Wedding Dress




After just having been through the process to searching for a wedding dress, I have some firsthand experience to add to everything else you’ve probably read and heard from friends.

Here are some things to remember as you search for that perfect gown.

  • Be prepared. It may take several stops or appointments until you find your dream dress.
  • Make an appointment. This will allow you one-on-one time with a consultant without interruptions. Once you start finding what you like and don’t like, they can be great to help you narrow down the search.
  • Feel good. Because the store typically only has one sample size of each dress, most of the dresses you try on won’t fit. You may not be able to zip up some while you’ll have to hold up others. Do your hair. Put on a little makeup. Put on some fun earrings. You will feel better in the dresses if you already feel good about yourself. Also, don’t forget to wear something nice underneath because your consultant or store staff will be helping you try on each dress.
  • Shop when you’re ready to buy. Look at magazines to see the different styles and designers out there. If you’re looking for a particular designer, call local shops to see if they have that designer and if they do, ask about any upcoming trunk shows or special showings.
  • Stay in your price range. If you’ve given yourself a budget, don’t tempt yourself by trying on dresses out of that range. You will be wasting your time and if you fall in love with one, the temptation will be hard to resist. Be honest with the consultant about what you’re willing to pay.
  • Order ahead. Because your gown will be ordered in a size based on your measurements and will then need to be altered, you want to make sure to leave yourself plenty of time before the wedding. Some dresses can take up to 6 months to come in and then alternations can take anywhere from 4 to 8 weeks.

Below are just a few of the bridal shops in Hampton Roads to get you started on your search.

All the Rage – Chesapeake
1600-D Crossways Boulevard, Chesapeake
(757) 523-2957
www.alltherageformals.com

Hours (January–May):
Monday–Friday: 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–5 p.m.

Hours (June–August):
Monday–Friday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Hours (September–December):
Monday–Friday: 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.

All the Rage – Hilltop
Hilltop East Shopping Center
1556 Laskin Road #144, Virginia Beach
(757) 491-1418
www.atrvb.com

Hours (January–May):
Monday–Thursday: 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
Friday–Saturday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–5 p.m.

Hours (June–December):
Monday–Wednesday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Thursday: 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
Friday–Saturday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–5 p.m.

Ava Clara Couture Bridal Boutique
401 N. Great Neck Road, Suite 119, Virginia Beach
(757) 962-1466
www.avaclarabridal.com

Hours (Appointments strongly recommended):
Tuesday–Saturday: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Prices range from $900–$5500.

Upcoming Trunk Shows and Special Events:
January 20–22 Modern Trousseau “Best of” Bridal Collection
February 10–12 Jim Hjelm “Best of” Bridal Collection and Spring 2011 New Bridal Collection
February 17–19 Amsale Bridesmaid Collection
February 24–26 Priscilla of Boston and Melissa Sweet Bridesmaid

Blush Bridal Consignment Boutique
185 Herman Melville Avenue, Newport News
(757) 595-7797
www.blushgowns.com

Hours (appointments required):
Monday: By appointment only
Tuesday–Wednesday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Thursday: Noon–7 p.m.
Friday–Saturday: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

David’s Bridal - Hampton
32 Coliseum Crossing, Hampton
(757) 827-0361
www.davidsbridal.com

Hours:
Monday–Friday: 11 a.m.–9 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–6 p.m.

David’s Bridal - Norfolk
5957 Virginia Beach Blvd., Military Crossing S/C, Norfolk
(757) 455-8411
www.davidsbridal.com

Hours:
Monday–Friday: 11 a.m.–9 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–6 p.m.

Le Star Bridal & Formal
3912 Virginia Beach Blvd., Virginia Beach
(757) 463-9416
www.lestarbridal.net

Maya Couture
12 Best Square, Norfolk
(757) 461-1690
www.mayacouture.com

Hours:
Sunday: Noon–4 p.m. (Appointments required)
Monday–Thursday: 11 a.m.–7 p.m. (6 p.m. in December)
Friday: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m. (Appointments required)

Upcoming Trunk Shows and Special Events:
February 4–6 La Sposa 2011 Bridal Collection
March 11–13 Impression 2011 Bridal Collection

Pure English
1860 Laskin Road, Suite 110, Virginia Beach
(757) 631-9810
www.pureenglishbridal.com

Hours (by appointment only):
Monday–Saturday: 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Special Seasonal Hours (January 3–March 31):
Late night Tuesday until 7:30 p.m.
Sunday: Noon–4 p.m. (Strictly by appointment only)

Prices range from $1000–$5500.

Upcoming Trunk Shows and Special Events:
January 28–30 Tara Keely Bridal New Fall 2011 Collection
February 3–6 Tara Keely Bridal New Fall 2011 Collection
February 10–13 Anjolique Bridal New Fall 2011 Collection

Silk Bridal Consignment
Chambord Commons
332 North Great Neck Road, Suite 108, Virginia Beach
(757) 631-2525
www.silkbridal.net

Prices range from $350–$2000.

Williamsburg Bridal & Formal
The Shops at Strawberry Cove
3709 C-1 Strawberry Plains Road, Williamsburg
(757) 229-5004
williamsburgbridalandformal.com

Hours:
Tuesday–Wednesday: 10 a.m.– 6 p.m.
Thursday: Noon–6 p.m.
Friday: 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

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