There’s me, in my much loved wedding dress, which I’m considering selling, but I have to collect from the dry cleaners first. I loved the dress shopping part of wedding planning. I’m sure everyone else didn’t. I ended up going to about 10 shops, trying on over 100 wedding dresses. My issues were many, in my line of work, I see a lot of dresses. I also lost a substantial amount of weight, so dresses I thought were off limits to me, were suddenly very accessible to me. I’ve worked with a lot of wedding dress shops in Ireland over the years and I wanted to visit them all. I very much knew what I didn’t want, but was unsure what I did want. When I started off the big search I made the mistake of dressing how I thought I was supposed to dress for such an occaision which made it hard for the consultants to get a sense of who I was, sartorially. This might sound silly, but it was only after I spent ages planning my outfits for All Together Now that I got a real sense of what I wanted. And what I wanted, was sequins, and to show off the body I worked hard to maintain and keep healthy all those years. I think I nailed the brief in the end :). Having visited a good few wedding dress shops in Dublin, Wicklow, Meath and Belfast I’ve decided to write about my top picks.
This is where I eventually bought my Karen Willis Holmes Addison gown. Again, I had 2 appointments with Ciara and Michelle before deciding on my gown. The space is so beautiful, with plush carpets and gold fixtures. They provided the perfect bridal experience that didn’t feel rushed. My second visit was for a Karen Whilis Holmes trunk show and I went on my own. Ciara was amazingly patient and helped me chose a gown that fit my style and personality. Her honesty was refreshing, it really felt like she wanted to best for me rather than just making a sale. They’re based in Naas in Co. Kildare, it’s very easy to find and parking is underground so it couldn’t be simpler. beaubride.ie
Photo by Eoin Hennessey
2. Folkster Bridal
Folkster Bridal in Kilkenny was my first stop on my journey to finding my wedding dress. Myself and Roisin (pronounced Rosheen), Folkster’s head of bridal, were close friends all through our twenties. She and her sister are two of the most stylish people I know, so needless to say I was excited. The styling is where Rosh really excels. She creates stunning looks with the gowns and accessories which means each bridal look is unique. Roisin tries on all the wedding dresses on their Instagram stories so you can see what they look like on. They also have a range of dresses under €1800 which is highlighted on their instagram.
I’ve worked with plenty of White Room brides over the years, so it was a no brainer for me to hit the road for Mullingar. I fell in love with two very different gowns there. One was a princess style Jesus Piero and the other was a very boho Rembo Styling. They were so accommodating with a second appointment and also getting a second Rembo in for me to try. The consultant really knew her stuff and advised me on gowns that suited not only my body shape but but my personality too.
The White Gallery are based in Newry and have one of the best reputations I’ve ever heard of for a store, let alone a wedding dress store. The could run a course on customer experience. The space is absolutely stunning and each appointment is customised for you. Their attention to detail is incredible, with a welcome sign with your name at the front door being such a lovely touch, prime Instagram content. I visited twice to try and whittle down my options and never felt like a nuisance. There’s no airs and graces either. They stock Halfpenny London and Rue de Seine alongside a wonderful Sample Sale section too. There’s some downright stunning gowns in their collection and I wanted to try them all!