Friday, July 22, 2011

A rooster in the hen house. Or, should your man help choose your wedding gown?

Bridal gown shopping is women’s business. It’s something you do with your mom, your best friend, you sister. Men are not usually involved, and if you were to ask most of them, they don’t want to be.
But let’s answer the first question that many brides ask – is it bad luck?  Well, after much web research I found that the groom not seeing the bride or the bride’s gown is a combination of things.
-          Way back when many marriages were arranged they were a business agreement between the parents. The couple was kept apart until after the vows were finalized. This way, the groom could not back out if he found his new wife was not . . . up to his expectations when he lifted the veil.  
-          It was considered bad luck for a bride to put her complete bridal outfit on before the day of the wedding. The actually sewing of gowns was often not completed until the day of in order to prevent this. And WAY back when, brides were often sewn into their gowns on their wedding day, so there was simply no way for the groom to see the gown before his bride was in it. 
-          Wow factor. As a guest at a wedding I love to see the look on the grooms face when he sees his bride for the first time. The bride I can watch all the way down the aisle. The groom is who I look at as the processional music starts. Many feel that this ‘Wow’ is lost if the couple sees each other before the actual ceremony. But then again, many don’t.
So really, it isn’t bad luck for the groom to see the bride in her gown while she’s hunting for that perfect dress. The question is not “can he” or even “should he”. It is “do you want him to?" and "does he want to?”
If he doesn’t want to be there, don’t force him. There are plenty of women out there who would love to help another woman find a wedding gown. I’ve had total strangers volunteer to play audience to a bride's dress up time when they realized she had no one there to help her and everyone enjoyed it. If he doesn’t want to be there it will cast a gloom on the appointment and could really ruin the whole experience for you.
Just a tip, if your man is one who answers “fine” when ever you ask him how an outfit looks, his presence will not be helpful. Lol
(posted with permission)
If he wants to be there, then do you want him there? Well, think about the following questions before you decide:
- Is the wow factor important to you?
- Do you have a dream gown in mind?
- How will you handle it if you find a gown you love and he doesn’t like it?
- What if he loves a gown you hate?
- Does he have a realistic idea of what a bridal gown could cost?
- Will he give you the time you need to try on several gowns?
 These are questions you need to answer for yourself before you invite your fiancé to shop. Then again, these are questions you need to ask of anyone you bring with you on this quest.
Bridal gown shopping is, for most brides, emotional as much as it is ‘visual’.  There are exceptions of course. But for most brides, when you put on that gown, THE gown, you will know. You will FEEL like a bride. You will feel beautiful/elegant/like a princess. What ever that secret part of you was looking for, this is what your bridal gown should make you feel.
It is a beautiful moment and I will never get tired of it. If your co-shoppers are the right people for the job their first question with every gown will be “how do you feel about this one?” Input on the specifics should not be offered until the bride has decided if the gown is in the running or not.
Long and short, the gown is about the bride. It’s what she wants and feels beautiful in. How she sees that fitting with the theme, budget and traditions she and her groom have decided to follow. If a bride has decided having her groom help choose the gown is important to her, then why not?

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