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As many of you may know, I LOVE planning…especially when it comes to weddings. I adored being a bride and am always jealous whenever any friend or family member gets engaged. I wish I could do it ALL over again!!! Casey is the last of mine or Zach’s immediate family to be getting married so, while I’m excited about helping her plan, I’m sad that this will be the last time for a LONG time that I get to be involved in any wedding planning (I hope Kye picks a bride who actually likes her mother in law so I can help someday!!!). Her wedding is in March and I helped her set up a timeline of things that need to get accomplished each month so she won’t have any last minute stresses before the big day. A thing on the asap list??? Get a dress! Wedding dresses can take months to come in, not including alteration time, and her wedding is only 6 months away!
It was really sweet of Casey to include me in her wedding dress shopping excursion. I’m a big believer in taking as few people along as possible – too many opinions can make the experience a negative one, ya know? Lucky for Casey, Mrs. Charlotte, Courtney and I aren’t the type of people to impose our personal preferences on her. We were ALL about what SHE wanted and felt beautiful in!
We started the morning by going to a HUGE yard sale that Katie and her family hosted. Katie’s grandmother passed away over the summer and she had a ton of stuff that they ended up selling. I knew it’d be a gold mine for wedding goodies and it didn’t disappoint. Casey scored ALL the vases she needed for centerpieces! We found a tutorial on pinterest of how to spray paint glass vases so that’s the plan 🙂
After the garage sale we headed down to Gainesville, FL for the big shopping adventure! When I was a bride I went to a million dress shops and tried on well over 50 dresses. Katie and I actually ended up finding “the one” in a magazine of all places!!! Casey’s experience was nothing like mine…we went to two stores and took less than a day to find her dress. Jordan’s lucky to be getting such a decisive wife! Poor Zach is stuck dealing with my constant indecisiveness on everything 🙂
Casey’s first appointment was at Jay’s where I went with Chrissy to find her dress!!! Casey had contacted Chrissy for advice on where to go and it all went perfectly! We were not overly impressed with Jays this time around, they weren’t very helpful and we had to pull all the dresses for her (with our crew consisting of a pregnant girl, sister who has lupus, and a mom with bad arthritis lifting those heavy dresses wasn’t really an option!). EVERY dress the girl tried on looked a-mazing on her (advantage of being 5’11 and beautiful, right?) and she found several that had potential to be “the one.” Of course I won’t be posting any of the dresses on here – you’ll have to wait for the big day!
Our appointment at Jay’s was at 10 and we stayed there until after 12. Our next appointment was at 1 at Solutions so we just buzzed through a gas station for some snacks to hold us over until after we were done shopping.
Solutions was a totally different vibe from Jay’s. It was like the kind of bridal store you see on tv! When we got there Casey had a sit down appointment with the girl who would be assisting her (and ONLY her) our entire visit. While they talked I went outside to work on our whole car situation (I spent a LOT of that day on the phone…but thankfully didn’t miss a single dress!). Laura got to know Casey personally and asked all about her and Jordan, their proposal story, wedding plans, and types of dresses she was interested in. They walked through the store together and Laura helped her pick only five dresses, all of which were in her price range. We were surprised that Laura stopped her at 5 and told her that was plenty! But the girl knew her stuff for sure…5 was more than enough to make the decision!!!
The very first dress Casey tried on in that store ended up being “the one.” Laura had three questions she’d ask her with each dress she tried on: was it comfortable, did it make her feel like a Bride, and one other question I can’t remember haha. I know that the dress she picked fit all three categories and Casey was simply glowing. I was impressed with Casey’s decision making skills – she tried on the dress and loved it. Then she tried on the second one and loved that one too. She tried on the three other dresses and none of them compared to the first two so then she went back to try on her two favorites. She started with the first dress and said “this is it!” She really didn’t rely too much on what we thought and I thought that was awesome – she KNEW what SHE wanted!!! It was great to see her so happy and so excited for her day. When Laura put on a veil we all about died – something about a veil to me just makes you a bride, ya know? The dress she chose will work beautifully for the venue and time of day/year that Casey is getting married. She’s having an outdoor wedding, on March 31st, at a Southern Plantation – a dress that works well in that setting is important! I know for me I wanted to make sure my dress made sense for a morning beach wedding…I think mine fit perfectly and Casey’s will too!
She bought the dress (not the shoes, but weren’t they blingin’?)
with Laura – who was AWESOME!!!!!!!
We all had a GREAT time at Solutions. I think we made friends with every other person in the store and even helped another bride pick her gown (this girl was a trip, she wouldn’t take that dress off and the store even let her webchat with family so they could weigh in their opinions on it!). We felt like Laura became our friend by the time we left and couldn’t be more impressed with the store, the staff, and the selection of gowns. Laura was SO knowledgeable about everything and knew how to clamp those dresses like a pro. I told Casey that I think the clamping made all the difference. The girls at Jay’s didn’t clamp the dresses tight enough (since all dresses are usually HUGE) to get a good feel of how it would look so, of course, none of them looked as good as they probably would have if Laura had been the one doing the clamping!
If you are ever with a bride or a bride yourself I HIGHLY recommend making the trip down to Gainesville to check out Solutions. It is best to make an appointment ahead of time and you can call them at 352-367-0070. They also now have a store in Orlando (which is where I got my dress, but from The Collection). Of course if you’re going to the Gainesville location then I’d totally ask for Laura Dean!!! She was GREAT!
After we left the bridal shop we went to get a late lunch at the mall food court (random?) before heading back. I think all the guys were shocked how fast we got home! Zach and Jordan were having a guys night watching football and we showed up before the games even got started haha. It was great to get to put Kye to bed and to get off my feet some though. I didn’t want to bother the guys during their “guy time” so I met up with Crissy and Ashley to try out The Mix!
Another thing you may know about me is that I LOVE ice cream…and I especially love the new type of ice cream/yogurt places where you can fill your own cup with unlimited amounts of ice cream and toppings. We FINALLY have such a place in Valdosta and I was PUMPED to try it out! It totally disappoint and it honestly better than Mochi! I mentioned that I heard something about it on the radio while we were there and they hooked me up with a free 8oz (of course my cup weighed 13oz so I still had to pay some dough…but it was a great deal!).
Crissy and Ashley! A mommy night out!
Notice who had the biggest amount…
We spent a couple hours enjoying our treats and visiting with each other. Luckily we all have sweet husbands who didn’t mind being at home while the babies slept (I am pretty sure 2 out of 3 of the husbands were watching football…I highly doubt Seth was though!). It was fun girl time and totally unlike me to do something so last minute! I enjoyed it though and it was the perfect way to end a fun filled day!!!
Thank you again to Casey for allowing me to tag along on such a big occasion. No bride forgets what it’s like to find that special, magical dress and I’m thankful I was able to be part of that moment! I can’t wait for ALL of you to see it in March! Now if I can get her to go ahead and pick out bridesmaid dresses, I’ll feel like this wedding will for sure come together in time 😉