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Bridal Couture

What to exppect from Bridal appointments, Wedding dresses, Bridal salons, 2014 wedding season, shop

Words of Wisdom..Are Bridal Alterations REALLY "FREE"??

beware of free bridal gown alterations, wedding dresses, wedding consultations, proper fitting  of wedding dresses, couture seamstress, special dresses
The TRUTH" about "Bridal Alterations"...Open your EYES....-Part 1

There  are  a few  privately owned Bridal Salons that may offer "FREE ALTERATIONS " included with your Bridal Gown purchase.

Brides-beware of ANY Bridal Salon that offers  FREE Alterations with your Wedding Dress Purchase. What makes your wedding dress fit so beautifully on your wedding day is the  "expertise" of the ALTERATIONS performed.  With over 35 years in Couture Design, and in all types of Alterations including Bridal Gowns and MORE...alterations cost money if they are to be done appropriately, and there is no way under the sun they are "FREE".   What is often done to make a bride believe she is getting "FREE ALTERATION SERVICES"  IS the retail cost of the Bridal gown is overly inflated to the point the average cost of the alterations is included in the cost of the dress and averaged out in the store owner's inventory.  This means you are STILL being charged for your alterations, and this is often a trick shops use to get a Bride to buy!!!!!!  It's the same with offering a free veil or headpiece.  It's also incorporated into the cost.  You are paying for everything when you sign that charge slip or put your cash out on the table !

The average cost of Bridal Alterations cost anywhere from $250.00 and up depending what is needed and often a Couture Seamstress will not know the exact cost of what needs to be done until the dress is fitted, then taken apart and each lining counts as a dress, and shortening a hem is often estimated by the amount of yardage needed to be removed and the time it needs to be hemmed and the number of fittings.   SO, YOU tell me, how can  all this work be FREE???

Word of wisdom- any Bridal Salon that offers FREE ALTERATIONS ...ask a lot of questions!  Take that dress elsewhere to someplace that knows what they are doing and has had many years experience in either making Wedding Dresses and is an REAL EXPERT because it will be worth every dollar spent!  A good Salon will refer you to a Professional who has experience and works closely with the Salon..and it becomes a "Team effort."  We care how the outcome of your gown will fit you on your wedding day and save you the tears later of "unprofessionally "done alterations that are FREE.


Your Bridal Appointment is going to be the most important factor in finding your Wedding Dress.

Every independently owned Bridal Salon or Bridal Boutique will set their own policy in servicing their customers.  This includes their scheduling of your "Bridal Appointment."  Their procedures are different from "chain store" Salons.  There is no comparison, including the services they offer which may include:

1. Private Consultations, this includes one and one private meetings with the Bride within a 1 hour or 2 hour time frame.

2. Private Appointments and Customer Service, which you do not find anywhere else, include shopping "online".

3. The knowledge of style and fabrics and how to fit you properly.

4. Timing of your order and when it will arrive in time for your wedding.

5. Couture Fashion design, and custom order knowledge

6. A well trained Bridal Salon and their staff will know exactly what style of wedding dress will look stunning just by looking at your body shape.  This comes from  many years  of experience  working in the Fashion Industry, including  as Showroom Models, Couture fashion design, Bridal Alterations , and Merchandising, They will know how to take your measurements to determine your proper size of your wedding dress.


Congratulations!   You said "yes" to his proposal of marriage.  It's the most exciting time of your life..and there is so much planning ahead!

It is highly recommended that you start shopping for your wedding dress no later than 1 year before your actual wedding date. Concentrate on your dress first..then take care of your Bridemaids.(more on that later).

Go thru some Bridal Magazines and see what is out there to get some basic ideas.  Set your budget for your wedding dress and accessories.  Alterations are NEVER included in the cost of the dress. This should not surprise you. Factor in approximately $300-$900 for Bridal Alterations.  This is a reality, and these costs are usually done independently by a professional expert in Bridal Alterations.  There is no "negotiation" of  any of these charges.  They are what they are as the cost of your dress!

Shop locally for your wedding dress. This is convenient in most cases, and you will be supporting independently owned businesses.

Call in advance for your appointment at the Bridal Salon you wish to patronize.  "Word of mouth" is the best referral.   Make the most of your appointment when you attend.   Bring shoes, any undergarments you need to try on with the dress, as these are usually not supplied, and will be required to purchase what you need at the appointment.

Each Salon is different. You will have an assigned a Consultant to work with you. She will have experience and the proper training in working with Brides and their Bridal Group. The  duration of your appointment  and the number of bridal gowns you will be allowed to try on during is up to the salon and their policy.  They will ask you several questions. Be honest and do not waste their time. This also means if you have already selected a gown at another store, but have not made your deposit or your final decision, say so.  Tell your Consultant you are "still looking".  There is nothing wrong with that. This is an important decision to make and an investment, and you will know instinctively when you have found your wedding dress.

 If the Bridal Salon does not allow  taking pictures during the appointment, please respect that policy. This is quite common and no reason to act surprised.  However, you will be allowed to take pictures of your wedding dress once it's purchased. Please always ask before you start "snapping" away  assuming it's OK.

Keep an open mind and feel free to go thru the inventory with your Consultant.   Try on the wedding dresses that "speak" to you. Limit yourself to 6 dresses at each appointment. If you want to try on more, you can always reschedule another appointment a few days later. Be rested, leave pets, small children at home to avoid distractions.  Also, bring along just one person that can give you positive feedback.  I have had many Brides say "YES" immediately to the first dress they try on. You never know what will be flattering on you and make you shine!

It can take anywhere from 6-9 months to order your wedding dress.  You will be required to sign a  Purchase Agreement , and make a non-refundable deposit  before your order is placed. This is not uncommon. Add extra time for custom orders with special changes.   Bear in mind, all RUSH ORDERS, and CUSTOM Changes will cost extra and are not included in the original cost of the dress, which is always priced as marked.  Don't expect discounts. Chain store Bridal Salons don't give them, so don't expect "privately owned" salons to do so either.

Furthermore, be courteous and gracious with the Salon.   If you cannot keep your scheduled appointment, call them and cancel your appointment at least 48-72 hours prior.  It's rude to not show up, and the appointment can always be replaced with another Bride. Some salons will take your credit card to secure your appointment and charge a fee for not showing up, or not calling within the time frame specified to cancel or reschedule.  Bridal salons and Consultants are rendering a Professional Service to be respected.

These are some of the basics on what to expect.  If you need more information, please give us a call at (831)626-1287.  You can schedule your appointment by calling us or by completing the "Contact US" form on our website, www.collezionefortuna.com. We are here to help.

We look forward working with you! Happy 2014 Wedding Season!

(c)July 19, 2013, Collezione Fortuna Fashion Boutique and Bridals, All Rights Reserved

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