After the venue and the administrative hurdles for the civil ceremony, the next (and most fun!) step is to find that dream wedding dress for you to walk down the aisle in. And where better to find this dress but in Paris, right? Well, not quite.
Dress shopping in Paris is definitely not as straightforward as one might imagine. The concept of the one-stop-shop multi-designer warehouse shops like Kleinfeld’s in the US, really do not exist here. Instead, each designer has their own showroom where they sell their designs only. The only exception is a store called Metal Flaque that sells designers like Jenny Packham, Monique Lhuillier, Oscar de la Renta, Sadoni and Vera Wang, all in one shop in the 1st arrondissement.
Paris also has several Pronovias, locations, but their dresses can be found world wide. Some of Paris’ best local designers that might be worth checking out are Delphine Manivet for her more modern and casual designs, Laure de Sagazan for a whimsical romantic feel, Suzanne Ermann for her fun and playful dresses, or Max Chaoul’s haute couture complex creations.
All of the above designers require an appointment to visit and try on their dresses. Walk-ins are usually turned away so plan in advance!
If you are a bride that knows what she wants, a very common practice in France is to have a dress made specifically for you. This was recommended to me on a few occasions but our 6 month engagement didn’t really leave enough time. It usually takes about 6 months for a dress to be made and properly fitted before your wedding, which means you should plan for at least 7 months in advance to be sure to have the design that you want. Laure de Sagazan makes custom dresses as well as selling her collection and other designers like Gilles Zimmer and Odile Leonard focus mainly on their robes sur-measure.
Happy dress shopping! Next on our agenda is the caterer…