An Unexpected Purchase


It was still hard coming home on breaks. I was still unsure what my parents thought, all I knew is that they had become involved in the wedding planning process. We had a venue, a date and a dress, which were all the important things!  We still had to find bridesmaids dresses and grooms men outfits.

I thought that this would be the easy part, but I was wrong.

My bridesmaids were all home over Christmas break so some of us headed down to a nearby mall to look around. Unfortunately, NO ONE had anything for summer because it was the middle of winter. We walked through department store after department store, but there was nothing.

Finally I caved and we went to check out David’s Bridal. Let me say, I have nothing against David’s Bridal, I just had four bridesmaids in college and one in high school and I didn’t think it was fair to ask them to pay for an expensive dress that they would only wear once. Or have them pay more for their dress than I did for mine.

But we had run out of viable options and I had the girls with me so we went to David’s.  We walked in and were immediately greeted by one of the attendants.

The bridesmaid section was a hard one to miss. There were pinks, blues, purples, yellows, and greens of all different shades. There were floor length dresses, tea-length dresses, above the knee dresses, loose, tight, one shoulder, two, strapless. The options seemed endless. Of course I was intrigued, we had just spent hours looking through department stores and hadn’t seen a single option. Here there were so many to choose from.

Unfortunately, I always look at the tag before I pick up a dress. My sea of options quickly trickled down into a small creek. Dresses are expensive, especially if you are on a college budget.

I picked ones that I liked from the racks and the girls tried on the dresses. This time, I got to sit back and watch. The dresses were very beautiful! I loved the idea of having one color with different style dresses or even one dress with different colors. My Pinterest visions were coming to life before my very eyes!

But I couldn’t ask the girls to spend more than I did on my dress. I was convinced I could get less expensive dresses somewhere else. So we ended up leaving empty handed and going out to eat.

I kept looking online, searching Pinterest and Modcloth and department store websites but didn’t find anything. I remember I saw a dress I liked on Amazon, but was afraid to buy a dress that had to be shipped overseas.

We did eventually order a couple dresses from Target that I really liked, but when they came in the mail, the colors were a little dull, not as vibrant as I had hoped.

I was quickly getting frustrated. I had pinned dresses that I loved but of course I couldn’t find them, or couldn’t afford them. The reality was, bridesmaid dress shopping was a lot harder than I had thought that it was going to be. As with my wedding dress, I did not have an exact idea in my head, I just knew I wanted the dresses to be some shade of light blue and modest—not to short, not to low.

Still months later I hadn’t found anything and it seemed like I was never going to find dresses for the girls. I was really close to having them pick any old dress in their closet to wear for the wedding.

But then, one afternoon on Maddie’s spring break, we were at the mall and low and behold we found a contender. 

We were walking around looking at the different department stores, amazed at how the prom dresses had gotten classier since we were in school (only two years earlier) and there in the junior section was this dress.

IT WASN’T WHAT I HAD ENVISIONED! I was thrown off by the beading, but I liked the style, the material was the same as my dress and the color was the closest thing I had seen to what I wanted. Plus we were running out of time!

We ended up buying a bunch of the dresses for the girls to try on and pick their sizes (because they were away at college). I didn’t hate the beading but I definitely didn’t like it. I knew they would look better with the beads off. So my dear mother bought an extra dress and experimented taking off the beads.

It took her hours to do (because you had to be careful not to snag the material), but eventually the beads, the little white dots (used to mark the beads) and the thread were gone and it looked AMAZING!


My persistence and instance on finding a less expensive dress paid off. It was definitely a lot more work and maybe not exactly what I had pinned, but it was worth it!

The dresses were beautiful and I was happy to know that they didn’t cost an outrageous amount of money. They weren’t what I had envisioned but I really could not have been happier. They were stunning the day of the wedding.

The truth is, it doesn’t matter what your bridesmaids wear, or even what you wear. At the end of the day it only matters who you are standing next to.

                               I was just happy to be marrying my best friend. 

If you are searching for the right dress, stop, breathe, relax, and just know you will find something and it will all be ok!

ARE WE EMAIL FRIENDS YET? I’d love to keep you updated on what’s happening here. If you want, just drop your email below. 🙂 Also, leave a comment, tell me what you think.


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I love a good plain t-shirt, pizza, snuggling with my dog and hanging out with my husband. My mission? To speak truth and grace to help encourage other women to know they are never alone.

I'm Sarah Jean.

I’m the girl who came to realize the freedom in not being the author of my story.

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