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Don't be basic,  follow our easy bride guide!

1

You shouldn't need more than 3 appointments to find 'the one' if you have taken time to vet the shops for styles, sizes & budget before booking.

 

Not all shops & dresses are created equally, 

don't waste your days trying on gowns that aren't worth your time.

Get traditional and fussy gowns out of your system before visiting us.

Its ok to find the dress in the first shop, if you do, stop and pat yourself on the back!

2

You don't owe anyone anything when it comes to dress shopping, what you wear is as personal to you as who you have chosen to marry.  

 

The venue, catering and entertainment have a tangible impact on your guests experience, but I bet you didn't consult any of them on those choices.

Ask guests to send a pic of what they can see you wearing, if they are way off the mark, don't bring them.

Guests, if you bring any, are there only to share the moment, not to be judge & jury.

3

You have chosen your life partner and you've been dressing yourself for years, You are officially over qualified to pick your own wedding dress!

 

DON'T let the internalised sexism of society infantilise you over making a very simple decision.  When you know, you will know. Weddings and what you wear are entirely a matter for the heart.

 

 Leave the overthinking head out of it (other than trying to stick to budget) or you are on a one way trip to months of turmoil and regret.

4

Give yourself plenty of time! This is the miracle of 

SLOW fashion.

We need a minimum of 8 months from order to wear date.  So that means shopping before that. Ideally, 2/3 shops over 1-2 weekends is best, but that's assuming everything goes to plan and your research has paid off.

Please don't hold off because you want to lose weight first. If you are on a weightloss journey or pregnant, please email us and we will advise case by case timings for ordering and potentially delayed measuring.

12 months is the gold standard.

  • What is your price range?
    Our gowns range from £1200 - £3500. We, like everyone else, have felt the soaring prices everywhere and worked very hard to find the most stylish and highest quality dresses on the market and pride ourselves in managing to present the majority of our high quality and desirable styles a little above or below £2000. There are often incentives available if you say yes on the day of your appointment, which most brides do! And if you order more than 10 months before the wedding date you can choose to spread payments over 6 months with no interest. Actual pricing of each dress can be found in the styles section.
  • How many people can I bring to the appointment?
    Each appointment type has its own guest limit: Bride + 0 guests - the limit is no guests Bride + 1 guest - the limit is 1 guest Bride +2 guests - the limit is 2 guests Bride + 3 guests - the limit is 3 guests (very limited availability due to staffing required) Children over 12 are part of the limit. Children under 12* are not permitted. If you book for 2 and then find yourself needing 3, you must cancel and rebook the appropriate appointment. However, if you booked for 2 and only 1 can make it, then you do not need to do anything. We strictly operate this way to make sure there are enough staff members in for everyones comfort and safety and our insurance requirements. We also need to prepare in advance for refreshments. There is no negotiation on this and we appreciate your cooperation. Arriving on the day with more people than you have booked will result in you being turned away at the door with no refund given. Daytime tv has brainwashed people into thinking you need to bring lots of people or specific family members with you. It truly pains me that people don't understand that this is because lots of people = lots of drama = good tv. A bride coming with that 1 really supportive friend who appreciates their sense of style and finding 'the one' without a problem isn't a hit show, but it is good for your own sanity! A huge number of our brides also choose to shop alone either out of choice or necessity and we will gladly be your bridal bessie throughout the appointment and beyond. *We understand that childcare of a newborn is difficult when often the people you would trust are also who you would bring to your bridal appointment. Where possible, childcare should be arranged for your own benefit of having a well deserved break and the attention properly focussed on you for an hour. But if not possible, the BRIDES newborn can be brought along as long as they are content in their pram or carry cot. We have a double storm door entrance which is normally half locked over, so if you are bringing a pram or wheelchair, please put it on your booking form so we can make sure you have easy access on arrival.
  • How many dresses can I try on?
    A typical appointment will allow for a bride to try on around 5-10 dresses, with most appointments finding the one within 7. Your appointment allows for time to arrive and get settled, find out a bit about you and your wedding, before we pull dresses based on that information, you will have just under an hour for actually trying on dresses. If it's your first appointment we are likely to rattle through a few styles to rule things out before identifying the right style so these tend to be the higher end of the scale. But if it's your 2nd or 3rd appointment we will likely focus on 3-5 style picks and spend more time in each as you will have clearer idea of what you want. We reserve the last 30 mins for measurements, placing the order, answering any questions, taking payment etc.
  • What size do you go up to?
    Bridal samples NEVER fit anyone perfectly. We try to list sample sizes on our styles carried by each designer on the website as a guide but take them with a pinch of salt as sizing varies across brands. Most of our samples fall between a UK size 8 and 18, majority being 12 & 14's, although we have some up to a 22. Usually you can try on a dress that is at least 1-3 sizes too small or too big with clever pegging and get a good enough idea if it suits you or not. Dresses can be ordered in pretty much any size and we will advise in store if your designer works by standard sizing or made to measure. All dresses will require further adjustments on arrival to have it fitting perfectly and these are not included in the cost.
  • When should I order my dress?
    We take pride that all our wedding dresses are 'slow fashion' and made only to order, not sitting in stock. This longer, but more sustainable approach means that dresses take up to 6 months to arrive. Our recommended seamstress kindly requests that you start alterations 3 months prior to the wedding date. We add in a buffer of 1 month to allow for the dress to arrive in store, be checked over by ourselves and give you time to organise collecting it before starting alterations so that equals a 10 month minimum order time. However, anytime between 8 and 18 months is normal and most brides and bridal stores settle at the 12 month mark as the god standard of advice. 8 months might restrict some dress choices and mean less time for alterations and is our absolute cut off. If you have less than 8 months then we cannot help you with a new dress/styling appointment, but please look at our sale page which is full of nearly new bargains available for immediate dispatch and online purchase. We understand brides are excited to dress shop, but do not recommend shopping too far in advance with the intention of ordering later down the line as styles get discontinued all the time with little to no notice, you will never want something more than the minute you find out you cannot have it! So we strongly advise booking between 10-18 months in advance and only at a time you are in a position to commit, should you find the one. You MUST have secured your wedding venue and date as we cannot advise which dresses will be available in time without this information and you will not be able to envisage your dress without knowing exactly when and where the wedding will take place. The price and availability of a gown is only valid during your appointment, if you need to revisit us later we cannot guarantee it will be available or the same price. At a time of high inflation and fluctuating currencies this likelihood of disappointment has never been higher!
  • Is there parking?
    Yes, we are in the heart of Ayr and there is now free parking for up to 2 hours on the streets of Ayr, including Kyle Street right outside our shop (except the last 2 spaces on the street which are reserved for taxis), you need to validate your parking by entering car reg into the machine and waiting a short pause for the green tick prompt. The surrounding parking lots are not included in the free 2 hours. The nearest parking lot of approx 50 spaces is under the red brick buildings on the right hand side across from the shop (on google maps as Kyle Street Parking) is £1 an hour payable up front. There is also the pay as you leave, parking basement parking underneath the shopping precinct 'Ayr Central' which is directly behind us. Alternatively we are under a minutes walk from the train station, which is connected to Glasgow central with at least 2 trains an hour with a journey time of under 50 mins.
  • How many bridal shops should I visit?
    A diligent bride who has researched shops that fall within their budget and vibe should be able to find the one within 1-3 stores. Don't waste your time hunting down specific gowns you found on Pinterest, find the shops that look like they have your kind of style and shop from there. If you are travelling a distance to visit, leaving us till last will make it easier to say yes on the day and save a second journey as you will be able to rule everything else out. If any part of you or your guests want to see you in a 'big princess gown' or something much more traditional be it serious or just for fun, we recommend visiting a larger traditional store first, so you can get this out of your system. We do not try to be everything to everybody, so although a smaller store, if you like plain and plain-ish gowns you will find a larger choice of gowns that you actually want to try on with us. Try keep your appointments grouped across 1-2 weeks as it is always sods law your favourites will be in different stores and much easier to compare if there aren't months between trying them on. Beware of over shopping. You will desensitise yourself to the experience, the gowns, and ultimately have a more complicated than necessary time. F&F will also grow weary of thinking of new things to say. Nearly all bridal shops charge for appointments too, think of what else you could treat yourself too with those extra booking fees! If you are struggling to find the one after a few shops, ask yourself if you are doing the same thing and expecting different results. For example, you booked shops and asked to try on specific dresses, but just aren't falling for anything. Open up your parameters on fabrics and styles and let the consultant dress you instead, you might surprise yourself!
  • Can I take photos during the appointment?
    Photography and videography is NOT permitted on our property. Booking an appointment is acceptance of this condition. We want to offer an organic, memorable bridal appointment and this just isn't possible with people taking awful photos from angles and focal lengths that warp and distort your figure. Your guest(s) should be looking at you and listening to you, offering support in real time. Allowing our honest, constructive advice to be heard and considered by yourself while letting your eyes, instinct and heart guide you through the decision making process. If you need to take a photo to remember it, then forget it, its not the one! Your guests should have their phones away during the appointment. If there was any specific situation that needed a photo, we can take them for you. Our staff have the right to privacy while at work on private property and anyone seen sneaking photos or videos during the appointment is breaking the law and will be asked to leave, without hesitation. With over 10 years in the game it is our lived experience that on collection of their dress, typically 6-12 months after saying yes, our brides number 1 feedback is their heartfelt gratitude that we didn't allow photos!
  • Where are you located?
    Our beautiful boutique is located in the peaceful coastal town of Ayr and our brides travel the length and breadth of Scotland to visit us. Just 36 miles from Glasgow. We are connected by direct train to the city and are just a minutes walk from the station. Alternatively there is ample paid parking around us. There are so many good cafes and restaurants around us to make a day out of it, just ask if you need any recommendations. We work by appointment only which are bookable online. We do not offer walk in appointments.
  • Do you serve Prosecco?
    No. Asides from the morality of getting people liquored up, during the day, with a substance that is proven to make you more likely to say yes. Its actually completely illegal to serve alcohol, free or not, in a commercial capacity, without having a personal and premise license exactly the same way a pub or restaurant does, punishable by up to 6 months in jail for me! Any bridal shop doing this is actually breaking the law and if they don't know the laws surrounding this then I would definitely question if they are aware of all the other trading rules and standards a business must follow and what that could potentially mean for your very special purchase. We do, however provide a self-serve mini fridge with various artisan refreshments for you to enjoy if you want them, much nicer than some cheap plonk.
  • When will my dress arrive?
    Typically around 3-4 months before your wedding date. Unless specifically requested, if it arrives early, we will hold on to it until this time as it is safe, insured and out of harms way. We will email you to advise it is here so you can book a collection appointment. It is your responsibility to advise us if your email address changes and make sure we do not go into junk folders.
  • Where are your gowns made?
    All our gowns and accessories are lovingly hand made by highly skilled teams based around the world including Europe, China, India and the UK.
  • Do you work with photographers on photoshoots?
    Absolutely, as long as you think your photography style and ethos is aligned with our brand, we loan out gowns to diligent and careful suppliers wishing to collaborate. Just send us an email with date, model photo and measurements, the kind of style you are after/moodboard and what the usage terms on the images will be. We require at least a small selection of images to be turned around within 10 days of the shoot. Postage/collection/return is your responsibility and if dresses come back damaged or dirty then we will charge cost to bring back good. If you are known to us or a local supplier we do this on a gentleman's agreement, if you are not based in Scotland we will take a credit card swipe of the value of the dress as security.
  • Do you do bridesmaids dresses or mother of the bride outfits?
    We only sell dresses, separates and jumpsuits for the bride.
  • Do you offer accessory only appointments?
    At present this is something we do not offer, but may in the future. At present our exclusive selection of veils, jewellery and shoes are only available to our brides.
  • Do you have a waiting list for appointments?
    We do not operate a waiting list, but do post last minute weekend cancellations on our instagram page. Our diary shows availability up to 3 months in advance, so if you are trying to book for later than this you will need to set yourself a reminder to come back later. Due to our unique styles and excellent reputation, we enjoy a client base the length and breadth of Scotland, making appointments, particularly weekend ones, in hot demand, often filling up, up to 3 weeks in advance.
  • What if I have less than 8 months until wedding?
    Unfortunately we do not offer rush orders. We do have a wide selection of "off the rack" ex sample gowns in great condition, that have only ever been tried on in store. These are only available to purchase online in our e-shop only and have photos, size and condition info. We do not have room for these dresses in store, so they are pre-packaged away in storage ready to ship out globally. They are full payment only. You can try on at home and have 14 days to return for refund if unsuitable, less p&p.
  • What do I need to bring to the appointment?
    An open mind and a credit card! We do not provide shoes and they are not essential for your appointment, but if you have your actual shoes or a similar height to what you will wear on the day itself then please bring them along as it will help with more accurate dress length. NUDE SEAM FREE PANTS that are not too tight and cutting in. Black or white underwear will ruin the look completely and are very difficult to see past. If you do not feel comfortable going braless on your wedding day then please put thought into bridal underwear solutions before dress shopping, especially if you want a backless gown. Many dresses have cups built in, but these often are not adequate for larger busts. Its better to know before spending ££££'s on a dress that the lowest backless bodysuit you can find is going to sit under the back of the dress. Ender Legard, Spanx and Skims all have bridal collections. A website called Luxury Legs carries a range of nude options. We are completely immune to all parts of the human form, but if it makes you feel more comfortable then skin coloured nipple covers can usually be picked up in primark. We also don't give two hoots about matching undies, scars, tan lines, eczema or anything else you are worried about, so don't panic. We have a WC stocked with hygiene essentials if you forget.
  • Do you do alterations?
    We do not offer in house alterations due to the vast majority of our brides not being local. Alterations are always extra and always required, even for made to measure gowns, to have it fitting perfectly. We recommend factoring in at least a few hundred into your dress budget for these, more if you are planning on major changes or customisations. Alterations are up to you to organise in a timely manner for your wedding date. The majority of our brides use Elizabeth Wallace in Kilmarnock who offer a professional fitting service and accessory store with a highly skilled and friendly team.
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