Saturday, September 18, 2010

Shellabella Bridal

I was obsessed with finding the perfect wedding dress.

Every wedding gown I saw was so manufactured. I went to all the major stores, all the little boutiques, and even a huge warehouse for an international formal wear website-- and all the gowns were the same: cookie-cutter sizing, cheap fabric, and the same, boring, trend-driven styles. I wanted something different. I wanted a dress that was mine and only mine, that reflected my style and made me feel beautiful. But I'm 5 feet tall- so it's almost impossible to find a gown that doesn't make me look like a 10 year old that's been raiding her mom's closet. I have a long torso, petite legs, small bust. Dresses never fit me like they should, so it's impossible to try on dresses and try to imagine what they'll look like when they're altered. I was getting so frustrated, and fed-up with the whole process. Then I found Shellabella Bridal.

I don't even remember how I found the site. It was like fate. I clicked on the site, and I found the perfect dress- the Isobelle. It was positively lavish, with a beautifully beaded bodice, gorgeous lace trim, and an enormous pick-up skirt. It was as if someone read my mind! Every detail was exactly what I wanted! I had looked at hundreds of gowns, and there were many that caught my eye. I liked the ruched bust on that one, or the pearl bead work on that one. But the Isobelle was the ultimate combination of everything that I had liked about every dress I had ever seen. It was simply stunning. I knew from the first click that it was THE dress.

But I was worried. It was an international purchase from a new company made entirely through e-mail and PayPal! Shellabella is based in Victoria, Australia and I live in Dayton, Ohio, USA. So much could go wrong. But nothing went wrong. Nothing at all!

Michelle Heron is a true business woman. She handled my transaction with the ease and confidence of a huge company, but she also took a real interest in my wedding and my vision of what I wanted my dress to be. Communicating, ordering and paying with Shellabella Bridal was a breeze. I just went to my local seamstress and got measured for my wedding dress, emailed my measurements to Michelle, and the left the rest to Shellabella. I couldn't decide weather I wanted straps, cap sleeves or strapless, so Michelle added all three with hook-and-eye fasteners, so that I could decided what I wanted when I received the dress. I have to admit I was initially very worried, never having seen the dress. But I had tried on a lot of similar dresses, so I knew that the style of dress would look good on me- especially since Shellabella was customizing a dress to exactly my measurements. And Michelle emailed me about every two weeks with an update, to tell me how the dress was coming along. When I ordered the dress, Michelle had estimated I would receive the dress in mid-June. It arrived right on time.

I opened the box and the dress was packaged perfectly. The dress bag was so durable, but nice and light. I unwrapped the hoop skirt, and it sprang right into shape. And then I unwrapped the dress. It was absolutely stunning. It wasn't even wrinkled! And when I tried it on- the fabric was positively luxurious. The detail of the beading was incredible. And when I tried it on it fit like a glove. It needed no alterations whatsoever. It was amazing!

I have to say, buying a wedding gown from Shellabella was the easiest online purchase I have ever made. The customer service that Michelle provides her customers is absolutely unmatched. Her attention to detail and genuine concern for her clients is something so rare to find in an online bridal shop. I loved my wedding for so many reasons- but my Shellabella gown made my day!

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