Dress You Up in My Love

Running of the Brides was one amazing experience.  While I didn't find a dress (yes I just gave it all away and killed the suspense), I would do it again in a heart beat.  If any one needs someone to go as part of their 'team'..... CALL ME!

I can't have asked for a better team than mine.  Mama CS came down from Philadelphia, my superstar Aunt and my cousin flew up from ATL for only 38 hours.  And finally a Sammie BM joined us briefly before she had to go to work but she was a trooper.
The Team!
The night before the RotBrides we did a little reconnaissance.  We took this very seriously.  The night prior we stopped by Filene's Basement to create our game plan for the next morning.  As luck would have it, they had already set the dresses out!  The dresses were roped off so we couldn't touch them but I could point out to my team the ones that I liked so they could get a feel for what I was looking for.  We picked a spot in a corner with a mirror and designated one person to run directly to the spot and claim it.  After our 'dry run', we went back to my house to get a solid 5 hours of sleep.  (On a side note: there were already people in line when we went at 5:30pm the night before... c.R.a.Z.y)

The plan was to get to Filene's at 4:00am which we thought would be plenty early enough.  Except it wasn't... there were probably 200 people already in line when we got there.  The 4am start gave us plenty of time to work on our signs and rehash the strategy. 
Nobody looks good at 4am
The doors opened at 8am but they 'condensed' the line starting around 6am.  From that moment on, if anyone flinch in line everyone surged forward.  It was madness.  Little known fact: In DC they actually only let about 100 people 'run' for the dresses and pull them off the racks like you see on tv.  If they let everyone run someone probably would have gotten injured.  You are never going to guess which team was part of the lucky 100?!?!  Ok... since I am writing this post you can probably guess.... It was ME!  We were the last team let in to 'run' but better last than never!  We got to actually take part of the running and stripping of the racks.  Don't believe me, watch the video:

Check out those camouflage shirts at the :33 second mark.  Surprisingly we were the only camo shirts amongst a sea of pink.  By the time we got into Filene's (in 33 seconds) the racks were almost bare.  I had to race around the back to the last couple of rows to grab dresses.  And they were frickin heavy!  I think it was one of those life endangerment adrenaline rush things but under normal circumstances I don't think I could have carried as many dresses as I did.  After my team grabbed and dragged, we met up at the predestined spot.  Best. Spot. Ever!  There was a mirror, plenty of room to hang up the dresses and we were under an air conditioner vent so it was nice and cool.
I just realized how nakey I look in this picture.  I swear I am not.
Hopefully you know a little about Running of the Brides so I am not going to go into it but there was tons of bartering, trading and negotiating going on.  Before I knew it, I was stripping down to my strapless bra and bike shorts in front of a couple of hundred strangers.  Sadly none of the dresses were what I was looking for (simple, narrow A-line, and slightly unique).  There was a shortage of any style except ballgown or fuller A-line.  There was very little lace but tons of satin with heavy beading.  The discount was unbelievable (all dresses for either $249, $499, or $699) but by the time the dress was altered, cleaned and in some cases repaired, the price would be about the same as a new dress if you were going for simple.  However for the more adorned dresses, it was quite the steal. 

As Mama CS said, soon it was becoming diminished returns.  Yes, we could have stayed there all day, combing the racks for a dress but would it be worth it?!  The team decided no and after about 2 hours we headed out.  No dress but an amazing once in a lifetime experience.  Unless someone asks me to go with them (please!) then it would be twice in a lifetime.

There are tips all over the internet for Running of the Brides but here are just my two cents.
1. In DC they were taking mirrors away from people in line because they said it was too dangerous.  I would call ahead to see if you can bring one or not.
2.  It definitely paid off to go the night before and scope out our spot.  An employee even told us we had the best location in the whole store.
3.  Don't buy a dress just because it is cheap and you feel like you have to justify getting up at 3am.  I have heard tons of stories of people getting a 2nd dress after RotBrides because they weren't totally sold on their RotBrides dress.
4.  Even though it says wear a sports bra, I would really recommend strapless.  It is hard to see past a big chunky sports bra when you are wearing a wedding dress.  Also I wore flip flops instead of close toed shoes and my toes were fine. 
5. Even though you designate someone as the trader or barter, take a lap once or twice yourself.  You are the best at spotting what you want and it is fun to soak it all in.  Don't feel like you can't go out in the fray because you are the bride. 

I am keeping my fingers crossed that someone I know gets engaged soon so I can go again!

Coming up next... the quest for the dress is over.  V for Victory!

1 comment:

  1. That sounds sooooo fun! I kind of wish I had done one!