Too Many Cooks In The Hitchin'


Over the 600 or so weddings we have cumulatively photographed, I know Amy and I have both seen this scene more than a few times: Enter the chaos of the bridal preparations. Hairspray cans, half consumed champagne glasses, and bobby pins everywhere. The leisure of the early morning has now crept up on everyone and suddenly it’s only 90 minutes until ceremony go-time. The 6 bridesmaids scurry up and down the hallways, cutting in an out of the doors of the beautiful airbnb, and hollering out requests and questions from every angle.

Does anyone know who’s driving us?

Who’s got the baby?

How do you want me to hold this bouquet?

Where’s my left shoe?

Do you have a preference for how quickly we walk down the aisle?

It’s about this time that we look over to the bride’s face to check in on her mental state and nine times out of ten, the poor poppet looks as though she feels the weight of the world. Usually when asked, “how you hanging in there, love?” all she can grant us is a weak, polite smile. The pressure mounts with ninety minutes till and she’s still in her dressing gown. Everyone else’s questions start careening in and the last thing she feels is reflective about the day or what she’s been looking forward to all along.

We’re all about entourages at Mrs Fray. We love a good support crew or bridal party who bring the mood to life for the day.

But… let us throw a small spanner in the works for just a second with one simple question: How many is too many cooks in the kitchen?

The world of wedding dress shopping is no different from the ‘make or break’ element a big crew can bring to the experience on the day. In the short amount of time we’ve been hosting brides in our Campbell shop, we’ve seen the crew be an asset just as often as it is a liability. Sometimes, bringing your aunties, your besties, your sisters, your mum, and that-friend-from-work-Sharon-you-like-the-style-of, can actually hinder the experience you have finding a wedding dress.


Because you might be a sparkle girl, but your mum would be happiest if she saw you in lace. The look on her face when you’re wearing a gown she loves vs one you feel ‘you’ in, could be enough to change your thoughts entirely on what you’re wearing on your wedding day (and perhaps not in a good way). You could love showing a bit of a skin with a low back, but your sister might think a more traditional ‘v’ back is the way to go. You might be in love with a modern gown that shows your personal style, while good old Work-Sharon might dissuade you in arguing, “it’s too plain.”

As with anything, when you have too many conflicting opinions things can get more difficult than they need to be.

Where we’ve seen this go wonderfully right is in the instance where even though there’s a plethora of opinions on that couch, sipping champagne at the same time and pulling the bride one way or the other, the woman at the helm knows herself well enough to step up and say, “Nah, you know what. I like it. It’s me.” We fancy ourselves as fairly self confident ladies, but even we struggle doing that very thing when there’s a line of people we respect sitting in front of us. Still, we’re here to say it’s been done and can be done again!

So here’s what we suggest: When you’re planning your wedding dress shopping excursion, know your crew and be ready for a flurry of differences. Come prepared to advocate for or defend your love of a gown just in case the crew slips the other way. Any maybe, perhaps, consider leaving home one or two of those strong opinionators and coming with just a trusted few.

Above all, ladies: remember that this is about you. It’s one of the beautiful, blissful instances in our lives as modern women that we get to make a personal style choice that helps us stand in front of that massive mirror and remark, ‘Wow… I look awesome.’

So come as you are, come with your trusted crew or come alone, but above all: come for you and we can guarantee a smooth ride from there.