Trunk Shows: What Every Bride Needs to Know



As a bride-to-be, your eyes and ears probably perk up any time you hear or see anything remotely bridal or wedding-ish. So most likely you’ve heard of a trunk show, but you may not know exactly what one is. Common definitions of the word aside, a trunk show doesn’t involve a display of cool vintage luggage, elephants or even storage compartments in cars. In the bridal world, a trunk show is a very special event held to highlight the work of a particular designer so that you can see the entire line in person, order at a discount and enjoy yourself. In the old days, designers actually rolled up for the shows with their trunks stuffed full of merchandise – thus the name. These days trunks have been replaced by brown cardboard boxes delivered by the UPS man, but the name stuck around.



Typically lasting just a few days (usually over a weekend), trunk shows are festive occasions which may involve a visit by the designer in person, refreshments, gift bags, door prizes and special discounts. Since most stores don’t have the budget or floor space to carry every style in store, the chance to see a designer’s entire collection is a huge treat. Trunk shows give you the opportunity to try on dresses that would not normally be in the shop. If you try on a sample gown and fall in love, be ready to commit so that you can take advantage of the discounted price. The store will be happy to order you a brand new dress in your size.


Trunk shows are held at local independently owned bridal boutiques, and the vast majority are scheduled during January through April. Contact your local bridal salon to see when their trunk shows are scheduled, and with which designers. Trunk shows are planned well in advance, so stores should be able to give you a list of dates. Typically the shows last from one to three days, and appointments book up quickly, so it’s best to call early to schedule your appointment! Trunk shows always book up fast, so if you find out your favorite designer is on the roster, nail down your spot at the event right away!

Lillian West Collage 6

As a bride, you will benefit from attending a trunk show in many ways. You will have a chance to try on gowns that typically are not available in store. And, you can earn a substantial discount for placing your order on the spot, sometimes up to 20% off. Enjoying the camaraderie and joyful atmosphere is another perk – you will be among friends. Nothing bonds ladies like wedding dress shopping!

You might even have the opportunity to talk to the actual designer, and discuss the gowns and any changes you may want to make to the one you are considering for yourself. It’s fun to get a photo taken with your favorite designer too! Hello Instagram! Designers (and bridal store consultants) also love to offer their expert suggestions for the most flattering style from the line for you. Added bonus: the designer might get the feels for you and throw in a few extras such as buttons down the back, or additional length on the train at no extra charge.

Trunk Shows are also beneficial to designers, since they get to watch brides try on their gowns and listen to their comments. It’s a perfect opportunity for them to learn directly from you what they’re doing right — and not so right! It’s a win for bridal boutiques as well, as they get to show — and possibly sell — dresses that aren’t part of their regular stock.

 Top Tips for Trunk Shows:
1. Research your favorite bridal designers and search for trunk shows at local bridal boutiques.
2. Reserve your appointment at the trunk show.
3. Come with whoever is instrumental in making your final decision with you to your appointment so that you can take advantage of the best possible price if you find “The Dress.”
4. Bring shoes with the heel height you plan to wear on your wedding day.
5. Wear nude undergarments.
6. Plan on a fabulous bridal shopping experience.
7. Bridal boutiques are happy to have you try on other designer’s wedding dresses while you are attending their trunk show if you prefer to do so.

At The Gilded Gown, we will host our Curvy 2017 bridal line Trunk Show beginning January 8th at the Pink Bride Show at the Knoxville Convention Center. Please call us at 865-329-4905 to schedule your appointment!


Things to be grateful for in a bridal salon! #gratefulthankfulblessed @thegildedgown



the gilded gown

At this time of year, we like to reflect on our many blessings.

Perhaps you would like to come join us, we are happy to share them with you!


Most of all we are thankful & grateful for the opportunity to be immersed in an atmosphere of love. We see every day the love between mothers and daughters. We experience first-hand supportive friendships, caring families and women feeling good about themselves. We celebrate the tradition of love and marriage and commitment and we have a ring-side seat to brides planning the happiest days of their lives. We say YES to that! Thank you Gilded Gown Girls!

We are thankful for all the beautiful details we are surrounded by each day, such as the intricate beading and lace on our award-winning couture gowns by Justin Alexander and the boho chic, vintage-inspired looks by Lillian West. Ahhhhh, sooo lovely!



We are thankful to be surrounded by SPARKLE! All the beautiful beading and sequins and glitter make us very happy! We love our spectacular new prom line by Azzure Couture and the Curvy line for 2017 is next-level! We know our Gilded Gown Girls are going to be absolutely thrilled with their prom dresses this year!



We appreciate the glamour and romance of our salon. We adore illusion tops and peek-a-boo backs and gorgeous headpieces. Being able to share just the right look with our Gilded Gown girls makes us very happy!


How lucky are we to get to play dress up each and every day with our brides? Buttons, and lace and armloads of bling!!!



We are grateful for the superior craftsmanship and lovely fabrics of our gowns and for how happy these things make our brides when they find their dream dresses!



All of us at The Gilded Gown wish you and yours a very happy Thanksgiving!

Image result for happy thanksgiving

If you are ready to begin the search for your dream dress, we invite you to visit us in Knoxville Center Mall. We offer convenient layaway terms, friendly & caring stylists, and the most gorgeous bridal gowns around. We are located downstairs, near Sears. Open Seven Days A Week: Monday through Saturday from 11 am to 7 pm, and Sundays from Noon to 6 pm. Although we will be closed on Thanksgiving and Black Friday to spend time with our loved ones!


Wedding Inspiration: Victorian


At The Gilded Gown we have a love for all things vintage. Throw out the name of any era to us and we will immediately imagine styles we love associated with that time period. The Roaring Twenties? Well that brings to mind the lovely Great Gatsby-esque, Art Deco fashion: shimmery skirts to dance the night away in, cloche hats, and adorably cropped, bobbed hair. The Sixties? The hippie aesthetic appeals to our boho loving sensibilities: long flowing clothing,  wildflowers, embroidery, and a free-spirited look. Mention the 1950’s and we are gonna be thinking of all things Rock-n-Roll, peep toe pumps, red lips and men who look like James Dean! We might not have a huge grasp on actual historical events that occurred during past decades but we are well versed in how awesome people dressed.

Looking to styles of the past is a splendid way to theme your wedding. You can embrace the details that you love about an era and blend it seamlessly with modern touches to make it your own. If you are looking for a grand, glamorous, opulent wedding that practically oozes romance and refinement, we suggest taking your style cues from the Victorian Era! One of the most exciting times in history, the Victorian era is named for this lady, Queen Victoria:


Queen Victoria not only looked fierce, she WAS. She loved art and spoke seven languages. Barely five feet tall, she was an outspoken woman who actually proposed to her first cousin Prince Albert. Their love story was a passionate one – they had nine children together.


She said about her husband, “Without him everything loses its interest.” When Albert died at age 42, Victoria went into a state of mourning and wore only black the rest of her life. The time of her reign, known as the Victorian era, was a time of splendid sensibilities and profound prosperity. Weddings were feminine, delicate affairs loaded with lace, puff sleeves, crinolines, gloves, veils, flowers, dainty details and delicate colors. Check out the lovely Victorian bride below:


Modern Victorian Weddings include lots of lush florals, candelabras, cameos, delicate china, top hats, greenery, silver and gold, crystals and vintage furnishings. For your Victorian style wedding, please take inspiration from the following lovely images from Style Me Pretty, Pinterest, The Gilded Gown archives and the Interweb:

victorian-collage-2 victorian-collage-3 victorian-collage-4 victorian-inspo victorian-wedding-style-me-pretty



We’ve also sourced several details available for purchase for your Victorian themed wedding:

The Gilded Gown offers lots of luxurious, Victorian inspired gowns like this strapless David Tutera lace trumpet wedding dress, which is delicately beaded and embroidered with tulle over memory taffeta:114293_blue_wedding_dresses_2014

For a more modern interpretation of a Victorian gown, how about this lovely Lillian West gown? You can feel dreamy in this feminine chiffon A-line gown with an illusion V-neckline, lace appliqués on the sleeves and sheer back, and a dropped waistline. This gown is completed with a chapel length train.

You can rent any decor items to compliment your theme from Vintage Inspirations Rentals  in Lenoir City. This is a tremendous resource for Knoxville area brides! Love!


Vintage Inspirations Rentals – Lenoir City, TN


CeceliaJane on Etsy, offers these lovely, fresh and floral Victorian invites:

Victorian wedding invitation, classic Victorian bridal shower, Victorian bride, floral and creamy bridal shower, vintage wedding, IN263

This set of 30 Skeleton Keys is available from GlowberryCreations on etsy for less than $20 and would be theme-appropriate for use with your seating chart or as favors:

set of 30 Alice in Wonderland silver skeleton keys old vintage keys wedding favor jewelry supply Victorian steampunk keys clés schlüssel


And, in parting, since you are getting married and will understand perfectly, we will leave you with the immortal, hopelessly romantic words of Emily Bronte:

Image result for victorian era quotes about love

New Lillian West Dresses in Stock! Yay!

Lillian West Collage 1We are thrilled to have new Lillian West Gowns in stock at The Gilded Gown. Please take this opportunity to come see these lovely boho-chic, vintage-inspired wedding dresses while we have them in store. Brides are falling in love with them left and right.

This dreamy feminine chiffon A-line gown with an illusion V-neckline, lace appliqués on the sleeves and sheer back, and a dropped waistline plus a chapel length train arrived in a size 12.

And Style 6433 arrived in a size 10. This adorable dress has floral details adorning the bodice and plunging crisscross straps plus a natural waistline, tulle skirt, and chapel length train.

Come See ‘Em!

The Gilded Gown is located in Knoxville Center Mall, downstairs, near Sears. We are open Monday – Saturday from 11 am to 7 pm and Sunday from Noon to 6 pm. Relaxed and friendly atmosphere, easy layaway plans, and tons of beautiful gowns waiting for you!!!

Lillian West Trunk Show is Still Going On At The Gilded Gown

We are thrilled to have extended our amazing Trunk Show of Lillian West Gowns at The Gilded Gown until July 25th. Please take this opportunity to come see these lovely boho-chic, vintage-inspired wedding dresses while we have them in store. Brides are falling in love with them left and right.

And, we are also very excited at the styles our brides are choosing.

This dreamy feminine chiffon A-line gown with an illusion V-neckline, lace appliqués on the sleeves and sheer back, and a dropped waistline plus a chapel length train will be worn by a Knoxville bride who is getting married in Ireland. How perfect???


And this, trend-setting two-piece gown was selected by a Kingsport bride for her wedding. She is our first bride to select a two piece bridal gown. LOVE!

Effortless beauty is created by this two-piece set. The bodice features a Sabrina neckline, cropped waistline, and layered lace appliques. The fit and flare skirt has tulle covered buttons and a chapel length train.


The Gilded Gown is located in Knoxville Center Mall, downstairs, near Sears. We are open Monday – Saturday from 11 am to 7 pm and Sunday from Noon to 6 pm. Relaxed and friendly atmosphere, easy layaway plans, and tons of beautiful gowns waiting for you!!!


BRIDAL EXPO at Knoxville Center Mall on Saturday, July 16th

You are invited to attend

Knoxville Center Mall’s


Saturday, July 16th,

in honor of







NATIONAL BRIDAL SALE DAY will be held at Knoxville Center Mall on Saturday,  July 16, 2016.

The Wedding Fair will include Fashion Shows, Wedding Workshops, Door Prizes and lots of the very, very best local wedding vendors including:  Regal Tuxedo,  LB Floral,  Custom Love Gifts,  Heartland Meadows,  Knox Vegas DJs,  Blush Creative Photography,  Melissa Timms Designs,   Claire Queisser Runway Events,  Gage Talent,  Simplicity Events LLC,  Charlie Kidd Make-Up Artist,  Knoxville Center Mall, Belk and JC Penney. At The Gilded Gown we will offer amazing deals for brides, plus we will feature a trunk show of award winning bridal designer Lillian West’s gowns.

The ground-breaking sale will be held all day at the store, and the Wedding Fair will be from Noon until 4 pm in the Center Court at Knoxville Center Mall. We encourage all brides to attend! If you would like to shop in store, please call us at 865-329-4905 to schedule your appointment. We have a feeling that day will be crazy, but in the best possible way.

There is even a perk you can click on right now from The Association of Wedding Gown Specialists. They are providing brides with a $25 gift certificate good towards gown cleaning and preservation.

A list of participating retailers, which we are proud to be on, and which is growing by the minute, can be found





Local Vendors:

Regal Tuxedo

3001 Knoxville Center Dr.

Knoxville, TN  37924


*2nd Location at Windsor Square Shopping Center

Phone: 865-531-9998

Regal Tux Collage

LB Floral

3001 Knoxville Center Dr.

Knoxville, TN  37924


LB Floral

Custom Love Gifts

3001 Knoxville Center Dr.

Knoxville, TN  37924


Custom Love Gifts

Heartland Meadows

5428 Salem Church Rd

Knoxville, TN  37938


Heartland Meadows

Knox Vegas DJ’s

5428 Salem Church Rd

Knoxville, TN  37938

Phone: (865-256-2982)


Blush Creative Photography

Phone: 865-323-9294

BC 2 BACK Blush Creative Photography collage

Melissa Timm Designs & More

8078 Kingston Pike, Suite 118A

Knoxville, TN  37919



Melissa Timm Designs 2

Claire Queisser Runway Events



Gage Talent

408 N. Cedar Bluff Rd. Suite 100
Knoxville, TN 37923




Charlie Kidd Makeup Artist

Simplicity Events

Heather Lynn


Simplicity Event Planners

Knoxville Center Mall

the gilded gown
bride clickbridal guideassociation of wedding gown specialists

Introducing Bridal Designer Lillian West! Trunk Show July 16th at The Gilded Gown

Lillian West first pic

Wonderful News for Brides of the Southeast!! Boho Chic and Vintage-Inspired Wedding Dresses designed by Lillian West are coming to The Gilded Gown.

Lillian West, a DEBI bridal design award nominee, artistically creates wedding gowns loaded with whimsy and romance. She combines lovely lace with intricate details and soft fabrics which makes her collection perfect for the boho bride or the indie bride searching for a vintage look.

We are very proud to introduce this stunning brand to the Knoxville market.

The Gilded Gown will be hosting a Trunk Show of Lillian West Gowns in honor of National Bridal Sale Day on Saturday July 16th.

We invite you to make your appointment for Saturday to see this loveliness in person. Simply give us a call at 865-329-4905.

In the meantime, we have posted lots of inspirational collages of these dreamy dresses for your viewing pleasure.

Lillian West Collage 1 Lillian West Collage 2 Lillian West Collage 3 Lillian West Collage 4 Lillian West Collage 5 Lillian West Collage 6


Behind the Scenes at the latest Gilded Gown Bridal Photo Shoot

On a hot day  (A VERY HOT DAY) recently we embarked on an exciting and ambitious major bridal photo shoot.

We had the following on hand:

A gorgeous, river front forest locale

One canoe

Five Styled Vignettes: A River, A Pear Orchard, A Wild Bamboo Fence, A Vintage Couch Overlooking the Water and A Grand Picnic Feast

Four Models: Grace, Jake, Olivia and Tucker

One Hair Stylist: Abby Katin Lane with Studio 26

One Make-Up Artist: Charlie Kidd

Two Photographers: Andrea Yeager and Rusty Isbill

Tons of Camera Gear

Two Floral & Set Designers: Ellie’s Home Mother and Daughter Team Beth Daniels and Catherine Daniels-Smith

One Friendly Neighbor and Jacqui’s Good Friend: Karen Fieldsa

One Director: Jacqui Wadsworth

Two Helpers: Dennis and Elizabeth (me)

A Table full of Accessories, Veils and Jewelry from The Gilded Gown

A Rack full of Gorgeous DEBI Award Nominated Bridal Designer Lillian West Gowns (Thanks Lillian West

A ton of Handsome Tuxes from Ben at Regal Tuxedo (Thanks Ben

Oh, and four dogs.

Please enjoy a few behind the scenes shots from our little ole tablet camera. These are not pro shots by our esteemed photographers, but some candid and fun un-professionals pics.

The actual photographs are AH-MAZING! We are sure to get published with these and we can’t wait to share them soon.


Big, big love and thanks to all who participated.
Behind the scenes 2 Behind the scenes 3 Behind the Scenes Beth and Catherine Charlie Kidd Make Up Artist and Abby Katin Lane Hair Stylist Grace and Jazz Olivia and Tucker 1 Olivia and Tucker and Parasol Olivia and Tucker and Rusty the photographer