Lots of women have dreamt about their wedding day since they were a little girl. The highlight of their dreams of course is their wedding dress. However, when it finally comes time to find the perfect gown a lot of women feel very overwhelmed. Luckily for you we have compiled this 12 step process to help you find the perfect gown. We hope it helps you find your dream dress for your special day.
Start your search about nine months to a year prior to your wedding day if possible to ensure there is ample time for delivery and alterations. Customizing your dress with beading or lace or by modifying the neckline or train can takes even longer. Plan accordingly. If you find yourself crunched for time ask your consultant if your dream dress can be rush delivered for an additional fee or consider attending a sample sale. Sample sales are wonderful opportunities where brides can score off-the-rack styles with discounts of up to 80% off.
Be realistic with your budget and stick to it. Be sure to factor in tax, shipping and alterations. Most bridal salons require a deposit that accounts for 50% of the ticket price of the gown. Keep a record of the payment in case problems arise. Plan ahead so that when you find the ONE you'll be ready to say 'yes' and celebrate the day you find your dream dress.
Study up on wedding gown silhouttes prior to shopping. Consider the basic outline of the dress. Bridal gown silhouttes fall into six broad categories: ball gown, empire, A-line, sheath, fit-and-flare, and mermaid. Try on one of each the first time you go shopping for your gown- it'll quickly become clear which works best for your shape. Selecting the silhouette you want to wear will help narrow down the huge range of gown options. From there you can decide on secondary criteria such as neckline, sleeves, embellishments, etc.
Narrow down your favorite wedding dresses in a PRIVATE Pinterest board. Look through hundreds of the latest styles and pin your favorites. Then take a step back and look for similarities amongs the dresses. You should begin noticing common similiarities that draw your attention such as a certain designer, silhouette, or fabric.
Consider scheduling your appointment on a weekday. There will be fewer crowds, and you may get more time to shop. If you have a personal day to spare, or even a half day, it might be worth taking off to go gown shopping during a weekday or other off-peak time. That way, you can get the best service and attention possible from the sales staff. Schedule appointments at bridal salons that are within your budget and offer your preferred designer.
Limit your dress shopping entourage. Although it might be tempting to get everyone's opinion on what will be the most important fashion purchase of your life, the more people you invite, the greater the chance that you'll end up overwhelmed or confused. Keep in mind that typically you will hear two opinions from each person that you bring dress shopping (the opinion they think you want to hear and then later what they really thought).Bring those who will be instrumental in helping you make your decision. They should be honest and have your best interest in mind. Save the big crowds for the actual wedding day.
Envision how you want your dress to make you feel. Do you want to feel sexy, understated, modern, chic, traditional? Or perhaps you want your dress to have a more vintage aesthetic. Once you find your aesthetic you will find your dress. Share your vision with your gown consultant, who can help you pull styles that match the feeling you wish to evoke on your wedding day.
Keep an open mind when trying on gowns. A dress that seems lackluster on the hanger may end up looking spectacular once you actually try it on your body. On the other hand, a gown that you've been pining over online might fall flat in person. So many times I have seen brides who went dress shopping with a certain look in mind but walked out with something completely different.
Give your gown consultant constructive feedback and your dress shopping experience will remain exciting, rather than becoming exhausting or stressful after the first five or six dresses. Don't make the mistake of keeping your thoughts to yourself out of fear that you'll hurt their feelings. Your stylists needs to know if you dislike the lace embellishments or the bodice of the dress. They can choose options that are more on target for your style if you are openly communicating with them. This does not mean be rude to your gown consultant. In fact be as nice as possible. This person ican easily be equivalent to your own personal Fairy Godmother or Godfather. Treat them with respect and they will treat you like the Princess you are.
Test how comfortable a prospective gown is by moving around in it- sit down, dance, and walk up and down the store aisles. Follow your gut instincts and choose a dress that is flattering to your body, rather than what is trending. If the gown feels too tight or if the top keeps falling and you worry that you may have a wardrobe malfunction ditch the dress and find something that is much more comfortable. You don't want to spend your most cherished day battling the gown instead of enjoying the day. *Bridal Tip: Be sure to eat a large meal prior to trying on dresses or getting them altered. This will help ensure that the gown fits you perfectly even after you have filled up on wedding cake and bubbly.
Don't get hung up on the dress size. Bridal gown sizes may be up to two sizes larger than your regular everyday attire. It is always safer to order a dress based on your current measurements rather than sizing down and trying to slim down in time for the wedding.
In the end, choose a dress that feels right for you, no one else. This is YOUR day and YOUR dress. I have seen it too many times where a bride chooses a gown based on everyone else's opinion and is miserable for it. You should feel beautiful and confident in your weding gown; only you can make the right choice, not your maid of honor or even your Mom. Unsure you have found the right dress to say "I do" to? Try adding a veil to help get yourself in the wedding-day mindset and see if you could imagine yourself walking down th aisle in this dress. If the answer is "yes" and you don't want to take it off, that's a sure sign that your search is over! You finally found the one!!! Now enjoy your beautiful day!!