How To Rock Wedding Dress Shopping
Congrats on your engagement! There are so many things that have to be done before your big day, and wedding dress shopping is something that gets done relatively early. It can also be fairly intimidating! Here are some tips to get you going toward your dream dress.
1. Start with research. What styles do you like? What silhouette do you prefer? Do you want sleeves or sleeveless? Know what you are looking for but…
2. …Don’t be afraid to try something out of the norm. Your dream dress may not look very good, but something out of left field might. Let your bridal consultant recommend other styles and don’t shy away from picking something else out too.
3. Don’t shop too early, but leave enough time for any needed alterations. You shouldn’t be looking more than 12 months in advance, but leave enough time to have any dresses ordered and sent, if needed (5-8 months).
4. At the appointment, ideally bring only 2-3 people with you. You don’t want too many opinions coming at you! Maybe your mom and a couple best friends. It is a great time for bonding, especially with a brunch or lunch planned into the day as well.
5. Bring the right undergarments for the appointment. What are you wearing the day of? Spanx? Normal underwear? Bra? No bra? Are you wearing heels? Are you looking for a long veil or a short one? If you don’t have everything yet, that is ok! Just make sure you bring something approximately like what you will have.
6. Remember that bridal sizing is wonky. Things are WAY scaled up or down. A size six bride might end up wearing a size 10 or 12 dress. Don’t worry about the number and instead keep your eyes on the style!
7. Remember that things can be altered, to a certain extent. Panels can be put in, hems can be taken up, etc. Don’t be afraid to try something on a size up or down.
8. Know your price range and don’t try on things outside of it. You don’t want to fall in love with your dream dress, only to find out that there is no way you can afford it. Stick with what you know- and don’t be afraid to try consignment shops like Adorned in Grace, which sends proceeds to help with women affected by sex trafficking!
9. Take the little things into consideration. Is this a heavy dress for an outdoor summer wedding? Is the beading under the arms going to be irritating by the time the ceremony starts? Do you have a long train, but are having your ceremony on the beach or on grass?
10. If you are plus size and going to a bridal salon, call ahead to make sure they will have sizes for you to try on. A lot of times they may sell a large range of sizes, but may only have samples up through size 10 or 12.
11. Don’t be afraid to shop online! These days, there are so many places to look beyond just having a bridal salon appointment. Don’t be afraid to check Amazon, Etsy, Nordstrom Rack, etc., for some amazing dresses at way better prices. A lot of times they are cheap enough that if it doesn’t work, it is easy enough to find more dresses and still come in under budget.
12. Looking for something specific? Ask your local Facebook wedding groups for salons they love. Many times there are tons of vendors in them that have seen a lot of weddings and have the inside scoop on wedding planning. They may know of a little corner place or an unusual online store that may have exactly what you are looking for.