Before purchasing a wedding gown, many brides visit more than one salon – or visit one salon more than once before making a decision. If you are newly engaged and are in the planning stages, here are 9 tips that can help you find your perfect wedding dress.
- Set a budget: Set a budget and stick to it. Look at your financials and figure out how much you want to spend on your wedding gown and alterations. Don’t try on any wedding dresses that are above the maximum you are able to spend. Too many brides have fallen in love with a dress that is way outside of their budget. They either purchase and are in debt or pass on it and feel like they are settling. If you tell your consultant the max you are willing to spend – not a penny more, she should show you only gowns that are within your budget so that problem can be avoided.
- Shop 9-12 months ahead: Some gowns need to be ordered, and it can take anywhere from a couple of months to a year for the gown to be made. Time can vary greatly depending on the dressmaker. It is advised that you shop for and pick out your gown 9-12 months ahead of your big day to avoid any issues. If you have less time, your consultant can pull only dresses that she knows can be ordered in time or show you sample gowns which typically can be taken home same day. One downside to sample gowns is that sizes are typically limited as they are the dresses that people try on in stores. Another downside is that they may have small rips in them, broken zippers, makeup or dirt on them.
- Narrow down the fit: Have in mind the style of dress you are looking for. Look online at different styles (mermaid, A-line, ball gown, etc.) and narrow it down, so you can focus on those style dresses at your appointment.
- Make bridal salon appointments: Make one or two bridal salon appointments. There aren’t many places that allow walk-ins, so setting an appointment will ensure that you will have a consultant there to focus on helping you.
- Select your entourage carefully: Be careful on who you bring to your dress appointment. Bring people along that support you and will encourage you as you are trying on dresses. Don’t bring a long anyone that is highly opinionated or that doesn’t respect your judgment.
- Look the part: If you know you want to wear your hair up on your big day, wear your hair up to the bridal salon. Same thing if you know you want to wear your hair down. Putting on some makeup can be helpful too; especially if you know that you want to wear it to your wedding. Being somewhat put together can help give you an image on what you will look like on the day of your wedding.
- Bring undergarments and shoes: Bring the shoes that you want to wear on your big day to ensure you get the right length of dress. If you know what undergarments you want to wear under your dress, it would be good to bring those as well. If you don’t have shoes or undergarments yet, most bridal salons sell a selection.
- Keep an open mind: It doesn’t hurt to try on something a little out of your comfort zone or a style you are unsure about – you may find you’ll be surprised.
Take pictures: If you are torn between two dresses and want to sleep on the decision, have someone take a few photos of you in each dress that you can look back on later. The bonus of taking photos is you can see how well the dress photographs.