Your wedding day is the one day you get to dress like an absolute princess, so why not fully embrace it? Whether you’re a fan of ballroom gowns or sleeker silhouettes, there’s something out there in the wonderful world of bridalwear for you. However, with so many options to choose from and factors to consider, picking the perfect gown can be tough, if you need a little help, we’re here to guide you.
Here are a few tips for choosing your wedding dress.
Know your wedding details
You’ve probably memorized every single wedding detail you’ve set in stone, so this step shouldn’t take long. Write down the important things that might affect what type of wedding dress you’d wear, like the season, what type of wedding venue you’ve opted for, what your wedding theme is, and, of course, your wedding budget. These bits of info will help narrow down the competition, leaving you with fewer styles and silhouettes to choose from.
Research, research, research
As with all other parts of wedding planning, you’ll want to do plenty of research before you even set foot in a store. Bridal boutiques can be very overwhelming, so you should have a clear idea of what you want to try on (this will save you from pulling every gown that catches your eye). We suggest scrolling through our Real Wedding section and our Dress Gallery, as well as Pinterest and Instagram to help figure out what you love (and rule out what you don’t).
Schedule an appointment
You’re probably not used to making appointments for shopping, but you’ll want to do it when hunting for a wedding dress. In fact, many bridal shops play by the “appointment only” rule, so you should definitely call ahead. Not only will this make the whole event more special, but it’ll also ensure that you get the best service (you’ll probably be appointed a salesperson just for you).
Prepare to make compromises
Maybe you were head-over-heels for Kate Middleton’s iconic wedding dress and want to wear its dupe? Well, when you try it on, don’t be surprised if you don’t look exactly like the Duchess of Cambridge. Every bride is a special snowflake and certain styles complement certain body types better than others. Be prepared to change your vision (or at least alter it a little) so that you get perfect gown for you.
Even if you consider yourself a lone wolf, don’t fly solo when looking at wedding dresses. Bringing along an entourage makes shopping more fun and will help give you a bit of honest direction. Pro tip: if you’ve got a Negative Nancy in your inner circle, it might be best to count them out for this trip. You want constructive criticism, not insults and passive aggressive comments.
Trust your intuition
While getting some feedback is important, don’t let your friends’ and relatives’ opinions cloud your judgment. If they’re not a fan of the sparkly belt on your dream dress and you absolutely love it, don’t toss it away! This is your special day and the only person you have to please is yourself.
Don’t forget about alterations
The wedding dress your eyeing probably doesn’t fit like a glove ATM, so once you’ve said yes, follow up with fittings. You can usually do some customization in this phase - like adjust the hemline or alter the neckline - so don’t be afraid to ask!