1. Location: Your location can play a big part in what type of dress you choose. If you’re getting married on the beach in the summer you may want to stick to a light-weight dress without a train. If you’re going for a winter indoor wedding a ball gown dress or a modest dress might work best for the temperature.
2. Budget: Keep in mind the additional costs for accessories, undergarments and alterations. Alterations will most likely be an additional cost that most brides disregard. These costs usually account for 10-15% of the dress.
3. Start early: Make sure to keep track with a timeline or calendar. It can take anywhere from 4-8 months to get designer dresses. Make sure to have an additional month, at least, before the wedding for alterations.
4. Do some research: This is a definitely one of the most important of the 10 tips for choosing your wedding dress. There are a variety of different color whites, ivories, champagnes, and other wedding dress colors? Some body types work with certain dress styles. Take photos of dresses you find to stores to give the consultant a better idea of what you want or something similar.
5. Make a “game plan”: Decide where you want to go and when. Keep in mind that most bridal shops will be busiest on the weekends so going on a weekday may allow for more one-on-one time with your consultant and you’ll feel more like a princess being in the store with less people. Only go to 1 to 2 stores in one day or you will get overwhelmed. Allow about 1-1.5 hours at each store. Carry a notebook to keep track of dresses and styles you like and store info.
6. Bring backup: It’s always nice to have a second opinion but having too many opinions can be overwhelming. A suggested number of guests are 1-5. Keep in mind that it’s YOUR wedding so go with what you love and not what others love.
7. Find a dress for less: Most stores have discontinued (but still very gorgeous and trendy) dresses at lower costs. Don’t disregard these dresses! Some stores also have trunk shows where they may have sales the day of. You can also usually get coupons at bridal shows and other events.
8. Keep an open mind: Bridal consultants are there to help you. Some dresses look different on than just hanging. You never know what it looks like on you until you try it on.
9. Focus on fit not size: This is another very important tip for choosing your wedding dress. Most stores will only have sample sizes that are not your exact size. Bridal sizes also run smaller than normal clothing sizes. You always want to go with a size that fits now or larger. Alterations can always take in a dress but it can’t always be let out.
10. Get it in writing: Go over a contract or timeline with your consultant for deposit prices, when the dress will arrive, alterations estimates, shipping, and return policy. Also prior to order, make sure to double check the styles, size and color so there is no confusion.