5 (or so) things to know before the wedding dress fun commences
Everyone gets excited about wedding dress shopping. The bride, her mom, her friends and/or bridesmaids, there is something so special about trying on all the different designs of tule and lace, beading and glitter. Here are 5 tips to help ensure your shopping day(s) are filled with joy and excitement rather than frustration and annoyance.
- Call the store and make an appointment.
Some places like David’s Bridal don’t require an appointment to go look around. However, if you are expecting someone to help you shop and help you get in and out of your dress, clamp the too big sizes, and help you locate the specific dress/style, then an appointment is highly recommended. A lot of the smaller boutiques require an appointment due to a smaller staff, and wanting to serve their customers well. By requiring an appointment, they will ensure each bride gets all the attention and the best possible service. *Even if you are in the early stages of looking, some smaller boutiques won’t even let you browse the racks without an appointment.
- Have an open mind.
Unless you have tried on wedding dresses before, you might have an idea of what you think will look good, but you don’t know until you try it. I went dress shopping with a girlfriend last spring/summer, and she had a very specific idea of what she wanted to try on, however her mom begged to see her in a ball gown style. She was really reluctant, but then she tried one on. She just glowed in it, and even she had to admit it made her feel like a princess, and it looked way better than she thought it would. Now it wasn’t even close to “The Dress” that she purchased that weekend, but she had no idea she liked a ball gown look until she tried it on.
- Try to have an idea of what you like.
While it is important to keep an open mind, going to an appointment with no idea what you want, can add frustration to the process. Not only frustration for you, but for your party as well. If they are a helpful group, they will troll the store for the perfect dress, and if you have no clue what you are wanting, they will start to feel a little hopeless in their search. Especially if you don’t like anything they have found for you.
- If you have found a specific dress in mind, don’t leave until you have tried it on.
Settling never feels good. If you found a dress online that you fell in love with, try it on! If the stores you are going to don’t carry it, show a photo of it to the staff person coordinating your appointment, and see if they have anything close to it. Close is better than nothing, but picking a dress, when you have your heart set on another is not the “YAY” moment everyone is hoping you find. One of my friends that got married this past fall had one of those moments. We were at our last appointment of the weekend, and she still had this dress in her mind, but we were unsuccessful in finding it the first “shopping” trip around the store. I could tell she wasn’t happy with anything she tried on, and she was ready to just leave without a dress. I made her pull up the item number off the website, and made everyone go look for it. “Whatever size, if you find it, grab it!” is what I shouted as we stormed the racks again. AND… We found it! In her size too!
She tried it on, came out and everyone cried because it in fact was the one! If we hadn’t taken the time to find it, she would not have walked away with a dress that day, and it would have been a little discouraging for her to feel like the weekend was wasted.
- Don’t let your bridal party discourage you with comments about what they like vs. what you like.
If you really like a dress, and your bridal/shopping party doesn’t, it can make you feel off and discouraged. Take time to ask questions. What don’t they like about it? Maybe they don’t mind the cut/shape of the dress, but they don’t like the material or the color or the neckline. If you take time to ask specific questions, you’ll get better answers to help you continue your search. Don’t be afraid to point out what you do and don’t like as well. This information can help you and your fitter determine what you really want out of your dress, and find the perfect one.
- EXTRA TIP: Wear your hair up! (or bring a hair tie!)
Even if you aren’t planning on wearing your hair up for your wedding day, it helps to have a way to pull it back so that you can see all of the dress. Now if you have short hair that may not be a problem for you, but for all my long hair ladies, BRING A HAIR TIE! You can wear your hair down for the day, but sometimes it’s hard to get an idea of how everything fits if your hair is hiding half the dress. Some of the dresses these days have so much detail, it helps to see all of that detail when trying to narrow down between a few options!
I’m sure there are a few other things I am missing, but overall, if you can follow these 5 tips, your wedding dress shopping will be more enjoyable. I’m not saying that I’m a genius, or know everything about the wedding dress shopping experience, but like anyone obsessed with the wedding industry, I have watched enough “Say Yes to the Dress” to pick up on the educational meetings Randy gives at the start of the episode.
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<3 Morgan @ PTP