Saying yes to the dress is one of the most exciting things you get to do as a bride. But it can also be overwhelming. Here are five tips to help make finding ‘the one’ a little bit easier.
- Set a Budget
Wedding dresses are not cheap. They are beautiful pieces, designed by experts and made using the finest materials. All that silk and hand-embroidery comes at a cost.
You can expect to spend anywhere between £500 and £5000 shopping at a traditional wedding dress boutique. For those with tighter budgets, high street shops such as Coast and numerous online stores offer some lovely options.
It’s really important to set a budget. Whether you’re paying for it yourself or your parents are chipping in, make sure everyone agrees on the upper limit.
Use your budget to choose where to shop (when booking appointments you can ask boutiques for their price range) and when you’re there make sure assistants are aware of that number. There are few things more disappointing than falling in love with a dress you can’t afford. Setting a budget will prevent that from happening.
- Keep Your Entourage Small
Bring just two or three people with you. Any more than that and you’ll be swamped with opinions and might feel unable to make a decision of your own.
Who do you trust to give honest but kind feedback? Most brides bring their mum and mother-in-law (it’s a great bonding opportunity) plus a best friend or sister. But it’s your day, so bring whoever will make you feel most relaxed and special.
- Be Open-Minded
You’ve spent hours scouring bridal magazines, blogs and Pinterest and you’ve finally settled on the perfect dress for you. That’s awesome! But do keep an open mind. The shop assistants really know their stuff so trust them and try on everything they bring you, even if you think you’ll hate it.
Many brides walk away with a very different dress to the one they had in mind. This is because bridal shopping is nothing like shopping for everyday clothes. Wedding dresses neither look nor fit the same as ‘normal’ clothes so it’s impossible to know what will suit you until you try lots of them on.
They say you’ll know ‘the one’ as soon as you step into it. My advice? Make a note of it and move on. Keep shopping. If nothing else makes you feel that way, you truly know it’s the dress for you.
- Don’t Do it All in One Day
Unless you’re in a serious time crunch, it’s often advised to spread appointments out over a couple of weeks. I’d suggest scheduling appointments at 2 or 3 boutiques one day and hitting another 2 or 3 boutiques a couple of weeks later.
Appointments are usually around 90 minutes, so it’s a long day and a LOT of dresses. Spreading the appointments out will ensure you’re not overwhelmed by choice and will allow some time to think about everything you’ve seen.
Just make sure you allow time for plenty of coffee breaks and a nice leisurely lunch.
- Order the Right Size
When you’re ready to order the perfect dress, order it in the size you are at that time. Even if you’re planning to lose weight and are tempted to order a size or two down, don’t. It is much, much easier to take in a dress that’s too big than it is to let out a too-small dress.
Ordering a dress for your current size and having it altered (if necessary) will also mean a more bespoke, flattering fit. Whereas a too-small dress, even if altered, may look cramped and uncomfortable.
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