Shopping for wedding dresses is kind of like shopping for a husband. You’re not sure how many you’ll have to date before you find “the one”.
Shopping for “the dress” can be a bit confusing. After all, it’s not every day a girl purchases a wedding gown (we can’t all be the Kardashian’s). With many designs, multiple styles, and no clue of what to expect here is a guide for the first time bride!
A 20 Something Style Guide for Finding Your Wedding Dress
Do Your Homework.
Dress shopping online before going to the store is very important. Figure out what you like based on your personality. Ask yourself these simple questions: Am I conservative? Am I traditional? Do I want to look sexy? Do I want to look like a princess? Am I edgy?
Because it’s not every day that a girl goes bridal shopping, be open to trying on a couple different shapes/styles. Plus it will please your wedding posse that tagged along!
Friend or Foe?
Deciding which people to bring while shopping for “the dress” is pretty important. Big groups bring big opinions, so choose wisely. Of course, honesty is key but being rude can ruin the experience. Choose friends and family who will help make your choice easier and at the end of day, will respect your decision.
Have a Budget
Tell your consultant the price range, but be clear that trying on dresses from all points below the top price is a must. There is nothing worse than falling in love with a dress that you can’t afford or having guilt after buying.
Think About Your Style
Whether you like it or not the wedding dress will end up representing your personal style! Every day you get dress in an outfit based on your personality. Why would your wedding dress be any different? Why would you want your wedding dress to be any different? Ask yourself these questions: Are you a girly girl? Do you like something unique? Is Audrey Hepburn your style icon? Do you lean toward the simpler things? Each of these questions helps in determining your dress style.
Girly girl? It’s likely your dress will resemble that of a princess. Unique? Go for something non-traditional, maybe with a splash of color, sheath, or corset. Audrey Hepburn-esque? Look for something elegant, lace, but nothing too bulky. Simple? Try on an a-line shape detailed with buttons, ruching, or ribbons. Lose the beading.
Bring a Photo
If you have an idea in mind, bring a photo to show your consultant. This will help her choose a dress that better fits you, not her.
Ivory or 10 Variations of White
The typical white as a wedding dress color has changed from back in the day. However, I highly suggest trying on both white and ivory! Depending on your skin tone, one might compliment you slightly better than the other. Note: Most dresses can be ordered in both, but be sure to ask your consultant.
Know Your Body Type
A-line, Ball-Gown, Fit and Flare, Mermaid, and Sheath are the common styles of bridal gowns. Take a look at the dresses you currently wear and pick out the things you like and don’t like about them. Then apply these same rules to your wedding gown. There are all sorts of tricks of the trade to pulling off your best wedding day look.
Don’t worry about it! You can either build in a bra or look for ways to add a little something extra. Pay attention to dresses with a detailed bust line or ruffle. Still not loving it? No worries. There is always alterations.
Headpieces, Veils, and Accessories
My advice to you is to NOT buy a veil, headpiece, or jewelry on the day you purchase your wedding dress. These pieces are extremely overpriced at a majority of bridal stores. There are plenty of other more affordable options such as looking for locals who make these items, internet retailers, department stores, or previous brides. I found my veil for $40 online when it was marked for $300 in the store. Need I say more?