Planning Tip: How to Shop for your Wedding Dress

It's time to pick THE DRESS! Some of our brides love shopping, and others honestly hate it. BUT, no matter which side of this fence you are on, shopping for your wedding dress can be exciting, frustrating, stressful, and at times, it can make you want to pull your hair out. AVOID the stress and frustration and use these helpful tips to make finding your wedding dress a little easier!

Photography by Dana Cubbage Weddings.

  1. PICK YOUR VENUE FIRST. I know you just got engaged and it's so incredibly tempting to go dress shopping right away. Try to resist. That ballgown you might fall in love with will probably be 1000% uncomfortable at an outdoor wedding venue. The location of your wedding will help you set the style tone of the attire, and picking a dress before your venue makes it a little harder to mesh the styles. So don't put the cart before the horse and buy your dress before you pick your location.

  2. GIVE YOURSELF PLENTY OF TIME. Stay on the safe side and plan to buy your dress 8-10 months before your wedding day. Once you find the right wedding dress, it can take up to 6+ months for the designer to make the dress and ship it to your bridal shop. Once you pick it up, you'll still need time for alterations as well. If you are short on time, let the bridal shop consultant know BEFORE you start trying on dresses. They will lead you to options with a faster turn around time. You might have less options, but it's better to know that the dress you love is going to take 8 months to come in before you try it on.

  3. DO YOUR RESEARCH. Do your research before scheduling appointments with bridal shops. Each dress appointment, you will try on anywhere from 5-10 dresses. If you book 5 different appointments at 5 different bridal shops, you could potentially be trying on over 50 dresses. Talk about dress overload! At that point, all of the dresses will start blending together and you will have an even harder time finding THE dress. Look through the shop's website before scheduling an appointment. Make sure they have dresses & designers you like that are also in your budget. Then try to narrow it down to 2-3 appointments.

  4. SET A {REALISTIC} BUDGET & STICK WITH IT. One of the first things a good bridal dress consultant will ask you is "what's your budget". If you've done your research and know what to expect, then you should be able to give them a great range to work with. Most wedding dresses at boutique bridal shops in the Savannah & Hilton Head area range from $900 up to $5000 not including alterations and accessories. Other areas like Atlanta and NYC will have From there, they will then talk to you about styles you like and narrow down your options from there. One of the biggest letdowns for a bride-to-be is falling in love with a dress significantly outside of her budget. So don't, I repeat, do not, try on that $15,000 couture wedding dress "for fun" if you remotely like it. If you absolutely find yourself in love with it, it will either break your heart or your wallet.

  5. WHO SHOULD YOU BRING WITH YOU TO TRY ON WEDDING DRESSES? Just remember that less is more. Try to limit the number of people you bring with you to 3 max. The less people you have there, the less stress you will have. It's always good to plan on having supportive people and the person who is going to purchase the dress, if not you. Have you ever seen "Say Yes to the Dress"? Those unwanted opinions are not just a TV thing, so make sure you surround yourself with people that will be honest with you but also understand that it's ultimately your decision on which dress you love.

  6. TRY ON DIFFERENT STYLES. Nearly every bride I've gone dress shopping with admitted that the dress they loved was not at all what they were expecting! Go into your appointment with an open mind. Try on at least one or two dresses in a style or frame that you wouldn't normally think to wear (a-line, ballgown, mermaid, etc.). You might be pleasantly surprised at what you find!

  7. LASTLY, LET YOUR HEART SING. Not every bride cries when they find the dress, but when you do find it, you will know! Mostly because you won't want to take it off.

Shopping for your wedding dress should be fun too!


Not sure you want to handle wedding gown, tuxedo shopping, and attire coordination on your own? We offer Attire Shopping & Consultation in our Legacy Wedding Service Package as an add on service in our Made for You Package. With this service, we will schedule and attend bridal gown and tuxedo appointments, attend shopping excursions with the bridal party, make recommendations for accessories, and give style advice for the wedding day.*

Happy Planning!

Trish


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a professional wedding planning & design company servicing hilton head island, sc; bluffton, sc; beaufort, sc; savannah, ga, + charleston, sc; + surrounding areas

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