Wedding Dress Shopping. 7 Top Tips!

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Shopping for your dress is one wedding task that us brides most look forward to from the moment he pops the question (and probably long before). However the pressure we put on the dress can sometimes turn this dream occasion into what seems an impossible task. Never fear you WILL find your dress and you can use these tips to help make it a stress-free experience.


1. Chances are you won’t go for the ‘perfect’ dress you have dreamed up in you head. Like most brides you will probably spend months staring at wedding dresses in magazines, trawling through each designer’s online lookbook and dreaming up the perfect dress that you will wear on your wedding day, only to find that when you actually try on a similar style, it doesn’t suit you or your body shape. So be open to trying on all different styles of dresses because even if you can’t imagine yourself wearing that A-line, lace gown with sweetheart neckline, you might find it to be the one that looks best on you!


 2. Wear the right underwear! Let’s face it, that white wedding dress will never look good with your black bra strap poking out, nor will you be able to tell if that strapless dress flatters your bust without a little lift, so make sure you wear a good bra for shopping. Nude is the best colour choice and if you have a small to average bust size, a strapless style will probably work best, whereas larger busted ladies will likely require straps for support. If in doubt, bring a few different bras in your handbag. If you don’t have a suitable bra I would suggest buying one pre-shopping trip; it makes a world of difference and you will always reuse a nude coloured bra.


3. Heels and veils are your best friends! Heels change your entire stance and can instantly give you a better idea of how you will look on the day so be sure to wear heels when trying on dresses. Some bridal boutiques keep heels in store that you can use or if you want to be sure, bring a pair of your own. Veils, in the same way will immediately make you feel more bridal and give you a better idea of how you will look on the day, so if you are offered one to try don’t turn it down.


4. Keep makeup to a minimal. Wedding dress shopping feels like a big occasion so you probably want to look good doing it but be sure to lay off the heavy makeup. Bear in mind that you will be taking off and putting on clothes all day, which makes you vulnerable to smudges anyway, but you will also be hanging around a lot of very expensive, white dresses!


5. Trust your own instincts above others. Your mother/sister/bridesmaids might tell you the tulle, princess gown is the one you just HAVE to get, or that lovely lady in the bridal boutique might tell you that the satin, fishtail dress looks better on you than anyone she has seen try it; but if you prefer the lace, a-line dress and think you’ll be happier wearing it, go with your gut! After all you’re the one that will be wearing it.


6. Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount. We’re not talking about market stall haggling here but if you decide on a dress that’s slightly out of your budget mention this to the sales assistant and ask if there’s anything she could do on the price. If she isn’t budging, perhaps you might want to walk away and think about it…and mention that you have appointments at other boutiques. Sometimes this can encourage a discount, as they would rather you spend your money with them than somewhere else. But remember; a boutique doesn’t have to drop the price nor might they be able to! In this case it’s time to accept defeat and move on, or else look for an alternative option such as purchasing a sample or second-hand! Best practice for avoiding this – only try on dresses that are within your budget!


7. Most importantly…Enjoy it! Most of us intend on venturing down the aisle only once, which means this is the only experience you will have of shopping for your wedding dress so don’t put too much pressure on it and let yourself enjoy the experience! Start shopping well in advance. We recommend 1 year to 9 months before your wedding, so that you’ll be shopping for the right season but it also allows you plenty of time to visit several boutiques and try on lots of dresses without feeling under pressure to find your dress within your first couple of appointments. Don’t forget, there are hundreds and hundreds of wedding dresses out there, some will look beautiful on you, some will look hideous (it’s okay to make fun of these ones) but just like your husband-to-be, there is that dress that you’ll know is ‘THE ONE’ for you, and just like we’re sure you did in your single life, let yourself enjoy the search until you find it!