Like I have mentioned a time or two, I have planned NOTHING for our wedding. But I figured what better way to start than with dress shopping! Last week I headed to A and Bé Bridal to jumpstart my journey of finding a wedding dress! *Cue happy dance. So like any bride-to-be who’s ever binge watched Say Yes to the Dress, my mom flew out and I had a few friends to come help me find “THE dress”. As I have learned, planning a wedding can be overwhelming, so I hope that some of these tips I learned before and during this process will help and girl out in the future!
| before you go |
Do your make up. Do you hair. Hit a barre class. You want to look and feel amazing before trying on dresses so try your best to prepare yourself!
Know Your Budget
This is important because dresses are thousands of dollars! I didn’t even ask my stylist to show be dresses over my budget. Make sure before you put anything on that it is a dress you can afford. If you try on a dress that’s over your budget and fall in love with it, it will either make you think ‘what if’ or make you recalculate your what else you have to sacrifice.
Bring pasties or a sticky bra along with other bra options just in case! Annnd best to wear nude or white undies. If you have -A’s you can deff get away with no bra too.
Wear Simple Jewelry
It will work with most dress styles and help you get a better picture of how to accessorize – just basic studs will work or maybe some silver hoops.
| the experience |
Most boutiques will put you in a room or section of the store where your friends and family can spectate. You chat with your consultant on your style, preference, thoughts, ideas, budget, etc. They take you shopping around the store introducing you to designers and collections. You then pick or say what gowns you like/don’t like and head to changing area as your stylist grabs the picks you loved or think you will love. One by one the consultant will assist you to try on the dresses. The dresses aren’t really a one man job so let her help you. Depending on the time of your appointment, you can try on your favorites at the end and of course show them off to everyone. By the end of the try-on, you narrow it down to a few of your favorites. I found it easy to just eliminate the ones that I couldn’t picture myself getting married in.
| during the appointment |
Take Your Time
Why rush?! Unless your wedding is weeks away. Just know that it can actually take around 9 months to get the dress made and sent back to you. THEN there are alterations! Do not leave it until the last minute. Take the time to try on all styles. I thought I wanted something poofy and floaty but ended up really loving the more fitted dresses. You only get one chance to do it, so trying them all on will never make you wonder "what if...".
Book Your Appointments
If you can avoid Saturdays, book your appointments from Tuesday-Friday. I was able to shoot over right after work to make my appointment.I felt like I had more time and attention and wasn’t being shoved out the door when it ended. Also, be strategic if you’re going to be farther from home and book a few appointments on each day in and around the same area so you can maximize your time.
Choose Your Entourage
I think two or three people is the perfect amount. I really didn't want to bring many people with me as it's more special and you honestly don’t need 5 options hitting you at once. Too many opinions are just no good. After all, it’s your choice and no one can tell you how you feel in a dress.
Trust Your Consultant
Your consultant will probably give you something you didn’t think of, so give it a try. Every time I thought I would hate something it ended up being not that bad! They know what they're doing and how all the dresses look on. It's sooooo hard to get the feel of a dress while its hung up. Also know that sizing does not matter. Many gowns run too small, too big. Allow the consultant to order appropriate size for your measurements, not what you may think is your size.
Here is a tip I have never heard before this visit. Once I find my dress, unfollow every bridal store I've followed on Instagram, stop looking at dress magazines, and move on to the next area of planning. "Dress FOMO" is a think and there will always be something just as beautiful. Just remember the feeling you had when you put on your dress and that's it.
Do you have any dress shopping tips? How did you find your dream dress? Let me know in the comments below!