Your big day is coming up soon! Amid all the planning, there’s one purchase that’s arguably the most important one: your wedding dress. But, just like the rest of your special day, there are a lot of things to consider when choosing the perfect gown. From which entourage to go with to planning the perfect budget, these are some of the main things to keep in mind.
1. Hit the Web
The first thing you want to do is conduct some research. Which style of dress catches your eye the most? Do you want any sort of bling on your gown? Are there any designers in particular who you’d love to wear? There’s definitely a lot to consider before you even set foot in a shop, so make sure you do your research beforehand.
When you’re surfing the web, be mindful of how many dresses you “absolutely love.” It’ll be easier for you and your consultant when you walk in with a few select images. Don’t get us wrong, it’s not to say that you shouldn’t branch out and try different things. But, you also shouldn’t love so many designs that you no longer have anything to go on.
2. Don’t Bring a Huge Crew
There are a few people in your life whose opinion truly matters to you. We get that! But, you should aim to cap your entourage at only a few select people. It’s easier to digest comments from one or two people than it is to do so with eight or nine. The last thing you want is to bring too many people and wind up with a dress that placates the crowd, not one that fits your best interest. Remember that at the end of the day, the only one whose opinion truly counts is yours.
3. Get a Head Start
Your wedding dress needs some time to be found. You may not find your gown in the first shop you go to… or even the third or fourth. Wedding dresses take time and there’s no shame in shopping around or even landing on a design completely different from your original vision. Of course, you’ll never know which dress is the one for you without giving yourself ample time to look.
Something else you’ll want to consider is peak season. Depending on when your big day is, you may run into significant traffic in stores. Not only that but dresses take a while to come in. Plus, you’ll need to go in for your first fitting and leave time for any potential alterations. Keep all of this in mind when shopping. Brides suggests picking your wedding dress out at least nine months before you get married.
4. Set That Budget
As exciting as it is to shop around, you’re setting yourself up for heartache without a proper budget. The Knot reported that the average wedding dress cost in America in 2018 was about $1600 (including alterations). However, some dresses can skyrocket up to tens of thousands while others can cost a few hundred dollars.
Given that the average wedding costs about $33,000, you’ll want to set a proper budget for everything, including your gown. Sit down and figure out costs with your partner. Where do you want the majority of your budget to go? Are you paying for the dress yourself? If so, ensure that you still stay within your means. Your future self will thank you.
5. Shop For Yourself
One of the biggest things to remember is that you’re shopping for yourself. This could mean a few different things. First and foremost, your wedding dress experience may (and probably will) differ from others in your life. Your best friend found her perfect dress in the first shop she went to? Your mom saved money by wearing her mom’s dress? Things will be different for you and that’s totally fine. It’s your day, your gown, and your experience.
You should also look into getting a dress that suits your body type. Many brides want to shed a few pounds before their wedding, but you’ll need to take that into account when shopping. It’s recommended that you don’t shop for gowns in smaller sizes. If you don’t reach your goal, you’ll need to alter your dress or grab a new one all together. Rock the body you have!
If you do want to lose weight, that’s awesome too. However, you should still buy a gown in your size, not one that’s a few sizes down. It’s much easier (and cheaper) to take in a dress than it is to squeeze yourself into a gown. The last thing you want is to be uncomfortable at one of the longest parties of your life.
Shopping for a wedding gown is one of the funnest purchases you’ll make. While there may be a lot to consider, it’ll all be worth it when you take everyone’s breath away.