Hello, I hope you are enjoying the blog posts so far and your wedding plans are coming along nicely. I am keen for my blogs to be inspirational and helpful. If you would like me to feature something in particular, just comment below and I will get right on to it.
This week it’s all about shopping for the perfect wedding dress. Your wedding dress is one of the most important things to get right. I know this can be a daunting task and I often find my brides are not sure where to start.
You want to look and feel amazing wearing it. All eyes will be on you and if you feel fantastic in your dress your confidence will shine through and it will really show especially in your photographs.
I also think that sometimes you can put yourself under a lot of pressure to find just the perfect one! The one certain thing is you will!
Take your time and follow my advice below to help get you started.
First things First! - Time
Try and give yourself plenty of time. Start at least six to nine months before your wedding if possible. Placing an order for your dress can take from three months upwards depending on where you buy your dress and longer if you are having one made. Until you have chosen your dress it is difficult to style and theme the rest of the wedding, it really is the starting point after your venue has been booked.
Venue and Time of Year
Think about your venue, the dress should fit in with the theme and style. If you are getting married on a beach then a dress with a huge long veil may not be the most practical. If you are marrying in a traditional setting then generally your dress will follow that kind of look. If your theme is going to be contemporary then choose the type of dress that compliments that style.
The weather is also a big factor. If you are marrying in winter then choose something heavier maybe with long sleeves or if not then look at buying a shrug or little jacket to keep you warm.
Your Style and Budget
Your wedding dress is generally an extension of your personality so start with your style and think about your figure. What do you like to wear and what suits you? Have you got great shoulders, if so halter necks look great, or do you prefer strapless? How about a full skirt or are you a more slinky and fitted girl. Tear pictures out of bridal magazines to give you ideas. It will also help the assistant in the bridal shop if you have ideas to show what you like.
At this point you must also set a budget for your dress. If you don’t you will be extremely tempted to spend much more than you thought. It is very easy once you get into the shop to completely blow the budget.
Keep an Open Mind and Trust the Assistant
This is most important, don’t limit yourself to one kind of look or style. You will be surprised what you thought you might like and then when you try the dress on it might not be right at all. I see many brides and often they choose something completely different. Try on a variety of dresses, limiting yourself could be stopping you from finding the right one!
Generally good bridal shops have assistants that can look at a bride and see what might suit her right away. Listen to them and let them help you. They will look at your body shape and size and then recommend dresses that will flatter you. They will also advise you on the right colour of dress for your skin tone. There are many shades of ivory, white and gold. If you are very pale then white might not be the most flattering.
I would always recommend too that you take someone with you who knows you very well and who you trust to give an honest opinion. They can take photographs if they are allowed to help you consider your options later. Do ask first, some shops don’t allow this. If not then your friend or mum can jot the styles down to help you remember. Don’t decide right away if you are unsure, sleep on it.
Sales and Deposits
Don’t forget if your budget is tight and you really want that designer dress but it is out of your price limit; think about when the bridal shops have sales on. During the wedding shows generally in March and October there are many sales. Often there is a good discount, which might mean that you can afford the dress you have your heart set on.
Do be careful though if you buy at somewhere like the NEC. You need to check where the shop you are buying your dress is located. I have known some brides buy dresses and the shops were located at the other end of the country from where they live. Fittings and collections are very tricky if you have to travel a great distance.
My other piece of advice would be to pay the deposit with a credit card just in case you are not sure of the shop. If there are any problems then you are insured.
Most of all have fun trying on dresses. It should be a special thing to do so enjoy it. Next week I think it would be good to give advice and tips on wedding style and themes.
We used a fabulous venue for the photoshoot, Iscoyd Park, they were superb. The jewellery and accessories for the photoshot were provided by Sarah Roberts Tiaras who also styled hair for the shoot. Make-up done was by Liz Griffiths and the photography was by Ashford Daly.
Until next time, happy planning.
Written by Julie Dawson - The Wedding Genie