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When To Shop For Wedding Dress

How Should I Pay For My Wedding Dress

Martha Stewart Weddings 101: How to Wedding Dress Shop

Most boutiques ask you to pay a 50% deposit and then 50% when the actual dress arrives from the manufacturer. Payment plans may also be available from some stores. RBA-accredited boutiques will guarantee deposits if the boutique goes out of business involuntarily. Find your nearest membersnow at

If youre still looking for dream dress inspiration, then dont forget to check out the latest Wedding Dress Collections!

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How To Know You’ve Found Your Wedding Dress

As the saying goes, when you know, you know. When you finally find your dress, there might be tears involvedbut if not, that’s okay too! While every bride’s reaction to finding her wedding dress is different, there are a few major giveaways that will let you know you’re ready to make it official.

How Long Do Appointments Usually Take

Appointment times vary by bridal salon but Risatti estimated an hour and 15 minutes at her store with an extra 15-minute buffer for good measure.

“If the bride decides to purchase and we need to do paperwork, or if she’s just not really sure it takes a little longer,” she said. “We kind of buffer it in so that everyone actually has an hour and a half.”

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What To Bring When You Go Wedding Dress Shopping

What Should You Bring with You on your Wedding Dress Shopping Trip? Dont miss this list of must-haves for shopping for your wedding dress.

Image via Canva

You said yes! Now you need the perfect dress to wear when you say I DO!

Whether youve been dreaming of the day youd go shopping for your wedding dress since you were little or this is the first time you are considering what youll want to wear, the day you pick your dress should be a beautiful memory to look back on!

Here are some tips and essential items to bring that can help make your wedding dress shopping trip a success!

Have Your Final Fitting

When It Comes To Wedding Dress Shopping, The Guest List Is ...

You may want to have a box of tissues on hand for this final trip to the seamstress. This is where you’ll get to see your gown the way it’ll look when you walk down the aisle. Bring at least one family member or friend to share this special moment with, and so you have someone there to learn how to create the bustle.

Also Check: Wedding Venue Comparison Spreadsheet

Other Important Wedding Attire

We know it takes a village of your closest friends and family to complete your special day. You can outfit the entire wedding party, starting with our stunning Mother of the Bride dresses that will make your mom feel like a queen, our vast collection of complimentary bridesmaid dresses for the favorite women by your side, and our groomsmen accessories to pull it all together.

Keep The Dress Away From Home

Jenny Fu

Especially if you live with your partner, you don’t want him or her to stumble upon your gown and ruin the surprise. Ask a relative or very trusted friend if they’ll let you keep the dress at their place until the big day. Plus, if it’s not in your closet, you won’t be tempted to wear it every day until the wedding.

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Order Too Big Rather Than Too Small

Danielle Frankel

Most gowns can be altered down one or two sizes and, depending on the seam allowance, up one size, so it’s better to order too big and take it in than be stuck with a zipper that won’t close.

Katie Ruther Event Planning by Papaya Playa Project

No wedding gown is going to be as comfortable as your pajamas, but you don’t want to be pulling it up or constricted by it all night, so bust out some moves in the dressing room. If you’re planning a church wedding where you may need to kneel or sit during the ceremony, practice doing that in the gown. If you’re planning to drop it like it’s hot on the dance floor, try it out to make sure you can move how you want.

Bridal Sizes Aren’t The Same As Street Sizes

Wedding Dress Shopping – What to Expect

Bridal sizes are measured differently than others, so don’t be surprised if your gown is a bigger size than you expected.

“While you might be a size 4 to 6 in jeans, you’re in fact a bridal size 8 to 10, and if you’re a size 14 to 16, you’re likely an 18 to 20,” Kruszka told Insider. “Don’t worry about it sizing is just a number! You’ll likely see most of our samples in a bridal size 8, 10, 12, 18, 20, or 22 to try on,” she added of Kleindfeld’s sizes.

“It may seem really confusing for most brides when they find out they are measuring for a size that is larger than what they are used to buying,” Debany told Insider. “Each designer has their own size chart and has slightly different proportions.”

So even if you’re a size 8 in one designer, you might be a 10 in another. “Once you have selected your dress, three key measurements will be taken to help us select the best size to recommend,” Debany added.

And don’t panic if your sizing is on the higher end. Most bridal gowns can be custom-made in sizes up to 32.

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Being Swayed By Steep Discounts

Try not to be too tempted by the lure of your dream designer gown for 70% off. The biggest mistake I have seen brides make is purchasing a gown online or from a shop for a deep discount only today, said Lash.

Sample sales are popular among brides, but you must keep in mind that you are typically truly purchasing just that a sample: The dress has been tried on by hundreds of brides and could have been torn, stained, or otherwise damaged during the process. Before making a purchase, check the gown very carefully for any damageand if there’s anything that cant easily be fixed, put it back. Some brides end up spending hundreds in alterations to fix whats wrong with the sample when they couldve found a similar brand new dress for not much more money.

But dont be totally discouraged: Sometimes you truly can find an amazing gown at a bargain price. Kimberly Sanicki, of Wanaque, NJ, found her perfect wedding gown at a Running of the Brides event thrown by Filenes Basement. She found a stunning Essense of Australia gown for just $500, marked down from $3,000. Before handing over the cash, Kimberly and her mom thoroughly examined the gown to check for any flaws. My mom made sure it had every crystal, and it did not need to be cleaned or even hemmed, said Sanicki.

Start Inexpensive And Work Your Way Up

Isabelle Armstrong

Make your first appointment with the least-expensive bridal shop and keep scaling up if you don’t find anything. Same goes for trying on dresses during your appointmentstry on the most affordable one first, and work your way up to the bank-breaker. You may fall in love before then.

David Salim Event Planning by Design Anarchy Studio

Whether you want to feel classic, vintage, and comfortable, or romantic, glamorous, and beautiful, go into wedding dress shopping with a clear vision of how you want to look on the big day. Choosing three specific words to describe your vibe can help narrow down your dress selections.

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What To Look For When Shopping For A Wedding Dress Online

Before you even begin browsing online, it’s important to know your measurements and what silhouettes work best for your body type. This will help eliminate a lot of trial and error and ensure that your wedding dress fits you perfectly. Since you’re not viewing wedding dresses in person, it’s also helpful to familiarize yourself with different types of fabrics so that you can get a sense of how certain wedding dresses will fit and feel. And probably one of the most important tips for buying a wedding dress online is to extensively review a retailer’s shipping and return policy. “Make sure you read the retailer’s fine print and are very clear on return policies and delivery dates as you’ll want to make sure you receive everything on time,” agrees Coleman

How Long Before Your Wedding Should You Buy Your Wedding Dress

Top Tips for Shopping for Your Wedding Dress Online ...

A good rule of thumb for when to buy your wedding dress is to shop between 6 to 12 months before the wedding. A year before your wedding is a good time to begin looking for a dress you should already have a date set and venue booked, so you know when and where the wedding will take place. With that information, you can consider the season and popular styles for wedding dresses.

Its important to allow enough time between choosing a dress and the big day. Wedding dress shopping is fun, but it can be stressful if youre on a time crunch. Your shopping timeline needs to consider the time it will take to find the perfect dress, plus time to place an order and get alterations completed in time for the wedding day.

On the other hand, you also dont want to buy your dress too early. If you have a longer engagement, it may be tempting to go wedding dress shopping early. Buying a wedding dress too early, however, can lead to buyers remorse. You may see a dress you like more in the time before the wedding, your body may change, or your style tastes may change in that time. While wedding dress shopping is exciting for many brides, dont go too early.

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Pay Attention To Fabric

Greg Finck

In addition to silhouette, color, and embellishments, fabric makes a big difference on how a gown will look on you. A heavier, more structured material will hold its shape and smooth your figure. Unstructured silk and filmy chiffon are less flattering for those brides with curves.

Some bridal salons have communal high heels you can borrow, but that’s a little icky, and a dress will look a lot different with flip-flops than stilettos. Be prepared by bringing heels of the same height you think you’ll likely wear for your big day, so you’ll have a better idea of how the dress will look.

Ponytails Or Hair Clips

A ponytail holder and hair clips are an essential for what to wear to a wedding dress fitting especially if your hair is on the longer side. Youll definitely want to see your neckline and back because it may potentially be the deciding factor between two different gowns.

Having this view in the bridal shop also allows you to decide on any potential alterations that need to be made.

Also Check: Wedding Spreadsheets

Figure Out Your Budget

Yes, it’s uncomfortable to talk numbers, but it will save you from heartache later on. Before your first appointment, figure out who is paying for the gown .

If someone else is paying, get the hard numbers on your limit, so you can stay within that budget or pay the difference yourself to get the dress you want.

Carmen Santorelli Event Planing by All Who Wander Events

Before you start dress shopping, decide whether you want a casual garden-party-themed wedding or a formal, romantic affair. Always keep the venue and theme in mind as you browse gowns, because the last thing you want is for your dress to clash with your overall wedding style.

Say you plan to cap your fashion spending at $2,000you actually shouldn’t buy a $2,000 gown. That’s because you need to factor in tailoring, accessories , and cleaning and preserving the gown after the wedding if you want it as a keepsake.

When Should I Start Dress Shopping

TIPS for Wedding Dress Shopping YOU NEED TO KNOW: Alterations, Payments, and Undergarments.

How you approach dress shopping depends on your wedding date. If you’ve got some time to spare, Risatti owner of Gabriella New York suggested getting started at least 10 months to a year in advance based on her experience.

“It takes about three or four months to make the gown,” she told Insider. “And then you’d like to have three to four months to alter the gown. So if you do that we’re talking six to eight months for the process. That’s not leaving you any room to really shop. So that’s why we say ten months to a year is ideal.”

That’s not to say an expedited process isn’t possible but the sooner the better.

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Let The Salon Make Recommendations

Don’t eliminate anything at first glance. If the salesperson brings you something they say you should try, try iteven if you don’t initially love it or think it’s totally “you.” It’s possible to fall for a wedding gown you didn’t think you’d like or want. Not every dress looks great on a hanger, so let go of any preconceived notions and keep an open mind.

Is The Store Reputable

Such a major purchase can’t be taken lightly, so you want to make sure your business is in good hands. Risatti suggested asking friends and family for their own recommendations.

“It’s also important to read reviews. Of course, take some with a grain of salt, but what are people saying? And if there is a bad review, what specifically is the reason? And if you call to make the appointment, what is the experience you have?”

Finally, look at the designers they have and whether they match your wedding-day aesthetic and price points.

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Tips For A Flawless Wedding Dress Shopping Experience

Welcome to the dreamy world of bridal fashion! We would imagine, since being engaged, youve been asked a dizzying array of wedding dress questions what you like, when youre shopping, whos going, are you wearing sleeves, can they come, whos your favorite designer, whos buying? Who knew shopping could seem stressful?!

But worry not, thanks to our bridal friends at Moonlight Bridal, we have all the best wedding dress shopping tips! Follow our guide and not only will shopping for gown be your favorite planning to-do, the whole process can be the one totally flawless wedding excursion.

Once youve taken a gander through our expert bridal tips, start your research with Moonlight Bridals new wedding dress collections. With three separate lines for brides of different style brides and budgets Moonlight Couture, Moonlight Collection, and Moonlight Tango it would be hard not to find your dream dress. Find your nearest retailer to schedule your appointment and get shopping!

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