Wedding dress shopping can be one the most exciting aspects of the wedding planning process. For women who have never been on a bridal gown outing before, the experience can seem straightforward – that is, until you begin to book appointments yourself. As a bride-to-be, staying organized is an invaluable trait at every twist and turn during the organization of your nuptials. As such, make sure you make the most of your bridal appointments with these tips and tricks from a professional wedding planner.
- Fill your schedule. Try to make multiple appointments in a day, but be sure you have enough time at each place – you should always assume you will be at each store for one full hour.
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water the day before and the morning of your shopping trip to prevent bloating. I also don’t suggest partying the night before; you don’t want to be puffy for your special shopping day!
- Gussy up. Wear some makeup and blow out your hair – this is not the day to throw your hair into a messy bun! In short, don’t be afraid to do yourself up however you will feel most confident – this will enhance each dress you try on. Remember, you will likely be getting your hair and makeup professionally done for the wedding, so you want to match that look as closely as possible.
- Pack your purse. Bring photos of dresses you like so your attendant has an idea of your style and what is most important to you. Additionally, bring heels that are a similar height to what you think you will wear on your wedding day, a strapless bra, and shapewear – if you believe you’ll want to wear some during your nuptials.
- Document your findings. If the salon or store you’re visiting allows you to take photos or even videos of the gowns your try on, take advantage of it! Having one of your companions snap pictures of each silhouette is a smart move – you will want the photos later when pondering your decision.
- Don’t be fooled. Try on veils and accessories to get a better feel of the dress, but don’t feel pressured to purchase the extra elements right away. There is a chance you’ll be able to find the same, or similar, pieces at a lower price point elsewhere, such as Etsy or another accessory-focused site.
- Know your true budget. Make sure that your stylist knows that the budget you provide represents the amount of money you’re willing to pay after taxes and alterations, not before. Extra tip: If you can schedule appointments when they are having trunk shows, you can take advantage of some helpful discounts! (Sign up for the Inside Weddings newsletter to receive trunk show updates every Tuesday!)
For more from Tessa Brand of Tessa Lyn Events, get the inside scoop on the celebrity wedding of Anna Camp & Skylar Astin, see her tips on what your planner doesn't tell you, and find out how to properly preserve your bridal gown.
Opening photo by Carasco Photography