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Friday, January 6, 2012

10 Tips For Wedding Gown Shopping

It's time to shop for your wedding gown.  You're excited.  Your mom is excited.  But don't let excitement rule the day.  Keep these 10 Tips For Wedding Gown Shopping in mind and shopping will be a joyful experience that won't drive you (or your mom) out of your minds.

1. Know your budget.  It's sad, but true.  Everyone, even the bride with plenty of money, has a budget.  Stick to it.  Want to take your budget a little bit higher?  Consider not wearing a veil or making your own simple tulle veil.  By the time you get to your reception there's a better than even chance you'll decide to take it off anyway.

2. Don't forget you'll need appropriate undergarments.  You'll have to add these to your budget so don't forget to figure them in when you're planning.  Do you need a strapless bra, a strapless long line bra, a crinoline? Good undergarments can give you that slimmer, sleeker look you're looking for.

3. Spend some time learning what silhouettes you like but don't limit yourself to them.  Sometimes a bride is pleasantly surprised when that mermaid silhouette she'd nixed in her mind in reality looks like a dream. 

4. Find a bridal consultant you trust, not just a saleswoman in a bridal store.  There is a huge difference in how happy you'll be with your purchase.  A good consultant has worked in the business long enough to be able to take one look at a bride, ask a few pertinent questions and be able to choose a small but select group of gowns for your to try on.  She'll let you make your own decisions but will offer her own honest opinion when asked.

5.  Try on your dress with shoes and stockings.  You want to get the best idea of what the gown would look like on your wedding day.  Those Christmas socks with reindeer all over them just aren't what you need to wear.

6.  Make an appointment.  Better yet, make an appointment on a day midweek when your consultant will have plenty of time to spend with you.  Try to avoid the trap of shopping on a weekend.

7.  Don't shop for bridesmaid dresses the same day you shop for your gown.  The day you shop for your gown should be all about you.  There will be enough drama when you take the bridesmaids shopping, don't let it take away from the day you shop for your gown.

8.  Be sure to take alterations into consideration when you are buying your gown and figuring your budget.  A gown that needs extensive alterations may end up being twice the cost after alterations. 

9.  Limit the number of salons you plan to shop.  Go through the bridal magazines, choose some basic styles you like, and find out who carries them locally.  Three or four salons should be plenty.  After that it will stop being fun and start to become a chore.

10. If you live near a state without sales tax buy your dress there. Many states consider bridal gowns a luxury so tax them even if they usually don't tax clothing. 

Are there other considerations? Sure.  But these should help you enjoy your gown shopping experience while still keeping you within your budget.  Get those magazines out, hit the Internet and start the search!  Keep a notebook of styles and manufacturers for reference.


wedding gown alterations OC said...

Before shopping around, you need to take into consideration many things to ensure that you will not forget anything. Creating a list can help you decide what needs to be given priority first so that you will not be having a problem with your budget.

Nancy Ross Vecchione said...

Thanks for your input! It's such a tricky thing balancing the 'oh my gosh I love that dress' with the realities of how much you can afford to spend, since obviously the dress alone isn't all you need to buy, shoes, veil, undergarments etc etc etc.