Our store manager recently got engaged (Hooray!). What did she realize, going into dress shopping? That, like every other bride, she actually had no clue what she should wear. You might think that someone who has touched, felt and breathed these dresses every day for the past six years would know exactly what she wanted for her wedding day, right? Wrong.
As every bride discovers when shopping for a bridal gown, dress shopping is so much more than finding a beautiful gown. The gown has to be the right fit for the bride. Photos of models on Pinterest and designer websites don’t accurately depict how a dress will look on a bride, how it will feel on her body, or how it will ultimately make her feel as a bride. What should you look for when shopping for your dream dress? We have created four key tips for shopping for your bridal gown.
- Have realistic budget expectations. When you are searching for a dream gown online, it is extremely easy to get lost in the fantasy world of lace and Mikado and sparkles. It is important to do the research and find out what those favorite styles cost, however. For example, bridal gowns are hand-beaded. If a particular gown’s production takes 72 hours of hand-beading, that will be factored into the cost of the dress. At The Dress Shop, we love working with brides to find dream gowns at any price point, and want to ensure each bride finds a gown that meets her expectations, and therefore work to ensure brides have realistic expectations for the quality they can expect at every price point.
- Have realistic body image expectations. Every gown is not designed to flatter every body type. At The Dress Shop, we understand that bodies are all different and unique, and love to help brides find the most flattering style to make them feel their most beautiful. Whether a bride has parts of her body she loves and wants to show off, or parts of her body she wants to camouflage, we strive to ensure each bride finds a gown that shows her best, most beautiful self.
- Be open to different styles of dresses. Almost every day, we have a bride come in with an exact picture in her head of what she will wear on her wedding day…and leave with a completely different gown, head over heels in love with her dress. Whether it be a fabric, silhouette, type of beading, or accessory, be open to the idea that a dress on a hanger doesn’t look the same as a dress on a body, and the “perfect dress” may not be the one found in an ad in a magazine.
- Be open to color. All brides should wear white…and ivory, and blush, and champagne, and maple, and nude, and sand, and lavender and…you get the idea. It’s important to understand that skin tone, time of year, wedding theme, and even wedding location can play an important role in helping a bride find her dream dress color.
The brides who have the most success (and most fun) finding their dream dress are the ones who are the most open to the possibilities of what they might fine. Our store manager was sure she knew her dream dress: she wanted a fit and flare, ivory, ruched, strapless gown with no beading or sparkle. What did she actually choose? Well, that’s still a secret, but let’s just say it doesn’t check off a single box from her “wants” list, except for one: it is perfectly her and is her perfect dress.