Friday, February 11, 2011

Wedding Gown Shopping 101

So now that I get to play dress up with brides, I’ve learned a few things that will make your gown shopping experience a little easier and more fun. So if you’re in the market for a gown here are a few tips for you.

1.       Book an appointment. Yes, even in small town Saskatchewan I have busier times and slower times. A bridal gown appointment will take you about 1 to 1 ½ hours. And in order to have the best possible experience you want someone who can focus on you and your needs. By calling ahead you can arrange a time that works for both you and the store and as a result you get the best possible service.

2.       Come prepared (i.e. Please shower and bring/wear the right undergarments). The first goes without saying. Would you want to try on a gown knowing the bride before you had come straight from the gym without detouring past a shower first?  Exactly. As for lingerie, if you want a strapless gown, wear a strapless bra. lol The right bra makes a huge difference and nothing ruins the look of your dream dress faster then what a sports bra will do to your figure. The same goes for things like Spanx, if you know you plan to wear them on the big day, then please bring them to your gown hunt.

3.       Arrive with an open mind. Chances are, shortly after you become engaged you hit the web and bridal magazines, hunting down the latest in gowns and day dreaming of what your gown will look like. But until you try on a dress, you don’t really know what it will look like. Sometimes those daydreams are exactly what you take home. But in only three months I’ve already lost count of the number of girls (brides and grads) who have come in with one specific idea and gone home with a dress that made them feel amazing, but looked nothing like what they had imagined. If you dismiss a gown or style without trying it on simply because it doesn’t match your mental image you may miss out on the perfect dress.

4.       Ask your consultant for tips. We get to see every body type trying on different gown styles. Our job is to listen to what you want, but it is also to help you feel beautiful. If your consultant says “let’s try something” or “indulge me for a minute and try this”, do it!

5.       Know your price range and stick with it. If you are reading this blog you have likely seen ‘Say Yes to the Dress”. Nothing is more heart breaking then having a bride fall in love with a gown that they just cannot afford. And once you’ve shopped around a bit, you will realize that many stores have very similar prices for the same gown. This is because we are told “This is your manufacturer suggested retail on this gown.” And we are supposed to stick to that. You do not need to spend thousands on a gown. But knowing what your limit is will make for a more positive buying experience.

6.       If possible, start looking for your gown 9 months or more ahead. Most brides will be ordering their gown, and most wedding gowns take about 6 months to come in. And it’s not often you end up choosing a gown your first appointment. Meaning you need to leave time to choose, then time to order and finally additional time for any alterations needed to make it YOUR perfect gown.

Most of all have fun! Buying a bridal gown is an adventure, not a chore to cross off the list. You deserve to feel like a princess and knowing you have chosen an Unforgettable gown will help make your photos and memories of your wedding day ones you will cherish forever.

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