Wedding Gown Shopping? 13+ Tips for Stress Free Wedding Gown Shopping

13+ Tipd for Stress Free Wedding Gown Shopping

13+ Tips for Stress Free Wedding Gown Shopping!

  1. Create a budget.   Most brides will spend about 10% of their wedding budget for their dress.
  2. Start shopping early.  It takes anywhere from six to twelve months from the time you place the order to when you bring your wedding gown home.  Bridal designers need four or five months to make it, and then you need to schedule fittings.
  3. Know what kind of dress you want. Love satin, hate lace…let your stylist know what you love and what you hate.
  4. What kind of wedding are you having? Destination wedding, outdoors, grand ballroom, barn/country….this decision will play some kind of role in selecting the right dress for the mood of your wedding.
  5. Most bridal shops prefer appointments, but most are happy to work with walk-ins too. Saturdays can be crazy busy, so why not try a weekday appointment for a more private and relaxing experience.
  6. Bring one or two people whose opinion means the most to you. The reality bridal TV shows show brides bringing a huge group of family and friends – and that just add drama and indecision to the process.
  7. Get ready for your appointment and bring items you want to wear down the aisle. Wear a strapless nude bra and a seamless thong or brief.
  8. Some dresses look better on you than on the rack. Let the stylist help choose a style which will flatter your body.  Keep an open mind.  Try different silhouettes to see which one makes you feel stunning.
  9. Forget about “sizes” in the wedding gown industry. Every designer’s size charts are different.  Taking in a gown is easy; letting it out is difficult.
  10. For most shops, a 50% deposit is required when you order.
  11. Don’t be afraid to say “yes” to the dress on your first attempt. When you know, you just know.  If you feel exceptional in that dress, it’s your dress.
  12. Move around – sit – dance a bit. You want to be comfortable.
  13. Gowns are made to order, so minor details can be customized or switched. You can add a belt to add some sizzle, or add some colored tulle underneath to add contrast.  Straps can be added or you might want to order a small jacket or fur for those cooler months.

And a few extra tips –

Fit is everything, which is why, when it comes to your wedding dress, alterations are everything. You can splurge on a pricey dress, but if it’s not altered properly it won’t look any better than a gown that’s a tenth of the cost.

Budget for Alterations:  Bridal Alterations can add up.  Some shops charge per service ($200 to shorten your gown, $150 to resew seams, etc.) while others charge a flat fee that covers anything you’ll need to make the dress fit you perfectly.  Design changes can cost anywhere from $50, to cut a sweetheart neckline, to hundreds of dollars.

Don’t Buy a Gown to Small:  Never buy a too-small dress, thinking you will lose the weight.  It’s easier to take in a larger dress, than to let a smaller one out.

Wear your Wedding Shoes:  A seamstress will adjust the hem based on the shoes you’ll be wearing at the wedding.  If you haven’t picked out your wedding shoes yet, bring a pair with a comparable height.  Your hemline should gently graze the ground, so that you don’t trip.

So, where are you buying your dress?  Be sure to choose a reliable, bridal store that cares about helping you be your very best on your special day.  There are some disreputable stores, that have poor service after the sale.  Even some of the larger chains have bad reputations.  There are both good and bad online bridal stores – and once you purchase your dress, it’s yours.  Use care when going that route as well.

Be a beautiful, happy bride in the dress you love!

5 Tips Every Bride Needs to Know about Wedding Dress Alterations

 

 

 

5 Tips Regarding Bridal Gown Alterations

 

Fit is everything, which is why, when it comes to your wedding dress, alterations are everything. You can splurge on a pricey dress, but if it’s not altered properly it won’t look any better than a gown that’s a tenth of the cost.

Here are 5 TIPS when it comes to bridal alterations.

Keep on Schedule:   It is best to buy your dress early enough to leave plenty of time for fittings and tailoring.  Schedule a fitting 2 months before the wedding and a final fitting no later than two weeks before your wedding.

Budget for Alterations:  Bridal Alterations can add up.  Some shops charge per service ($200 to shorten your gown, $150 to resew seams, etc.) while others charge a flat fee that covers anything you’ll need to make the dress fit you perfectly.  Design changes can cost anywhere from $50, to cut a sweetheart neckline, to hundreds of dollars.

Don’t Buy a Gown to Small:  Never buy a too-small dress, thinking you will lose the weight.  It’s easier to take in a larger dress, than to let a smaller one out.

Wear your Wedding Shoes:  A seamstress will adjust the hem based on the shoes you’ll be wearing at the wedding.  If you haven’t picked out your wedding shoes yet, bring a pair with a comparable height.  Your hemline should gently graze the ground, so that you don’t trip.

Bring Along Undergarments:  Whatever undergarments you plan on wearing bring them along for your fitting.  Spanx or the right strapless bra can make a difference.

Coleen’s Journey – Saying “Yes” to the dress! (Part 3)

I said YES…to the dress!  A wedding dress can take anywhere from 5-6 months to come in (not including alterations) and with my wedding coming up in less than 6 months, I knew what I had to do next!  As much as I dreaded dress shopping, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I had expected.

I had a few ideas of the dress I envisioned myself in.  So, I went on Pinterest and found a few I liked and added them to my wedding board.  This way, when consultants asked what I was envisioning, I could just hold up my phone and I wouldn’t have to try and explain the hundreds of ideas swirling around in my head.  The main aspect to my original vision was long sleeves. I’ve always loved the idea of wearing long sleeves on my wedding day. Partly because I am self-conscious about my arms (ridiculous, I know) and partly because I think long sleeve dresses are elegant.

Once I had a few dresses pinned and ready to show, (I may have done this on the car ride to the dress shop #procrastinationatitsfinest) we made an appointment at a bridal store that was close to home and that I had heard about through some friends.  My mom and dad were the only ones I wanted to come with me on this first go around. Remember how I said I’m very indecisive? I wasn’t sure what I really wanted so I didn’t want to make my friends endure a long day of trial and error. I might not know what I want, but I definitely know what I don’t want.  I knew I could go to this appointment with my parents and send back any dress I wasn’t “feeling” and they would totally understand!  I wanted to get a feel for what I liked before I asked some friends to come along.

The first appointment went just as I expected.  I tried on a few dresses I thought I would like and ultimately, I wasn’t impressed.  It was a great first appointment though to feel out a few styles and now I felt like I was ready for my second attempt!  After we left the first appointment, there was a bridal store down the road that luckily allowed walk-ins! I went into my second appointment with a little more confidence.  I told my consultant my “vision” for long sleeves and I tried on a few options both with and without the sleeves. But yet again, nothing I really loved.

I went ahead and called a third and final place and I also randomly called a few friends to join me.  And I’m glad I did because, like they say, the third times the charm! The one thing that I loved about this shop that the other two shops were lacking was the organization.  The dresses were organized by style which helped me see all the long sleeve dresses they had available. I was also able to look in their “lace” section as well, which was the second best option in my vision.  I tried on exactly what I had thought I would love and had always pictured wearing.  As you can guess, I didn’t love it. It just didn’t feel right for my venue, body style, and time of year (I realized long sleeves in July would be pretty toasty).  If you try on a dress that isn’t feeling quite right, go with your gut and keep searching!

I ended up branching out and realizing that a trumpet style gown WITHOUT sleeves was more my style!  I ended up saying YES to a lace, ivory, spaghetti strap gown with a nude underlay. Completely different than what I had planned!  The moral of my long drawn out dress saga is to keep an open mind!  I know you probably hear this all the time and roll your eyes (just like I did), but it’s the truth!  I can’t wait to tell you more about my wedding planning journey next week!

Need some help choosing your style.  Check out this previous blog post:  https://bridestlouis.com/mermaid-trumpet-or-fit-flare-whats-the-difference/

Need some help selecting the right dress for your body:  https://bridestlouis.com/selecting-the-best-wedding-dress-for-your-body-style/

And one more helpful article about purchasing a wedding dress – the basics:  https://bridestlouis.com/everything-need-know-buying-wedding-dress/

Bride St. Louis donates to ReFresh

 

Refresh Visit by Bride St. Louis

This week Bride St. Louis made a stop at ReFresh in Brentwood to donate dresses that remained from our 2019 Run for the Dress.  Re-Fresh is not your typical resale store.  The only thing that can top fashionable clothes at reasonable prices is shopping in the name of a great cause.

ReFresh is run by the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition, a St. Louis non-profit that finds forever families for area children in foster care.  Not only do the store’s proceeds benefit the Coalition’s important work, but ReFresh also provides deep discounts to children in foster care.  Shopping at ReFresh truly makes both your heart and wallet feel good!

Join them for their first ever Bridal Event January 4th thru January 31st.  Come shop their collection, which includes over 200 new wedding dresses generously donated by a local bridal store.  They have a vast array of sizes and on-trend styles starting at $100, with many dresses on sale for 30 to 50% off the ticket price.  Be sure to tell them Bride St. Louis sent you.

Mermaid, Trumpet or Fit & Flare – Wedding Gown Styles and Silhouettes

Over the next few posts we will introduce you to some basic information about wedding gown styles and silhouettes.

We will start with details about the Trumpet, Mermaid, and Fit and Flare.  For the brides who is just starting to look at wedding gowns, they can appear very much alike.

A trumpet wedding dress fits similar to a mermaid gown. It hugs the body in all the right places and gradually flares outward. The key difference between mermaid and trumpet wedding gowns is where the flare begins, which in the case of the trumpet style is mid-thigh.

A mermaid dress is a style of evening gown that fits closely to the body through the torso and hips, then “fishtails” out in a flare to the floor. (This is why it’s also known as a fishtail dress.)  Thanks to the dramatic cut, a mermaid style dress can highlight a curvy figure or even add curves where there are none, making it one of the best dress styles for hourglass figures. For a high-fashion, sexy silhouette, this is an ideal choice, and can make more impact for a bride who wants a wow-factor dress. However, it’s also worth bearing in mind that the tight fit can restrict movement and dancing, so if you’re thinking about a mermaid gown, it’s important to try on your chosen style and practice walking and sitting in it.

Choosing a Wedding Gown by BrideStLouis

Fit and Flare Style Wedding Dress is one of the most flattering “silhouettes” for all body types. This type of dress hugs the body and flares off just below the hips, accentuating the waist, or just above the knees beautifully showing off your curvaceous body. Fit and flare is the term that encompasses several styles including mermaid gowns and trumpet styles. Ideal for the pear and hourglass shape, this glamorous style is perfect for highlighting your best features. Despite the common misconception, petite brides can also wear a fit-and-flare dress, as long as they get the dress altered to fit their proportions perfectly. Sometimes all you have to do is raise the skirt’s starting point just a bit higher in order to create length in the torso and legs. For maximum elongation, the dress should be fitted through your hips and flare out just above the knee and not below.

Strapless wedding dresses are considered a classic. Bare shoulders can look beautifully paired with a dramatic flair of the skirt. A sweetheart neckline accentuates décolletage, and is perfect for the bride who wants to either enhance or create the illusion of curves. It also lengthens the neck and adds balance to the overall silhouette. To put a modern twist on your bridal gown, look for plunging styles, lace-embellished bodices, and delicate floral appliqués.

Wedding dresses in lace are super feminine and utterly romantic. They are as timeless and elegant as they are versatile. Lace fits perfectly in the elegant and romantic wedding theme, as much as in the free-spirited summer beach ceremony.   A fully hand beaded gown is super glamorous and a fabulous way to celebrate your wedding, Hollywood star style.

Choosing a wedding dress is probably the most exciting moment of planning a wedding for any bride. But it can also be very stressful and you can feel that you are expected to know all these different styles of gowns and know which one you want– not to mention all the different varieties of necklines, hemlines and backs.

At the Run for the Dress in July you will be able to try on various styles and silhouettes to find your perfect dress.  There will be bridal shop attendants there to assist you, dressing rooms, and support staff including alterations staff to advise on any modifications or adjustments that might be necessary.  Almost all wedding dresses need to be altered to fit properly so keep that in mind as you select your dress.

READ THIS FIRST – BEFORE you buy your Wedding Dress

 

All women want to look their very best on their wedding day – beautiful, confident and radiant!  Here are some tips to ensure that you make a GREAT choice when it comes to your choice of bridal gown.

  1. Start NOW to find your dress. If you plan to order a designer gown it can take up to six months to arrive after it is ordered.  Plus – every gown will need some alterations to fit perfectly.
  2. Don’t let anyone persuade you into purchasing a particular dress – not your mother, your fashionista friend, or an opinionated maid of honor. Choose the dress YOU LOVE and the dress that makes you feel beautiful.
  3. We all love to get a great deal. But this is one time you don’t want to make a decision purely on price.  Find dresses that are within your budget and choose from those selections.
  4. Believe me when I tell you, make sure your dress is comfortable! Can you sit, dance, and relax in your dress?  Good undergarments and a dress that fits right is so essential.  At 8 o’clock when it’s time to party you will be glad that you followed this tip.
  5. Locate a reliable, reputable and well-respected shop instead of shopping online. Good service and advice is worth a lot more than saving a few dollars.  I went to a wedding last year where the bride wore a “pink” dress– it was a bright, hot pink!  She ordered it online, and it arrived just a few days before the wedding.  The online photos showed this dress as a “very, light delicate baby pink. NOT! It was a hot pink and the bride had no choice but to wear it
  6. Don’t buy your dress based on your street clothes size. Bridal gowns don’t run true to your typical dress size.  Don’t buy a smaller gown because you are planning to lose weight before your wedding day.  Remember, it’s easier to have a dress taken in if you lose the weight than trying to find an extra inch to let out.
  7. Need help finding a good Bridal Shop. Here is a link to all the great Bridal Shops in our area. I’ve been to many of them and they will treat you right.    https://bridestlouis.com/listings/bridal-fashions