Friday, August 19, 2011

Wedding dress shopping tips

I recently got to go wedding dress shopping with one of my close friends (hi, Rebekah!). It was fun, but it can also be stressful for some brides! I know when I was shopping for my own dress, it definitely wandered into the territory of stressful and overwhelming at a certain point.

Since wedding dress shopping is fresh in my mind, I wanted to share some tips with you in case you or a friend will be looking at wedding dresses in the near future!

1.      Don’t be afraid to try on styles you dislike on the hanger. This is pretty typical advice that most brides hear over and over, but it’s true! Especially when you’re just starting out shopping, it’s best to give several different styles a try and see how they look on your body, even if they aren’t what you’re envisioning yourself in on the big day.

2.      Know when to say no. Once you get to know your favorite style(s) and which ones look best on you, don’t be afraid to say no to the salesperson when it comes to trying on other dresses. Sometimes they can be pushy, but it’s ok to tell them you already know you dislike a certain style on your body. This will save you time and sanity, trust me! They won’t be insulted if you don’t like a dress. Remember, they are just salespeople, not the designers!

3.      Bring pictures and explain them. This might seem trivial, especially if you know that you can describe exactly what you want, but you might be surprised at someone else’s interpretation of the dress of your dreams. Pictures are always better than words alone in this case! Aside from showing the pictures, describe to the salesperson what exactly you like about the dress as well as what you don’t. Point out features like the shape of the dress, the fabric, the beading, the train, etc. and let them know which of those features you want to see in the dresses you’ll be trying on.

4.      Fewer friends are better. Sometimes more opinions in the room can lead to more confusion for the bride. It’s best to just bring 1-3 people who are closest to you and who you can count on to give you the support you need.

5.      Don’t be pressured by sales. Of course we all love a good deal, especially when it comes to a big purchase like a wedding dress, but you should never make a rushed decision on a dress just because it’s on sale. Salespeople are good at putting the pressure on…after all, it is their job to sell! But, unless you’ve been to several stores and are 100% confident that you’ve found your dress and you’re done looking at others, it’s best to walk away from the sale and think about your options.

6.      Take pictures. If the store allows it, have a friend or family member take pictures of you in each dress you try on. These pictures will come in handy later when you can’t remember which dresses you liked and why! The pictures can also give you a better perspective on what looks best on you once you’re out of the store and in a more relaxed environment at home. You’ll be thinking clearer by then and may even notice some things about the dress that you didn’t while you were at the store.

7.      Have fun. Of course this one is the most important! If you’re not having fun with the process anymore, it might be time to take a little break from shopping to get your mood back in the right place!

I hope these tips can help you or one of your friends!

Just for fun, here are some dresses I tried on when I was shopping for my own dress in 2008 that didn't make the cut. Hopefully you can see why!

This one actually wasn't terrible, it just wasn't what I was looking for.

I LOVED the bodice of this dress, but...

....the back was a little much for me.

I think my face says it all here! This dress was just all wrong for my body!

Next dress, please!

 Then, I finally found the one!

It's Reem Acra's "Magique" in case you're wondering!

Are you going dress shopping for yourself or a friend any time soon? If you’re already married, how was your own dress shopping experience? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!


  1. I've got married last year. The most exiting part of a wedding party is to buy a wonderful dress, don't you agree? I loved trying on dresses after dresses, that was the best part!
    By the way, I love your wedding dress. You chose the best one :)

  2. @Sahar

    Thanks Sahar! Trying on all the dresses was definitely fun!


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