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  • Writer's pictureKatie Haynes

Weducation Wednesdays: Tips for Wedding Dress Shopping Before You Step into a Bridal Gown Salon

Embarking on the journey to find the perfect wedding dress is an exhilarating experience filled with excitement and anticipation. As a seasoned wedding planner, I understand the importance of finding a gown that captures your style and personality and also fits seamlessly within your budget. Before you step into a bridal gown salon, here are some essential tips to ensure a successful and stress-free dress shopping experience.

Bride Wedding Dress Shopping for Wedding Gown

Know Your Budget

Before you start shopping for your dream dress, it's crucial to establish a realistic budget. Knowing your budget upfront will help you narrow down your options. It also prevents any financial surprises down the road. You certainly don't want to fall in love with a dress when you're shopping when that dress doesn't fit your budget. Ask your bridal salon too if they have dresses that are off-the rack. Sometimes they will have sample dresses or dresses from the previous wedding season that are on sale.

Understand Dress Styles

Wedding dress styles come in a variety of silhouettes, fabrics, and designs. Three of the most popular dresses and styles brides are searching for in the 2024 wedding season include:

A-Line: Timeless and universally flattering, A-line dresses feature a fitted bodice that gradually flares out from the waist, creating an elegant silhouette.

The Coquette Aesthetic: Flirty, feminine details like corsets, peek a boo details, bows and florals

Bride Wears an A Line Wedding Dress with Corset and Veil While Holding Bouquet

Mermaid: For brides who want to showcase their curves, mermaid dresses hug the body from the chest to the knees, then flare out dramatically at the bottom, resembling a mermaid's tail.

Ball Gown: Fit for a fairytale princess, ball gown dresses feature a fitted bodice and a full skirt, perfect for creating a dramatic and romantic look.

Bride Wears a Ball Gown Wedding Dress with Tiara and Groom Wears a Bespoke Maroon Tweed Suit

Veils: From floral embroidery, Cathedral length veils, colorful veils and veils with pearl accents, these details add texture and visual interest to your wedding day vibe.

Bride Gets Ready for Her Wedding Day with Veil Dotted with Pearls

Factor in Additional Costs

In addition to the cost of the dress itself, it's essential to budget for other associated expenses. This includes purchasing undergarments that work with the style of your dress, alterations to ensure the perfect fit, shoes, jewelry, veil, and any additional gowns for later in the evening. Be sure to account for these costs when setting your budget.

Bride Tries on Her Wedding Gown

Plan Ahead for Ordering and Alterations

Keep in mind that ordering a wedding dress and receiving it can take several months, so it's essential to shop for your gown well in advance. Aim to start shopping for your dress at least 9-12 months before your wedding date to allow ample time for ordering, alterations, and any unexpected delays.

Timing is Key

When it comes to wedding dress shopping, timing is everything. Avoid the crowds and book your appointments during weekdays or early mornings when bridal salons are less busy. Additionally, consider shopping during off-peak seasons, such as late fall or early spring, to take advantage of discounts and promotions.

Bride Wears a Long Sleeve Lace White Wedding Gown

With these tips in mind, you're ready to embark on the unforgettable journey of wedding dress shopping. Remember to stay true to your style, trust your instincts, and enjoy every moment of the experience. From classic elegance to modern chic, may you find the gown that makes your heart skip a beat and sets the stage for a truly magical wedding day. Happy shopping, brides-to-be!

With love and gratitude,


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