Saying “yes” to the right dress might be one of the most stressful aspects of planning your wedding. You want every detail in your dress to be exactly how you want it. It’s certainly going to be more difficult than finding the perfect suit for the groom. Unless you’ve done it before, or you have some experienced friends helping you out, there are some things about wedding dress shopping that you should know beforehand. At Platinum Banquet Hall, we’ve seen so many dresses that we wanted to offer some guidance for future brides!
Every place you go will be different of course. It’s important to know that at some locations you’ll be able to bargain on the price, while at others you might not be able to. When you’re interested in a specific dress, ask about pricing to see if you can bargain a little bit. Every dollar counts!
It’s also important to make sure to ask about alterations. Some places may include the alteration pricing in the dress while others may not. It’s important to figure this out beforehand so that you’re not surprised by a completely different price than you expected.
2. Be Aware Of Who You Take With You
Most brides will bring a group of friends and family with them during wedding dress shopping. This is great as you can turn it into a whole event with them. It’s important you’re aware of who you’re inviting with you. You’ll likely invite your mom, sisters (if you have any), and a few friends (perhaps some of them are bridesmaids/maid of honor).
They’re all going to have their opinions of each dress. This is good and bad. The more people you invite, the more opinions there is going to be for each dress you try on. If some are really opinionated this can get out of hand really quick. Just be aware of how many people you bring and their specific personalities. If you really trust a specific friend’s taste, then make sure to invite her along.
3. Do Your Homework Online First
There’s so much information available to you online that it would be counterproductive to not do research ahead of time. By doing research for wedding dress shopping you’ll get a sense of what styles are trending, what styles are traditional, and what to avoid. You’ll be better prepared for when you go try on various dresses.
Doing research will also allow you to get an idea of prices. Perhaps you find a specific dress online for a better price than at the store you tried it on at. Simply by knowing there is a cheaper price you can negotiate with the storeowner or manager, or simply try the dress on, order it online, and have it altered later on.
4. Set Yourself A Budget
This seems obvious but we’re going to point it out anyways. Be cognizant of how much money you’re able to realistically spend on your dress. There’s no point in trying on multiple $10,000 dresses if you’re only able to budget $3,000. Find yourself a wedding budget calculator and start the budgeting process.
Setting yourself a budget will save you a lot of time and make it easier to focus on what you can afford. You can also let the salesperson at each store know what you’re looking to spend so they can create a list of dresses you should focus on.
This goes back to the homework portion of our blog post. By doing research ahead of time, you can get an idea of what various styles are going to cost you. From there you can figure out what you can spend. We do recommend that you leave yourself a cushion of a few hundred dollars incase there’s a dress that just knocks you off your feet. This is a once-in-a-lifetime event so we understand wanting to splurge a little extra.
5. Be Open-Minded
Unless you have a huge budget allotted for wedding dress shopping, you’ll benefit from being open minded during this experience. You may have a strict idea of what you want, only to see that a different style looks better on you.
Just because you know what you really want, doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be the best choice for you. Put some trust into your salesperson as she does this for a living. If she’s making suggestions for a different style, give them a try. You never know what you will put on that will “wow” you.
Wedding Dress Shopping – Conclusion
There are thousands of options when it comes to wedding dress shopping. The most important things you can do is to be knowledgeable as well as have a budget in mind. The more knowledgeable you are, the easier the process should be for you and your family. Having an idea of pricing for various styles will guide you in the right direction and help you to make the best choice for you. Don’t get caught up in how you look in the photos when you try on each dress. You’re going to look different on your wedding day and a professional photographer makes a huge difference!