Wedding dress shopping is an experience I’ve only dreamed about up until this year. I spent my college years as a bridal stylist for hundreds of brides, just waiting for it be my turn one day! I had such a great experience dress shopping earlier this year, and while it’s fun to play dress up when picking out your gown, it can also be a pretty stressful process. As a bride-to-be, and a former wedding stylist, I wanted to share a few tips to consider when its time for you to pick out your dream dress!
Every friend & family member does not need to attend your appointment. Please think long and hard about who you invite to accompany you dress shopping. That opinionated bridesmaid? Your Aunt who always has something negative to say? Leave them home. You can easily explain to them that you want your dress to be a big surprise, so you’re just taking a few people. As a stylist, I’ve watched so many appointments fall apart because the brides are trying to appease too many people. I personally only took my Mom with me, and it was the best decision I ever made! It’s so much better to make it an intimate, special day! Believe me, you won’t regret it.
Have specific things you do & do NOT like in mind. Communicate them to your stylist at the beginning of your appointment. You will save yourself & your stylist SO much time if you’re upfront about this from the start! Do you like lace? Beading? Sleeves? Maybe you hate halter necklines, or know that you love a sweetheart style! I’m all for trying on different silhouettes, but I knew from the jump I didn’t care for heavy beading. I was handing dresses right back to my stylist that I knew just weren’t for me. Any info you can provide your stylist with will help you get the most out of your appointment time.
Bridal sizing is inconsistent & runs way smaller than typical sizing. I say this to eliminate the shock that most women have when they find out what size wedding gown they need to order. While I was always respectful of what brides thought their size was, I knew later in the appointment she would want to size up because the dresses are cut so differently than their typical clothing. (& by different, I mean WAY smaller!) I ordered my gown 3 sizes larger than what I typically wear; crazy right? Of all times to make women self conscious about their body, it totally should NOT be on their wedding day! Just remember that this happens to EVERY BRIDE, so don’t read too much into it!
Do your hair & makeup extra special to help you visualize yourself on the big day. Even when I go shopping for regular clothes, I am ten times more likely to purchase something if my hair and makeup are done! Getting dolled up is fun & makes you feel good, right? Think about trying on dresses as your wedding day trial run; can you see yourself walking down the aisle in this dress? Does it give you ALL the feels? Some may say this a no-brainer, but you would be surprised! Whatever look you envision for yourself, create that vision for your appointment!
Your gown is all about you. Say it LOUDER because oh my gosh do we forget this. Maybe you’re like me, and go into your appointment knowing exactly what you want, or maybe you have absolutely no idea at all. That’s okay! One thing you do know, every time, is whether you like a dress on your body or not. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, this your dress, on your body, for your day. I’ll be real with you, there were times when I was dreading going dress shopping, because I have so many insecurities about my body. I questioned whether I would like anything on me at all; please believe me when I to tell you that’s not going to be the case. Forget what anyone else says or thinks; what makes you feel beautiful? What makes you feel comfortable? If you buy a dress because everyone else likes it, even though you’re not totally comfortable in it, it will show on your wedding day. Remind yourself that others will have, or already have had, their turn. Close your eyes and picture yourself about to walk down the aisle; what does your dress look like? This is YOUR dress, YOUR turn to be the bride!
I hope these tips are helpful in your quest to say YES to the dress!
XO, The Future Mrs. Kreft