Steps for Finding the Perfect Wedding Dress

Now that you are engaged, are you dreaming of finding your wedding dress?

If you are eager to hit the bridal shop to try on different styles and find the picture-perfect fit, then this timeline can help you determine when it is best to gather your support team and start shopping.

When should you try on dresses?
It is essential to understand that finding and fitting the right wedding dress is a process. Your dress will need to be ordered, shipped, altered, and pressed before your wedding date. Some dresses are made to order, and it can take up to six months to piece together. But, even if you are purchasing off the rack, it is likely you will still need time to make adjustments.

With this in mind, we recommend you begin dress shopping as soon as you have secured the venue. Ideally, you will have eight to ten months for find your dress and have it returned and ready to wear on the big day.

What are the steps for finding the right dress?
Since selecting the right dress is more than simply hitting the store and buying what you like, we have created a simple timeline set you on the right shopping path.

  1. Choose a style. You may already have a style in mind but do some online research and purchase and peruse a few bridal magazines. Trends change year to year, and you may find yourself leaning towards a look that you want to try first. It makes your trip to the bridal shop more efficient when you already have an idea of what you like. Although, we do recommend you try on a few varying styles, you may be surprised with what you fall in love with!
  2. Choose your budget. Decide how much of your wedding budget you plan to spend on your dress. Remember to add in taxes, shipping costs, alterations, and the added cost of your veil and accessories.
  3. Set an appointment. Many bridal boutiques will require and appointment to try on gowns. It is likely that they will have an attendant available to walk you through the process, so they need to have you on the schedule to provide the best possible service.
  4. Make your purchase and allow time for your dress to be created and packaged for shipping.
  5. Once your dress has arrived, make an appointment to try it on and determine what needs to be altered.
  6. After the final alterations, have your dress steamed or professionally pressed and hung in a sealed bag until your wedding date.

What Items to Add to Your Wedding Registry

Shopping your registry should be fun and exciting, not stressful! This is a time to find items both you and your future spouse will enjoy. It can be fun for you to create a wish list, but it is also helpful for your guests to have suggestions.  Whether you choose to shop online or in person, here are recommendations to add to your list.

Kitchen items that are sensible. Consider practical items that you need for day-to-day use. Standard plates, bowls, and silverware are a must when you are not already fully stocked. Thinking beyond the basics, add baking items such as: mixing bowls, spoons, spatulas, and measuring tools. Then broaden your list to include pots and pans, toaster ovens, and other cooking necessities.

Your household wish list. Throw in household items (decorative or pragmatic) that you want or need around the house. Consider including bath towels, bedding, pillows, luggage, and even cleaning supplies. This is also the time to add that vacuum cleaner you are secretly wishing for.

Include items that are unique. While some guests will simply shop within their price range others will want to purchase something out of the box. If there is a monogramed or personalized piece that is special to you, include it for the sentimental shopper. Add in distinctive décor or an accent item that will make your home feel extra special.

Add big and small ticket items. Be sure to include items that guests of all budget ranges can afford. Some may even want to purchase numerous gifts at a lower price range. You may also be pleasantly surprised that the high ticket “wish list” item you dreamed about made its way to your home after all. Remember, a wedding registry is a helpful guide for those shopping for you. Be respectful to all budgets as you add to your wish list and grateful for everything you receive. Here are more tips before getting started.