Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Tips for the Bride to Be – Finding that Perfect Wedding Gown

One of the most exciting things about being a bride is donning the gown of your dreams.  If you are a future bride, there is no doubt that you wouldn’t want your wedding gown to be anything  less-than-perfect.  You may choose a gown with an elaborate design or you may opt for a simpler one but regardless of your personal taste, you would surely want your gown to be perfect for you.

short summer wedding dress by Lana Stepul

What are some of the things you should consider before choosing a gown?  Here are points to ponder:

Your budget.  First, you will need to decide how much you can afford to spend on the dress.  If money is not a problem, you may choose to splurge on your dress but if you have a limited budget, you will need to find an inexpensive wedding gown.  Of course, the price does not necessarily define the kind of dress you would be wearing.  It can be a very simple gown at an affordable price but if it fits just right, you would still look beautiful on your wedding day.

Hence, don’t worry so much about the price tag.  What’s most important is for you to set a definite budget and stick to it.  Don’t forget to think about other expenses such as the food, venue, decorations, favors, etc.  You wouldn’t want to go over-budget just because you have your eye on a gown that you clearly can’t afford.

designer-inspired gown by: mila haute couture 

Tailor-made or off the rack?  Once you have set your budget, you can decide whether to purchase a gown off the rack or have it custom-made.  Custom-designed or tailor-made gowns are expected to be more expensive but if you happen to be a friend of a designer, then you might be able to get a huge discount. 

The nice thing about having a gown especially made for you is that you can actually request for the exact design and material you want.  You can also be sure that the dress would perfectly fit.  Some couturiers are able to create fabulous wedding gowns made out of recycled fabric.  If you are planning to do a bohemian-theme wedding, a recycled-fabric wedding dress or an up-cycled vintage gown is a good option.

bohemian wedding dress by Katie Jean Designs

It’s a good idea for you to canvass the price-range offered by designers or tailoring shops in your city.  However, if it’s clearly way-out of your budget, don’t worry.  You still have a lot of choices from bridal shops online and at store locations.

You can find numerous wedding gown shops that sell bridal gowns in all styles and sizes.  It used to be that plus-sized brides don’t have much choice but to pay a hefty sum of money on custom-made wedding gowns.  Today, there are specialized bridal shops that exclusively cater to plus-size women so you can be sure to find a gown that will perfectly suit your sense-of-style and figure.

 tulle dress bridal gown by Claire La Faye

Know your body type.  Wedding gown styles vary and certain styles are more flattering on specific body shapes.  Certain styles emphasize the best features of a woman while hiding the flaws.  It’s important to understand your own body structure before shopping around so you’ll know exactly which styles would look great on you and you won’t need to waste time trying on gowns that do not go well with your body built.

What’s your body type? (Are you a pear-shaped or a cone-shaped (inverted-triangle) woman?  Do you have a straight, hourglass, or a curvy figure?  Are you plus-sized, medium-sized or petite?  You’ll be glad to know that regardless of your body structure, you will be exceptionally gorgeous if you will choose a dress that complements your body.

 silk chiffon empire-waist wedding gown by dahlnyc

Take time to shop around.  You will be confronted with a thousand choices and choosing the right one can be a daunting task.  What you need is time to do comparison shopping.  The internet can be a wonderful tool for canvassing information so you can check out the price-range of gowns in different materials and styles. 

Of course, you should also visit your local shops where you can do on-the-spot fittings and you might be able to find a good buy.  Think you’ve found the right gown at a good price?  Don’t buy just yet until you’re done checking out other shops and doing comparison.

Check out the SALE section.  When checking out online shops or brick-and-mortar stores, don’t forget to take look at the SALE section as you might be able to find the gown of your dreams at half-the-price or at a much less cost.  Carefully examine the dress if there are flaws or glitches.  Nonetheless, most sellers offer their overstock items on a bargain even though they are in perfect condition and with no damages whatsoever.

vintage lace wedding gown by Leanimal

Consider second-hand or vintage wedding gowns.  You may also consider buying a second-hand or a vintage dress from online auction websites or from local and online vintage shops like Etsy. In fact, vintage bridal gowns are a favorite choice among many brides these days.  Even for brides who choose to have their gowns tailor-made, many of them do request for vintage-inspired wedding dresses.

Does it fit you well?  Don’t choose style over comfort.  The perfect wedding gown should match your budget, your taste, and your figure.  You should feel comfortable, not uneasy wearing it.  You should feel beautiful, not doubtful wearing it.  If you think you’ve found the style you want, don't buy in an impulse unless you have tried it on.  If you’re 100% convinced that you feel good in it, then you’ve found your gown indeed.

Be sure that the people closest to you are there when you do the fittings.  Your maid-of-honor should be present as this is one of her most important duties.  Many brides would also love their mothers to be there to help them choose their wedding dress.  And if you came from a big, close-knit family, it wouldn’t be so bad to have your sisters or brothers there as well.  If you see them beaming with joy when you come out from the fitting room, then it’s most likely that the gown looks flattering on you.

 bridesmaid dress wedding gown by The English Dept

Prepare a budget for alterations.  If you plan to purchase a gown off-the-rack, whether it’s brand new or second-hand, do not completely eliminate the possibility of alterations.  You might need to make minor adjustments with your gown such as trimming the hem or adding a few embellishments.  If your mother or friend knows how to do alterations, then you wouldn’t need to worry about the extra costs.  However, if you don’t know anyone who can do the fix, it’s best to seek help from a professional dressmaker.

Do a final fitting.  It is recommended that brides do their final fitting at least one or two weeks before the wedding day.  In case, adjustments need to be done, there would be enough time to do so.

*All wedding gown photos featured on this article are by Etsy Sellers. Please click on the shop name to check out the store.

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