Your first bridal gown appointment. For some brides, this is a day they have imagined since childhood and for others it is an overwhelming experience. No matter what category you find yourself in, a bridal appointment is a unique experience. So before you book your first appointment, make sure you do the following:
VENUE & WEDDING INSPIRATION
One of the first questions your bridal consultant will ask is where your wedding ceremony and reception will take place and when. This information will help your consultant understand your wedding inspiration and pull the best dresses for you.
Another question your consultant will ask is if you have a dress budget in mind. Don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed about the number, your consultant is just trying to better assist you. If you have a hard budget it is important to be straightforward with your consultant.
With Covid restrictions in place in many states, you may be limited to the number of guests you can bring to your bridal appointment. Check with the shop in advance to see if you can virtually connect with additional guests during your appointment. Most shops have their Covid protocols listed on their website, but if not be sure to call.
Wedding dresses have their own “couture” sizing similar to European sizing. Don’t freak out if the gown size listed is two sizes larger than your normal clothing size.
SAMPLES & SAMPLE SALES
Bridal shops carry a sample of each of their dresses for brides to try on. Sometimes a shop may have multiple samples of a particular gown in various sizes and colors, and other times they may only have one sample. While a store’s dress sample may be in one color, it is often available in alternate color combinations. If the sample itself fits and you love it, ask if you can purchase the sample at a discounted price.
Depending on the shop, a bridal consultant may be present in the fitting room to assist you in and out of each of the dresses. Visceral reactions are the best reactions when it comes to wedding dresses. If you think the dress is absolutely hideous on you, let your consultant know it! If you finally see yourself as a bride ready for her big day, let out the cry and the words “I love it.”
THE BIG DECISION
Some brides know in the moment they have found their wedding dress, whereas others need time to let it sink in. Take your two top favorite dresses and try them on back to back. Once you have done this a couple of times, the feelings often come through.
Remember you should be buying your dress a minimum of 10 months before your wedding. Once you have found your dream dress, your consultant will take your measurements and discuss your sizing with you. if you are ordering a custom dress, you will need to buy your shoes first and return to the shop for measurements.
Be sure to allow enough 2-3 months prior to your wedding for your dress to be tailored. Even if you order a custom dress, you will need to take the dress to a tailor to finish off any adjustments and to put a bustle on.
After the dress has been tailored, hide it away in a smoke-free, pet-free, moist-free environment and you are ready for your big day!