Imagine yourself getting married. What picture comes into your mind?
Now, imagine yourself walking down the aisle towards your soon-to-be husband and with everyone looking at you. What can you see?
If you’re like most people, what you probably saw was an image of yourself wearing your bridal dress – a gown that you will use to say your vows and your “I do’s”, and a piece of clothing that you only get to wear once… but will be immortalized through pictures and videos FOREVER. Your image together with your wedding gown will be posted on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter and shared by all your friends and family. It’ll be seen by your college pals, your mother’s best friend, or your preschool teacher.
So, yes. A wedding dress is a big deal. Thus, it’s only normal that you want only the best. And, we’re here to help you do that with our little guide on how to choose a wedding dress.
Important Factors to Consider Before Choosing
When and where is your wedding taking place? See, these are important factors to consider as they will affect the fabric you have to go with. For example, if you’re getting hitched at the beach in summer, go with lightweight breezy fabrics. On the other hand, if you’re getting married during winter, we recommend going for heavier and lush fabrics such as taffeta or satin.
Another thing to think about is your engagement. Will you be having a long one or do you plan of getting married immediately?
The thing with long engagements and shopping for gowns is that the one you’ve already bought may be already out of style and it’s more likely that you’ll find “the one” when you’re closer to your big day. On the contrary, short engagements could mean that you don’t have enough time to find what exactly you are looking for. And, this is because gowns usually take so long to be made. That’s why most brides order theirs 8-12 months in advance!
Now, the most important factor to consider is your budget. With it, you’ll know which stores to go to and what dresses you don’t have to put on. Remember, don’t try on wedding gowns that you know you can’t afford. Doing so will be like torture!
Where to Buy a Wedding Dress
The easiest way to score a bridal gown is through a retail store. They have several dresses on display and you can simply leaf through them and browse on your own. However, it won’t be personalized or customized according to your wishes. You’ll be simply hoping that they have something that can fit you.
Your next choice is through bridal salons. Here, you can’t simply barge in and demand to try on gowns. You will need to set an appointment so a consultant can help you select gowns and try them on. A bridal consultant will work with you on your ideas, what you’re looking for, what you dream of wearing, and what matches your physique.
Also, if you’re an avid online shopper, you can also find wedding dresses online. Just make sure that you check the return policy just in case the dress you ordered doesn’t fit or it’s not as dreamy as it was in the photos.
In addition, you can go with “Couture” or “Cut to Measure” and find a professional who will personally design and create a dress just for you. If you really have the budget, you can go with Vera Wang, Jenny Packham, or Oscar De la Renta. Or, you can go local and stack up on savings. For example, if you live in Melbourne, Australia and you’re planning to wed there, you might have heard of Judith Valente. She used to have the best bridal couture shop Melbourne has to offer, creating gowns according to every bride’s wishes.
What You Like and What Fits You Best
In choosing a wedding dress, should it really be all about what you want? Say, you want a voluminous gown that is dramatic and big but you really have a petite frame. What should you do?
Well, remember that the shape of your gown is based on your style, the venue, the mood of your wedding, and what makes your body more flattering. To give you an idea, a simple sheath is recommended for tall, slim brides and fit-n-flare works on almost any body type. Mermaid style dresses show off curves similar to a pencil skirt but they’re not fitting for a formal wedding. However, if you have a more rustic or casual wedding, like a beach wedding, you can go with untraditional lengths. This can bring out your personality more during your big day. If you see yourself as a quirky person, you can go with a tea-length dress or if you’re more of a rocker-chick with a party vibe, a mini dress can also do!
In addition to the embellishments, shape, and color, consider also choosing the right fabric for your body type. Materials such as taffeta, guipure lace, or silk shantung are heavier and more structured. Thus, it can hold its shape and enhance your figure. On the other hand, if you’re a girl with curves, unstructured silk and chiffon will make you less flattering.
Now, once you consider these technicalities, you can go on with what you truly like. Do you want a classic, vintage, or romantic feel? What’s your vision of how you see yourself on your big day? Are you looking for classic and timeless? If yes, then going lace is your top choice. But if you’re more on a modern bride who wants to take risks, you can consider including detached sleeves, short hems, and even capes!
If you know what you want and you understand how important right fitting is, then you can definitely find “the ONE”. May it be a romantic blush, subtle ivory, or a surprisingly bold red, don’t be afraid. It’s your wedding and you can choose to be as unique and as fantastic as you want to be!