8 Must-Read Tips Before Your Bridal Appointment

You just got engaged, and you're ecstatic about finally getting to try on wedding gowns! You may find yourself so excited, but have no idea where to start. The first few steps are easy!  Begin by picturing the details of your big day. Next, start researching the styles of gowns that interest you. Lastly, search for bridal salons in your area and start setting up appointments. After you've got a few scheduled, it's time to get yourself prepared for your first bridal appointment! Here are some need-to-know tips that will guide you in making the most of your bridal shopping experience! You're beautiful, enjoy!

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1. Your Vision

Creating your vision for your wedding day is one of the most exciting tasks that you'll get to experience as a bride. If you haven't already begun to envision it, start thinking about your venue. What type of gown do you think would make you feel the most beautiful there? Another thing to envision is the color scheme for your decor and bridesmaids dresses. This will help you choose the color of your gown, whether it be off-white or even blush! 

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2. Time Frame for Purchasing

Consider creating a monthly to-do-list leading up to your big day. Getting organized not only helps you stay on track with your wedding planning, but it also allows you to have peace of mind that things are running according to schedule. Keep in mind that shopping before you're ready to buy, may create disappointment if you find your dream gown, but have to leave the store without it. At the same time, don’t procrastinate. Most dresses take anywhere from six to nine months to come in. You can may be able to place a rush order if you need it in under five months; however, the rush fee can sometimes be pretty steep. 

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3. Budget Decisions

It’s important to know your budget and if there is any wiggle room before you try on gowns. For most brides, this is the most important factor in deciding which gowns to try on. Feel free to openly discuss your budget with your consultant, so they can maximize your options in meeting your needs. Don’t forget that your budget should factor in the veil, accessories, and alterations along with the gown to avoid overspending.

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4. Who to Bring With

Most brides shop the best with just their mom and maybe a sister or best friend. The intimacy of a smaller group allows the bride to be herself and feel supported by those who mean the most to her. Regardless of how many people you bring, make sure they are people who have your best interests in mind and will be encouraging during this process.

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5. What to Wear

Wear a nude or white pair of panties! This is usually the last thing you are thinking about the day of your appointment; however, dresses are white and will reveal any polka dots underneath. Also, a nude strapless or adhesive bra is a great option if you feel the need to wear a bra. However, most bridal gowns already have cups in them, and a bra may change the way the gown is meant to look on you. 

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6. Bridal Dress Sizes

When it comes to dresses, they run about 2 to 4 sizes up from your typical pants size. Most bridal salons carry an assortment of sample size; however, this won't guarantee that they will fit you perfectly like you had hoped. Please don't feel discouraged or frustrated about this. I understand that as women, we are very visual, and want to see the finished product clearly before we make our decision. It's your bridal consultants job to get you as close as possible in helping you imagine how the gown is going to look once it's tailored appropriately to your size. 

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7. Taking Pictures

Pictures are everything when it comes to your big day, so it only makes sense that you would want to see how your gown photographs on you at your appointment. Ask your consultant beforehand if the salon allows picture taking because not all of them do. Even though pictures are super helpful in your decision-making process, there are also some cons to it. We understand how special this experience is for you, and we don't want anything to make you change your mind about the way you felt in your favorite gown. Once you've experienced the euphoria of falling in love with a gown, you can't capture that excitement in a picture. Plus, after you leave the salon without that gown, the memory of your experience quickly fades. Another con to picture taking has to do with the salon lighting. The bulbs can cast shadows and throw off the color, beauty, and glimmer of the gown. With these factors at play, the gown may look completely different than it did in person. For salons that do invite picture-taking, ask your consultant if you can stand in natural lighting or record a video of you in the gown and loving it. 

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8. Have Fun

It’s totally normal if you're feeling nervous when you come in for your bridal appointment. It’s a brand new experience for you, and it’s our bridal consultant’s job to make you feel comfortable and beautiful. If there is anything that you are concerned about before the appointment, never hesitate to call or email the salon. We are here to listen, give you a memorable experience, and pop champagne with you once you say yes to the dress!

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XOXO IOBC