1. Be Realistic With Your Timeframe

Very rarely will you luck out and find that perfect gown, in the perfect color and perfect size right off the rack. Most bridal stores order a single stock dress in a size that will fit a good range of bride to be's, in only one color. Ordering wedding gowns have a standard shipping time of approximately 6 months! That's right ladies......6 months! Now don't let that entirely scare you away from ordering if you are trying to plan a wedding in 4 months or less. There are options available to get a gown in sooner, but keep in mind that there are no guarantees when we are in a time crunch. Bridesmaid dresses take on average 3-4 months for standard shipping. There are rush shipping options available for most designers for bridesmaids as well.


Now with all of that in mind, a good rule of thumb is to give yourself at least 8-10 months time when ordering your wedding dress. This gives you plenty of time for it to be delivered on time, have any alterations done if needed and is probably one of the biggest stress relievers when planning one of the happiest days of your life.



2. Know What You Want (and How Much You Have!)

You should have a clear vision of what your bridal style is: Do you want to be traditional, chic, understated, fashion-forward, fun, quirky, or regal? You also need to know what your venue is like and have a target budget that you're comfortable with.



3. Shop With a Supportive Team

Your shopping partners should support you and have a very clear understanding about your goal and what your bridal style and budget are. They need to respect the fact that this is your wedding gown and be there to offer advice only when asked.


4. Be a Savvy Sample-Sale Shopper

A sample sale isn't the time to try on different silhouettes and find your style. Know what styles or designers you're looking for, and be prepared to make a quick decision once you're there. Also, remember these are sample dresses, usually a bridal size 10, and will have been tried on by many other people, so they don't tend to be in pristine condition. If you're well prepared, though, you just may catch a great bargain.


5. Wear a Hairpiece

Veils are a key component in turning you into a bride! Anyone can wear a white gown, but only a bride can wear a veil. If you're going to skip the veil, wear something in your hair, like gorgeous hair jewelry, crystal pins, or even a silk flower.



6. Buy the Dress That You Don't Want to Take Off

After you've taken a good look in the mirror from many angles, when it's the right one, you probably won't want to take it off. You'll feel accomplished, excited, comfortable, and happy -- and you may even shed some tears!

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