As it's really getting into wedding season now, I thought I would share a bit of my wisdom and experience when it comes to choosing your dream dress.
Obviously the dress is hugely important to most, if not all brides. It's the one day where you get to wear that stunning gown that makes you feel amazingly beautiful! Therefore you need to make sure you are making the right decision.
I would suggest to begin looking at images online (do not buy a dress online!) or in magazines for different dress styles, shapes, fabrics, colours, embellishments, fastenings, basically anything that catches your eye. A good idea would be to create a scrapbook of ideas that you can take to a bridal shop with you. This gives the consultant a better idea of what you may be looking for. On the other hand, if you don't have quite enough time to do this, a consultant will still be able to help you find the perfect dress.
Once your ideas are compiled, begin looking for your dress around 12 month before the wedding. It is best to do this as certain aspects of your wedding will more than likely be based around your dress, for example Bridesmaids dresses. Try to source a few shops that you may know are reputable, or visit some shops websites, you will soon get the idea of which will be best for you. Upon making your first appointment, I would advise not taking many people with you. Only take the people you really know and trust to give you honest yet nice opinions. There's nothing worse than having lots of people with too many different opinions. Try to limit yourself to 3 guests.
When at the shop try to pick out the styles you've been looking at, but also a few other styles too, simply because, each dress style looks different on everyone. One might not look great on the hanger but when it's on, it can be surprising how much you may like it. Basically try to keep a bit of an open mind as well as following your scrap book ideas. Every shop will have each dress in one sample size, therefore a dress you try on may not fit 100%, but the consultant should be able to make it so that you can get a good idea of the correct shape and style on you.
Try not to go round too many shops or try on too many dresses. Yes it's so tempting to go and just try on loads of dresses for the experience, but this may cause you to get confused over which dresses you liked and didn't. They do have a tendency to blend into one sometimes.
So after all the trying on you will have done, you should hopefully have a good idea of the dress, and possibly a shortlist of a few. Go back and try these few dresses on, you should have one or two that have really stuck in your mind. Now is either the really easy or hard part. Basically making your decision on the dress. Whilst in the dresses, think about which one will suit your venue, which one you feel most comfortable in (remember you are wearing the dress all day), which one you can see yourself looking back on in photos and still loving and ultimately which one you feel most special in! If you love yourself in a dress as it is there and then, whether it fits properly or not, this is a good sign! It may take a while of walking round in the dress or looking at yourself in the mirror a lot, but ultimately you will get to that big decision. Family/friends and the shop consultants will be more than happy to help with this but ultimately the decision is yours. You have to be fully happy and sure of your choice.
Oh and once you have purchased your dress, as tempting as it may be, don't look at anymore dresses!
Good luck on finding the one!
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask below :)