One of the most exciting and nerve-wracking parts of a wedding is choosing your dress. You may have dreamt of this moment from the time you were little, and it may have featured you in a stunning gorgeous white dress that seemed made for you. Or you may dread having to sift through dress after dress, trying on one after the next in hopes that something fulfills the image you have in your head.
Whatever the case, the temptation to start shopping for wedding dress now to get the perfect down should be resisted. There’s a good chance that getting a dress to early can throw a wrench in your wedding plans and make you feel disappointed, sad or disillusioned.
Timing is Key
You don’t want to end up in a dress that is stylish and current right now and be married in a fashion fad when your big day comes. Ideally, you shouldn’t even be considering shopping 10 months before your wedding. Work out details like your budget, venue, guest list and food. Soak in engagement bliss before your mind even touches the idea of a wedding dress.
You may be excited to step into a boutique and be offered unique, personalized service. And a good boutique will never pressure you, as they understand the scale and weight of this decision. However, that’s not to rule out that a consultant may ask questions during a fitting that lead you down a less-than-rosy path. They may ask about if you plan on losing weight before the wedding and turn your date into a countdown weight-loss journey. That’s not the best vibe to kick off your wedding planning.
There’s the chance that if you buy your dress soon after getting engaged and your wedding is still over a year away, you may pull out your dress and wonder what drew you to it in the first place. Taste can change and purchasing too early without trying all of your options may lead you to making a premature decision. You could end up with a dress that once seemed flattering but now seems plain and boring.
Not Shopping ‘til You Drop
You may have looked forward to this moment so much that you end up buying one of the first dresses that look good on you. Or conversely, you may hate shopping for wedding dress so much that you—again—end up buying the first dress that looks good on you. Though it may be hard to schedule in time to go to boutiques, it’s a necessary task to avoid ended up with a wedding dress that doesn’t make you feel like the most gorgeous woman on the planet. Exhaust yourself and your need to shop. Look at absolutely everything. Try on styles that you wouldn’t normally consider. Make sure that your final choice was an informed decision after looking at and trying on a satisfactory number of dresses.
This one is obvious. We changes sizes throughout our lifetimes, rarely staying stationary at one consistent body type. There’s the chance that in the time from now until your wedding day, you’ll either gain or lose weight. The stress of planning, the upcoming life changes and any other random event can throw you off and cause your weight to change. Fortunately, in your final fitting you can get the dress tailored. It’s not an ideal option, especially if you ended up gaining. And you may find that the style you chose is better suited to your current body than your new one. Avoid the toll that this can take on your self-image and mental health and shop closer to your wedding day.
There are few people who don’t love a good sale, and nothing hurts worse than buying something at full price and then later seeing it reduced to clear. Shop for your dress, try everything on, but when you find one you like, wait on it a little bit. This will give you time to truly consider if it meets your needs and projects the beautiful image that you want to radiate on your big day. And then wait some more. Styles go on sale frequently, so there’s a good chance that your dress will too. If you’re not afraid to risk losing it (because after all, there are many dresses that will look fantastic on you), then wait and let the sales roll in.
The Dress Budget
Shopping for wedding dress too early puts you at risk of accidentally or unknowingly borrowing from other budgets, such as your venue or your photography. Though you may have a good idea of what your dress budget is, it’s best to wait until prices have been finalized for other important aspects. You may run over budget or you may come up with extra. There’s also the chance that your venue and dress may clash, so may sure that the former is picked and secured before you settle on a style.
Don’t Start Too Late Either
If you’re having a dress made, then consider how long that will take as well. If it’s off the rack, then you’ll be looking at alterations and fittings, which can be expensive and costly in itself. However, having a dress custom made for you can easily be 6-9 months. This is something to consider if you’ve got a unique style or certain vision you want carried out just perfectly. You won’t get something you love if you start too late.
The goal behind wedding dress shopping is to find something true to you that makes you feel wonderful on this momentous day. Getting caught up in details, having negative experiences or becoming exhausted are things that you need to work to avoid. Pick a positive image that can stay strong in your mind and carry that throughout the process of selecting a wedding dress.