Shopping wedding dresses: Getting Started

You’ve got the ring on your finger, now you’re ready to go wedding gown shopping. To assist you on the quest for your dream wedding dress,Here’s what to know before you go.

If you’re like many brides, you’ve been envisioning what you’d wear to your wedding since before you bought your first bra. Then again, maybe you’ve never thought about it at all. Either way, a lot of pressure can accompany wedding dress shopping. After all, the bridal gown you put on for your walk down the aisle will be the true centerpiece of the day. This one article of clothing is probably going to be the most expensive and talked about thing you’ll ever wear.

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When should you start?

Two words: shop early. Nine to 12 months before your wedding is ideal since you’ll need about six months to spare for fittings. Why? Unless you buy a ready-to-wear wedding dress or a sample wedding gown, wedding dresses are custom-made. And once your wedding dress arrives, it’s going to have to be altered — usually several times — until it fits you perfectly. That said, many companies can turn a wedding dress around more quickly if need be. But if you have less than six months, start shopping right away and try to be flexible about your dress choice. Here’s a tip: Avoid weekends and evenings if you can swing it. Bridal salons get insanely busy — especially if you’re marrying in a popular wedding month. If you can take time off during the week to shop, you’ll get more of the salesperson’s time and attention.

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