Are you about a bride about to dress shop for the very first time? Before you book your bridal appointment, be sure to check out these 5 common mistakes that can save you from a dress shopping day disaster!
Mistake Number 1: Shopping way too early
We totally get it. You're newly engaged and you can't wait to get started in your dress shopping process! As excited as we are to try to help you find your perfect gown, we also don't recommend starting too soon for a number of reasons. Not only can your wedding vision change over time, but so can the designer gown availability. Although it is true that it is important to shop about a year out from your wedding date, any sooner could potentially pose a few problems. One common issue is that designers often discontinue dresses without warning, which can be problematic for brides who try on styles years ahead of their wedding. Often we see brides make appointments to try on dresses very early on just to 'get an idea', but end up falling in love with a style on the spot. If their wedding date is too far away for them to feel comfortable actually purchasing the dress at that time, they run the risk of that dress no longer being available months or years later when they are actually ready to take that next step of purchasing. The last thing we want as consultants is to see a bride love a dress and then have to tell her that it is no longer available to her! However, if you are a bride who feels comfortable and confident actually purchasing her dress years in advance, you can certainly shop as early as you'd like! To avoid any possible disappointment, a good rule of thumb is to make sure you don't go shopping until you feel ready to potentially purchase your dress at that time.
Mistake #2: Not being realistic about budget vs. style
Before going to your first bridal appointment, one helpful thing to do is a little bit of research on different designers and their respective price points. Since bridal gown shopping is something that each bride has likely never experienced before, it is easy to be unaware of how different designers and styles run as far as price goes. After establishing your own budget of what feels comfortable for you, a good idea would be to look into what designers typically fall around that price range, and where you can go to access those styles. Additionally, when researching, take note of what those different designers offer as far as detail such as beading, lace, etc. This might give you a little more info into what to expect to be available within your price range. We often seen brides come in unknowingly with pictures of styles from extravagant designers whose prices range typically anywhere from $8,000-$10,000. These are the pictures that you typically see heavily circulating on Pinterest or Instagram, and can certainly be misleading as far as price goes. Be sure to look further into each designer that is pictured, and their typical price points, in order to keep a realistic expectation as to what is available. Keep in mind you are more than welcome to bring these pictures in for inspiration, and we as consultants will do our best to show you the comparable styles within each price point that feels right for you! Just make sure you are being open and honest with your consultant, and also keeping an open mind to the levels of detail that might coincide with each price point.
Mistake #3: Bringing too many or too few guests
Bringing the right amount of guests to your bridal appointment can be tricky. On one hand it is tempting to want to bring your whole bridal party to celebrate such an exciting day, but on the other hand, it is hard to have so many opinions clashing with one another. Bringing too many guests can make for an overwhelming experience that can leave you more confused and frustrated than excited. Conversely, shopping without the important people in your life can also make it hard to say yes, and ultimately even harder to recreate that special moment that you have when you find the perfect dress. Our best advice would be to make sure you bring anywhere from 1-4 guests to your appointment, always including the people in your life that mean the most to you. If you know that you cannot say yes without a certain few people, remember to never book an appointment where they are unable to attend. This will eliminate the possibility of falling in love with a dress without them there to witness that milestone moment.
Mistake #4: Trying on too many dresses
It is certainly true that there are thousands of dresses out there, and the options are truly endless. What is also true, is that the more options you give yourself, the harder it is to make a decision! Known as the 'paradox of choice', the more options you try on, the more likely you are to question the dresses, their qualities, and even your own decision making skills. Although we know it is tempting to want to explore all your options, keep in mind that realistically there will always be dresses out there that you won't necessarily be able to try on, and that is okay! The most important thing isn't trying on a million and one dresses, it's trying on THE dress. We would definitely recommend having a rough idea of what vision you are looking for going into your appointment, while allowing for some flexibility. Remember that there is a possibility you may try on different styles that you wouldn't expect to like, but you end up truly loving. Use the help of your consultant to narrow your choices as much as possible as to not end up overwhelming yourself with too many options. After all, this should be an exciting process and not one that is taxing or draining!
Mistake #5: Believing you can't 'say yes' at your first appointment
Going hand in hand with mistake #4, this is by FAR the biggest misconception we see brides fall victim to. There is absolutely NO average amount of dresses you have to try, or appointments you have to go to, that are 'typical' or 'right' when it comes to finding your perfect dress. A majority of brides believe that there is something inherently wrong with finding their dress right away, and they end up sabotaging their own happiness/questioning themselves through this belief. Please remember that finding a dress you feel beautiful and confident in is a something to be thrilled about, and if you find it on the first try it is just a bonus! Take it from us, most brides who have been through the process of many appointments would tell you that they would have LOVED to have found their dress right off the bat. Lastly, go with your gut! If you only try on 3 dresses and love the 3rd one, it is more than okay to lean into that feeling. 'The one' will be 'the one' whether it is dress 2, or dress 22. We are here to help you every step of the way, but remember to have faith in yourself and your own ability to know for certain what makes you feel the most beautiful.
We hope these tips help you in being the most prepared you possibly can, and we will see all you beautiful brides at your next appointment!