What Should You Bring with You on your Wedding Dress Shopping Trip?
You said “yes!” Now you need the perfect dress to wear when you say “I DO!”
Whether you've been dreaming of the day you'd go shopping for your wedding dress since you were little or this is the first time you are considering what you'll want to wear, the day you pick your dress should be a beautiful memory to look back on!
Here are some tips and essential items to bring that can help make your wedding dress shopping trip a success!
What to Bring on Your Wedding Dress Shopping Trip
The Dream Team
The day you go wedding dress shopping you should bring people who make you feel special! That could be one close friend or family member or it might be every female member of your wedding party! Your “dream team” should be made of people who will be honest, but supportive. Bring someone you feel comfortable bringing into the dressing room with you, so you don’t have a stranger in there. Bring someone you trust to happily take pictures, but not post them on social media to ruin the surprise! Leave the body shamers, party pooper, and easily bored children at home. Make sure you have at least one person there to get excited with you if possible, but be careful not to over-invite as too many opinions can be distracting.
Knowing your wedding dress budget ahead of time will keep you from having buyer’s remorse later. The last thing you want is to fall in love with something you can’t afford. Overspending on your wedding dress could mean you have to cut back on something else you wanted for your big day, so going in with a budget for your wedding dress is key. Keep in mind when buying your dress that you should consider things like accessories and alterations in the final cost. As such, you may want to leave breathing room in your budget for the dress in particular.
Are you planning to rock your highest heels, cutest boots, or most comfortable pair of Converse under your dress? Whatever your plan is for wedding footwear, bring them along for your wedding dress shopping trip. It will be easier to pick a dress and decide on alterations if you are wearing the shoes you’ll be rocking on the big day. Don’t know exactly which shoes you are going to wear yet? Bring a few options! Then you can decide the kind of shoe while you find the perfect dress. Two birds, one stone, bridal style!
What You'll Be Wearing Under Your Wedding Dress
Speaking of what you will be wearing with your wedding dress, let’s talk about what goes underneath! Consider your wedding undergarments– or at least bring some options along to try on with various dresses. You may not have the same “this is the one!” moment if your hot pink bra straps are showing, or if you can't clasp the back of the dress because you are wearing boy shorts instead of shapewear. So, if you are considering a strapless dress, make sure to bring a strapless bra. You'll probably want to bring one no matter what since many styles include illusion necklines, spaghetti straps, or other features that would not look right with your regular bra straps showing. Nude and white are good choices for undergarment colors if you are sticking with traditional wedding dress colors. A pair of smoothing shapewear is also recommended, whether or not you're considering a form-fitting gown. Think ahead, bring multiple options if needed, you won’t regret it.
Any “Little Details” You'll Wear on the Big Day
It is helpful when going on a wedding dress shopping trip to have anything you know (or even think) you might wear on the big day. If there are any special “little details” or accessories you plan to wear, be sure to bring them. For instance, if you're planning to wear a tiara or veil that belonged to your mother or grandmother, you'll probably want to bring it to try on with various dresses to make sure they coordinate. However, if you don't have any special accessories in mind, just come with an open mind and consider trying on the options available at the bridal salon. Often times the associates will suggest accessories to complement the gowns you try on! Alternatively, feel free to bring some of your own options to try when you are thinking you have found “the one.”
Hair and Make-up and a shower
Another essential wedding dress shopping tip is to do what is needed to look and feel your best. A good go-to for the day you go to try on dresses is to wear your hair down but bring whatever you might need to put it up. Throw a few curls in your hair, and be sure to bring a hair tie and/or bobby pins in your purse. Be prepared so you can try dresses with different hair options if you haven't yet settled on a certain style.
As far as makeup goes, wear some if you plan to on the big day. Again, this will help you picture your final bridal look as best as possible. Another good tip on the makeup front is to bring waterproof mascara for you and the dream team just in case tears happen (which, let's be real… they likely will!)
Also, be sure to shower and shave before your wedding dress shopping trip to avoid any possible embarrassing situations while changing and modeling the gowns.
A Camera & Tissues
You may need tissues for tears of joy (or tears of sadness if the hunt goes unsuccessfully.) Bring a camera to take pictures to look back on later (your smartphone will work just fine!) Having photos can help you remember what you liked about each dress for your next shopping trip if you don’t find “the one” on your first outing. Pictures are also fun to look back and remember the day you said “YES” to the dress!
An Open Mind and a Good Attitude!
Last but definitely not least, come equipped with these essentials. Keep an open mind about styles. You may think you want an A-line halter dress, but end up falling in love with a strapless ball gown. Be open to suggestions from the sales associates (as long as they are respectful of your budget!) Bridal consultants know the silhouettes that are most flattering to every body type, so be receptive if they offer you a style you hadn't originally considered. Corsets and ruching really can be a girl’s best friend! As long as your attitude is positive, it will stay a great day!
Now it's time to try on some dresses! Make sure you have enough time scheduled to enjoy your dress shopping experience and remember to HAVE FUN! Let us know if these tips helped or if you can think of something that we missed!
Read This: Consider Buying a Used Wedding Dress
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Editor's note: Due to the pandemic, some of the general wedding planning advice we share may not be applicable or possible due to restrictions on events. Please adhere to all current regulations and stay safe and healthy! Get more resources for planning a pandemic wedding here.