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It's time to start Wedding Dress Shopping, Hooray! Here is everything you need to know about buying a wedding dress from Where to find Wedding Dresses, How to save money on wedding dresses and What to Bring to your Wedding Dress Fitting. We're giving you the Wedding Dresses 101 Info and Inspiration.

Happy Vendor Week Team! One of the biggest, most fun, and important contracts you’ll sign while planning your wedding is for your Wedding Dress. Yes, your Bridal Salon is a vendor whom with you make a contract, which land dress buying smack in the middle of Vendor Week of the GEG Team Experience. 😉 In fact, your Bridal Salon, Alterations, Bridesmaid Dress shop, and Men’s Formal Wear rentals are all vendors you’ll want to land before the end of Vendor Week. Re-Watch the Day 5 Lecture from the I’m Engaged ECourse for a refresher.

More on all that later… Let’s talk about how you should start shopping for your Wedding Dress.

Before you Start Wedding Dress Shopping

I have a mini checklist I want you to run through before you head out on the town, high-heels in the front seat… First we need to do a little bit of research.

1- Do Some Wedding Dress Research

Do your homework. If you’re like me you’ve been saving magazine tear-outs for a long time. Pull those out or dive onto your pinboard and narrow down what will really work for your body shape, wedding theme, and time of year. If you haven’t looked at all yet, start in bridal magazines to get a sense of the styles you like that are current. Are there certain styles you keep going back to? Make a list of terms/keywords and features you like or want to try on {as well as avoid} before you ever get into the salon.

2- Set a Wedding Dress Budget

Now, remember Sheet 2 of your Budget Excel Spreadsheet? It’s easy to forget all the little pieces that add up to form your dress budget. You’ll need to consider shoes, alterations, undergarments, veils, jewelry, etc. in the whole shebang. Your dress budget can cause unpredicted stress because there is so much pressure on *finding the one* dress. However, You don’t want a stylist to put you in a $3,000 dress if your budget is only $1,000. That just sets everyone up for an awkward moment if you fall in love with it.

Be honest with yourself about your priorities and determine how much you’re able to spend on the dress before you make your salon appointment. You may want to tinker with the budget and other areas to make room if you find something you love. That’s why you have the spreadsheet, to tinker with the numbers.

How to save money on your Wedding Dress

Start looking early. Not only should you start looking early, but also schedule your appointment(s) a month in advance, especially during the busy season. If you’re buying a made to order dress from a salon it takes at least six months before the wedding for the dress to get made, but eight to 10 months is average. Give yourself a year for the whole process and you won’t feel rushed. You might also snag a seasonal special or catch a trunk show!

A trunk show can save you money! Trunk shows are min events hosted by a salon to showcase a designer. Often they’ll offer discounts and showcase more dresses from a designer than the salon usually carries.

Consider buying a Once-Worn Dress. You know me, I LOVE a pre-loved wedding. If you’re trying to keep your Wedding Dress Budget small, a pre-loved dress might be the way to go. You can try looking online in Facebook Groups or shop local consignment shops. If you’re here in Oregon you have to swing into The Shabby Chic Bride Consignment Shop, before or after your wedding to sell.

READ | 4 Tips on Shopping for your Wedding Dress from TSCB Consignment Shop

3- Know What to Bring

Less is More. When you’re looking for your dress for the first time, consider only bringing your most trusted 1-3 family/friends. Too many opinions can get overwhelming. You can always invite more friends to come to the second fitting after you’ve found your special dress.

Shoes in the heel height you want. You don’t have to have your exact wedding shoes yet, but bring something with a similar height. If you’re planning to rock flats down the aisle that will impact the hemline of your dress.

Wedding Essentials at SPANX

What else to bring:

  • All your ideas. When you get to your appointment, the first thing your stylist will ask you is what kind of style you’re going for. Have a few pictures printed.
  • The right undergarments/strapless bra
  • A hair tie.

4- Know What to Ask

Your Bridal Salon is in fact a Wedding Vendor, therefore, you’ll have to sign a contract. It can seem scary, but a wedding dress is a pretty major purchase for most people. Since wedding dresses are expensive, made-to-order pieces, both parties need to be protected. Have a list of questions ready to ask at the end of your appointment about the specific dress you want to buy and what the buying process looks like. You’ll want a breakdown of payment policies, fitting schedules, and alteration estimates.

CONSIDER | All the Questions to Ask when Buying your Wedding Dress- Worksheet

I happen to have a quick printable list of questions you can download so you’re more prepared. You can also consider the full Vendor Interview Workbook | How to Hire your Wedding Vendor Dream Team, which includes all the questions needed for a Bridal Salon appointment.

Final Thoughts on Wedding Dress Shopping

Buying a brand new, one of a kind creation or a vintage, generational beauty should be fun. So long as you keep these four points in mind I know you’ll be on the right track. Good Luck ladies and Go Team!

The I’m Engaged ECourse

This post is connected to our I’m Engaged Ecourse, Day 5 “Getting Pretty” Lecture. It is also a part of Vendor Week for the GEG Team Experience. Come on over and join us for this’s year’s Experience.

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Hi there! I’m Kandice, Owner of Green-Eyed Girl Productions and engineer of The Project Block System. Thank you so much for stopping in on this blog post! Join hundreds of Bride who have worked through The Project Block System while planning their Wedding. Our Team Experience is now FREE to everyone planning a wedding during this chaotic and confusing time.


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