How to shop for your Wedding Dress. Preparing to buy a Wedding Dress. 4 Tips on Wedding Dress Shopping

Shopping for your Wedding Dress may be one of the most exciting adventures of your wedding planning. Most of us have been dreaming of walking into that bridal salon our whole life. And, like most of us, we have no idea what we’re doing, what we’re looking for, or where to start. How do you going shopping for a wedding dress exactly? How should you prepare and best set yourself up for success? For those answers and more we asked the right people…

We took the liberty of interviewing one of our favorite Bridal Shops, The Shabby Chic Bride Consignment Shop, for you. We love this shop for many reasons, from their consignment structure and reviving once loved dresses to be loved again, to their hardworking and dedicated staff.

How to Shop for your Dress:

In an interview with the owner and amazing #ladyboss, Sara Bayes we learned quite a bit! {SInce our interview, Sara has sold the shop to one of her best friends, Kara Richards, who is the current owner.} In our interview with Sara, she provided us with great details about her own shop as well as why you might consider buying a Consignment Dress. But also, she gave us some great advice for all brides beginning their shopping journey.

Do brides need to make an appointment?

An appointment is recommended but not necessary Wednesday through Friday. However, appointments are given first priority on Saturday and Sunday. It will depend on the bridal salon and their schedule.

What should I know before making my appointment?

Jean size is helpful, keeping in mind dress sizes vary greatly depending on style and brand so be prepared to try on dresses in a range of sizes. Having an idea of the style you would like is helpful, but not necessary. Remember; never judge a dress by its hanger!

What should I bring with me to my appointment?

A strapless bra for specific dress styles, and an open mind for trying on new and exciting styles you might not have previously considered!

How many people should I bring with me for opinions?

We believe in the age-old expression “less is more”. While it’s always helpful to get a second opinion, having too many chefs in the kitchen can complicate your selection. We suggest bringing 1-3 people who you trust the most to help you make this important decision. This is YOUR day, it should be filled with the least amount of trouble as possible! Please, no children under 12 for both yours and other brides’ experience.

Have you considered buying your dress from a Consignment Shop? You will be surprised for sure! Buying a once-worn wedding dress is not only an affordable option, but it is also earth-friendly 😉 Which is obviously a GEG favorite factor. If you are local, in Oregon, I encourage you to take a tour through The Shabby Chic Bride in Salem, and here is why…

The Shabby Chic Bride Interview

The Shabby Chic Bride Consignment Shop

2195 Hyacinth St, Salem, OR 97301


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Tell us a little history about The Shabby Chic Bride

In 2012 we decided to find and buy a local business. We found this store for sale and decided to jump right in! The store was on State St at the time and we struggled with flooding issues, location difficulties, and a variety of problems. We joined the Salem Chamber of Commerce and began participating in community events. We’ve met many interesting people and have enjoyed getting to know our neighbors. Since moving to the Hyacinth St building, we’ve met many more and love the look we are able to achieve.

Tell us a few great things about buying a dress from your shop

We are an off the rack shop that offers new, sample, and once worn gowns. We are committed to providing an enjoyable experience and affordable gowns.

What is your favorite thing about The Shabby Chic Bride and what you do for the Wedding Industry?

We are excited about providing beautiful, current style gowns at an affordable price. Along with that, we love that we are able to help the community by keeping money local.

What should a Bride expect when she walks into your shop for the first time?

Be prepared to be surprised! We may be a consignment store, but we don’t look like one! Our space is upbeat, trendy, and busy! When you walk in, you are met by one of our friendly bridal specialists. We ask a few pointed questions that help us get you started looking for the dress of your dreams. We are unusual in that we allow you and your entourage to peruse the gowns and find what you’d like to try. But, we keep a watchful eye and are always ready to answer questions or make suggestions. Once you find THE DRESS, we will offer seamstress suggestions and tips on storing your dress before and after your wedding. We’ll bag your dress, accept your payment, and off you go!

Any other advice for brides about dresses, who just got engaged and beginning the dress search?

  • Close your eyes
  • Take a deep breath
  • Get ready to have some fun! Finding your dress should be a fun and exciting experience! Knowing what style of gown you’d like is helpful, but remember to keep an open mind. No 2 dresses are created equal, so be prepared to try on multiple styles until you find the dress that fits your form and your budget. Never judge a dress by its hanger!

Best of luck to you on your Wedding Planning Adventures!

If you need a Wedding Coordinator you know where to find us 😉 Be sure to follow us on Instagram and Facebook for more wedding planning advice and blog posts like this one.

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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