Wedding Tip 001: The Dress

Wedding Dress


One of the most exciting (and stressful) parts about preparing for your wedding is finding…the dress. It is a big deal! You want it to be perfect, flattering, memorable, comfortable, and so much more. Finding your wedding dress is a whole lot more than finding a good fit or a great deal. If you have watched any episodes of “Say Yes To The Dress”, you will know that all those things can be in place, but it won’t be the dress, until you have…the moment.

I was blessed and definitely found the “perfect” dress. But it didn’t happen exactly like I imagined it to. Here are a few tips about searching for your dress that I learned while finding mine.

  1. Don’t solely rely on Pinterest. Or pictures in magazines, google images, etc. Pinterest was such a helpful tool in planning my wedding, but it did not help me find my dress. It was so fun looking at and pinning different dresses and dreaming about which one I would wear, but my board had about fifty different styles pinned to it. You have to get to a store and try on some styles to actually know what style you want. Pinterest is great for fun and inspiration, but when it comes to finding your dress, go out and try them on!
  2. Start the search early. Make finding a dress an early priority in your wedding planning. Dresses can take forever to be ordered, made, altered, and even found. The last thing you want is to have to settle for a different dress just because yours cannot be made in time.
  3. Give ample time between appointments. When making appointments at stores, make sure to leave plenty of time in between them. Trying on dresses takes longer than you think, and it is such a memorable time, so you don’t want to feel rushed.
  4. Make sure to eat. Wedding dress shopping can be exhausting. Some of those dresses are very heavy! You need some energy to get through the day. The search is tiring as you are usually on display for whoever came to help you pick out the dress. It is emotionally draining as you are shopping for something so important, and it can be discouraging. I know I didn’t find the dress at my first appointment and I started to worry that it was not out there at all. So make sure to take care of your body. It will help you keep going and keep your head up.
  5. Don’t feel pressured. The employee selling you the dress really wants you to buy from their store. At the first store I went to, I actually felt bad because she spent so much time helping me, and then I did not end up buying any of their dresses. Don’t sweat it. That is their job. If they start putting pressure on you, just stay focused. You can always come back later and buy the dress if you do end up liking it. But it causes a lot more trouble if you buy and then regret the purchase.
  6. Don’t rush it. You do not have to find the dress at the first appointment or on the first day of the dress hunt. You can take time to think about it, browse other stores, come back to the same store. Also, you want to enjoy this experience, so take time to snap some pictures and put on a veil!
  7. Think about who you want to come. One of the most stressful parts about finding the dress is the entourage that you bring with you. I have seen many shows where the family and friends that come along totally crush the bride by hating on a dress that she loves. I was very blessed with my family that came. I brought my sister, sister-in-law, mom, and both grandmas. They were all so kind and we were all pretty much on the same page. It was so fun and meaningful to share that experience with them.
  8. About the moment. Everyone says you will have a moment when you know you found the perfect dress. I agree with this…somewhat. I did not have this moment when I found my dress. In fact, I almost decided on the other dress until my sister asked me to put on the other one, just one more time. My moment was when I found the style of the dress, which for me was ballgown. So, although that moment is wonderful, don’t base everything on it. You do want to be super excited and feel beautiful in your dress, but sometimes the decision is more gradual and less dramatic.
  9. About the venue. I have read so many times that you need to know the venue you are getting married at before you buy the dress. It is very helpful to know where you are getting married before you buy the dress, but it is not a must. Go for the dress you like. You are the bride and it is your wedding. Even if your dress doesn’t match the venue perfectly, you will make it work. So don’t let the venue or the style of the wedding get in the way of buying the dress you love.
  10. Modesty. Everyone views modesty in different ways. Someone may be fine with a see-through and strapless dress, while someone else requires a turtleneck and long-sleeved dress. Just remember that this is your wedding, not just any old party. It is a day that will be photographed and passed on through the years. It is a day where you make a life-long commitment before God. So try to avoid the skimpy party dress, even if you look amazing in it.
  11. Feel beautiful and bridal. Make sure that you feel like a beautiful bride! Don’t just settle for a pretty dress. Does putting on the veil make you feel as much like a bride as slipping on your dress? Cause it should!
  12. Can you move in your dress? Make sure your dress is comfortable and flexible enough. You can still go for the mermaid style, but make sure it is altered correctly. Think about how active you will be on your wedding day. You will be in the dress for a long time. Make sure you can walk up and down stairs comfortably, dance, sit, etc. You want to look amazing, but you also have to move!

{My Funny Story About My Dress}

I wore a big and poofy wedding dress. It had layers and layers of tulle. It was very comfortable, stayed up well, and I had plenty of room to move around. I could walk easily in it and sitting was a breeze. But I forgot to check one thing.

As I walked down the aisle at my wedding, looking at all the happy expressions of my guests, seeing the tears in my soon-to-be-husband’s eyes, and felt my dad’s arm against mine, I felt like a graceful princess. After my dad handed me off to Jon, we approached the altar. Feeling like a princess quickly switched to feeling like my old clumsy self again. As my tall, dark, and handsome husband held my hand, we approached the three steps to the altar. I took my first step up, and stopped. I paused with all eyes on me. I had stepped on and gotten stuck in my million layers of tool. I still had two steps and another foot to go and I couldn’t budge. My hands were full with my bouquet of flowers and my groom’s hand. With all eyes on me, I did not know what to do. Eventually I stuck my arm straight out and whispered loudly to my sister to walk down the stairs and take my bouquet. I had to let go of Jon’s hand, take a step back, lift up my dress, and ask Jon to lift up the other layers of my dress, before I could even make my next step. After much difficulty, I made it to the altar and all went well, but I could have avoided this embarrassing moment with remembering to practice going up the stairs during my alterations!

wedding dress

{Jon trying to help me up to the altar}

Here are some of my favorite pictures of my wedding dress. Chloe Murdoch took all of our wedding photos. She did a perfect job and was so pleasant to work with!

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2 thoughts on “Wedding Tip 001: The Dress

  1. Pingback: Wedding Tip 002: Go Green | Learn This Life

  2. Pingback: Wedding Tip 004: Your Photographer | Learn This Life

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