(Closed) Any tips for a first-time dress shopper?

posted 6 years ago in Dress
Post # 3
7904 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

Do not worry yourself one single bit about what size you end up ordering a dress in. The sizes are not like the street sizes you are used to and every designer is different. I wear a 12 and ordered an 18. Who cares? No one will be stopping you during your wedding to check the tag on your dress.

I found that I didn’t need to bring any special undergarments–that the stores provided, but some women suggest it.

Also, put all your preconceived notions of what you think you want out of your head. Most women buy a dress they wouldn’t have thought they would’ve liked before they went shopping. Try on all silhouetttes, all fabric types.

Also, be honest with the associate about the style of your wedding, the time of year, and especially your budget. A good associate will respect your budget and a bad one won’t, no matter what you tell him or her anyway.

Post # 4
4327 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 1992

Wear something comfortable so you can get in and out of it easily. Some places don’t like for you to wear makeup because it may rub off on their white dresses, but if they didn’t tell you that specifically, try to do your make up in a similar way you want to appear on your wedding. Same with a hairstyle so you can get the idea of how you’ll look in the gown. Maybe wear the jewelry you think you may wear also.

Most of all, have fun. Bring a camera. Lots of ladies need a day or more to decide which dress they want, so you may want to take pictures to remember what each looks like. Memory will fail you, you’ll want the pictures as reference.

Post # 5
7904 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

To add to what @StuporDuck: said, be prepared that many salons won’t allow you to take pictures. I went to 7 or 8 different salons and not one allowed photography.

Post # 6
4352 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

And put a friend in charge of writing down style numbers. I went to a salon that said they would write them for me, but never told me what they were. Also have the same friend write down notes about what you said about the dress. I couldn’t remember much about them, but with my friend’s notes I remembered that I needed the flare (I was looking at mermaids and trumpets) to be at midthigh or above otherwise my butt looked too big. If you have a specific dress in mind, call ahead and make sure they have that style, not just the designer.

ETA: Print out pictures of dresses you love and show them to the consultant when you’re telling her what you think you like. Even if they don’t carry the same designer or styles, they probably have things that are similar or that are more like what you want. Its easier to figure out what you like with pictures vs descriptions like “greek fairy” (thats what my Maid/Matron of Honor wants for her wedding dress. I can kind of picture it, but it will be fun seeing what that really means when we go dress shopping).

Wear good undergarmets. Don’t wear black undies (some dresses are sheer) and if you’re shy don’t wear a thong. Someone will probably help you dress and they will see your underwear. I brought two bras (one strapless and one low cut normal one) which was good to have with different necklines). You can use their stuff, but I prefer my own.

Post # 7
2891 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

Honestly if you are shy wear spanx. It can be really discomfitting to have a sales lady throw open the  door at the wrong moment and “flash” you. At least in spanx you are covered.

Post # 8
1257 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Comfortable undergarments I think is very important. Also have fun! Try on something that you may absolutely never see yourself in… you may end up loving it. See sizes may be frustrating so I agree with the PPs about not worrying about what size the dress comes in.

Post # 10
2190 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

Great tips by previous posters!

I would also say, don’t buy on your first trip. You don’t want dress regret. Take some time away from the dresses to think about them. Try to get pics if you can (I know some places won’t allow it.), but you really need to see the dress from diff angles and how they fit from a different perspective. You might change your mind as to what you like later after seeing pics. 

Post # 11
10453 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2014

Try in all different styles and keep an open mind. It’s sooooo fun!

Post # 13
1083 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I brought a nude strapless bra with me. I don’t even know if the store I went to would provide undergarments if needed, but bring one just in case. I also brought a list of style numbers I liked from that particular designer. It’s always good to have an idea of what you’re looking for and what you like. Once you start trying on, you’ll start to realize what looks good and what doesn’t. Most of all, just have fun!!!

Post # 14
315 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

Nude underwear, open minded about trying different style of dresses. I went for the first time Thursday Saturday Sunday while on a trp to Sydney.

I ended up hating the puffy tulle skirt style on my body as it made me look huge when I expected to love it.

My favourite dresses were slinky mermaid styles that I never though I would be able to rock and be confident wearing.

Be clear about your wedding date, venue and style.

Be open to the consultants suggestions. Once I briefed her on my style and theme she pulled some great dresses that really suited me that I would not have looked at twice on the hanger.




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