It's easy when you're a love-struck teenager, dreaming of the day when you walk down the aisle. It is a completely different experience when you know you have to face up to the fact that you really are getting married – and that hundreds of people will be staring at you on your wedding day. Your friends, in-laws, family members and your beloved will all weigh in on your choice of a wedding dress. So where do you begin?
It may not sound very romantic, but you need to know what you can afford to spend on your wedding dress. Do not dismay if you don't have thousands and thousands of dollars to spend on your dress. Not only are there plenty of budget-priced dresses available, but there are also tricks to getting discounts on the finest gowns.
Many bridal salons have at least one annual sale when they drastically reduce the prices on their stock. Other stores have bridal events when they offer brides major incentives to come in. Some places offer discounts on the gown if you buy your bridesmaid dresses there. Shop around and find out what deals are available.
If you have time to plan, find out when the big sales take place. That's when you should buy. But first, you need to have a good idea of what you want, so go shopping first. Try on dresses so you have an idea of what looks good on you. Then, if you find yourself in one of those shopping races, you will know what to look for and what to avoid.
One of the best ways to quickly sort through wedding dresses is to know what looks good on you and what does not. Different lines and cuts are definitely more flattering to some shapes than others. While you should never go strictly by a list of do's and don'ts, here is a good place to start:
·Busty brides would be wise to go for a sweetheart neckline or a strapless gown. Try to avoid thin spaghetti straps, which can make your dress appear to be hanging by a thread. Also, it is wise to avoid an empire waistline, which can put too much emphasis on the bust.
·If you are small-busted, consider a V-neckline, which does not draw attention to the bust – or the lack of one. You can also consider a strapless gown or a sleeveless gown, both of which draw focus away from your chest.
· Like busty brides, full-figured brides should avoid thin spaghetti straps. And beware some clingy fabrics, because they can draw attention to every dimple and ripple.
·Thin brides need to add the illusion of curves. Look for a gown that creates hips, like a ball gown, or one that adds to the bustline with some ruching.
·If you are a petite bride – say 5 feet 4 inches or shorter – you need to be aware that some dresses can overpower you. Try to avoid a dress with a lot of intense detailing or one with an extremely full cut. A simple A-line is a good place to start.
·Avoid emphasizing any figure-flawed areas. For example, if you have ample hips, do not choose a dress with a bow in the back. It will draw attention where you don't want any.
Please brides, remember that there are exceptions to the rules about what you should wear. You need to feel comfortable in your selection. Confidence is far more attractive than anything you can put on.
One final way to sort through wedding dresses is to become familiar with the style of different designers. For example:
·Priscilla of Boston is known for elegant, beautiful and traditional gowns. Their designs are for the classic, regal bride. A Priscilla of Boston gown will be in style yesterday, today and tomorrow.
·Jewel by Priscilla of Boston offers gowns with sleek, understated silhouettes with a youthful flair. They are innocent in nature, but fun at the same time.
·The Melissa Sweet collection offers whimsical and distinctive dresses. The mix of textures and embellishments will appeal to those with an artist's heart. They are original in every meaning of the word.
·The Vineyard Collection offers a modern take on the classic bridal lines. They feature crisp tailoring and couture-like details.
·Vera Wang is a style icon who brought her artistic style to the bridal industry in 1990. The result is modern, luxurious designs that transport the model's runway to the center aisle of the local church.
If you are just beginning the daunting task of selecting a wedding gown, your fist step is to get better informed. Learn what is out there, what looks good on your and who designs the dress you want.