Wedding gown shopping... where do we begin?! There are SO many options, from styles to designers to even colors to choose from- it can almost be overwhelming, right? When I was a bride, I never went wedding dress shopping (I made my own), but it's something I do wish I would've done, looking back. I met up with Kim Keck, owner of Exclusively You, a full service Bridal Boutique located in Bloomsburg, PA recently to get some advice from a pro on tips for saying yes to your perfect dress. From gowns to accessories (tuxes, too!) this lady has you covered.
- Come with Ideas You know, way back in the day when brides used to earmark magazines with their dream dresses? Well, these days it's Pinterest or whatever else, but the women that are going to be helping you find the perfect dress want to know what your vision is for the day. The consultant will use your inspiration as a starting point, and then can help expand on your ideas with their expertise! On the flip side, try to not bring too many opinions. Keep your shopping pals to a tight knit group of must have people you need by your side. You want opinions from a few close people whose opinions you trust, but that also have your best interest in mind. People that know and understand your taste can be beneficial, but too many conflicting opinions can leave you overwhelmed and upset.
- Stick to Your Budget A budget for all things wedding, whether it's a strict budget or a loose one, will help you keep on track with what is the most important to you. You might want a specific designer for your gown and place a large part of your budget toward that, or you might want a certain photographer and spend more in that department (I swear, this is not a sales pitch- haha!).
- Location & Time of Year Are you getting married on the beach in August or at a cabin in January? Ok, it's probably somewhere in between for most of you, but keeping your location and time of year in mind is pretty important to the overall look on your wedding day (as well as your comfort level). If you're planning a winter (or even a Spring or Fall) wedding, consider sleeves. Strapless seems to be the go to right now, but I photograph so many brides who don't love their arms. If you don't love your arms, why are you wearing a strapless gown? There are some amazing little lace & sheer top options that you can pair with gowns these days that are simply stunning. If it's a top that you're adding over the bodice of your gown, you can even take it off for the party portion of your wedding. Fun, right?
- Your Body Type A good consultant will take your vision seriously, but will help work on any 'trouble spots' to get you to that perfect gown. With comfort being a primary goal, consultants want you to not only look great, but feel great all night long.
- A Line - A great option for anyone. This is a classic cut that looks great on everyone!
- Ballgown - The princess dress. Try. It. On. Just do it. Even if you don't want it, try it on! It looks great on most body types and is especially flattering on pear shapes or those with broad shoulders, as it evens out the frame.
- Sheath/Slip Dress - Exactly how it sounds, this dress will look best on well proportioned frames. These are gaining popularity recently and designers are using texture and dimension to add a little extra something to the simple cuts.
- Trumpet - Fitted through the body and flaring out mid-thigh, the trumpet looks great on anyone with a defined waist
- Mermaid - Fitted down to the knee, the mermaid gown is ideal for petites and hourglass shapes willing to show off some serious curves!
- Keep an Open Mind You might go in with your heart set on the most amazing trumpet gown you saw on Pinterest but after trying it on... it's just blah. Don't let your expectations of what you thought you wanted overshadow all the options on the table. Let the consultants do what they do best and find the perfect dress for you, even if it's the exact opposite of what you thought you wanted. It's their job to make you feel more beautiful than you've ever felt before. Trust them!
Want more wedding tips to help you through this crazy process? Download my FREE wedding day shot list for brides... You know, a handy dandy PDF of all the 'Must Have' pictures you need to have on your wedding day. Check it out!
Nicole DuMond is a wedding and portrait photographer based in the rolling hills of Stillwater, Pennsylvania and serving the surrounding areas of Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania, including the Poconos, Lehigh Valley, and Philadelphia areas. Nicole is also available for limited travel along the East Coast & Worldwide.
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