Wedding gown

5 Things to Know Before Dress Shopping

This entry is from our Expert Guest series where wedding and honeymoon professionals share their best tips on creating memories that last a lifetime.

Saying yes to the dress may seem like a daunting and never-ending task, but these 5 tips are guaranteed to create a successful wedding gown experience!

Tips for saying yes to your dress

1. Do your research

Come up with a general idea of what style you’re into and the overall look you’d like to portray. Doing adequate research on the different dress styles, designers, and materials is key to figuring out what you really want in the end. At the same time, it’s also very limiting to be stuck on one certain idea before even trying any dresses on. Some styles, silhouettes and fits look different once on various body shapes. As with any big purchase, you want to come into it with background knowledge, but make sure you start with an open mind before you knock anything. It’s often that a bride leaves with a dress they would have never pictured for themselves before!


2. Less is more!

When planning your wedding dress shopping excursions, it’s important to realize that whoever you invite can and will give their opinion at any point–wanted or not. Invite only those people whose opinions mean the most to you in your decision making, whether that may be your parents, a maid of honor, a sibling, etc. It’s difficult to put a hard number on it, but it always seems better to keep the count down to 1-3 guests for your initial wedding gown search. That way you don’t get overwhelmed with tons of dresses, tons of guests, and tons of opinions. If you’re one who has many friends, invite them all back when you’ve narrowed your search down to 2 or 3 gowns. This way, it’s easier to handle your own emotions after figuring out the majority of your decision and it allows your friends to be happy they’re apart of the decision too! That’s what we call a win-win!

Know your budget

3. Know your budget

Whether yourself, a parent, or your fiancé is paying for your dress, make sure you have a gauge on what you’re going to spend. Unlike other vendors that make up your wedding, bridal stores drastically vary in price. Some stores sell dresses right off the rack and some sell dresses that are handmade to your measurements in another country. Make sure you discuss this concept with someone close (or the someone that’s paying for it) and come up with a price range or a maximum budget you’re comfortable with spending on your dress. This step alone will help narrow down your search and keep you from wasting time at places that are too low or high for what you’re looking for.

Come prepared for dress selection

4. Nude, nude, nude!

This may seem like a minute detail compared to all the other tips, but time and time again, it makes a difference–wear nude colored undergarments! Some materials are either a little thin or just plain see-through! Of course, you can always add layers, but be prepared to try on some dresses that could reveal a little more than grandma would approve. Wearing nude colors is a lot less noticeable than your bright pink Victoria’s Secret panties. It’s the little things that we notice around here that are easy to overlook when planning to dress shop!

Feel like a bride

5. Feel like a bride

Always come with your hair and makeup semi-done. In order to find the right one, you have to FEEL that it’s the right one, and if your hair and makeup are out of sorts, you may have a hard time visualizing the end result. Instead, wear a similar amount of makeup and style your hair how you imagine it looking on the big day–in a low bun, beachy waves, etc. Certainly, you don’t have to go out and pay for a blowout or anything, but the closer you look like a bride, the more you’ll feel like a bride (in the right dress, of course)!

Be ready for your big day with the right dress

A Honeyfund honeymoon registry can help you finance your wedding dreams.

Bio: Samantha Townsend is Social Media and Marketing Coordinator at Kinsley James Couture Bridal, wedding coordinators in the Bay area. Founded by Dawn and Amber, recent brides themselves, the salon offers a bride both couture and style with gowns by well known, unique designers, as well as personal service.

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Your beautiful wedding dress

This entry is from our Expert Guest series where wedding and honeymoon professionals share their best tips on creating memories that last a lifetime.

Your wedding day has come and gone, you’re back from your honeymoon, and while you’re unpacking, you see your wedding dress lying on the bed. Yes, that beautiful dress has cost a lot of money, and it is now hidden in a garment bag on the bed.

Whether it’s silk, satin, or lace, wedding dresses are so much more than just fabric pieces. For many brides, the dress fits their personal style and love story. Women feel like princesses on their wedding day and it’s magical. With all the emotion and nostalgia surrounding the wedding dress, it is sometimes very difficult to decide what to do with your long white dress after the wedding.

Let’s face it: Like your bridesmaids, there’s a good chance that you will never wear your wedding dress again. So, what do you do with such an expensive garment that is made for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity? Are you going to hang it in the closet? Are you going to donate the dress to a charity? Or do you want to change it so you can wear it again?

Nine Ways To Give Your Wedding Dress New Life

Below are nine creative things you can do with your wedding dress.

1.  Creative With Lace

Was the dress your favorite aspect of your wedding and are you a little creative? Then, of course, there are many ways to make something beautiful of your wedding dress. Look around on Pinterest and you will have enough ideas. For example, you can dress your baby cradle with it, create a necklace with the fabric of your dress or use part of your dress to frame as a lasting memory. You will get lots of compliments!


2. Magical Lingerie

Another option for your dress is to create a lingerie fabric. You’ll get to recreate that magical moment when your spouse took off your wedding gown in an even sexier way! You’ve probably never felt more beautiful than on your wedding day. With lingerie that is made out of your wedding dress, you experience that special feeling over and over again. Ask about a tailor in the area and you’ll see that a lot of things are possible!

If you want to keep your dress, but not necessarily in its current form, you can be creative. Retain only the bustier and leave it into a portable skirt underneath. Or the other way, you can transform a long dress into a cute mini skirt.

3. Organize A Bride Dinner

Do you have friends who are already married? Then cozy all together bubbling in your wedding dresses! A bride dinner is a great excuse to shine again in your bridal regalia.

Christening Dress

4. Christening Dress

You can also save the dress for a future christening dress. This way you can keep the dress and use it in a new way for another happy moment in your life.

5. Keep Your Wedding Dress For Your Daughter

Keep your wedding dress for your daughter or daughter-in-law. This seems a bit far-fetched, but if you can’t let go of your beautiful dress and you can see someone else wearing it on their wedding day, you should keep it. You never know what the future holds! The moment you see your daughter shine in your wedding dress is priceless. Keeping your dress for her wedding is therefore the best thing you can do with your wedding dress. Keep it safe in a special cover in a dry and dark place.

It is often possible to make your dress something more to her taste. You don’t want to wait that long? A photo shoot of your little girl in your wedding dress is super cute!

Feeling Generous

6. Feeling Generous?

Donate your dress to charity. Brides Across America offers free wedding dresses to military brides who could not afford it otherwise. Another great charity is Adorned in Grace, which was born out of one sex trafficking survivor’s experience with a donated wedding gown. All proceeds are donated to raise awareness and prevention of human trafficking and to support victims.

7. Pre Owned Wedding Dresses

Several bridal shops have a second section where you can give your dress a second life or you can buy them online. If you had purchased a designer dress you can recoup some of the cost. Sites like Once Wed, Preowned Wedding Dresses, Nearly Newlywed and Tradesy make the process so easy it’s like free money in your pocket. While some charge a small listing fee, others simply take a commission of the sale.

Trash The Dress

8. Trash The Dress

If you are finished with your wedding dress, there is one great last way to say goodbye to the most important dress of your life. Trash the dress! Trash your dress for amazing and unique pictures. There are some incredibly artistic ways to photograph your wedding in a non-wedding area.

9. Out In The Open

If you have the space, you can store your wedding dress on a mannequin display, or on a beautiful hanger on the wall. Ask for some information in the dry cleaning shop about how you can treat your wedding dress to prevent it from being yellowish.

Before you do these amazing things with your dream dress, make sure a professional cleans it. Your wedding dress is a special reminder of a fantastic day. After dragging on the ground, or after the endless toasts with your girlfriends, it can be dirty.

Whatever you ultimately choose to do with your wedding dress, be glad you met the love of your life and have had the opportunity to be a bride.

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BIO: Leanne Lovett is a rockstar content producer from Best Miami Weddings, the first stop for every bride in Miami.. The company assists in every aspect of wedding planning as they offer wedding packages and arrange celebrations in the best Miami venues.

They have received the WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Award® for 2016, as determined by reviews from our clients and also The Couples’ Choice Awards recognizes our business as amongst the top 5% of wedding professionals nationwide.

Look on for more information about this company that helps couples plan for every aspect of their wedding

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