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A Timeline for Shopping for Your Wedding Dress

Well, today we are delighted to give our brides a great timeline for shopping for your wedding gowns!

Every little girl dreams about the day that she’ll walk down the aisle to the person of their dreams in a big white gown.  When you get engaged to the love of your life, there are so many details to think about, bu the dress is one of the best parts of planning your wedding.  Searching for the perfect dress is almost as important as finding the perfect guy!  You want to make sure to find a dress and get alterations so that you have it in plenty of time for your special day!  If you don’t know where (or when) to start, follow this timetable to find the dress you’ve always dreamed about!

12-18 months until your wedding

A year and a half to a year before your wedding, you’ll want to set your budget for your gown.  If you don’t know who will be paying for your dress yet, make that decision with your fiancee and your family.  Once you’ve figured out who’s footing the bill, setting the max budget for your dress is important.  The budget will keep you focused when you start shopping so that you’re not falling in love with dresses you can’t afford.  If you and your family don’t want to have to charge the dress to a high-interest credit card, look into a personal loan.  the low interest will allow you to pay the dress off over time without breaking the bank with additional interest.  To get some inspiration on what you’re looking for, do some browsing on Pinterest and stock up on your bridal magazines.   That way when you go into a bridal store or boutique, you’ll have pictures of dresses you like to reference and give you some direction.  Once you get closer to a year away from your wedding, you’ll want to start shopping around to get an idea of what you look best in.  You don’t have to make the final decision on which dress is “the one” but you’ll want to start looking!

8-10 months until your wedding

It’s time to make the decision on which dress you want to wear on your wedding day.  You can use a home try-on service to help you make your decision or buy from a boutique!  Everyone says ‘when you know, you know’ and it’s true!  If you feel comfortable and hesitate to take the dress off when it’s time to change, you’ll know that’s the one you should choose.  And if you and your family tear up when you put it on, that will seal the deal!  If you need to, feel free to sleep on it, and if you can’t stop thinking about the dress, you’ll know you’re making the right choice.  Before making the purchase, be sure to read the contract thoroughly.  Once you buy your dress, ask the bridal salon when they expect your dress to arrive in the store, which should take 4 to 5 months from the day you place the order.  Be sure to have the store contact you when your dress has arrived so you’re aware.   Ask the bridal store to give you a swatch of the fabric of your dress to help you shop for your shoes and your flowers while you wait for the dress to come in.

6 months until your wedding

You’ve got the dress, so now you have to complete the outfit!  When you’re 6 months away from the big day, you’ll want to go shopping for your shoes, hair accessories, jewellery, and undergarments.  For your shoes, you’ll want to choose something you’re comfortable in,  You’re going to be doing a lot of standing and a whole lot of dancing on your wedding day, so get a pair that don’t kill your feet.  Getting your shoes will help with your fittings to make sure your dress is the perfect length.  Don’t feel pressured to wear heels if you feel like you can’t walk in them.  It might be fun to pick a shoe with a pop of colour (maybe even blue as your “something blue”) to add some fun style!  Make sure to have a pair of dancing shoes for your reception so you don’t have to hop around barefoot.  Next, decide what hairstyle and shop for hair accessories if you want to add something extra.  You want to be sure that your hairstyle and your jewellery complement the neckline of your dress.  If your gown has a high neckline, you might be able to go for a romantic updo and switch out a necklace for some beautiful earrings instead.  Last but not least, don’t forget to shop for what you’ll be wearing under your dress!  You might think this is the last thing you need to worry about, but what undergarments you choose will impact how great your dress looks.

3 months until your wedding

When you’re a few months away from your wedding, you’ll want to get your first fitting.  This is an important part of the shopping process, and you want to allow plenty of time for alterations in case something goes wrong and needs to be addressed.  While some dress vendors can do rush dress orders, there will be rush fees.  To ensure that you’re not scrambling, leave yourself time so that everything can be done the right way.  Make sure to bring your shoes to the fitting so that your alterations are made according to what you’ll be wearing on your wedding day!

6 to 8 weeks until your wedding

Have a second fitting so you know your dress is on track to be ready for your wedding.  Make sure to let your seamstress know if anything doesn’t look right or if you’d like something changed.  When you go for your final fitting, you want everything to look how you intended so now is when you want to speak up.  If you want anything sewn into your dress, like a family keepsake or a piece of fabric, bring it to your second fitting and tell your seamstress exactly where you want it placed.

2 to 3 weeks until your wedding

The big day is so close, so you’ll want to have your final fitting if you haven’t already so that any final alterations can be made.  Don’t forget to practice walking in your full ensemble (your shoes, veil and dress) so you’re comfortable!  Pick someone that you want to bustle your dress on the day of and have them come with you to learn from the seamstress.  You’ll want someone who is reliable and will remember how to bustle correctly so your dress looks perfect.  Once your final alterations are done, you’ll want to pick your dress up and store it in a safe place so it doesn’t get damaged, and so your groom doesn’t see it before the wedding!

The day before your wedding

The day before the wedding will be stressful trying to get everything together, but you want to make sure your dress is all ready to go.  Pack a bag specifically for your dress:  bring a steamer to smooth our your dress and an emergency kit for any last minute fix ups.  You want your dress to look perfect, so being prepared is essential.  That way when you’re getting ready on the day of, there are no surprises!

Your wedding day

You’re getting married, and you’re going to look beautiful in your dress.  Make sure you give yourself time to put on your dress and ask your mom or your bridesmaids to help zip you in.  Then you’re all ready to walk down the aisle to your new partner!  Don’t forget to have fun, enjoy the day, and dance all night long!

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