Wedding dress shopping! It’s enough to strike fear into even the most rational person. The cost alone is frightening, not to mention that I was overwhelmed by learning new information such as when it comes to wedding dresses white comes in a thousand shades!
I’m not going to lie, there was definitely a moment in which I was standing in front of a mirror at a bridal boutique in the city actually trying to rationalise in my head the $3000 price tag. I am actually glad I walked away that day as whilst I loved that dress, that money was definitely better spent on our honeymoon!
Before buying your dress online you must first know what you are looking for. Research – find styles you like, if you walk into a boutique without an idea in your head it can be very overwhelming as to where to start. Try on different styles, what you originally liked may not look the best. At every store I always tried on something completely different to what I had imagined…just in case! Once you have found a style you like and know looks good it’s ready to look online. This can be a very overwhelming task in itself but if you follow these tips you will feel a lot more confident in pressing buy.
1. If it seems ridiculously cheap, it’s either a scam or really awful. I paid $250, this is around the price you should expect to pay, don’t even bother if they are claiming to make you a fully lined, multi-layer gown for under $100.
2. Read reviews. If there is one thing brides are good at it is sharing their experiences, especially if they are negative! You want to find a high percentage of brides who are super satisfied with their purchases and who are willing to post photos of the actual dresses they receive. Often the sale website will post the designer dress picture that they make copies of – you want to see actual dresses they make.
3. Communicate. Make sure they are a legitimate company by having some form of communication. I asked many questions including if I could get them to make alterations to the dresses and I always received a fast reply. I also purchased fabric samples first; this also eliminated any colour shock that could be caused by photos and different screens.
4. Double check the sizing, I was able to send through custom measurements so the dress came perfectly in my size. That was an extra $100-200 I saved not having any alterations done. I also opted for a lace up back so I had the ability to tighten or loosen if sizing was not quite right, this also allowed for any weight fluctuations leading up to the day.
5. Buy early, just in case!
So which site passed my test and impressed me the most? Dressilyme I’m not sure that I could have got any more complements on my dress if I had paid the 3k. Have you purchased a dress online? Share your experience!
Photography by Ray Williams.