Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Wedding Tip #8 - Choosing a dress!

Last night I went with my friend Abby to Spoil Me in Portland, ME to look at wedding dresses. Spoil Me is a new bridal boutique (they used to sell all kinds of women's clothing). I was very impressed with the selection and lovely atmosphere inside their newly redesigned store! After the dress fitting - and hearing my dress advice - Abby asked me, only half kidding, so when are you going to become a wedding planner? Which made me think - I DO love weddings, but I love photographing them more than planning! However, I have a ton of stored up advice since I've planned my own and attended over 100 weddings! Instead of just sharing my advice with my friends... here is yet another Katie wedding tip!


Advice for BRIDES:
Not every style looks good on every bride. It's important to have a vision of what you'd like to wear, but be open and try on a few different styles so that you can see what different bustlines, waistlines, and dress shapes look like on your body. Don't forget that these are sample sizes! Chances are that they will not fit you perfectly and you will either need to have them clipped tighter or leave them partially unzipped. This happens to EVERYONE, so try to look past the "creative" fitting methods you might need to use. Your dress with be fitted to you perfectly - I loved my seamstress! So, take notice of what styles look good on your body - but don't scrutinize very wrinkle & bump in the fabric. You will hear a lot of opinions the more helpers you bring along but remember this is your dress and you should give your own opinion the most weight!

Take careful notes for the Bride. While she tries on dresses, for each one she likes you should write down the designer, style # or name, price, and a brief description. I also numbered the dresses in the order she tried them on and took a photo of each dress, with the bride-to-be's camera, so she would have the photos and notes to look at when she went back over the dresses.

I've noticed there is one big question many brides don't think about when shopping for their gown. What will it look like bustled? You should ask your bridal boutique to show you what the bustle will look like. Don't forget that for all of the reception (most of your wedding day) your dress will be bustled, not opened up with it's full train! Some dresses look better with a traditional bustle, others look better with a french bustle. Click here for a bustle description from And click here for more bustle descriptions and photos. The french bustle is by far my favorite. I find it to be the most elegant. If you prefer one bustle style over another you should speak to a seamstress BEFORE purchasing your dress so you are sure she can do the bustle you have in mind with that particular dress!

Oh, and have fun! Dress shopping is so exciting! Don't feel like you need to leave knowing which dress is "the one." If you're not sure, look over your photos and notes and visit other boutiques. Many dresses take about four months to come in, and then you need time for your alterations. This means you should be making a final dress selection and ordering 6 to 9 months before your wedding date.

Like a dress that's a bit out of your price range? Don't forget about trunk shows! Here is the listing of trunk shows from Modern Trousseau:

Or you could try your luck at the running of the brides:

Happy Shopping!

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