So you have accepted his proposal and after all the excitement of that calms down you start thinking about the DRESS. For most brides to be, this will be a new experience and while it is a magical one, sometimes it can be daunting and also worrying. With so much focus on pictures that now exists in our society, picking the perfect dress is all the more stressful for most brides. Sometimes brides got so caught up on this subject they forget about all other matters to do with their big day. Here a are a few helpful tips to get you started on the road to hopefully making a happy and positive decision. 


  • Think about the time frame. Ideally starting  10-12 months before the big day is a good idea. Styles and designs in fashion don’t really change within a year, it is not as fast as high street fashion, buyers only buy once maybe twice a year max. Give yourself a period of 3-4 weeks to view and visit shops and then make a decision, don’t drag it out over months as you will have forgotten dresses or decisions you made at the start of the process. Booking your dress in advance and with time on your hands allows for you to make decisions on other matters without feeling under pressure. The wedding dress really sets the theme and most brides find it hard to make decisions until she has her dress chosen. Booking in plenty of time also allows for fitting appointments again without feeling under pressure.
  • Choose the Bridal Shops you want to visit. Do some research on line or through magazines and make a list of shops that you would like to visit. Best form of research is recommendation through family and friends. Ideally pick a shop close to you as travelling for fittings etc may cause problems later. Plan your appointments and again try and do them all within a tight time frame. You do not need to visit every shop in the country, four to five shops is plenty, there are only so many styles and fabric in bridal dresses, this number will give you a good choice. Book your appointments in plenty of time as Saturdays, being the most popular day, can get booked out very quickly. If you can do during the week you will find it much better as sales staff will have more time to give you the attention you need. Please keep in mind that a lot of Bridal shops are now charging for consultations.
  • Think about the style/type of wedding you are planning.Consider the style of wedding you are planning with you fiancee, is it a formal church style or are you thinking of casual beach, perhaps you are thinking of going abroad. All these factors will and should have an impact on the style of wedding dress you go for. If the wedding is abroad, the dress has to travel and therefore must be suitable for this. A casual style wedding will have a different look to a formal one. Try and visualise how you see yourself on your wedding day, do you see yourself with a veil and full skirt or is it more a slim line sexy look. Have a gut feeling about the style and theme you and your partner want for your big day, and please don’t change your ideas to suit other people, you will regret it. This will have an impact on the shops you choose to visit.
  • Decide on what you want to spend on your Dress. Work this out with your partner or whoever is helping you with the wedding. Again this will have an impact on the shops you choose. Please don’t go to shops that you know are way out of your budget as this will only cause you stress, however don’t be completely rigid on the dress, if you do fall in love with a dress that is within reason a few hundred more that your budget, make it work by cutting back on something else, as more than likely you will never get that dress out of your head. Over the course of your life €500-€600( or whatever your range in deviation be ) is really not a lot and your photos last forever. Don’t pick too many bridesmaids if you can as this really eats into your budget. In saying all that you don’t need to spend thousands to get a beautiful dress and many bridal shops have sales once or twice a year.


  • Who to bring with you. Some bridal shops will ask you not to bring too many people as on your first consultation as they may not have room to accommodate a lot of people especially if it is a Saturday . In saying that, you are better off going by yourself or with one other person who you know will be honest and who you share similar tastes with. Please remember that you should look like you on your wedding day. There is no point in picking a style or shape that you feel uncomfortable  in or that you would never wear just so as to be on trend. Too many opinions can make your shopping process a nightmare. When you have narrowed down your choice to one or two dresses, then bring a few friends or family to help you decide. You may never get a group of woman to all have the same decision so go with the majority and please trust your gut. 
  • Wear The right Underwear. Remember to wear underwear that you feel good in when doing your consultation. How you feel in a dress will make a big difference and sometimes a dress won’t feel right because the underwear isn’t suitable. Many dresses now a days need certain types of underwear, if you are looking for a low back dress and you need support then wear the bra that gives you the support and shows you how low you can go on the back. Likewise if its a strapless dress you think you would like, then wear a strapless bra. If you like wearing support around the tummy area like spanks remember not to get anything that sucks you in too much, as if it sucks you in somewhere it pushes you out in other places. Finally if you have a good size bust remember wearing a bra is important to give you support, watch out for padding around the bust on some dresses as sometimes these need to be removed and you will get a much better fit.
  • Do Research on the right shape for you. Think about the shape that is right for your figure and body type. With all the attention given to dresses posted to pinterest etc  many brides to be can get bogged down with so many beautiful dresses, and most of these images are of models who have been photoshopped ! Look at the shapes and neckline that suit you in your normal clothes, be honest about what part of your body you are not 100% confident with, pick what part you want to show off, as we all have both. There are only so many shapes and styles in bridal wear. necklines are very important as this is the closest part to your face and will be in all photos. Please don’t get caught up wearing the in vogue style purely for that reason, you have to be comfortable in your wedding dress or it will show in your photos. We have all gone out on a Friday night in the wrong gear and spent the night wanting to get out of it, you can’t have that feeling on your wedding day. You want a low back, low back dresses are hard to fit  because there is no back its hard to get a good fit, maybe go up an inch so that you can get a good fit at the waist. You are a D cup but you can’t wear a bra with this lace back dress – not a good idea. Consider comfort and the ability to wear the dress for over 10 hours, this is very important.
  • NO Fake Tan. Please don’t go out trying on wedding dresses with false tan on. Wedding dresses are expensive and can be ruined with false tan. Besides being very embarrassing its not fair on the shop or brides trying it on after you.