N + C Wedding: Dress Shopping Tips

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Photo by Heather Curiel 
Wedding dress shopping is probably one of the most exciting moments of the planning process, it was certainly my absolute favorite part! I must admit I tried over 100 dresses before I decided on my Vera Wang. I visited stores in L.A. Scottsdale, Austin and Monterrey, Mexico and tried on EVERYTHING that caught my eye. From the lower-end David's Bridal to an absolutely dreamy completely-out-of-my-budget Monique Lhuillier Platinum.

 Needless to say, I learned a few things along the way, so here are a few tips to help you with this fun task:

1. Give Everything A Chance
In my head, my dream dress involved a lot of lace, a dramatic train  and long sleeves. As you can see by my final pick, it is nothing like what I had in mind but I loved it so so much. I picked this dress just for fun and ended up falling in love with it. My message here is to give everything a fair chance, you might be set on a mermaid gown and then fall in love with the ballgown. Or like me, want something more intricate and end up with a simpler dress. Don't shut down a dress because of how it looks on the hanger, always give it a try.

2. Shop Alone
Of course you'll want to bring your mom and sisters or friends to the first shopping trip, it is such a special moment! But if you have the time and logistics permit it, go and shop alone one afternoon. This will give you a better point of view on what YOU like and don't like. It's very easy to get lost in the excitement of the moment when everyone is crying because the dress it's so beautiful but you're just not into it. Take your time, you only get to wear a wedding dress once!

3.Bring Your Essentials
Bring your strapless bra, heels or anything else you know you'll be wearing for sure. I knew I wanted to wear flats on my wedding day so I always wore flats when I went shopping. Long earrings were also a must have for me so I had a little pair I brought with me to every appointment. It helped me visualize the entire look when I was trying everything on.

4. Don't Be Pressured
Don't let sales girls pressure you into making a decision. I had one particular bad experience where the woman was pressuring me so much to put a payment on a dress she made the entire appointment uncomfortable. The store had this weird tactic of sending everyone out to you to complement you on the dress. There was nothing genuine about it, they almost seemed rehearsed. I walked out of there without making a purchase and on my way out I saw them to the exact same thing to another bride; I knew then the uneasy feeling wasn't just my imagination. Decide and buy when YOU are ready. If you are not felling 100% confident; it's probably not the one (this applies to the groom as well haha).

5. Know Your Dress
My dress arrived to Austin in a big box (almost my size!) and I waited until a couple weeks before the wedding to have it prepared. Vera Wang recommended I take it to a shop in Houston to get it fluffed but I was much to lazy to drive 3 hours, so I found the best dry cleaner in Austin and paid $200 to have it steamed. Big Mistake. The dress did not look like it was supposed to so I went to Target, bought a gigantic steamer myself and steamed the whole thing again at home. Then I flew with the dress to Mexico and steamed it once again the morning of the wedding. It wasn't until I got back from my honeymoon that I actually read the tag on the dress where it clearly states DO NOT STEAM (ugh!). No wonder my petals did not look as fluffy! I still loved it and felt very pretty in it. I just wished I would have read the tag before or listened to the girls at Vera Wang. Learn from me and don't put steam where you are not supposed to.

Best of luck on this fun experience!


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