You’re engaged! Now it’s time to find your perfect dress – grab your nearest and dearest and the fun part starts…. Bridal gown shopping!
The biggest question that we get asked from brides is: When should I start shopping for my wedding dress? We are here to provide our thoughts and advice on this topic in the hope to help ensure a smooth bridal shopping journey for you.
So, when is the best time to start? We recommend at least 12 months out from your wedding day for a more relaxed bridal experience. This will allow you enough time to explore the different designer collections with your bridal tribe, lock in your dream gown and have it fitted to you perfectly for your big day without rushing.
Delivery Times on Standard Gown Orders
Every place can have a slightly varied timeline to us, but here at Bluebell Bridal most of our designers need about 6-8 months to have your dream gown created in your chosen size. We then recommend allowing about 10 weeks prior to your wedding day to have the time to get your gown fitted to you beautifully. This time frame allows you 2 months to have the time to explore different gowns and boutiques.
If you’re thinking… “Oh no, my wedding is under 12 months…. Have I left it too late?” – No worries. If you are getting married in under 9 months, you are still in luck. We do have the majority of our designers that can accommodate a priority rush order which can deliver a gown in under 6 months with a rush fee. There may be a few designers that are unable to do so, which therefore limits your gown selection choices. However, if you are open to exploring your options – we can definitely find a gown for you.
What to consider when dress shopping?
Your wedding dress is possibly the most iconic piece of fashion garment you will be wearing for your entire life. We all know and feel the pressure of making sure we pick the perfect dress. Let’s take this big moment, and make it simple decision for you and fun… consider these factors:
- Wedding date – this is important for obvious reasons; you want to make sure you can get the dress on time. By having your date set, this will help guide you as to what gowns are available and what timeline works best for you. This will also help you think about what style of dress could work as the date will determine the season – will you be having a summer wedding or a winter wedding?
- Wedding Venue – we recommend having your venue set as this will also further assist in creating a vision of your dream dress. It also makes a big difference when saying ‘Yes’ to your gown as once you have fallen in love with a gown, you can envision the dress at your venue and in the setting. It really brings the whole gown image to life!
- Curate the bridal boutiques you visit – this is also a really important factor to consider as we find that when brides have visited too many places and have tried on an abundant of dresses, the process starts becoming too overwhelming and stressful. We like to think that your wedding dress should be a representation of you as a person… but more elevated. After all, when do you ever get to wear a beautiful gown again? You need the gown to reflect your personal style and not feel like you are playing dress ups. So, with this in mind, we recommend curating your bridal gown shopping to about 2-3 bridal shops which have styles that resonate with you. The best way to curate your experience is to do your research. Look on the websites to see what designers are available in each boutique, and if there are any questions that you have about styling or pricing, don’t be shy to reach out. If you feel like you need to try gowns on to determine what suits you best, then select boutiques that might have a variety of different designers and styles for you to explore to narrow down your look. Here at Bluebell Bridal, we host an array of designers that have a collection with different silhouettes to help brides determine what shape works for them if you are uncertain. But always keep focused on your vibe and the style of wedding when trying on gowns.
- Who you bring with you to your appointment – This is an important factor as the people you bring with you to your appointment need to be able to help you with your dress decision and not hinder it. The bridal gown journey can be a process so if you choose to bring people with you to your appointment, you want them to be able to be supportive, honest and share the same gown vision as what you are looking for. Whilst it’s nice to share your gown with everyone, sometimes it’s more special to just have a select few with you when you lock in your dress and surprise the rest! The rest of your tribe can also come join for a second styling appointment or when you come in to collect your dress.
Be Prepared to find your gown
You’ve done your research; you have curated your bridal shops and now it’s time to start trying on the gown… So don’t be surprised that you will find your dream gown during this time. At Bluebell Bridal, our master stylists have in- depth knowledge of the gowns and designers, and we know the products intimately. We will work together with you to marry the perfect dress to your dream vision of your gown. So we say…. Trust the specialists. They either find the dress that you have been dreaming of, or might even suggest another style that you never thought of but fits with your vision perfectly. No matter your journey, you’ll know that you have found your gown if you stay true to yourself and trust your feeling when you are in the gown.
The journey to finding your dream gown is meant to be a fun and exciting one, it’s not supposed to be hard and daunting – so keep that in mind when you are dress shopping! By starting your bridal gown journey a year out from your wedding day, it will allow you to go through the process in a more relaxed way and give you the time to enjoy it and give you the confidence to say YES when you have found ‘The One’.
We hope this has helped! And know that whatever you need, we are here to guide you through this special moment.