“Say Yes to the Dress.” “I Found the Gown.” and  “Something Borrowed, Something New.” –  These are just a few of the many TV shows based solely around brides finding their “Dream Dress” and I have to admit once engaged I did binge watch quite a few! Then came the time to actually enter the shops myself! But where do you start and how do you know what you’re looking for? Well, granted I’ve only shopped for one wedding dress in my life but I do remain happy with my choice, so the following blog will hopefully help you to have a fun and successful adventure finding that “Dream dress” ready for the big day.

Tip number one: Finding the right shop. Depending on where you live you may have a wide range of Bridal shops local to you or you may have to travel to your nearest big town to locate different ones. There is quite a range of different bridal shops, some cater to all price ranges and some are very high end so it’s worth doing your research before walking in to help ensure you aren’t surrounded by dresses way out of your price range. As well as this some shops will need you to pre-book, especially if you know you will want to try dresses on. So make sure you’ve made an appointment before turning up.

Wedding Dresses | Devon Wedding Photographer

Tip number two: Decide a budget. As sad as it sounds, it is a good idea to have a budget, and to then tell your Bridal Assistant what you have decided is your maximum spend. This will help avoid the situation of trying on an amazing dress and then finding out you can’t afford it. Your Bridal Assistant can then only show you dresses in your price range so you know that whatever you lay eyes on could be a possibility without breaking your bank!

Tip number three: Try them all on! I loved this part…parading down the rail picking out anything and everything! My Bridal Assistant must have thought I was nuts but I was determined to ensure I had tried on every style! I must have tried on around 20 in that first shop! I thought I had a rough idea of what I wanted but I wanted the full experience so I picked out all sorts and I am SO glad I did because I ended up with a dress I would never have thought I wanted! She hung them all up in front of me and said “Right, which one are you most unsure about, let’s try that first…” So I picked out one and said: “I’m pretty sure I won’t like this” … And that was it! The first one I tried on was the one! But I carried on and tried on the rest of the mass collection just to make sure! And I’m so glad I did. To this day my advice would be to try on as many different styles as possible, even if you do return to the first one. That way when you are looking through magazines or watching yet more episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress” you don’t have that awful feeling of “Oh I wonder what I would look like in that style?” Or “Aw I wish I had tried on one like that” Obviously, there may be unavoidable moments like that but the more you have tried and tested the happy you will feel about your final choice for sure.

Wedding Dresses | Devon Wedding Photographer

Final Tip: Pick your audience wisely. It’s a good idea to take people with you, but be careful who you choose. Nothing beats that third person “Wow!” when you walk out from behind the dressing room curtain but you want it to be genuine. Make sure your chosen audience is going to be honest about what style looks good on you. It’s your choice at the end of the day and how you feel in the dress is the most important thing, but knowing others think you look amazing too will most definitely help your final decision! Plus, there’s nothing like making people cry with joy when they see you looking amazing in your chosen gown!

Wedding Dresses | Devon Wedding Photographer

Hopefully, these tips have been useful and will help you to find your dream wedding dress! Most importantly, go and enjoy the experience; the trying on, the ‘oo’s and ‘ah’s and the special moment of finding the one!