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Finding the perfect dress for your wedding is a long process. Here are 70 things you should know to help you pick out the perfect dress!

Whether you have a specific image of your dream wedding dress in mind, or are just looking for ideas to get started, we've got you covered. We'll walk you through the process of finding your dress, as well as customizing it to fit your body and personal style.

Shopping for a wedding dress can be overwhelming, especially if it's your first time. There are so many styles and fabrics to choose from that it can feel like you're going in blind.  Fortunately, the process doesn't have to be stressful! We've done all the research on styles and fabrics so you don't have to. We'll provide you with everything you need to know to make the right choice for your dream gown.

No matter your budget, personal style, or timeline, these wedding dress shopping tips are guaranteed to help you find the gown of your dreams.





What is Your Vision

Searching for your dream dress online is like a rabbit hole of gorgeous options. To make the process easier, look for common themes in styles you love. Do you prefer a very embellished, lacy, or voluminous style? Or maybe you like an open back? Ask your stylist questions about the most popular trends to help narrow down your options.

Explore All Your Options

When you go wedding dress shopping, a bridal consultant will probably tell you that they often see women come in with a set idea of what they want for a dress, and then try on something completely different. They often discover that the dress they thought would never be their style is actually the one they love. Always keep an open mind when wedding dress shopping; you may find your dream dress, even if it's not your first choice.

Get Ready For Sizing

With wedding sizing, your dress will typically be one to two sizes higher than what you normally wear. This is because a wedding gown is designed to be form-fitting and accentuate your curves. Although it sounds frightening, remember that no one will know the number but you and your consultant.

Find A Comfortable Size

Even if you are trying to lose a few pounds before your big day, shop for dresses in your current size instead of going down a size. If you end up losing weight and you are able to fit into that dress, it will be much easier to take it in than if the dress is too tight.

Reserve Early

Many brides find that the process of finding and ordering their gown can take anywhere from six months to a year. The dress doesn't even show up at your door until four months after you've placed your order. Then, you still have to factor in the time it takes to get alterations done, and make sure all your accessories are in place.

Find The Perfect Timing

If you wait until the last minute to shop for your wedding dress, you’ll likely be disappointed. It’s best to shop early so you can take your time, and find a dress that is perfect for you.

What is A Reasonable Budget For Your

Talking about money can be an uncomfortable experience. However, it is a necessary part of the process to ensure that your wedding day is exactly how you want it to be. Before you start searching for your gown, sit down with your partner and decide who will pay for the gown. Once you know who is paying, it will be much easier to find the right dress for you both.

What is Your Wedding Theme

Before you start shopping for your wedding dress, it's important to decide on a wedding theme. Will it be formal or casual? Will you get married in the city or by the beach? These decisions will help narrow down your options. Once you've identified your theme, then you can shop for dresses that match your overall style.

Know The Additional Costs

When planning to buy a dress for your wedding, you should consider that the gown price will include tailoring and accessories (veil, jewelry, shoes), and it will include cleaning and preserving the gown as a keepsake after the wedding.

Find The Perfect Wedding Dress Store in Toronto

Before you start shopping for a wedding dress, make sure you do your research. Go on a trial run with a close friend to see what styles you like and which designers will fit your vision for the big day. Also, check online reviews to find shops with solid reputations and be sure to get referrals from friends who have already bought dresses.

Be Sure To Call

Don't waste your time shopping at a store that doesn't have what you want. Call ahead to your favorite boutique or salon to make sure they have the style, designer, and price range that you are looking for.

Always Book An Appointment

Unlike other retail stores, bridal stores are designed to make finding a dress as stress-free as possible, with the help of a consultant. Appointments ensure that you always have someone on hand to help you find the dress of your dreams.

Start Low and Work Your Way Up

If you are looking for the right wedding dress and want to save money, then you should start at the lower end of the price range. The same goes for trying on dresses during your appointments. Starting with the least expensive one will give you an idea of what styles you like, which will help you make a decision. This is also a good way to narrow down your choices before making an expensive purchase.

Describe Your Perfect Dress with 3 Adjectives

When shopping for a wedding dress, you want to be able to look and feel beautiful. When you are trying on dresses, make sure to take the time to think about how you want to feel on your big day. Narrow down your choices by using three words to describe your vibe. This can help you narrow down your choices and choose a dress that fits you best.

Always Go On A Weekday

Bridal salons are typically packed on the weekends, so it is best to avoid them if you want to ensure that you get the attention you deserve or if you want an appointment during a time when there are fewer customers.

Set Aside The Whole Day

It's surprisingly time-consuming to try on wedding gowns, so you want to be sure to leave enough time for the appointment. Instead of making plans for brunch or trying to fit it in between other errands, leave a few hours so you can take your time browsing and trying on dresses.

Be Careful Who You Shop With

It's true that you love your mom, sister, sister-in-law, maid of honor and six bridesmaids - but if you've ever tried to get a group of girls to agree on where to go for dinner, then you can only imagine how hard it will be to find consensus on a wedding dress. So, narrow down the group to the two or three people whose opinions matter most to you.

Choose The Right Undergarnments

It's hard to imagine how a strapless dress would look when your bra straps are visible - or how a bodycon dress would fit if your hips aren't completely smooth. For your appointments, wear a nude thong and strapless bra underneath and bring Spanx to make sure everything is smooth.

Finalize Your Silhouette

Your wedding dress is a reflection of your personality and style. Whether you're an elegant, classic bride or a bold, fun-loving one, finding the right fit for your body is essential to making it truly yours. An A-line silhouette creates a cascading hemline, which looks great on most body types. A fit-and-flare silhouette gives the illusion of curves without overwhelming your frame, and can be dressed up or down depending on what kind of day you want to have. Of course, if you're a bride who wants to make an entrance with a dramatic ball gown silhouette

Things To Consider For Destination Weddings

Be sure to check the airline's baggage regulations before buying your wedding dress. You don't want to fall in love with a ball gown style dress, only to find out it exceeds the size restrictions come travel time.

Explore Alternative Lengths

While it's unlikely that unconventional bridal gowns will be as popular as they are today in the next few years, there is one thing that is certain: They will never go out of style. There are hundreds of different styles to choose from, each with its own personality and flair. For a more casual wedding dress, try a tea-length gown, or for a more traditional look, consider a white minidress.

Choose Your Fabrics

There are many different types of fabric that can be used for a wedding gown. The most popular is silk, which comes in many different varieties. A heavier, more structured material (think silk shantung, taffeta, or guipure lace) will hold its shape and smooth your figure. Unstructured silk and filmy chiffon are less flattering for those brides with curves.

Bring Your Heels

Some bridal salons have communal high heels you can borrow, but that's a little icky. You really don't want to try on your wedding dress with someone else's shoes! If you're going to bring your own shoes, be sure to bring heels of the same height you think you'll likely wear for your big day. That way, you'll have a better idea of how the dress will look.

Explore Dress Photos To Get Ideas

Whether it’s a photo collage of the wedding dress styles you like best or a printout of dream dresses from your secret wedding Pinterest board you’ve had since college, be sure to come armed with the essentials when shopping for a wedding dress.

Bring Wedding Dress Photos

Whether it’s a photo collage of the wedding dress styles you like best or a printout of dream dresses from your secret wedding Pinterest board you’ve had since college, be sure to come armed with the essentials when shopping for a wedding dress.

The Gown Usually Looks Better On

During your first appointment, bring pictures of the venue where you will be getting married. Seeing the ambience of the site can help your consultant decide which gowns are best for you.

Wedding dress shopping can be a difficult process, as you will be choosing from hundreds of dresses that all look beautiful on the hanger. However, the key to finding the perfect dress is to put in some effort and try on as many dresses as you can. "Unlike shopping for a shirt, you won't really know what a wedding dress will look like until you actually try it on, so be open if your consultant promises the dress will look better on you than it does on the hanger," says Anne Chertoff, bridal expert at You & Me TV.

Do You Want Custom Designs

Embellishments like embroidery, beading, and lace may add to the cost of the dress. But if you don't want a simple look, they're worth it—just factor that into your budget.

Try Dresses Only in Your Budget

If you're unsure about whether or not you can afford an item, there's no point in trying it on. You're just torturing yourself and setting an unrealistic standard that no dress you can actually have will live up to.


Try Shopping Online

Online shopping is the most popular form of retail therapy; however, it's not really the only way to get your retail fix. In fact, 18 percent of brides in the U.S. prefer to buy their dress online. If you're an online shopper, this is a great option for you! Just make sure you try on the dress in person before making a purchase. 

Call Ahead For Plus Sized Dresses

Nothing is worse than getting to a bridal shop and finding that they only have sample sizes for women who are size 10 and below. (Unfortunately, this still happens in even the most well-known shops.) To make sure your salon isn't one of these, call ahead and ask if they sell plus-size samples for the style and designer you want to try on, and if they don't, find out if they can order some in before your appointment.

Get Ready To Try Alot Of Dresses

Unfortunately, unless you're really lucky, the first wedding gown you try on probably isn’t going to be "the one." But don’t get frustrated if you’ve tried on dress after dress to no avail. Stay patient and keep an open mind until you’re sure you’ve tried on the perfect dress. It might even take multiple shopping trips until you're fully 100 percent sure.

Don't Hold Yourself Back

The most important thing to remember when trying on wedding dresses is to pace yourself. I know it can be overwhelming to try on so many dresses, but the more you try on the more likely you are to find your perfect dress. If you’ve been trying on dresses for an extended period of time and are feeling overwhelmed, take a break from shopping. Sleep on your favorite choices, and then re-visit them the next day with fresh eyes.

Decide Your Style and Stick To It

If you want to look classic on your wedding day, consider our lace dresses. But if you're a fashionista who wants to be up-to-the-minute on trends, then our chiffon bridal gowns are for you!

Use Celebrity Weddings For Ideas

Even if you have a small budget, you can still get the wedding dress of your dreams. You just need to think outside the box and find ways to replicate the looks of your favorite celebrities without spending thousands of dollars on their dresses. For example, you could hire a fashion designer to help create a cape with rhinestones that is similar to Serena Williams's style.

Find What You Love

One of the most important decisions a bride will make is what dress to wear on her wedding day. The prospect of pleasing everyone involved can be stressful, so it's easy to give in and choose a dress that makes other people happy. However, it's a crucial decision that should be made by the bride herself, regardless of other people's expectations.

Explore Non White Dress Options

There are many color options for brides to choose from. Some of the most popular include subtle eggshell or ivory, romantic blush, and bold prints. Whether you like to stand out or want to be a traditional bride, there's no need to worry about whether it will work! Of course, it might not be right for your wedding theme, but 14% of brides wear a colored wedding dress. Don't be afraid to experiment with different colors!

Bring Your Family Heirlooms With You

If you're hoping to incorporate a family heirloom, such as a veil or piece of jewelry, into your wedding day look, make sure you bring it to all your shopping appointments to find the perfect pairing.

Find Wedding Dress Stores in Toronto Within Your Budget

A good bridal salon should have a variety of dresses within your price range. It doesn't matter if you're on a budget or not, it's important to be able to try on options that fit into your budget.

Only Buy One You Are 100% Sure

If you want to know whether a dress is right for you, you need to try it on, Even if you're not sure at first, you'll know once you've worn it.

Try Different Angle Poses

The best way to get a true idea of what you'll look like in your wedding dress on the big day is to have someone take pictures and videos of you while trying dresses on. Make sure they capture all angles of each dress - from the back and sides, to shots of you sitting down in the gown from the top up.

Mirrors Are Not Often The True Reflection

Every mirror can make you look different, which is why it's important to rely on photos and videos to get an authentic sneak peek of what you'll look like in your wedding dress.

How Does The Dress Make You Feel

When you're the most beautiful, you feel the most beautiful. So if you want to feel the most beautiful on your special day, choose the dress that makes you feel it. Whether a dress fits your criteria or not, what matters is how it makes you feel. If you don't love it, keep trying on dresses until you find what makes you feel like a princess.

Talk To Your Best Friends

Wedding dress shopping is an exciting process, but can also be a stressful and time consuming one. If you're looking for the perfect gown, it may seem like you'll never find it and you will likely feel overwhelmed. However, there is no need to stress! A few good friends and family members can be helpful in making your decision.

Chose Something You Feel Great Wearing

Think about the top or dress you already own that makes you feel your most confident or beautiful. What is it exactly that you like about it so much? Is it the fit, the fabric, the neckline, or the silhouette? Whatever it may be, envision the best components of your current wardrobe and your everyday style and translate those elements as you shop for wedding dresses.

Avoid Pushy Sales People

If you're not sure about what to do, the salesperson shouldn't pressure you into making a decision. It's a big purchase and an important moment in your life, so if you need more time, there is no reason to feel bad about it.

Avoid Rush Fees By Ordering Ahead

If you are looking to buy a custom-made gown, I suggest ordering at least 8 months in advance to avoid 'rush' fees. These can range anywhere between 20-30% of the total price of the dress.

Order Big To Size Down Later

It doesn't matter if you're ordering online or in-store, because the size of your dress will depend on a few factors: the brand, the fabric, and how you want it to fit. That's why it's important to consult a professional before you order - they'll be able to help you find the right size.

The best way to make sure your dress fits perfectly is to order one that is two sizes larger than you think you need. Most dresses can be taken in by a tailor, but it's much better to have more fabric to work with rather than less.

Test Movement

The first time you wear a wedding dress, it's sure to feel a little strange and perhaps even uncomfortable. But you'll have to get used to it! No matter how great the dress is, it's not going to feel like your favorite pair of pajamas at home. You're going to need to be able to move around in it, so try sitting, standing and walking in the dressing room. If you're planning a church wedding where you may need to kneel or sit during the ceremony, practice doing that in the gown.

Prepare Yourself Before Going To Try On Dresses

If you're going dress shopping for your big day, you might not be feeling your best. It's easy to feel this way when trying on wedding dresses - especially since it's a look you've likely never worn before. To get the full effect, try to mimic your ideal wedding beauty look as closely as possible. You don't have to go all out, but dab on some makeup and wear your hair up or down, depending on how you plan to sport it on the big day.

Make Sure You Love it Before You Finalize

Once you order the dress, you will not be able to cancel the order. We suggest you take your time and think about it carefully.

The Dress Should Express Your Personal Style

If you are a bride who is looking for a dress that expresses your personality, rather than one that will make you tear up in the dressing room, you may not be brought to tears. However, that doesn't mean you haven't found the right gown. Not all brides get emotional when they find their gown.

Find A Tailor You Trust

Couture or "cut to measure" dresses are often pricier because it's made just for you. However, it's far less expensive to buy off the rack and spend some money on a good tailor, and you'll still have it perfectly altered for your body.

Book Well Ahead of Time

If you're looking to get your wedding dress in the next 6 months, you'll need to be flexible on your appointment time. Bridal shops are inundated with brides looking for the perfect gown, so they book up months in advance.

Try Finding A Local Wedding Dress Store in Toronto

Although more intimate than larger stores, they may have a smaller variety of gowns to try on. However, this can also mean more personalized attention. They are familiar with the area and can offer tips on other local brides who have worn the dresses available at the boutique. They will also be familiar with your wedding venue and can help you create a look that will complement the space.

Talk To A Bridal Consultant You Can Trust

When shopping for a wedding dress with a consultant, be as open and honest as possible. Tell the consultant exactly what you're looking for in terms of style, color, fit, and accessories. The more information they have, the easier it will be to find you the perfect dress.

Keep Seasonality in Mind

If you're getting married in the Caribbean in August, opt for lightweight fabrics with breezy styles. But if you're getting married in Boston in the winter, it's all about snow-like sparkle and heavier, lush fabrics like satin or taffeta.

There Are No Actual Rules

Whatever dress you choose, we'll be sure to make you feel like a queen. We've seen it all, so don't worry about us judging your choices. If you feel that wearing a see-through gown to your wedding is the right decision for you, then go for it. It might not be the most popular choice, but it's your day and you should look exactly how you want to on your special day.

The Top Of The Wedding Dress

You want your wedding dress to be perfect, but don't forget that you'll be wearing it for hours on end. It's important that you feel relaxed and comfortable as you mingle and dance with friends and family. Make sure the top of your gown isn't too tight or too loose; make sure the neckline doesn't gap or slip when you sit down.

Tweak But Don't Re-Design

If you're going to customize a gown, you have to be extremely careful, It's easy to add straps or a hemline change, but any customization that requires the inner support and structure of the gown to be changed is risky, costly, and, many times, irreversible. If it's not done with precision, it can potentially ruin a gown.

Don't Panic Just Salvage

If you're unsure about a dress once it arrives, don't give up on it! Instead, gather your trusted fashion advisers and see if you can "try it on with totally different accessories, like a new belt or a bolero. If that doesn't help, a seamstress can really change the look by shortening it, changing the neckline, taking off sleeves, or adding sleeves.


If You Changed Your Mind

If you've decided that you're not going to keep your dress, there are still some options you can take before scrapping it. You can try selling it on a resale website like Encore Bridal, where you'll have access to thousands of brides who are looking for their perfect dress at a cheaper price. Or, if you're looking for a more unique look, you can also post your dress on Etsy or Bonanza and try to sell it to someone who wants to customise the dress themselves.

Adding A Bustle

If your dress has a long train and you'd like to pick it up while dancing at the reception, consider getting a bustle. It will alter how the back of the dress looks, but if you select a style that complements the overall design, it can be a great way to dance without worrying about dragging your dress.

What is Their Dress Preview Policy

Of course you want to keep your dress a secret from your partner until the big day, but what about your friends and family? Set a rule before you start sharing pictures of the gown - will you only share with the people at the appointment? Just with the bridal party? If you don't set a rule in advance, you could feel trapped later into showing everyone, and lose some of the magic of the reveal on your wedding day.

Don't Keep The Dress At Home

If you live with a partner, there is a small chance that he or she may see your gown before the day of the wedding. If this happens, the surprise will be ruined. To avoid this, ask someone you can trust very well (perhaps someone who will attend the wedding) if you can store your dress at their place for safekeeping.

When It's Time To Stop

After you found your dream gown, you should have stopped shopping. It will make you nuts if you keep looking at dresses. Yours is great! Now just look forward to showing everyone on the big day.

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