Kristi and John

 Kristi and John 

 The Story of our wedding couple will be here soon.

How to Choose Your Perfect Wedding Dress

Choosing a wedding dress can be extremely stressful. There are so many questions that we ask ourselves: "As the bride, what do I personally like?" "Will my fiance like it?" "Does my family like it?" "How much am I willing to spend?" "What flatters me best?" "Does it fit the theme of my wedding?" Unfortunately, choosing the perfect dress is not an exact science. However, there are things you can do to make the decision with as much confidence and self assurance as possible. Here is how:

1: Begin your search with a positive attitude. If you go into dress-searching believing that you won't find the perfect dress, that you won't be able to afford it, or that nothing will flatter you, it is likely to become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Keep an open mind, and remember: even if the dress you choose doesn't seem to be the "perfect" dress, in the end, you still get to marry the person you love. Chances are, they will think you're beautiful no matter what.

2: Begin searching. There are several places in which you can seek out wedding dresses. Wedding magazines, wedding dress stores, and wedding pictures online are the most common. You can also watch wedding television shows, such as "Say Yes to the Dress" or "My Fair Wedding." Also, make sure to print out copies of your favorite dresses. These can be helpful both to yourself and for your bridal consultant at whatever salon you go to. Through these sources, you can discover what dresses you do and do not like, and ultimately, what kind of dress you can picture yourself wearing on your big day.

3: Find out what flatters you. A lot of this is done through trying things on and experimenting. However, if you cannot tell what looks good and what doesn't, there are a few basic fashion rules that you can follow: First of all, if you aren't built like a model (6 feet tall and extremely skinny), chances are that the dress won't look the same on you as it did on the model. That doesn't mean it will look bad, but that also doesn't mean that it won't. Second, plus-size women tend to have a harder time. Not only do they have a higher priced dress because of the excess fabric, but more fashion restrictions are placed upon them. They are generally not recommended to wear mermaid dresses. They also aren't recommended to wear certain types of ball gowns, which tend to add more bulk. Most fashion consultants suggest an a-line shape for them, which usually hides the larger areas without adding any excess material. If you are plus-sized, you may want to flaunt your curves with a form-fitting dress. In my opinion, as long as you and your fiance like it, that's really all that matters. Third, choose a dress that fits both your personality and your theme. For example, if you are an outgoing bride with the wedding theme Las Vegas, don't purchase a classic, plain dress. Now, if your wedding is centered around simplicity and tradition, that type of dress would be fine. However, that is not the case with a Vegas wedding. After all, if you care about the opinions of your guests, you probably are hoping that they will be in awe of your beauty as you walk down the aisle. If your dress doesn't fit your theme, instead of focusing on your beauty, they may just question your motives for purchasing that dress. Ruching tends to make people look skinnier. Form-fitting lace dresses should be chosen with caution (it takes the right dress and the right person to pull them off). And, for people with broad shoulders, halter top dresses are not usually the best choice.

4: Come up with a budget. If the budget for your entire wedding is 500,000 dollars or more, chances are, this isn't going to be much of an issue. However, for the majority of people, budget is extremely important. It is vital to come up with a reasonable budget so that you can not only have the wedding of your dreams, but so that you also won't be sunken into debt after it's over. First of all, you may be wondering how much a typical wedding dress costs. They aren't cheap. Generally speaking, a wedding dress under 2000 dollars is a pretty inexpensive gown. Don't let that discourage you though. There are plenty of places that sell good dresses for under 500 dollars, even some for under 100 (such as David's Bridal). So don't worry. If you're budget is low, you still have plenty of options. Just be aware of how your budget connects with your dress choice. For example, if you are interested in either a ball gown or a dress with a lot of detail, you may have a rough time finding one for a low price. Also, be aware that you may have to put down a deposit when ordering a dress. Keep all of your receipts to avoid potential scams.

5: Decide who you're taking with you. When you go shopping for the dress, you're probably going to want some of your loved ones there who will be able to support you and help you make the right decision. But don't choose just anyone. You are going to want people who will be supportive and honest. Those people must also realize that it is your dress. If you have your heart set on one dress, but they think you should choose a different one, they need to be flexible and realize that it is your day. Otherwise, dress shopping can be a very painful process. You also must decide how big you want your entourage to be. I wouldn't recommend too big, as a large group can sometimes get unfocused or over-opinionated. Still, you'll probably want more than just one person, just so that you'll have more variety and more people who can point out potential flaws. Basically, I would say a group of 2-5 people is probably your best bet.

6: Make an appointment with a bridal salon. Congratulations! You have gotten through one of the potentially most difficult parts of the process. Now is the easy part. Search online for bridal stores in your area. After you have picked a few that you think you'll like, give them a call and schedule an appointment to try on dresses. After that, it's pretty much a no-brainer.

7: Keep a level head. Stay positive, be patient, and never give up hope. Always keep in mind that finding the dress is not the most important thing. What really matters is that person at the end of the aisle, and the knowledge that he(or she) is waiting for you, in love, and in the hopes of spending his entire life by your side. Now that beats picking out an item of clothing by a long shot.

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