Wedding dress shopping tips for BEFORE you go to a bridal boutique

Guest post by PersephoneUnderground
victorian wedding dress alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
Dress by DULIANYTSKA as seen in the Offbeat Bride shop

Ok, so you're engaged. You've got your wedding planning spreadsheets downloaded. It's starting to get real, and now you're going wedding dress shopping. I was once you, and here are five things I wish I'd known about wedding dress shopping at bridal boutiques…

1. It's more tiring than you would think.

If you hit a wall mentally or emotionally and are just done with this, respect that feeling and go take a break. That could mean lunch, coffee, or even going home and coming back to this fresh tomorrow.

You can ask the boutique assistant to write down the names of the dresses you were looking at and give you her card so you can pick up later where you left off.

I probably should have done this and prevented my stressed-out crying jag at home that night… I had a little voice say “I really hate this right now, I don't want to deal with this” about 5 minutes into my afternoon appointment, and should have tapped out then.

StylishBrideAccs Wedding Dress on Offbeat Bride 4 alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
Dress by StylishBrideAcc

2, Be persistent

…That said, if you're just a bit irritated it can't hurt to push through to see what's on offer despite the annoying floofy trappings.

Don't reject everything before you try it, but speak up with what you do want.

3. Don't expect to go home with a dress

They don't expect you to buy a dress on your first shopping trip, think more like car shopping or apartment hunting than normal clothes shopping – it's a large purchase so you are expected to think and look a lot before you come back to the place you pick. The assistants will happily note the dresses you like for you and give you that list with their card.

4 Ask before you shoot

Be aware that some bridal boutiques don't allow pictures anywhere (or just not in some parts of the shop).

blue embroidered wedding dress alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
This embroidered wedding dress by OksanaPolonets has your something blue included!

5. Consider non-wedding dresses

If you don't want traditional, try looking at evening gowns — or even prom dresses or quinceanera dresses. You get a different variety and can save a bundle that way — think hundreds instead of thousands for a dress.

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