Choosing your wedding dress is one of the most magical things about planning your wedding. As it is one of the most important elements of your big day, you must take all precautions to make sure everything is perfect. Whether you've got your heart set on a ball gown wedding dress or more of a boho wedding dress, make sure you avoid these common mistakes, to find the perfect dress.
1. Getting ahead of yourself - try not to shop too early. Choose a venue or destination before you start looking so you know your time frame and the setting you’ll be wearing your dress in.
2. Failing to research - make sure you are fully researched with all wedding dress directories. The more informed you are, the more likely you’ll get your hands on the best dress.
3. Falling too far behind - you should begin to look for your dream dress at least nine months before the wedding. This takes into consideration time for the dress to be ordered in and for any alterations to be made.
4. Being thrown off by terminology- we’re here to give you a heads up on the wedding world. Read our guide to bridal necklines and dress styles.
5. Forgetting the additional costs - it’s easy to forget the added on prices for alterations and adjustments when looking for a dress. Take everything into account before spending more money than you expected.
6. Being unrealistic regarding your budget - is your wedding dress worth more than your venue? Think carefully about how much you really want to spend on your dress before it’s too late.
7. Keeping your partner happy- as much as you want your partner to be blown away, make sure you are comfortable in your dress and that it makes you feel amazing.
8. Being indecisive- if you are having doubts about a particular dress and struggling to make a strong decision, then don’t buy it. Your wedding dress needs to be ‘the one’ and you should be able to feel it.
9. Inviting too many people- you only need one or two people with you at your dress fitting. They should be people you trust and ensuring you don’t end up second guessing yourself.
10. Inviting the wrong people- dress shopping on your own is better than bringing the wrong people. You needed open-minded but honest people by your side.
11. Forgetting your lingerie- take more than one selection of underwear to your fitting. You need to work out what kind of underwear you’ll need underneath so it’s best to bring along a nude selection for your first fitting.
12. Early accessorising- try not to purchase any new accessories before you find the right dress. You don’t want to end up having to return everything because they don’t match your dress.
13. Being ill-prepared for fittings- if you’re not already aware- your fitting will be an intimate experience with your bridal consultant. So make sure you’re ok with being seen in your underwear.
14. Choosing the wrong shop- keeping both your budget and preferences in mind, make sure you choose the right store to start shopping at.
15. Forgetting to ask if a stock list is registered- it’s important to make sure that your bridal wear shop is RBA (Retail Bridal Association) registered. If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
16. Choosing to ignore the bridal advisor’s advice- the staffs at your bridal wear stores has both experience and knowledge. Take their advice because they do know best.
17. Forgetting to ask for expert advice- the sales assistants are here to help so make sure you ask them any questions at all, including those you think are silly.
18. Thinking poor service is ok- your wedding day is the most important day of your life. Therefore, when choosing your wedding dress the service should be on top form.
19. Closed-minded behaviour- although you may have dreamed about a certain dress for a long time, you should keep your options open and try on something you wouldn’t consider. You may be pleasantly surprised.
20. Staying within your comfort zone- try on a style of dress that you would never think of- some brides find their dream dress this way.
21. Closing the doors on colour- white is both traditional and beautiful, but don’t close the doors on colour as it may compliment your complexion.
22. Size worrying- every dress fits differently, therefore you must ignore the label and go with whatever size fits you perfectly.
23. Second hand snobbery- don’t be embarrassed to consider a second hand dress. Most are vintage and come in lace so why not?
24. Considering too many dresses- keep your options open but try not to choose so many. If you chose up to ten dresses, it’s likely you could find yourself confused.
25. Making hasty decisions- take the time to keep looking around, don’t go for the first you try on as you may regret it.
26. Settling second best- you will know when you have found the dress. It may not happen straight away, so don’t go for second best.
27. Laziness- don’t forget to take the time to do background research about your dress. If you leave it too late, you may find it out of stock and end up choosing the second best.
28. Dismissing your budget- yes the dress is a very important part of the day, but don’t try on a dress that you love but can’t afford.
29. Internet Shopping- don’t pay out online until you have tried a similar dress or brand on in store. You don’t want the hassle of sending anything back before your big day.
30. Falling for the discounted dress- Check reviews of sites and dresses from other brides, you don’t want to end up falling for a scam.
31. Sample sales- don’t buy a dress just because it’s a good deal, keep your options open.
32. Thinking expensive is the best- your perfect dress should be one that fits perfect and makes you feel good regardless of the price tag or designer.
33. Ignoring practicalities- think about the venue and weather on your big day. You want it to go as smooth as possible so all elements should be considered.
34. Not considering the weight- you’ll be wearing your dress for the whole day so you want to ensure you won’t be exhausted by the afternoon. Check the weight of the dress to ensure it’s just right.
35. Fantasy Obsession- everyone has dreams, but you have to think about reality and the less glamorous aspects of your day. How comfortable is your dress to go to the toilet in?
36. Ignoring the fabric- the fabric of your dress is very important. You need to make sure it feels comfortable for your big day.
37. Dressing in the dark- make sure you have seen your dress in all different lights including natural so you have no shock on your big day.
38. Slaving to fashion- trends come and go so there is no need to fret if your wedding dress isn’t a current trend. All that matters is how you feel in it.
39. Dismissing personal style- never go for a dress that isn’t ‘you’. If you like a classic look, or have a quirky style then embrace it!
40. Forgetting your transport- take into account how you are getting to and from your venue, you don’t want anything to ruin your beautiful wedding dress material.
41. Overlooking details- you need to know every little detail of your dress so that you can accessorise well. Whether it’s your hem line or your zipper, make sure you know it!
42. Buying a dress that doesn’t fit- you can easily have your dress altered, however it’s much harder to have it taken out again. Don’t buy a size too small with the intention of losing weight in case you don’t!
43. Taking the dress home too early- as exciting as it is, you must force yourself not to take your dress home. You’ll be tempted to constantly try it on, and your partner may accidentally see it.
Once you've got your perfect dress you can start thinking about the shoes. Take inspiration from these iconic wedding shoes.