Picking your wedding dress can be both exciting and challenging. With such a huge variety of gowns to choose from, it can be tricky to find the one that's right for you. Here are three of the most important things you should take into consideration during the dress shopping process.
Before you even think about browsing online dress shops or flipping through bridal magazines, you'll need to decide how much you wish to spend on your dress. If you don't do this at the beginning of your search, you may end up finding a seemingly 'perfect' gown that ends up being far too expensive; this, in turn, will lead to you either being disappointed because you can't afford it or to you going over budget.
When setting a spending limit, consider your personal priorities. If for example, you're not hugely fashion-conscious, you might want to opt for a simple, relatively low-cost gown and invest more of your money into elements of the wedding which you feel are most important, such as hiring an incredible photographer or having a decadent, five-course gourmet reception dinner.
Conversely, if you've always imagined yourself walking down the aisle in a spectacularly beautiful, customized wedding gown, then it may be worth opting for inexpensive table favours, a low-cost wedding cake or simpler flower arrangements so that you can afford to buy the dress of your dreams.
Your body shape
If you want your dress to flatter your figure, it's crucial to take your body shape into consideration when shopping for your dress. If you're pear-shaped, for example (that is, if you have a relatively narrow waist and a wider lower body), a gown with a fitted top half and a flared, A-line skirt would be perfect, as this would draw attention to your slim upper body and skim past your hips and thighs.
If you're apple-shaped, with a slender lower body and a slightly wider midsection and bust, a vintage-style mid-calf wedding dress would be a wonderful choice, as this would emphasise your best feature — your legs. For an hourglass figure (i.e. a defined waist and equally-sized hip and bust areas), a fitted gown with a fishtail skirt that flares out from the calves is a very flattering option, as this will accentuate and flatter your natural curves.
In addition to flattering your particular body shape, the dress that you should also be in keeping with your wedding setting. For instance, a loose, chiffon dress with a bohemian-chic feel would look completely out-of-place at a wedding held in the wintertime, at an old, austere cathedral. This type of gown would be better suited to a laid-back beach wedding. Likewise, a stiff, duchess-satin dress with an embellished ball gown skirt would look inappropriate at a casual, country garden wedding venue. As such, it's important to strike a balance between finding a dress that reflects your personal tastes and one which will suit the place in which your wedding is to be held.