One of the most important aspects of a wedding for a bride is finding the prefect dress to wear. Some brides have a definite idea of what their dream wedding dress looks like. They know their dress “is the one” when they try it on. Others need help finding the right style and silhouette to complement their shape. These brides may be unsure, and they may feel the need to solicit the input of others before they say, “Yes to the Dress!” But what if you make a huge mistake? What if after you choose your dress, you start having second thoughts? If you have bought a dress and soon realize you are not happy with your decision, you are not alone!
When I went wedding dress shopping, I was determined not to be the bride that tried on 100 dresses. I only went to two bridal salons. I settled on a dress because it was nice and it fit. (Read more about my experience here.) However, a day after I purchased the dress, I realized I made a mistake. I went online and started looking at other dresses. This only made my anxiety worse. I decided to wait until my dress arrived to see if I was over reacting. When my dress arrived 5 months later, I still was not happy. So I decided to sell my dress online. Luckily my dress sold in a month, and I was able to get some of my money back. However, if I had taken more time to look at other dresses, I may not have made that costly mistake.
Having dress regret is very stressful, so here are my tips to help you find the right dress the first time:
1) Do your research before shopping. Look at dresses online, or in bridal magazines and note your favorite designs. Find out which salons in your area sell your dream dresses. It is also great to look at real brides to get a sense of what might look good on you. The majority of brides are not paper thin like wedding dress models. If you want a place to start, check out our Bridal Fashion and Real Weddings pages for inspiration.
2) Find the right dress for your shape. Choose a dress that compliments your figure, and you will be less likely to have second thoughts.
3) Make sure your dress compliments your venue. If your wedding and reception is outside, you may have regrets if you buy a heavy, hot ball gown.
4) Find a dress that is within your budget. Do not try on gowns that you cannot afford. If you fall in love with a dress that is out of your price range, all other dresses may pale in comparison.
5) You do not need to buy the first dress you try on! Trying on wedding dresses is exciting. Some brides get caught up in the moment and buy a dress after visiting only one bridal salon. If your wedding is more than a year away, you have at least 3 months before you have to make a final decision. I am NOT saying try on 100 dresses, but if you are unsure, visit a couple of salons. If you still feel strongly about your first dress buy it!
6) When you buy your dress, stop daydreaming about other dresses. It is exciting when designers release their new lines, and there will always be plenty of beautiful wedding dresses to swoon over; however, you cannot wear all of them. Acknowledge that there are gorgeous gowns out there, but be confident that you have made the right choice.
If you hate your wedding dress, you don’t have to burn it like the bride in our feature image (note this picture is Photoshopped) . If you already have the dress, and you want to sell it before or after your wedding, here are some tips:
1) Sell your dress online. There are several legitimate websites you can use besides, eBay and Craig’s List to sell your dress. Try Preownedweddingdresses.com or Oncewed.com. You can also post your wedding gown on the message boards of wedding websites, such as TheKnot.com. Brides who use these services to buy a gown are looking for a deal, so do not expect to get full price for your dress even if it’s new.
2) Sell your dress to a consignment shop or wedding gown rental boutique. They will either sell your gown for you and keep part of the profit, or buy the gown from you. Again you will lose money, but it is better than allowing your unused gown to collect dust.
3) Donate your gown! If you can afford to donate your gown there are plenty of organizations that will resale your dress and use the profit to help others. Check out organizations such as Brides Against Breast Cancer. Research other organizations in your area that accept wedding dresses.