Wedding dress shopping is without a doubt the part of planning that brides look forward to the most. As
many will find out, it can also be the most stressful part. There are some basic rules, like bringing
only a few core members of your squad, doing your research on what you want to try on before you
go, and never trying on dresses outside your budget. You are almost guaranteed to fall in love and
break your heart. Then there are some tricks to trying on dresses that most brides only figure out
once they’re in a dress, on a pedestal, and trying but failing to visualise themselves on the day.
1. When to
The timing of your wedding dress shopping is important. Some brides plan their wedding theme
and pick a venue, then realise when they go shopping that their dream dress does not go with the
look and feel of their day, or the other way around. Decide whether you want to pick a dress and
plan a wedding to match, which means dress shopping is the first thing you should do, or plan your
dream wedding and find a dress that fits the vision after you have picked a theme and venue.
2. The right underwear
Wearing the right underwear to wedding dress fittings can make a huge difference to how the
dresses look on you. Wear underwear similar to what you would wear on the wedding day. We
recommend a stick-on or strapless bra, in a neutral tone, paired with a neutral seamless bottom.
Seams showing through silk, bra straps added to what should have been a strapless dress, or dark
colours showing through ivory all distract from how the dress could/should look on you.
3. Your hair affair
If you have long hair, make the effort to tie your hair up or put it in a bun. Trying on dresses can get
hot and tiring, and a mess of hair by the time you try dress number 10 is not worth it. It also places
all the focus on the dresses you are trying on, with no hair covering up potential back or shoulder
If you are planning on wearing heels on the big day, wear heels when trying on dresses. It improves
your posture, allows you the see how long the dress will be on you and as with the other tips, helps
you visualise the final look better.
5. It’s a sample size
Boutiques unfortunately can not stock their dresses in every size. They usually have one sample
size, which means it will not be a perfect fit when trying it on. It might be too big for some, too small
for others. Don’t be discouraged by this! Use your imagination to create an image of what the dress
will look like when it is tailored to your body (Tips 2 to 4 are there to help you paint a final picture as
6. Don’t try on too many at a time
Limit yourself to one boutique/shop per day. Trying on too many dresses at once gets tiring for both
you and your wedding party, and limiting yourself means you can properly reflect on what you’ve
tried on before moving on to more.
Written by: Lorraine Scheepers