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Marit is a Minneapolis wedding, family and branding photographer. 


5 Tips for Wedding Dress Shopping

The ring is on your finger, now the fun really begins! One of the most exciting part of planning a wedding for many brides is trying on and finding that perfect wedding gown. It’s something many of us have dreamed about since we were little girls. As someone who gets super excited when brides show me their gowns, I’m so excited to be teaming up with Claire Landgraf, owner of the fabulous Finery Bridal Chic in downtown Rochester, MN who is sharing 5 tips for finding the dress that is perfect for YOU. Claire has over ten years experience in the bridal gown market so consider this an insider scoop!

Top 5 Wedding Dress Shopping Tips

  1. Give yourself the freedom to try on styles that are outside of your comfort zone. This is the time to slip on that sheath style that you think you’ll “never wear” or that ball gown that is “way too poofy”. One of two things will happen: you’ll either establish that you do not like the style, which will help you refine your gown selection as you move forward, or you will totally surprise yourself and find out that you love a style you had never even considered. Regardless, it’s worth the time!
  2. Be open and honest with your consultant. This is your time to find the gown of your dreams – so don’t be so (Minnesota) nice that you miss out on what you’re looking for out of the fear of hurt feelings. To be honest – consultants are used to hearing gripes about gowns and we love when brides are honest with us. We’re problem solvers after all! Tell us what you love about a dress (even if it’s not the one), as well as what you dislike about a dress. Being honest with us makes it easier for us to help pull styles that ARE what you’re looking for. Plus, we didn’t design those gowns – you really aren’t going to hurt our feelings by telling us you aren’t in love.
  3. When it comes to your entourage – less is more! In a day and age where most brides have been watching Say Yes to the Dress since they were in high school, we’ve all but been trained that a large group is the way to go when you’re shopping for your gown. But before you invite, sit back and think about whether or not you really want your fiancé’s aunt to be giving you her opinion while you’re shopping for your gown. Bring the people who you trust to give you honest opinions and leave those behind who could confuse you or worse, hurt feelings on that special day. Pro-tip: Consider having a gown reveal party after you’ve made your selection. That is a great time to invite all those close but non inner circle relatives and friends. Pop some bubbly and let everyone look at what a stunning bride you’re going to make.
  4. Avoid buying your bridal gown online. We know you’ve heard this time and time again. But it never fails that we see brides who come in our door looking for a wedding gown on a quick turnaround time because they ordered something online and it didn’t work. Online gown buying may seem like a great idea while you’re looking at that gorgeous gown in the comfort of your own home. But remember, not all designs are originals and knockoffs never end up coming close to having the fit and quality of the real thing. Also – Photoshop is a real thing, ladies! What you see online and what you actually get in person are typically two different things. Save the online shopping for that daring bodysuit you’ve been dying to try and stick to a brick and mortar store for your wedding gown. Want another plus to shopping in person? The trained and talented bridal consultant you’re working with will go above and beyond for you to make sure your attire is perfect for your wedding day and a website simply can’t offer that.
  5. Make a budget but keep it flexible. Have a price in mind for your gown? Communicate that with your consultant. We can direct you to designers you’ll love who fit into your price range and can make sure you don’t fall in love with anything that will break the bank. That being said, try to have some flexibility in your budget. Being able to throw an extra $500 into the mix can sometimes make the difference between finding the gown you’ve been dreaming of and settling for something that’s just “okay”. Nowadays it’s so easy to shift within a budget to give a little wiggle room. Additionally, don’t be afraid to ask the bridal store you’re working with if they have payment plans for their gowns. A lot of times, store owners will work with you to make sure you can get the gown you’ve been dreaming of. 

The Perfect Wedding Dress by Finery Bridal Chic in Rochester, MN

Thank you so much Claire for sharing these 5 super helpful tips! Now that you’re equipped with all the insider information on dress shopping, be sure to make the time to schedule an appointment with Finery Bridal Chic to find the perfect gown for you.

Finery Bridal Boutique owner shares 5 tips for successful wedding dress shopping

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Marit Williams is a hybrid digital and film wedding, family and branding photographer based in Minneapolis and Rochester, MN. Her natural, timeless photography style ensures your photos will be cherished for generations to come.