8 Top Tips to Prep Like a Pro for the PERFECT Wedding Dress Appointment

The Perfect Appointment
Emma Draper

By Emma Draper

21 November 2023

Yay! You’ve booked your bridal appointment! There’s nothing more exciting than getting ready to say ‘YES’ to the dress! Trying on wedding dresses is without a doubt one of the most significant events of a bride’s journey. For some, the whole experience is exciting and thrilling but for others it can feel a little overwhelming. No matter how you are feeling about dress shopping though, please don’t worry – we totally understand that picking THE dress can feel like such a BIG decision.

At LOVE we’ve had the privilege of helping so many brides find their perfect gown, so we know a thing or two about helping you get the most out of your dress appointment – plus we have some handy tips designed to reduce any dress stress!

To help you make the most of your dress shopping experience, we’ve pulled together 8 top tips for a perfect appointment. With advice on how you can prepare for your appointment and a helpful walk through of what to expect from your appointment here at LOVE.

Tip 1. Pre-Appointment Prep Helps Us to Tailor Your Appointment to Your Taste

Getting to know our LOVE brides PRIOR to the actual appointment means we are prepped and prepared for your arrival. We ask you to pre-select 5 dresses BEFORE your appointment so we can have them steamed, pressed, ready and waiting for you to try on. Don’t worry, that doesn’t mean that’s all you are able to try on, but it’s a great starting point to avoid dress overwhelm (trust us, it’s a real thing). Then once we’ve got a better idea of the dress styles you’re loving the most we can then make other suggestions to you.

preparing appointment

We love to know all the exciting details of your big day. Knowing the venue, what style of wedding you’re planning (traditional, minimalist, or colourful garden wedding for example) and hearing about your own personal style – from how you imagine wearing your hair to whether you would prefer a veil or hair accessory to compliment your look, all helps paint a picture of your big day. This allows us to guide you on the right dresses or designers that will match your personal aesthetic.  Diving into the details also enables us to make recommendations of gowns perhaps you hadn’t considered or gorgeous accessories that work perfectly with the designs you love. Collaborating with our brides from the start means we’re all on the same style page at the appointment and can make the absolute most of our time together.

Please don’t worry though if you’ve not got all the finer details sorted though, that’s perfectly normal too so even if you’ve just got ideas at this stage that’s a great starting point and we may even be able to help make some suggestions too!

Tip 2. Make Full Use of Your Personal Stylist

During each appointment our brides-to-be are paired with either myself or Charlotte, who will take on the role of your personal stylist! Charlotte and I have both been in the bridal industry for many years and we pride ourselves on being able to offer, not only personalised styling tips and recommendations for accessories, but be able to help you navigate the best dresses to suit you and your style while accentuating your unique features too.

Trust your stylist

Our combined knowledge of our designers and dresses is pretty insane. As well as being informed with the latest bridal styling trends, we have extensive in-depth bridal experience for you to tap into. We know our dress collection inside out, which gowns work best on different body shapes, and the styling possibilities with each and every dress style. When the time comes, we will be the ones responsible for expertly taking your measurements before ordering your dress and will continue to be your styling sidekicks for the duration of your bridal journey 🤍

Tip 3. Do Some Dress Research

To really maximise your appointment, we recommend that our brides spend a little bit of time researching dresses in advance. This doesn’t mean you have to be ‘set’ on a particular designer (though some brides do come to us already knowing this), but if you have an idea of necklines (V neck, strapless or sweetheart) or fabrics (silk, lace or tulle) that you do (or don’t) want, or silhouettes that you prefer, then you’re already one step ahead when it comes to finding your dream dress. Having an inkling of what you like helps us navigate our dress rails during your appointment to find the kind of dresses that meet your criteria. Our top tip however is that if you’re not sure on a silhouette or style – try it on! Having an open mind is key to success. Sometimes the dress style you fall in love with can totally surprise you!

Tip 4. Know Your Budget

Whilst choosing a wedding dress is a totally dreamy pastime, there are some reality checks it’s always worth putting in place – like the budget. Having a clear price range you’d like to keep within can save you lots of time and stress from the get-go. There is no point trying on gowns that are totally out of the price range you have set for your dress as this will only set you up for disappointment – especially if you find a dress you like but it’s out of your budget. We promise there is a dress out there for you and at the right price too.

Tip 5. Wear Nude Underwear

When it comes to trying on gowns, wearing nude briefs will ensure you can see the true potential of a gown. You may also want to consider wearing shapewear if you feel more confident with more coverage – the likes of Ender Legard and Spanx have some great options available.

The majority of our dresses have bust cups fitted into them so we usually recommend removing your bra to ensure you see the full effect of a gown, particularly if the dress has a low neckline/back detail, however if you are not comfortable with this then we completely understand and can work around this.

We provide shoes to try on with your dresses in sizes 4 – 7, however, if you have your wedding shoes already, then please feel free to bring them with you as we’d love to see them!

Trust your stylist

With a variety of veils, wings, and stylish headwear and jewellery in store too, you can get a feel for what accessories really make your heart sing. If you have a particular item of sentimental value that you intend to wear on your big day such as earrings or a tiara, please feel free to bring this to your appointment. Every detail matters!

Tip 6. Avoid Dress Size Stress!

Shopping for a wedding dress is unlike any other kind of shopping trip you’ll ever experience. The resulting dress you wear on your big day will be a totally unique size – yours! Wedding dresses are typically ordered in a size and then tailored to fit you perfectly so please don’t get caught up by the size of the dress you’re trying on. We stock dresses in a variety of sizes – ranging from 10-18 and depending on the designer, we can order gowns up to a size 22. If your ‘exact’ size isn’t available in your preferred gown (we often stock just one size of each dress style you see but for some styles we do have a couple of size options) then don’t worry as we have many clever ways of adjusting a dress for you to get a good feel for how it looks.

When you do order your dress we will then suggest ordering the size closest to your measurements according to the designers’ size chart. Some of our designers do offer a split size option if needed which will be explained to you at the time of measuring. When your dress arrives shortly before your wedding day, it will then be fitted to you by our recommended seamstress. The dress you order might not quite be the size you would usually wear when shopping on the high street, but do remember that wedding dresses are not ‘off the hanger’ purchases and the tailoring process is totally different. Most of all, remember that you are in our very safe, experienced hands and if you have any sizing queries then we will be able to answer these for you.

Tip 7. Factor in Your Feelings

There’s a lot of anticipation building up prior to your dress appointment and on the day lots of emotions can often bubble to the surface… excitement, nervousness, worry – we know first hand how overwhelming it can be. Thinking about how you might feel beforehand though can help you to mentally prepare for a positive experience.

Feeling overwhelmed is often experienced when brides are accompanied with large groups of guests (with strong opinions). If you know you’ll struggle to navigate conflicting opinions, then we recommend you keep your attendees to one or two supportive guests to avoid it.

perfect appointment

Another common concern is whether you’ll have ‘the moment’ – that special point when you know the dress is ‘the one’. From experience we can tell you that every bride’s moment is different. Some brides think they won’t cry or vice versa (and they do/don’t) others just get a complete deep sense of ‘knowing’ that this dress is ‘it’. Going into a dress appointment mentally prepared to say ‘yes’ to a dress is the best way to get your moment. Trying on endless options or inviting guests with too many opinions can lead to dress discouragement and can leave you deflated or confused. Take time with every dress you try on to work out your own feelings towards it before showing it to your guests. This means you can go with your gut and make the right choice that’s totally 100% perfectly you.

Tip 8. Make an Event of the Day

What better way to make your dress appointment a day to remember than making an event of it! Our boutique is nestled in the lovely market town of Altrincham, filled with fabulously quaint coffee shops and stylish eateries. Why not start the day off with your guests in one of the amazing nearby coffee shops (California Coffee, just a couple of doors down from the boutique, would be perfect for this!) followed by a celebratory lunch and maybe even cocktails after your appointment! With so many sought after bars and restaurants only a short walk from our boutique you’ll be spoilt for choice. Sharing the excitement of this amazing day with your nearest and dearest is a great way to keep everyone involved and means that you get to make extra-precious memories you’ll absolutely cherish forever.

Trying on wedding dresses is a magical experience! We simply can’t wait to welcome you to LOVE and help you find the perfect dress for your special day. If you have any questions ahead of your upcoming appointment, then feel free to visit our FAQ’s or drop us an email 🤍

See you soon!

Lots of love,

Emma xo