Finding the perfect wedding dress is an exciting but sometimes challenging task. Here are some steps and tips to help you in your search:

Start Early: 

Begin your search for a wedding dress well in advance of your wedding date. In a perfect world 9-12 months is the sweet spot. This gives you enough time to do your research, find the places you really want to shop with designers or styles that you love. Wedding dresses can take between 4-6 months from ordering to arriving in to the boutique and then you want at least 10 weeks for alterations, sometimes 12. At the 9 month mark your wedding dress shopping experience will remain stress free. Anything less than this can absolutely be achieved but you may incur rush delivery fees or have to opt for a sample dress. 

Set a Budget: 

Determine how much you are comfortable spending on your wedding dress. This will help narrow down your options and prevent you from falling in love with a dress outside of your budget. Dress price ranges vary from £1,500 to £5,000 plus depending on the designer. 

Research and Gather Inspiration: 

Look through bridal magazines, websites and social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram to gather inspiration for styles, fabrics, and details you like. Boutique owners like Becky at Lavelle Bridal Couture will help you find the right designer for you and provide valuable guidance and offer experienced insights. While it's essential to have some ideas about what you like, be open to trying on different styles. Sometimes a dress you didn't expect to love can surprise you.

Consider Your Body Shape: 

Understand your body shape and what styles tend to flatter your figure. Different dress silhouettes (A-line, mermaid, ball gown, sheath, etc.) complement different body types.

Bring a Small Entourage: 

Limit the number of people you bring with you to the dress fittings. Too many opinions can be overwhelming and it's essential to focus on what you love.

Focus on Comfort: 

Remember that you'll be wearing the dress for an extended period on your wedding day. Ensure that the dress is comfortable and allows you to move and dance freely. Ensure key bridal party members know how to bustle your dress.

Swap the Traditional Big White Gown for Some Bridal Tailoring:

If wearing a suit on your wedding day is something that you are considering, then the good news is that there could not be more options available right now. Whether you want something oversized or fitted, a skirt or a trouser, cream or bright white, there is plenty to choose from, whether from bridal brands or fashion houses. When choosing something that's right for you, it is all about the cut, the fabric and how you style it. The suit is such a statement in itself so keep your accessories minimal, with a nice simple strappy shoe and barely there jewellery.

I spoke to wedding dress expert Becky Lavelle at Lavelle Bridal Couture in the heart of Warwick. Her service is incredible from start to finish, Becky will ensure your wedding dress shopping is stress free and so much fun. Becky can often be found doing admin in a pearl headband!  Becky shared some valuable top tips:

What designers should brides look at for a statement dress?

Dream by Savin. All handmade in their London Atelier from luxe laces and the most beautiful hand-painted fabrics. These dresses have everything a statement dress should include. For a more classic statement checkout Vera Wang Bride...I mean, it's Vera Wang, need I say more? 

Must have bridal accessories?

Veils, I'm of the go big or go home opinion on veils. Obviously totally depends on your dress as to what type you go for but I think the longer the better. Then change it up for a short, sparkly bow veil for the evening. Also totally in love with anything pearl at the moment and pearl headbands are a perfect accessory. 

Any wedding dress do's and don'ts? 

DO wear nude underwear to your appointment.

DON'T bring people with you to your appointment who are over opinionated. Even when they tell you "at least I'm honest", these people are mean and they try to disguise it as being 'honest'.

Remember, finding the perfect wedding dress is a personal journey. Trust your instincts and when you find the dress that makes you feel like the best version of yourself, you'll know you've found the one!