Wedding tips

Dress Dos and Don’ts: Common Mistakes to Avoid When Choosing Your Gown

Selecting the perfect wedding gown is a momentous task that requires careful consideration and attention to detail. It’s essential to avoid common pitfalls and mistakes that can impact your overall bridal look. In this article, we will discuss some crucial dos and don’ts to keep in mind when choosing your gown, ensuring that you make a confident and informed decision. Let’s dive in!

Do: Consider your body type and personal style

Finding a dress that flatters your body type and reflects your personal style is key to feeling confident and beautiful on your wedding day. Here are some key considerations.

Understand your body shape

Take the time to understand your shape and identify the silhouettes that complement your figure. Whether you have an hourglass shape, a pear shape, a petite frame or a fuller figure, there are dress styles that will accentuate your best features. For example, an A-line silhouette is universally flattering, while a ballgown can create a dramatic look. Mermaid or sheath dresses can show off your curves, while empire waist dresses can be flattering for those who want to emphasise their bust and conceal their midriff. Understanding your shape will help you narrow down your options and focus on styles that make you feel your best.

Consider necklines and waistlines

Necklines and waistlines can have a significant impact on the overall look of your dress. Different necklines, such as sweetheart, v-neck, scoop or off-the-shoulder, can highlight your collarbones, shoulders or décolleté. Similarly, waistlines such as natural, dropped or empire can create different focal points and define your waist. Experiment with different options during your dress fitting to see which styles flatter your body and suit your personal taste.

Reflect your personal style

Your wedding dress should reflect your personal style and make you feel like the best version of yourself. Think about the type of clothing you typically gravitate towards and incorporate those elements into your dress selection. If you prefer clean lines and minimalism, a sleek and simple dress may be the perfect fit. If you’re drawn to a romantic and ethereal aesthetic, consider dresses with soft layers of tulle or lace. Don’t be afraid to inject your individuality into the dress, whether through unique embellishments, fabric choices or unconventional colour accents.

Try on a variety of styles

While it’s helpful to have an idea of what you’re looking for, keep an open mind and be willing to try on different dress styles. You may be surprised at what looks and feels great on you. Wedding dress shopping is an opportunity to explore different designs, so embrace the experience and allow yourself to be pleasantly surprised by unexpected choices. Trust the expertise of bridal consultants who can suggest styles you may not have considered based on your body shape and style preferences.

Don’t: Ignore comfort and mobility

While it’s natural to prioritise the aesthetic appeal of a wedding dress, it’s equally important to consider your comfort and mobility. Here’s why you shouldn’t overlook these important considerations:

Move freely

Your wedding day will be filled with activities, from walking down the aisle to dancing the night away. Make sure your dress allows you to move freely and comfortably without any restrictions. Consider the length and weight of the dress, as well as the ease of walking and manoeuvring. Practice different movements during your dress fitting to ensure that you can walk, sit and dance with ease. If you’re opting for a dress with a train, discuss the possibility of adding a bustle to lift and secure it during the reception, allowing you to move around effortlessly.

Long-term wear

It’s important to remember that you’ll be wearing your wedding dress for a long time. Depending on your wedding schedule, you may be wearing it for several hours or even all day. Uncomfortable fabrics, tight fits or irritating embellishments can cause unnecessary discomfort and distract you from fully enjoying your special day. Choose fabrics that feel soft against your skin and allow for breathability. Consider lightweight options such as chiffon or silk, which offer both comfort and elegant drape.

Consider the climate

The weather and climate of your wedding location should also influence your choice of dress. If you’re getting married in a warm, tropical location, heavy fabrics and long sleeves may make you feel hot and uncomfortable. Conversely, a winter wedding may require a dress with extra coverage to keep you warm. Consider the season and climate when choosing your dress, and make sure it’s appropriate for the weather conditions you’ll be facing.

Stay true to yourself

While it’s easy to get caught up in the allure of a stunning dress, remember to stay true to yourself and your personal preferences. If you tend to dress more casually and comfortably, don’t feel pressured into choosing a dress that feels overly formal or constricting. Your wedding day is a celebration of your love and you should feel like the best version of yourself. Choose a dress that not only looks beautiful, but also suits your personal style and comfort level.

Alterations and customisation

If you find a dress that you love but isn’t as comfortable as you’d like, discuss alterations with a skilled seamstress. They can make adjustments to improve the fit and ensure you feel comfortable throughout the day. You should also consider any customisation options that can improve both comfort and mobility. For example, adding straps or sleeves for extra support or opting for a dress with a corseted back for more flexibility.

Do: Set a realistic budget

Setting a realistic budget for your wedding dress is essential to ensure a smooth and stress-free shopping experience. Here are some reasons why setting a budget is crucial:

Avoid overspending

Weddings can be expensive affairs and it’s easy to get carried away when it comes to your dress. Setting a budget will help you stay grounded and avoid overspending on any one item. By determining a reasonable amount to spend on your wedding dress, you can maintain financial balance and allocate funds to other important aspects of your wedding.

Narrow down your options

The bridal market offers a wide range of dress options, from affordable to luxurious. Having a budget in mind will help you narrow down your choices and focus on dresses within your price range. This will save you time and energy by eliminating dresses that are beyond what you’re willing to spend.

Consider additional costs

Remember that the cost of the dress itself is not the only expense to consider. Alterations, accessories and any customisation you may require should also be factored into your budget. These additional costs can add up, so it’s important to have a clear understanding of the total investment you’re making.

Prioritise what matters

Setting a budget allows you to prioritise what is most important to you. If your dream dress exceeds your budget, you can make informed decisions about where to make compromises or adjustments. For example, you may decide to spend more on your dress and cut back on other aspects, or vice versa. Knowing your budget allows you to make choices that reflect your personal preferences and priorities.

Avoid regrets

Overspending on your wedding dress can lead to regret and financial strain after the wedding. By setting a realistic budget, you can make a confident decision within your means. This will ensure that you’re happy with your choice of dress and won’t experience any lingering feelings of regret or financial stress after your wedding day.

Be transparent with your advisor

As you begin your dress shopping journey, be transparent with your bridal consultant about your budget. They can guide you to options within your price range and prevent you from falling in love with dresses that may be beyond what you’re prepared to spend. Working with your consultant, you can find a dress that suits both your style preferences and your budget.

Don’t: Fall for trends that don’t suit you

It’s tempting to be swayed by the latest wedding dress trends in magazines and on social media. But it’s important to remember that not every trend will suit your body type, personal style or even the overall theme of your wedding. Here’s why you should avoid falling for trends that don’t really resonate with you:

Authenticity and timelessness

Your wedding day is an important milestone and you’ll cherish the memories and photographs for years to come. Choosing a gown that reflects your personal style, rather than following fleeting trends, ensures that your look remains authentic and timeless. Trends come and go, but classic, well-tailored gowns will stand the test of time and look beautiful for years to come.

Body type considerations

Every body type is unique and what looks stunning on one person may not flatter another. It’s important to choose a dress that accentuates your best features and enhances your natural beauty. Trends that don’t suit your body type may not enhance your figure in the most flattering way. Instead, focus on styles and silhouettes that complement your shape and make you feel confident and comfortable.

Express your personal style

Your wedding day is an opportunity to express your personal style and show who you are as an individual. While trends can be inspiring, they may not always align with your preferred aesthetic or the overall theme of your wedding. It’s important to choose a dress that reflects your personal style, whether it’s classic, bohemian, modern or vintage-inspired. Your dress should make you feel like the best version of yourself, rather than trying to fit into a trend that doesn’t feel like your personality.

Avoid regret

Wedding dress trends can be tempting, especially when they’re getting a lot of attention. However, it’s important to consider whether you really love a trend or whether you’re just caught up in the excitement. Falling for a trend that doesn’t suit you could leave you feeling sorry for yourself when you look back at your wedding photos. It’s better to choose a dress that reflects your personal style and makes you feel confident and beautiful, rather than one that simply follows the latest trend.

Stay true to your vision

Your wedding day is a reflection of you and your partner’s vision for the celebration. It’s important to choose a dress that matches the overall theme, atmosphere and setting of your wedding. Certain trends may be popular, but they don’t necessarily fit with the atmosphere you’re trying to create. By staying true to your vision and choosing a gown that harmonises with the overall style of your wedding, you’ll create a cohesive and memorable experience for you and your guests.

Do it: Start shopping early

When it comes to finding the perfect wedding dress, starting early can make a significant difference to your overall experience and the outcome of your search. Here are some reasons why it’s beneficial to start your dress shopping process early:

Plenty of time to research

Starting early gives you the luxury of time to do your research. You can explore various bridal magazines, websites and social media platforms to find inspiration and narrow down your preferred styles. By taking the time to understand your likes and dislikes, you’ll have a clearer vision of what you’re looking for when you start visiting bridal salons.

Availability of Popular Designers

If you have your heart set on a gown from a specific designer, it’s crucial to consider their lead times and availability. Many sought-after designers have limited production capacity, and their gowns may need to be ordered well in advance. By starting early, you increase your chances of securing an appointment with the designer or boutique and allow for any necessary lead times to ensure your gown arrives in time for alterations.

Customization Options

If you’re considering customizing your gown or incorporating unique elements, starting early is essential. Customizations often require additional time for design consultations, fabric sourcing, and creating a one-of-a-kind gown. By starting early, you give yourself and your designer or seamstress the necessary time to bring your vision to life without feeling rushed or stressed.

Less Pressure and Stress

Wedding planning can be overwhelming, and the last thing you want is to add unnecessary stress to the process. Starting your gown shopping early allows you to approach the experience with a relaxed mindset. You can enjoy the process, visit multiple salons, and try on different styles without feeling pressured to make a rushed decision. Shopping early gives you the freedom to explore various options and make an informed choice that you’re genuinely happy with.

Alterations and fitting time

Once you’ve found your dream dress, alterations and fittings are often necessary to achieve the perfect fit. By starting early, you will have plenty of time to schedule multiple fittings and alterations to ensure your dress fits perfectly on your wedding day. Rushing through alterations can cause unnecessary stress and compromise the final fit and finish of your dress.

Peace of mind

Finding the perfect wedding gown is a significant milestone in your wedding planning journey. By starting early, you give yourself peace of mind, knowing that you have ample time to find the gown that makes you feel beautiful and confident. It eliminates the anxiety of last-minute shopping and allows you to focus on other essential aspects of your wedding planning.

Don’t: Forget to consider the venue and season

When choosing your bridal gown, it’s important to consider the location and season of your wedding. These factors can greatly influence the style, fabric and overall comfort of your dress. Here are some reasons why you shouldn’t overlook the importance of considering venue and season:

Venue compatibility

The location and ambience of your wedding venue will play an important role in determining the style of dress that will complement the surroundings. For example, if you’re having a beach wedding, a light and flowing dress may be more appropriate than a heavily embellished ball gown. A rustic outdoor venue may call for a more relaxed and bohemian style, while a formal ballroom setting may warrant a classic and elegant silhouette. Considering the venue will help ensure that your dress harmonises with the overall aesthetic of your wedding day.

Climate considerations

The season in which you’re getting married can have a huge impact on your comfort throughout the day. If you’re having a summer wedding, choose a dress made from breathable fabrics that will keep you cool, such as lightweight lace or chiffon. For a winter wedding, heavier fabrics such as satin or velvet can provide warmth and comfort. By considering the season, you can choose a dress that will keep you comfortable and ensure you enjoy your special day without being too hot or too cold.

Practicality and mobility

Different venues and seasons may require specific practical considerations for your dress. For example, if you’re having an outdoor wedding with a lot of walking, or if your venue has stairs or uneven surfaces, you’ll want to choose a dress that allows for easy mobility. Similarly, if you’re getting married in a hot and humid climate, a dress with a long train or heavy layers may become uncomfortable as the day progresses. Considering these factors will help ensure that your dress doesn’t hinder your movement or become impractical for the chosen venue.

Photography and Lighting

The lighting conditions at your venue can affect the overall appearance of your dress in photographs. Different fabrics reflect light differently, and certain colours may look different under different lighting setups. It’s important to consider how your dress will look in the specific lighting conditions of your venue to achieve the desired effect in your wedding photographs. Talking to your photographer or seeking their advice can be helpful in choosing a gown that will look great in photographs.

Coordinate with the season

Your dress can also complement the overall seasonal feel and colour palette of your wedding. For example, a light and airy gown with pastel accents may be perfect for spring, while a richly coloured gown or one with luxurious fabrics may evoke a sense of warmth and cosiness for a winter wedding. By considering the season, you can choose a dress that complements the overall theme and atmosphere of your wedding day.


Choosing your wedding dress is an incredibly personal and exciting experience. By keeping these do’s and don’ts in mind, you can navigate the process with confidence and avoid common mistakes. Remember to prioritise your comfort, style and budget while staying true to your unique personality. With careful consideration and attention to detail, you’ll find the perfect dress to make you feel like a radiant bride on your special day. Happy shopping!

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