How to Prepare For Your Bridal Appointment
Shopping for your bridal gown can be an extremely exciting experience, but we know that it can also be stressful and overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time looking for gowns. At Harbor Bridal, we’re here to ease those anxieties in any way we can. We only take one bridal appointment at a time, so you won’t be competing for attention or mirror space with any other bride. We do this because we know choosing your wedding dress is an emotional and important decision, and we want our brides to feel comfortable, relaxed, and at ease. In addition to one-on-one time with each bride, we also reserve an hour and a half for each bridal appointment so that our brides never feel rushed or pushed out the door. These elements, combined with our gorgeous selection of gowns, create a unique and special bridal dress shopping experience. That being said, there are still some things you can do to prepare for your bridal appointment:
Come with some ideas about what styles you are looking for, but be open!
The first time shopping for wedding gowns is a learning process – you’ll try on a variety of styles to learn what silhouettes, necklines, and fabrics work for you, but it’s always good to have some ideas of what you are looking for to make the most of your time here. Bring some photos or thoughts with you to your appointment. Keep in mind that what you aren’t looking for can be just as helpful as what you are looking for. But always remember to keep an open mind. We’ve had brides come in saying they don’t want to look at strapless gowns who end up buying a strapless gown. We’ve also noticed that brides have a very hard time when they fall in love with a gown that didn’t meet the vision in their head of what they were looking for. So, while it’s important to have an idea coming into your appointment, it’s also important to remember that the wedding gown you fall in love with might surprise you!
Bring only your closest family and/or friends.
At Harbor Bridal, we recommend bringing a maximum of four guests with you. There are several reasons for this. We are a small boutique and only have seating for four people, and we find it difficult for everyone to move around comfortably with many more people in the shop. More importantly, though, we’ve noticed that the more people brought to an appointment, the more overwhelming the experience is for the bride. We know that getting engaged and picking out a bridal gown is such an exciting experience, and brides want to share that experience with all their loved ones, but sometimes too many opinions makes it difficult for a bride to gather her own thoughts and form her own opinion. We suggest bringing people to the appointment whose opinion you value the most, and who you know will be honest with you but respectful of your feelings. Remember that once you make your decision, you can come back as many times as you’d like to show all your loved ones your dress. Plus, there are always bridesmaids’ appointments to get a group together to celebrate this exciting time!
Have a preferred price point in mind.
Budget is an important part of the wedding planning process, and we know that. If you come in to your bridal appointment with an idea of how much you’d like to spend, it helps us in choosing dresses for you. We would hate for a bride to fall in love with a dress that’s outside her preferred price point, which is why we always let anyone making an appointment know that our gown price point starts at $3,000. It’s important to keep in mind that your budget can include alterations and accessories or can be for the dress alone, but, either way, let us know where you are comfortable, so that we can make the best use of our time together.
While it’s not necessary for you to bring anything with you to your appointment, having a strapless bra and/or your favorite shapewear can be helpful. Most brides don’t end up wearing a bra on their wedding day, but a strapless bra during your bridal appointment can be helpful for us while dressing you. We do have shoes in store for you to wear while trying on gowns, but if you have a favorite pair of heels, feel free to bring those, as well!
Ask us questions!
If you are nervous or anxious before your appointment (or after your appointment!), we’re here to help. We’re happy to answer any question that helps you better prepare for your appointment or make your decision. Call us or email us at any time to let us know your questions, concerns, or thoughts! That’s what we’re here for!