So now you're engaged! It's time to get this show on the road. After you've shared the exciting news with your family and close friends, let the planning begin. It's an exciting time, and finding the perfect wedding dress is a big deal. If you are unsure about how long it will take to secure the dress of your dreams, you'll want to read on and make note of this timeline.
8 Months Before the Wedding - Begin Shopping At the very least, you should begin shopping for your gown 8 months before your wedding date. This includes the time you should spend researching bridal salons online and viewing your favorite Pinterest images with your mom or best girlfriends. During this time, visit bridal shops alone, and identify what style you really want without the opinions of your family and friends (trust me, this will make your life so much easier). Once you've narrowed down your favorite styles to one or two, invite your family to visit your favorite bride store with you. This is the time for you to settle in on your throne as a bride, and decide what YOU want for your wedding day. Accept critique and suggestions gracefully, but remember that the final decision is yours and yours only.
6 Months Before the Wedding - Secure Your Wedding Dress During this time, you may need to place a special order for your dress if your provider does not have in store the exact color and/or size you need. In this case, you'll allow the manufacturer ample time to process your order, produce the gown, and ship it to your retailer with enough time to then ship it to your home if necessary (personal shipping is optional and only done for special circumstances). While special orders are possible, you should aim to purchase your dress off-the-rack. This means that you will make a decision, lay hands on your exact dress that same day, and leave with it as soon as possible. You can then check the dress off your to-do list, and move on with your life. Done.
10 Weeks Before the Wedding - Schedule Your Alterations Appointment Many women need alterations on their wedding dress, as the average woman is not typically shaped like the size 6, 5'7 model that you see in bridal magazines. Our alterations specialists at Anya Bridal Warehouse book up really quickly, so it's best that you get your name on their calendar 2 months before your actual first fitting appointment. Your first fitting appointment should take place no later than 6 weeks before your wedding date. Typically, your alterations specialists will have your alterations completed within 4 weeks after your first fitting. Before you leave your first fitting appointment, you'll pay the balance on your alterations, and schedule a delivery appointment to come back and pick up your dress. Be prepared for a third trip if for some reason there are additional alterations that you desire.
1-2 Days Before Your Wedding - Steam Your Wedding Dress You may opt to have your dress steamed before you take it home. Just be aware that certain materials are likely to wrinkle again once you place the gown in its garment bag (satin and satin blends are especially susceptible to wrinkling easily). Anya Bridal Warehouse offers courtesy steaming of your dress when you schedule an appointment in advance. You can wait until 1-2 days before your wedding day or portrait date to have the dress steamed. Once you get home, you'll want to let the dress hang outside of its garment bag so that it does not re-wrinkle. Even better, if you have your own steamer at home (or you know someone with one), use it on your dress the evening before your wedding to ensure that it's pristine for your big day. Follow this timeline, and you should have no hiccups as you find your wedding dress.
Remember that every bridal salon has different procedures and timelines. The timeline mentioned above reflects policies set in place only by Anya Bridal Warehouse. If you know the color, size, and style number of a particular dress, you can always call to find out if we have it in-store or the estimated arrival date on a special order.
For additional questions, feel free to schedule an appointment with use online, or call and speak with one of our friendly receptionists at 404-699-4655. Happy Bridal Dress Hunting! :)