Dress Shopping Tips

Dress Shopping Tips

Sep 02, 2020

Let me introduce myself. I’m Noelle & I own Rouge Bridal. Congrats on your engagement and upcoming wedding!! I know finding your perfect wedding gown can be overwhelming or stressful for some. You walk into a bridal store filled with tons of options. Many things may run thru your mind.

  • Where do I start?
  • Is my stylist going to listen to what I want?
  • Is she going to understand my vision?
  • What style will I look best in?
  • What if my mom, sister, friend, grandma, doesn’t love the dress I fall in love with?



I was very uneducated 10.5 years ago when I went shopping for my wedding dress. My sister didn’t like the dress I picked.  Good thing that didn’t bother me one bit.  So, below is what I have learned since opening Rouge Bridal.  The tips below will help you when searching for your perfect wedding dress.


  1. Know you budget before you step foot in the bridal store.
    1. This should be one of your stylists first questions. Make it clear to your entourage what your budget is.  The last thing you want to happen is to put on a dress you fall in love with but don’t want to or can’t pay for.  You stylist should be pulling dresses for you that are within you budget.  If your entourage tries to pull a dress for you and it’s over budget, you stylist should make that known to them.  We stylists are here to help you.  Not stress you out. 


  1. Have an open mind.
    1. More often than not a bride to be will come in set on a specific dress style. Have an open mind to trying different styles.  You never know until you actually put it on.  Most of the dresses look totally different on the hanger than on a body.  If you mom wants you to try on a ball gown and you know that’s not what you want, just humor her.  Just because you put it on doesn’t mean you have to get it.  You may surprise yourself and end up with a dress completely different than what you though.  That’s ok, as long as you feel like a bride and look fabulous.  It happens more often than you think.


  1. Your opinion is the only one that matters. 
    1. Opinions fly all over the place at a bridal appointment. Listen to yourself.  How do you feel in the dress?  Do you feel like a bride?  Can you see yourself walking down the aisle in this dress?  Don’t be afraid to speak up.  Tell the stylist if you want to go a different direction than what she’s pulling for you.  Tell you entourage if you LOVE a dress.  Just be polite.  We are here to help you. 


  1. Remember- the dress you order is going to be your size, and alterations will most likely still be needed.
    1. You may try on dresses that are too big or too small. You have to be able to look past that.  Focus on the elements of the dress.  Do you like the details?  Do you like the shape?  Do you like the neckline?  A good stylist will be able clip the dress, so you can see what it would look like if it was your size. Wedding gowns are ordered based on your measurements.   Bust, waist and hips.  Most of the time a bride will be between sizes.  Order what your stylist suggests.  You don’t want to order for your bust if your waist puts you in the next size up.  It will fit in your bust, but you won’t get it zipped.  Don’t be caught off guard if you still need to have your dress hemmed, straps taken up, or taken in at the waist or bust.  Unless you are paying for a custom gown, some sort of alteration will need to be done. 


  1. Make an Appointment
    1. Some stores are appointment only. Some accept walk in’s.  If you make an appointment you will be guaranteed a dressing room and stylist to work with.  If you walk in on a busy day, you may have to wait for a dressing room and may not get a stylist to work with.  Don’t be offended.  It’s not that they don’t want to help you.  They are just working with someone who made an appointment. 


  1. Be prepared to put money down on your dress.
    1. A deposit is required to order your gown. Most of the time it is only a deposit and you can pay the rest once your gown arrives.  If you are not paying for your gown, make sure to talk to the person who is paying or helping you pay for it prior to shopping.  That will avoid an akward conversation when you are finalizing your order with your stylist.  If you have discussed budget, then you have most likely discussed this topic. 




Quick Tips

  • Don’t take pictures of every dress you try on. You will only confuse yourself
  • When you say YES to the dress, stop shopping. Don’t second guess yourself
  • Be polite to your stylist, we are here to help you.
  • Remember to HAVE FUN
  • Sometimes it’s better to have a smaller entourage.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for a private appointment. The worst they can say is no.
  • Ask policy on champagne / wine before you bring it.