First you need to determine which types of wedding dresses are right for you.
Your wedding dress should tell the world exactly who you are. After all, this is YOUR day, and your wedding gown is the key way that you share yourself with your wedding guests -- and, of course, your husband-to-be.
By now, you've likely given some thought as to what kind of wedding you would like to have: traditional, informal or a theme wedding, perhaps.
Here are some general guidelines:
In formal weddings, brides generally wear long white/cream-colored wedding dresses and a veil, perhaps a train and, of course, gloves.
In semi-formal weddings, brides generally wear long white/cream-colored wedding dresses, a veil and gloves if desired.
In informal weddings, brides have more flexibility. They can wear wedding gowns of any color -- short or long -- or even a suit.
What about theme weddings? Here you should decide first on the theme and then on the formality of the wedding you've always wanted to have. Only then is it time to shop for wedding dresses and wedding accessories to determine which ones match your theme!
As you can see, the most important aspect to consider when selecting wedding dresses is your own sense of style.
For specifics on what's appropriate to wear for each type of wedding, I recommend Emily Post's Wedding Etiquette, which devotes an entire chapter to wedding dresses and other fashion dos and don'ts, or Vera Wang on Weddings, in which Wang shares her vast fashion expertise with you as you plan your wedding. Both can be purchased from any major online bookstore and have great tips on buying wedding dresses.
How can you purchase wedding dresses online?
The Internet can be a tremendous help when you're looking for wedding gowns and have a tight wedding budget. And let's face it -- most of us do have to keep the bottom line in mind when we plan the most important day of our romantic lives.
After you have given some thought to the type of wedding you want to have, I recommend that you:
- Look through bridal magazines and check out your options by flipping through the pages to see which wedding dresses are available in your area.
- Go to local bridal stores and try on wedding gowns.
- Look online to see what other wedding dresses are available to you. In case you're uncertain about buying wedding gowns from an online vendor, bear in mind that there really are online bridal shops that deliver the same level of service as regular stores.
- Compare the in-store price to the Internet dress stores to find out which is the better deal. Many online stores offer you discount wedding dresses because of their vastly reduced overhead costs!
- Narrow down your search to a handful of wedding dresses that make your final cut.
When you've gone through all these steps, you're certain to have accessed all the wedding dresses available to you -- and you will very likely save your hard-earned money if you end up finding discount wedding dresses available only from an Internet vendor.
Good luck with your search! Though it might seem daunting at first, if you follow these tips, you'll be well on your way to finding a beautiful range of perfectly elegant wedding dresses.
Stacey Martin is the publisher of MarriedBliss.com, where you will find objective reviews of online wedding vendors, tips on wedding planning, advice on where to buy wedding dresses online and much more helpful content for brides-to-be and couples planning their weddings.