Your Dress Buying that once-in-a-lifetime dress doesn't have to mean breaking the bank. Here are some tips to help you find the right dress at the right price.

  • Discover what's out there. Check out bridal magazines and local fashion shows to see what styles you like. Keep a file with pictures of dresses that catch your eye.
  • Shop early. You should start looking for the dress at least six to eight months before your wedding.
  • Know your options. Besides the full-service bridal salon, you may find your dress at a department store, discounter, vintage or consignment store, or even a rental shop. You could also borrow a dress or have one custom made.
  • Make an appointment at the bridal dress retailer. Leave yourself plenty of time to try on dresses so you don't have to feel rushed.
  • Bring one objective person who will help you choose the dress that looks best.
  • Do your hair and makeup so you look great when you're trying on dresses.
  • Show the sales person your clippings, and tell her about your wedding style and price range so she can show you dresses that suit your needs and budget.
  • Ask about the delivery date of your dress and any additional alteration fees.

Bridesmaids' Dresses Choosing the dresses for your attendants may be the toughest part of wedding planning. You need to find gowns that fit your color scheme and the tastes and styles of several individuals. Here are some tips to help you find their perfect dresses:

  • Look for dresses that they can wear again or have tailored to wear at other events.
  • Try to find something that will flatter every bridesmaid's coloring, style, and size. If these vary too much, you might want to choose different styles within the same color scheme to suit each bridesmaid's figure. For younger members of your wedding party, choose a different style that suits their age.
  • You should order your bridesmaids' dresses soon after you choose your own. This will give them plenty of time to have the gowns altered to fit.
  • Let your bridesmaids know what accessories they will need to complete their wedding day attire.

Men's Attire

  • Choose the groom's attire after you've chosen your dress and your bridesmaids gowns. The formal wear he and his attendants wear should complement the rest of the wedding party's attire and suit the time of day and style of the wedding.
  • Most national tuxedo rental shops offer a free groom's tuxedo if a certain number of tuxedos are rented from them.
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