One of the questions that we’re often asked, is when is the right time to start your wedding dress shopping? And actually there isn’t one clear specific and concise answer or rule to help answer this question. Here are some pointers that I hope might help you decide when to start your dress shopping and when to book your wedding dress shopping appointments with wedding dress shops in the Essex region and beyond.
Interestingly, you may know that our wedding dress shop is in Colchester in Essex and that we’ve been based in the area for 14 years now. There are actually many wedding dress shops in Essex which is very exciting if you are in Essex Bride but it can also be quite overwhelming, and sometimes it’s really difficult to know where to start. Some find it helpful to know that we are proudly one of the very very few (in fact we may be the only one) who is able to offer an entirely private and VIP wedding dress shopping experience which guarantees that you will not see other brides during your wedding dress fitting experience. When I launched Abigail’s Collection way back in 2005 I decided that I wanted every single bride that visited us to enjoy a really memorable, special and private wedding dress shopping experience and despite the growth of our business we remain true and focused on ensuring that that service is always offered, that’s probably one of the reasons that we’ve managed to (proudly) win so many awards over the years I guess (28 actually, takes small bow, lol).
One of the things that we would usually recommend before you embark upon your wedding dress shopping is that you have your wedding venue booked so that you know the time of year that you are planning to get married. Your venue and the time of year that you plan to hold your wedding may well impact upon the choice of wedding dress that you decide to wear for your amazing wedding day, for example, a bridal dress that you choose to wear on a Santorini cliffside luxury hotel overlooking the ocean may well be a different style of dress to one that you might choose to wear if you get married in a gorgeous country house hotel in the autumn or in a woodland setting in the beautiful Essex countryside.
In terms of how long dresses can take? Well; it might be helpful to know that if you visit a wedding dress shop and fall in love with a dress and order one to be made especially for you, it can take anything from 8 to 12 months to be made. On that basis if you have the time, in an ideal world we would recommend that you start wedding dress shopping for your gorgeous wedding dress at least 8 to 12 months before the big day. There are lots of options at wedding dress boutiques now from off-the-peg dresses and ready to wear collections so it isn’t necessarily the case that you must have 8 to 12 months available to you in order for you to find a special wedding dress in a wedding dress boutique like ours, plus, a lot of wedding dress designers can ‘rush cut’ and make your dress for you faster than 8-12 months although it’s wise to know that sometimes there are additional charges that might apply in order to accelerate the wedding dress design process for you and your retailer.
Another point that we would always discuss with the bride if she asked us ‘when is the right time to start wedding dress shopping?’ would be that actually, the best time to start trying on wedding dresses is when you are ready to find it. Now that might sound a little odd - but what we mean by this is that you never know when you are going to find the one! Sometimes brides think that they are going to pop and visit some wedding dress shops and wedding dress boutiques to get ‘some ideas’ and have ‘a little trying on session’ but in actual fact it is very often during that process that you will find the one and have that all important and special yes to the dress moment. On that basis we would always suggest that before you start to arrange a wedding dress appointment you ensure that the special people that you want with you for that appointment are available to attend. You never know when you will have that moment in the dress of your dreams.
So we truly hope that clarifies a few things for you, it can all feel like a bit of a minefield before you start but trust us it’s actually a really exciting and wonderful aspect of your wedding journey and we like to think that we’re right there with you to support and guide and celebrate with you. Drop us a mail or DM us on insta or facebook if you want to chat through anything or if you have any other questions, we’d love to help you and of course are here for you when you need us. Good luck and happy wedding dress shopping.