10 Questions to Ask Before Saying “‘Yes’ to the Dress”

Congratulations! I hope if you’re reading this article that you have been bestowed the joy of participating in a dress worthy event, as well as find yourself in the dress shopping mood! I’m sure you have many questions! There really are so many questions worth asking when finding that perfect dress for your event, whether it’s a wedding, prom, a charity gala, etc, but how do you know what the right questions are that will lead you to say ‘Yes!” to the dress?

This past week, I was able to do some personal research into this topic. While I primarily looked into the wedding industry, these questions are absolutely useful for any dress shopping occasion.

My research led me to David’s Bridal in the York Town Shopping Center, located in York, Pennsylvania. I had the privilege of speaking with Taylor, one of the retail associates working at the shop. She gave me an enormous amount of tips and information for this topic, so many thank you’s and hugs to you, Taylor!

Here are the 10 questions I found were most useful to ask yourself as well as your shopping companions when searching for that perfect gown:

  1. “What kind of dress do I see myself in?”
    • This was the very first question Taylor mentioned to me. She was definitely adamant that I use this in my article, because it’s a necessary question that most brides/dress shoppers don’t have an answer for. She recommends that every potential customer have a fair idea of what kind of dress they see themselves in, whether it’s an A-line, mermaid, ball gown, etc. This will 100% save you time and stress, especially if you have companions shopping with you.
  2. “Does my skin tone work with this color?”
    • This is such an important question More than likely, photographs will be taken at this event, and the color of the dress could be the ‘make or break’ factor to you being washed-out in the photographs. So, please don’t hesitate to place your arm against the fabric of dresses while you’re perusing the store before trying them on. If you don’t like the color combination but you adore the dress, don’t be afraid to ask for other available colors. I have found that David’s Bridal as well as other bridal shops work so easily with customers to find a dress in the perfect color for them.
  3. “Does my figure limit my choices of different styles of dresses?”
    • First off, I’d like to clarify that if you love YOU in the dress, then buy it, no matter the style! But Taylor agreed with me that your figure does make a slight difference for how a dress may work in your favor. She made a few suggestions:
      • An hour-glass figure looks absolutely stunning in a mermaid style gown. If you have the hips, don’t be afraid to flaunt them!
      • A ball gown works best for those with a more athletic build, as the fullness of the gown will accentuate your curves.
      • A-line skirts work well with all body types! Taylor agreed that this type of gown is the most popular style to leave the store.
      • A ‘trumpet’ gown (like a mermaid style, but with a flared out bottom) is perfect for women with curves as well.
        • Disclaimer– If you do not want the tight-dress feel for the duration of your event, this style of dress as well as a mermaid style may not be the right choice for you.
  4. “Will I be wearing my hair up or down?”
    • From the advice of Taylor, please make sure to bring a hair tie with you when you’re dress shopping to allow you to see your hair up and down in the dresses you try on, especially if you don’t know how your hair is going to be for your event. For most dress styles, the way your hair is going to be may be a factor for what dress style you may want to choose (but not a limitation). Lastly, if you find that perfect dress, make sure to take a mental note of how you initially wore your hair so you may plan accordingly with your hair stylist.
  5. “What are my bridesmaids wearing?”
    • This may not seem like a question you might ask, but ultimately an important one. Depending on the theme and color scheme of your wedding, as well as the style and color of your bridesmaids dresses, plan accordingly for your wedding dress, or there could be a clashing of some sort with your choices. Taylor’s advice would be if you pick your bridesmaids dresses before choosing your own dress, make sure to bring a bridesmaid along with you to wear her dress to compare to any potential dress you may choose. When my sister was shopping for her wedding dress, she brought along her bridesmaids to choose their dresses before she chose her own, so she could easily compare the colors and styles. Asking this question may be the deciding factor for what wedding dress you say yes to.
  6. “I’m having my event at             . What style of dress would be most ideal for the venue?”
    • This is a GREAT question to ask yourself, because only you can really answer it truthfully as the wearer of the dress! I always say, if the event is your wedding, choose your venue before your dress. If you switch it (dress first, venue second) that absolutely could limit your venue choices. Wedding dresses are already so expensive, and rarely can be returned. So, as a wedding planner to a bride, my advice would be to take the time to choose your venue carefully, as well as plan ahead for any possible weather events, as both can affect what dress choice you make. Also, the comfort level of your dress can be a factor. If you’re having, say a beach wedding in the middle of the summer, perhaps choose a dress with a light-weight fabric that will allow for adequate air flow and easy mobility.
  7. “Should I be so quick to spend $                ?”
    • This question honestly just depends on what you’re willing to spend. If your budget is already stretched to the point of breaking, rather than spend a large chunk of it on a dress, be sensible when dress shopping and use that money for other parts of your big day. After all, your dress is only one part of the event, a large part, but only a part all the same. There are many dress options out there, all just as beautiful, and plenty in the perfect price range for you.
  8. “Will I be able to dance?”
    • Whether it’s for your prom or your wedding, having a dress that gives easy mobility is definitely necessary if you plan to dance the night away. There are already so many stressful things that go along with any event, and having to constantly think of how to move you legs here or there is completely avoidable just by making the right choice with your dress. Per advice from Taylor, make sure to do a little dance in every dress you try on, and don’t even worry about how silly you look!
  9. “Am I settling?”
    • Dress shopping is always stressful, not matter how much you wish it wasn’t. Stress is certainly a possibility, especially if you are being accompanied with an entourage. No matter how much you want to please your loved ones, don’t hesitate to ask the question, “am I settling,” when your family is pressuring you to buy it over your first choice. Which leads me to the last, but most important question…
  10. “But do I like it?”
    • In all the excitement of finding that perfect dress, being accompanied by love ones, making memories, it really is easy to forget to ask yourself this question. Ultimately, it’s your decision that matters. It’s your choice if you would like to listen to the advice and opinions of others, but if you find yourself in that moment of true love and you know the dress is perfect, and others are thinking otherwise, you have the final say, because it’s your day after all!

Happy Dress Hunting!

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