How to Shop for a Bridal Gown

Searching for your wedding dress can either be the most exciting part of the wedding planning process or the most overwhelming (usually it’s a little of both)!

This week’s show is all about shopping for the bridal gown: where to look, what to look out for, and how to save big. My guest expert is Alan Fields, who with wife Denise Fields wrote Bridal Bargains: Secrets to Throwing a Fantastic Wedding on a Realistic Budget—the book that saved me $850 on my wedding gown!

Alan offers advice on when to start shopping, the differences between boutiques and chain stores, the hallmarks of a well-made gown, how to arrange for alterations, and whether gown preservation is all it’s cracked up to be. He also shares some shady sales tactics to watch out for, including the illegal practice of tag-cutting, and offers tips for finding the dress you want at a price you can afford.

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3 thoughts on “How to Shop for a Bridal Gown

  1. Great topic today! I’m not sure if you remember, but I went ALL OVER and tried on a bunch of gowns and didn’t get that special magical feeling either. I did end up with a gown that I loved though so I at least got that happy ending with the crazy gown search. Some of the things you talked about reminded me of some of the things I noticed while gown shopping. Some of the “authorized dealers” practiced tag cutting. Some were shadier than others, but I was really surprised that some of the tag cutters were in “fancy” areas (Beverly Hills, I’m looking at you!) So it really made it hard to “trust”. At least with all my research and fairly good memory, I was able to either immediately recognize a gown’s designer, or come home and search for it online to see if the price I was quoted was a fair price. I also was told that you get 10% off at Trunk Shows, but like you mentioned, who knows if that’s for certain or if they just merely raise the price by 10% that weekend so it “seems” like you saved some money. I did read “Bridal Bargains” when I was planning and while I can’t say for certain if any of the tips helped me specifically with Disney, I can say that at least for outside vendors it helped me be more aware of possible ways where I could save. 🙂

    1. I agree! The experience I talked about on the show took place at one of the largest, most well known bridal salons in Southern California—definitely not a place you’d expect to find tag-cutting. Must be how these places can afford their sky-high rent…

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