One of the most important parts of planning your wedding, buying a dress is not only a cherished memory and special occasion, but a key step in getting everything together for your big day. Your dress is one of the major components that sets the tone for the overall feel of your wedding, so knowing when to get the dress matters. If you’re not sure when to start looking, we’re breaking down the timeline for purchasing a wedding dress for you:
After You Get Engaged
Once you’ve said “yes,” the planning begins! Before you start searching for your dress, we strongly recommend finding a date and a venue. Having your date and venue set helps you better envision your wedding day: what you’ll be surrounded by, the time of year, and ways you may want to decorate the venue. Getting a general sense of your wedding day will help you picture yourself in the dress day of, making shopping much easier.
8 to 10 Months Ahead
Once you’ve set a venue, book an appointment to start shopping. 8 to 10 months may sound like a long time, but trust us—you’ll want the time. Typically, it takes at least six months for a dress to come in after you order it. This is because the designer needs time to source the materials, sew each piece of your gown, and add any embellishments. The intricacy and quality of a wedding dress does not come together overnight, and you want to give enough time for your dress to arrive and get alterations.
6 Weeks Ahead
After your gown arrives, you need to allow time for alterations. While your dress was custom made, you’ll still need to alter it—typically, these are minor changes like hemming the skirt, tightening a strap, or taking the dress in slightly if you’ve decided to lose weight for the wedding since your appointment. You’ll have your first fitting 6 weeks out from the wedding, and two more at 4 weeks and 2 weeks to ensure the dress is fitting perfectly for the big day.
One Week Out
The week before your wedding, you’ll pick your dress up from alterations. It will be steamed and ready to go for the big day, so all you have left to do is walk down the aisle!