Wedding Gown Shopping: 17 Tips to Quickly Find and Choose the Right Dress Before You Buy

Shopping and trying to find the right wedding gown can be exhausting and overwhelming, and may even go wrong if you are uninformed about important wedding dress pre-shopping tips and advice (or dress shopping checklist).  It’s important that you’re prepared by knowing the bridal shopping dos and donts, what to expect and how to prepare for dress try-ons.  I want to help, and so in this post, I’m sharing 17 no-fail tips and advice to make finding and choosing your dream dress fun and a lot easier for you.  Read on, and let’s get you to ready for stress-free bridal shopping.

nigerian bride white wedding gown and bouquet

Photo Credit: Wedding Photography by Obi Nwokedi /instagram


17 Fail-Proof Tips and Advice to Make Shopping for a Wedding Gown Fun

The secret to quickly finding your perfect wedding dress lies in knowing what you want, way in advance, before stepping into any bridal store.  Knowing that will enable you to confidently communicate to shop reps an idea of different wedding gown styles you’d like to try on.  It lets them know you have already done your homework and not likely to waste their time (wearing every dress in the shop) and looking like you are not serious to buy a dress.

1. Have an Idea of Bridal Dress Looks (Styles) to Try on Before Going Shopping: Don’t go to the dress shop to discover what to buy, rather first do your homework from home and be armed with a visual wedding gown shopping list (to show) and the basic lingo of wedding gown parts, as well as how the shops call each wedding gown silhouettes / style-cut.  The next tips below will guide you on how to figure out wedding gown styles for your shape and personality, and also names of dress silhouette and parts.

2. Set a Shopping Budget (Limit) and Try Only Dresses Within Your Budget:  You don’t want to try on a wedding dress, fall in love with it, only to later discover that it’s 10 times costlier than you can afford. So, girl, stay in your lane – and not to worry because same style of wedding dresses can come in diverse price points.  For example, you could find a particular wedding gown style in $1000 (convert that to Naira, lol), and also find a similar style in lower costs $300. So, tell the bridal shop person the price range you’re looking for, as well as show pictures of desired styles (silhouette and cuts).

3. Try-On Familiar Cuts that Flatter Your Body Shape: Wedding gowns are styled and cut somewhat similarly to the regular prom or designer evening dresses.  So, if you know the outfit cuts (neck cut, sleeves, skirt area, body – fitted or loose) that always look good on you, you can start your store-try-ons by looking at wedding gowns that have similar cuts and silhouettes.  It’s quicker to find your “it-gown” from familiar cuts than from trying on strange outfit cuts you’ve never worn before.  With wedding gowns, the cuts and silhouettes have names, and it’s a good idea to know those names – to make it easy when talking with bridal shops.

4. Check Your Wardrobe for Occasion-Outfit Styles and Cuts You Gravitate Towards: Another way to get a good idea of the style of wedding gown that is “you” and true to your personality is to start from the familiar and what’s YOU.  Take a look at your wardrobe to identify a pattern  – look at the long dresses and evening gown styles you own.  Or even look at the long skirt-and-blouse styles you own.  Which cuts (sleeves, neckline, skirt-styles, dress-body styles) do you have more? Of those outfits, which ones do you get the most compliments from? What styles flatters your body type most, when you look at the mirror?

It’s a good idea to start your wedding gown search from what you already know that you look good in. Don’t start searching from the scratch.  A wedding gown is not much different from a long skirt-and-blouse style, only that it’s white and comes in delicate fabric and embellishment.  So, when you go to the bridal stores, help them to help you find styles to try-on, by telling them the cuts, necklines and skirt styles that usually flatter your figure.


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About Stella Anokam

Stella is the founder and Editor of this blog (NaijaGlamWedding). Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Submit your photos to be featured - it's FREE, because we love everything weddings, bridal showers, engagement shoots.


  1. U guys gat me imagining maself in dos SWIT n LUVLY dresses, dey’r sooooooo biuti4ul

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