Buying wedding dress online was something very unheard of in the past. The ideas seems very new then. The number one reason why nowadays more brides are looking towards the online shopping option is because online wedding dresses are more affordable. You could save few hundreds to thousands of your wedding cost by opting for online wedding dress. Besides that you have thousands of bridal gowns choices readily available with just the touch of your finger tips. So yes, it’s convenient and cost saving at the same time.
However I bet you’ve heard the perils of purchasing wedding dress online too. Gown doesn’t fit, doesn’t look like picture, low quality, didn’t arrive on promised time or didn’t arrive at all. These are the risk the bride will need to take. Brides who ordered their wedding dress online will usually include a prayer, hoping that the bridal gown will arrive well and fit. It doesn’t have to be this way if you’re armed with the know-how on how to buy your online dream wedding dress.
Let’s enrich our knowledge!
1. Know Your Dress Style
As a starting point, look at the dress style you usually go for. You know your own body, you know which dress style flatters you and which style you like. If there’s one particular style you wear a lot, then it is most probably because you like it. It can be A-line, empire or sheath style which you usually find in day-to-day dresses.
2. Try On Several Wedding Dress Style
Of course when it comes to wedding, you might feel more adventurous and would like a totally different style. That is alright too. You can try on several style of the wedding dresses at the bridal boutique to find out your options first. Whether it’s mermaid, ball gown or A-line, decide which style make you beautiful and comfortable at the same time.
Here are tips and recommendation for broad shoulders brides and brides who are peared shape and looking to wear mermaid and trumpet wedding dress
3. Have Your Body Measured Precisely
An ill-fitting dress is half the battle lost. You’ll look improper for your big day which no brides want. Ordering your wedding dress online following the size chart guide is not always ideal. You can be a 10 in this shop and a size 8 in the other. Paris Ciel highly recommend you to send in your precise body measurements in order to get your wedding dress tailor made perfectly. Have yourself measured by professional (seamstress, tailor) or a family member accurately. Refer to this guide on how to take body measurements if you’re doing it yourself. Order your current size and not what you think you would be after going on diet. Also it’s better to order a larger size which you can alter later compared to a smaller size which you can’t do pretty much about it.
4. Set Your Budget
Even though online wedding dresses are cheaper than those available in physical bridal boutiques, you still need to set a wedding budget for your wedding dress. Place a price range so that you don’t go over your budget. If you choose tailor made wedding dress, you will be charged an additional fee. Remember to include an approximate custom duty budget in case you need to pay for it and budget for alteration too (just in case).
5. Buy From Reputable Online Seller
How do you know which sellers are reputable? Do a spot check on them before committing to your purchase. Check their website particularly about page, testimonials page, customers’ feedbacks, reviews and contact info. You’ll get an idea whether their customers are happy with their purchases. Also if you have friends or relatives who had bought dresses and are satisfied with their dresses from certain online shops, ask them to recommend the websites to you.
6. Ask Plenty Of Questions
You have the right to ask questions to the seller before clicking the ‘Buy’ button. If you’re not sure of something, it’s better to ask now than when it’s too late. What fabrics do they use to construct the wedding dress? Is the dress white or ivory? How long is the train? Does it have a zip? and so on. Also the way the seller respond will give you an indicator how committed or bad the customer service is.
Tip: Go for lace up dress rather than a dress with zip so that it’s more flexible in case you have gain or lose weight!
Left: Adorable ivory wedding dress, Right: Sublime off-the-shoulder wedding dress
7. Request For Fabric Swatches
Sometimes what you see online is not exactly what you get. Why does this thing happened? Because using cheap fabrics is one of the way to keep the cost of the dress low. To be on the safe side, if possible request for fabric swatches. At least you’ll have an assurance how your wedding dress will look (color) and feel.
8. Order Plenty Of Time In Advance
Understand that when you order your wedding dress online, you need to wait from a couple of days to weeks for the dress to reach you especially if the dress is custom made. Check with the online seller the delivery time and add in extra few days in case the dress didn’t arrive on time, get delayed in custom check or you need to make some minor alterations later.
For Paris Ciel’s case, ready to wear dress is available within 1 to 3 days while tailoring period for custom made dress takes about 15 to 20 days. Meanwhile shipping time is about 3 to 7 days depending you opt for regular or express delivery.
9. You Might Need Alterations
There is always some risk when buying your wedding dress online. If you didn’t provide an accurate measurements, you may need alteration later. You may have also lose or gain some weight during that period which require some adjustment on the wedding dress. Sometimes you just luck out or the dress need just a little tweak here and there to fit you perfectly. Whatever the reason, make sure you set some budget and time aside for alterations. Get a trustworthy tailor.
10. Review The Cancellation & Return Policy
Remember to read through the cancellation and return policy before committing to your purchase. This way you’ll know what to expect and how to deal with the circumstance if in any case you need to deal with cancellation or return. For most online sellers, custom made dresses are not refundable or exchangeable because they are made to fit only you. Also take note that if you return two or more dresses some online sellers will charge a restocking fee.
11. Accept Special Request
Imagine you found a perfect wedding dress only to find a bow at the back of the dress which you don’t like. Or maybe you prefer a short V-neck compared to plunging neckline. Some online boutiques will accept to make this modification without extra charges. Paris Ciel accept these kind of special request.
12. Too Good To Be True
Be overly cautious if the wedding dress is priced at rock-bottom price. You’re most likely to receive a poorly constructed gown, low quality fabric or badly fitted dress. But then sometimes you get lucky with the most perfect wedding dress.
Have you bought your wedding dress online before? What was your experience like?
Do you think it is safe to buy wedding dress online? What advice would you give to brides who are looking to purchase their wedding dress online?