There are many articles that highlight wedding dress trends, designers and what styles are the most figure-flattering. But at the end of the day, there is no one size fits all wedding or wedding dress. I believe it’s about finding something that makes you feel beautiful and special; after all this is the most important dress you will ever wear. In the DC area, we are lucky to have some amazing bridal boutiques for Brides to find their dress; as well as great attire options for Bridesmaids, Grooms, Groomsmen and parents. This post will highlight some important considerations and the attire we chose for our DC Ladies Wedding Styled Shoot.
Wedding attire shopping is different than regular shopping, so it’s a good idea to have some ideas and information before you start the process.
1) Location: When and where you are getting married (and time of day) will play a role in the type of dress you select. A wedding dress for a daytime beach wedding vs. a church wedding and grand ballroom reception will likely be very different. Also some fabrics may be fine all year round, but others are season specific.
2) Budget: Most wedding dresses are thousands of dollars, but there is still a wide price range. It’s best to figure out your max budget and let your salesperson know to pull dresses at the price you are comfortable with. Otherwise you may fall in love with a dress that is way more than you can or want to spend. Keep in mind that your veil, undergarments, alterations, tax and cleaning after your wedding will all be additional fees that you should factor into your total budget.
3) Shop Early: There is a reason why most of us plan our weddings a year in advance, and part of this is due to the time it will take to get your wedding dress (unless you purchase off the rack). Most dresses are made for each individual order and take six months (on average) to arrive and another one to two months for alterations. I recommend brides begin shopping eight to ten months in advance of their wedding date.
4) Do Some Research: It’s a great idea to do a little online browsing to seek out dress styles that match your personality, and to pick stores with dresses in your chosen price range. Ellie’s Bridal Boutique, provided the wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses for our DC Ladies Wedding Styled Shoot. Ellie’s Bridal is a full-service bridal salon in Alexandria, VA. What I love about Ellie’s Bridal is that they offer a casual and comfortable atmosphere and a really nice selection of dresses that range from vintage, glam, modern, simple and traditional. In addition to wedding dresses they carry special occasion gowns, accessories and tuxedo rentals.
5) Bring A Small Group: We’ve all seen those episodes on “Say Yes to the Dress” where the bride has a huge entourage and ends up leaving her appointment confused and without a dress. I recommend a small group of family and/or friends that know your style and will be honest and helpful with their opinions.
6) Look and Feel: At the end of the day, the most important factor is how you look and feel in the dress. Your perfect dress will make you feel beautiful, comfortable and confident. The dress should highlight your beauty and not distract.
For our DC Ladies Wedding Styled Shoot, Ellie’s Bridal helped us select dresses that are on trend and seasonally appropriate for a fall wedding. Ultimately, we chose a beautiful Victoria Nicole wedding dress (style 1106) that fit our bride perfectly; she looked and felt amazing in this dress.
What’s next? After you’ve found your perfect dress you can begin to look for bridesmaids dresses, followed by your groom and groomsmen. I suggest looking for bridesmaids dresses six to eight months before your wedding date. For your groom and groomsmen two to four months will be an appropriate amount time.
I love the current trend for bridesmaids; a mismatched look that is complimentary and cohesive. Our theme for the DC Ladies Wedding Styled Shoot was Kate Spade in DC (more on this tomorrow!). So we chose floor length dresses in the same fabric and general silhouette, but with different colors and styles for each bridesmaid. The team at Ellie’s Bridal worked with me to select the gorgeous bridesmaid dresses from the Jim Hjelm Occasions line (styles 5125, 5185, and 5363), our bridesmaids looked amazing!
Gray suits have been on trend for grooms and groomsmen for the past year and will continue to be a popular option for the men. For our DC Ladies Wedding Style Shoot, our Groom donned a classic gray suit, white button down dress shirt and a skinny black tie for a look that was modern and complimented his bride perfectly.
Bridal jewelry was provided by Diamond Connects in Bethesda, MD. Rachel Graff at Diamond Connects helped us pick out statement jewelry, engagement and wedding rings that were simply beautiful for our Bride and Groom.
Bridesmaid jewelry was provided by Rene Kauder – Independent Stylist for Stella & Dot, not only are these pieces gorgeous, they also make great gifts for your girls.
Photographer: Mollie Tobias – Contact: Mollie Tobias | Wedding Planning and Styling: Bright Occasions – Contact: Margo Fischer | Venue: Carnegie Library – Contact: Kristina Noell or Ashley Forrester | Hair: Amie Decker of Amie Decker Beauty | Makeup: Suzanne Della Pella of Amie Decker Beauty – Contact: Amie Decker | Bridal Gown and Bridesmaid Dresses: Ellie’s Bridal Boutique – Contact: Ellie’s Bridal | Bridal Jewelry: Diamond Connects – Contact: Diamond Connects |Bridesmaid Jewelry: Rene Kauder – Independent Stylist for Stella & Dot – Contact: Rene Kauder | Floral Design: Eight Tree Street – Contact: Contact: Maribel Kalata
Bridal Gown – Victoria-Nicole/1106
Shoes: Kate Spade
Engagement Ring: custom made 14k white gold Halo diamond engagement ring with center stone Radiant fancy yellow 1.21 carat total weight VS2 clarity & 0.37 carat total weight white diamond side stones Retails: $11,622
Bracelet: custom made 18k white gold deco-inspired diamond bracelet 4.81 carat total weight Retail: $13,300
Earrings: custom made 18kt white deco-inspired drop earrings 5.24 total weight Retail: $9,672
Bridesmaids – Jim Hjelm Occasions 1) JH5125 2) JH5185 3) JH5363
Necklace: Somervell Necklace $59.00
Earings: Nancy Studs $24.00
Bracelet: Christina Link Bracelet $49.00
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