Before your first fitting, decide which accessories you want to wear with your dress and buy or order them. Buy also your undergarments and bridal shoes. You need your wedding-day lingerie and shoes for all your fittings -- a simple bra switch or change in heel height can cause your dress to fit improperly.
YOUR FIRST FITTING
The first fitting usually takes place about 6 weeks before your wedding day. Bring along one eagle-eyed friend or family member for advice. This fitting is to ensure 2main things:
- That your gown is the right size, color, and design (neckline, train, sleeves, etc.)
- That your designer knows what she's doing. A designer will most likely have an assistant who helps you get into your gown. The designer should then begin looking for places where your dress needs to be taken in, let out, shortened, lengthened, or altered -- hence the term "fitting".
Be sure to observe
- The way the material falls
- How the waist feels
- How the chest area fits
- Any funny puckering, bunching or bulging
- The stitching, embroidery, and beading are all in good shape
- Everything is well-sewn
Look in the three-way mirrors to view all angles, and ask for another hand-held mirror if necessary. Speak up if you see anything that you don't like -- or forever hold your peace.
The designer should be able to tell you why a problem exists, and what can be done to fix it. Though you shouldn't expect miracles, it is your prerogative to have as many fittings as it takes to get the perfect fit.
YOUR SECOND FITTING
About 1 month before your wedding, you should have a second fitting. Bring along your foundation garments, bridal shoes, jewelry, and any accessories you plan to wear on your big day.
And if you're not quite sure which accessories to wear and which ones to leave home, bring along a Polaroid camera as well, so you can see how each option looks with your dress.
In addition, you'll want to make sure
- All your concerns from the first fitting have been addressed and fixed
- You can move comfortably in your gown
- Your dress stays in one place as you move
- There is no obvious wrinkling, bunching, or pulling of material
- If you have a full-length dress, your hem skims the tops of the toes of your shoes
Once again, speak up if you see something that doesn't look right. If there is a problem, continue to schedule fittings until you are completely satisfied.
YOUR FINAL FITTING
When the day of your final fitting finally arrives, ask your mom and maid of honor to come along so they can learn about your gown.
Think about the following
- Does your gown need bustling? Ask the designer to teach your mom and maid of honor how to do it.
- Does your gown have complicated straps or buttons? Ditto above.
- What about last-minute wrinkles? Should you use an iron? On what setting? Is steaming a better option?
- What if you spill something on the gown? Are there certain products you should/shouldn't use?
When all is said and done, your gown should fit you like a glove. Take a look in the mirror, and join the ranks of gorgeous brides everywhere.
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