One of my most popular posts of all-time is I Ordered My Wedding Dress Online! Dressilyme.com Wedding Dress Review, which was originally published a few years ago. While I did not end up going through with the wedding, I’m so glad that I chose to order my wedding gown online. It saved me hundreds of dollars and fit without having to get a tailor.
I learned so much from this experience and I figured it is high time I put everything I learned into one post so your are able to know how to properly order your wedding dress online. Without further adieu….
Get Correctly Measured
I can’t stress this one enough….. you will not get the dress of your dreams if you do not supply the merchant with correct measurements. While you may be tempted to break out a measuring tape and measure yourself, DON’T! You will not get the most accurate dimensions. Believe me, I tried and they were wrong. Instead, have a friend, family member, or local seamstress or tailor measure you, and double check your numbers.
In addition, be sure to read up on exactly where the merchant wants the measurements taken. If they just say “waist,” email them to confirm where that exactly is. Natural waist? Where you wear your pants? Somewhere in between? And ideally, each merchant should have a diagram on their website, guiding you where to measure. For my dress, they wanted shoulder measurements, and I had trouble understanding what that meant. If you’re not sure, ask!
Give Yourself Plenty of Time
One of the great things about ordering a dress online is that you can order it to fit- but it also takes time. Just like ordering a dress from a chain bridal store, you will need at least 6-8 weeks for your dress to ship from China (yes, they come from the SAME place), but the difference is, when you order from a chain, it will still be a standard dress size and will need tailoring. It’s a great perk that you might be able to avoid tailoring by skipping the middle man and ordering something custom.
On the other hand, the problem when ordering online is you have never actually seen it or tried it on. Yes, it can be really nerve wracking to figure out you’re going to like it. Therefore, if choosing to order your wedding dress online, make sure you have plenty of time for a plan B.
You don’t want to be scrambling for a dress last minute because you put all your eggs in plan A’s basket and it doesn’t fit or is nothing like you wanted. There’s no point in saving big bucks by buying online if it doesn’t make you happy and you’re miserable with the dress or something happens.
When I ordered my dress, it arrived on time and without issue- but I also had 8 months of planning just in case something had happened or I needed to make adjustments.
Familiarize Yourself with Fabrics
Organza, chiffon, french lace, satin, silk, etc., etc…… All fabrics are not created equal. And every bride is not going to like the same kind of fabric. That’s why it is so important to familiarize yourself with the different kind of fabrics.
If possible, head to your local fabric store before you order your wedding dress online or check out dresses in a dress shop, just so you can actually touch and better visualize the different options.
Even better, ask for detailed, up-close photos of each part of the dress from whatever company you’re using online so you can get a good feel of how the fabric looks. I wasn’t 100% pleased with the lace on my dress, but that was my fault for not getting more detailed information. I am super, super picky about lace- had it been taffeta, there’s less room for being picky or surprises in terms of texture.
Buying your wedding gown online is not the time to be experimenting. Instead, you should choose an option that you know fits your body shape well and that you know you like. Yes, you can be trendy- but honestly, go with what you feel confident in and you know flatters your body type.
Go to a local dress shop and try on some different styles if you have to if you’re not really sure what you’ll like. Chain dress shops are notoriously salesy, but you entitled to shop around until you find something you love….plus, many of them source from the same shops overseas.
So, maybe be trendy- but do so at your own risk. The last thing you want to do is end up with a shit show like Maya Rudolph did in “Bridesmaids.” Lord Jesus, have mercy!
Don’t Believe the Hype
One of my least favorite shows of ALLLLLLL TIME? Say Yes to the Dress. American women have always been a little obsessed with our wedding dresses, often dreaming of them since we were young. And that’s ok. But that damn show has given average gals (as in, women who don’t have a daddy to fund a $200k wedding) a major inferiority complex.
Please, don’t believe the hype from the wedding industrial complex that it has to be “PERFECT” so they can capitalize on your fears and insecurities in order to sell you their services at a premium. You’ll save hundreds or thousands when you order your wedding dress online, which means you can customize your dress locally if it’s not quite up to par. But remember, your dress isn’t what makes your wedding. If it’s not 100% perfect to some unreachable standard, just let yourself enjoy your day. When all comes to pass, nothing is perfect, but it can still be amazing!
Honestly- your day won’t be perfect, your marriage won’t be perfect, your dress won’t be perfect. It’s okay to find beauty in the things that aren’t 100%, and they often become funny or special memories from your wedding day. Let go of perfection, it isn’t as fun as being present and feeling as beautiful as you are, no matter what the dress looks like.
Here’s what I ordered to give you an idea of what I got:
Interested in checking out the online merchant where I ordered my dress? Hop on over to Dressilyme and revel in their amazing gowns!
This dress didn’t end up getting used, but was donated to an excellent charity- and I didn’t want to post photos online of me in it (since those would have been taken after our really crummy breakup, and no thanks).
That being said, my dress was under $400 and didn’t need tailoring. Ordering from a chain dress shop means you get a dress off the rack and still needs 4-6 weeks to ship, plus tailoring (at least 2 weeks) and can cost anywhere from $1000 on up. I was very pleased with the lining, but wish I would have spent more time learning styles I liked before I ordered to ensure I got what fit my body type best….so take your time and don’t be afraid to order online! 🙂