Do's and Don'ts of a wedding dress fitting

With fast fashion upon us and slow fashion betting against it, when was the last time you had a custom dress made? Unless is is a special occasion you won't think of a customised outfit as it's the cost and the length of the process that probably put you off seeing your local dressmaker. Wedding dress is one of those special occasions when it's worth paying a visit to a dressmaker for alterations or a couture wedding dress designer's store.

How to make sure your dress fits you perfectly on the day and what not to wear underneath corseted dresses? Here's your guide to a wedding dress fitting if you are buying your dress from a retail chain store. Bespoke wedding dress process is a different story. See how it works here.

1. First fitting date and what delays can cause

You have received a phone call from a store to say that your wedding dress has arrived and is ready for the first fitting. In many stores, you need to clear the balance of the dress on the day of the first fitting. You probably did not save enough funds to pay it off and would like to postpone the first fitting? It's a lot of money and stress to risk on such an uncertain venture. Remember that retail stores order a dress nearest to your size from a supplier whose manufacturer give only 30 days to the supplier to return faulty garments.

We all know that many wedding dresses sold in retail stores are made in China or another Far Eastern country. These dresses when produced, are first sent to the designer's warehouse, then checked by the designer's QC team, allocated a retail store tag and a Bride's reference number. They are then shipped to a retail store who ordered this dress where they also go through QC checks and are also allocated the Bride's reference number. The retail store customer service then contacts the Bride to announce that the wedding dress is in store waiting to be fitted. By the time you are informed of delivery it's been three weeks since the manufacturer's 30 days warranty has started.

The retail store is given only seven days to report any imperfections on a wedding dress to the designer's warehouse. This is one of the main reasons the store calls the Bride for a fitting as soon as the wedding dress is delivered. If you haven't made it to the store within seven days the manufacturer's warranty will expire and there little to no chance you will be able to exchange the dress on time or report any imperfections on the gown as these sometimes happen.

Now, if you are not prepared to pay off the balance of the dress, at least find the time to visit the store and see the dress on. Do not worry about weight fluctuations if any. Your aim is to make sure your dress is THE ONE YOU ORDERED and it looks the same as on the photo in the designer's catalogue. We're not trying to scare you :) we are just letting you know what's involved in the retail wedding dress making process.

Bride getting ready

2. First fitting audience: moms lead the way

Let's say you have booked your first fitting appointment with the store and now is the time to think who to bring along to such an intimate event. Remember, the more people you bring with you the more opinions you get. Ten bridesmaids are fun but each one of them have their own taste and may not like your dress. Avoid people whose opinion and taste is different from yours. From our experience, mom and your grandma are the best people to bring to a fitting. We've seen so many happy tears in here. Agh... this mom and daughter thing.

Your bestie is a great person yo have with you too as they often tell you the truth and will always recommend you the best for your bridal look.

Bridesmaids holding flower bouquets

3.First fitting essentials

The two things you must have on your first fitting are shoes and a bra. Because it is the day when your bridal fitter measures the correct length of your dress (dresses are made in a factory to a standard length, remember?) and pins the hem. Bra is another piece of accessorie worn underneath the dress to determine whether or not the neckline of a dress needs to be altered. 99% of the dresses are taken in around the bust and neckline area because our bodies are all so different! We rarely match the designer's standard mannequin and that's the beauty of us women.

Benjamin Adams Wedding Shoes

4.Corset talks

Nowadays, almost all designer dresses are made with well-cut fitted corsets meaning there is no need for a separate boned lingerie corset to be worn underneath. Having two corsets on is the way forward to a sweaty wedding as you'll get hot and add about an inch on your waist wearing unnecessary layers of fabric. If you still think you'll need a corset consult your dress fitter and trust her. She's more than you interested in getting things right as another happy Bride adds to her commission rate.

Wedding dress corset

5. Second fitting date - when and why?

The date of your second fitting depends on how much time you have left until your dream day. Divide this time by two and set the fitting on the middle of this period. Thus, if you had your first fitting today and you've got three months left to your wedding, the perfect second fitting date in a month and a half away. Just don't forget to bring the same pair of shoes and a bra you wore on your first fitting. 'Tis the time to try on your accessories, bracelets and jewellery if you are wearing any.

Bride trying on a beaded belt on a wedding ballgown

6. Last fitting a week before the wedding. 'No way!' you say? 'Yes, it is!'

There is a reason stores like to call you for the last fitting really really really close to your big day. Here's why:

  • If you collect the dress too early, you might change in shape and will have to bring the dress back for alterations closer to the date and the store will have to do the same fitting twice. Do you really want to have your wedding dress turned inside out damaging such expensive and delicate fabric?

  • The dress may get damaged if stored at home. Leave it in the store as it is equipped with special wedding dress storage facilities to protect them from dust and damp

Bride holding a bouquet of white peonies

If you already bought your wedding dress and need it perfected to fit your body like a glove, book an appointment and see one of our fitters today!

Happy wedding dress fitting!

#bridal #bespoke

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