If you’re looking for your wedding dress for your adventure elopement, but have no idea where to start, I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve!
Finding a wedding dress that fits your style, your elopement, and is comfortable can be a daunting task! Especially because there are SO many options out there, at a range of prices, variety of styles and shapes.
In my Building an Elopement Budget post, I talk about prioritizing different aspects of your elopement, to help you build your budget. Before you go shopping, consider what you are comfortable spending on your wedding dress.
When I was shopping for my own wedding dress, I looked all over Pinterest and throughout my own portfolio to find some inspiration. But when it came down to it, my wedding dress was nothing like any of the dresses I had screenshots of for inspiration. And that okay! Don’t be afraid to try something outside of your inspiration. The worst that can happen is you don’t like it.
To help make the task of finding a wedding dress and little less scary, here are my top 3 tips while looking for your own wedding dress!
1. Find a shop that fits your style & vibe.
Most wedding dress shops have a style theme that most of their dresses for within. Boho, modern, traditional and contemporary, are just a few. They may not say them in these terms, but each shop has a theme of sorts.
Nearly every shop has a website or social media profile you can look at to gauge the style they have in their shop. But do not worry, you don’t need to know any fancy style terms to check if a shop fits your style & vibe.
If you can look at a fair amount of dresses from their shop and like most of them, or aspects & vibes, of the dresses, that wedding dress shop might have the dress you’re in search of!
There are so many shops across the country & world! Don’t be afraid to look at shops outside of your local area. If you’re taking a trip to visit loved ones, or a just-for-fun trip, consider looking at shops in the area you’ll be visiting.
During the pandemic, many bridal shops had to shift how their customers could try on dresses. For alot of shops, that resulted in sent-to-you dresses to try on at home. And for some shops, that is still an option. There are even shops that run completely online and have gorgeous selections.
Point in all, if the wedding dress shop doesn’t fit your style & vibe, a majority of their dresses may not be the right style for you. But also, don’t be afraid to try something new! You’ll never know what you’ll find.
2. Consider the Your Elopement Day
Whether your elopement is all-day, broken up into 2 parts, or just for part of the day, what are you going to be doing? Are you hiking, hanging around a spot or two, kayaking on a lake? Or whatever it may be! Think about what you’ll be doing.
If you’re hiking, do you want to hike in your dress (highly encouraged, but it will get dirty), or do you want to pack the dress in a backpacking bag and carry it along?
Along with considering what you’ll be doing, consider where you’ll be. If you’re taking the adventure elopement route, we’ll most definitely be outside most of the time. Consider what the temperature will be, the environment you’ll be in (is it sand, muddy, rocky?), and how long you’ll be in your dress.
Finding a dress that you can be comfortable in, in the environment you’ll be in is super important! If you’re too hot or cold, that can play a big part in how you feel throughout the day.
The fabrics a dress is made out of play a big part in this, as well as how much nature it’ll be picking up. Some fabrics are lighter and made to move, but may pick up more sticks and leaves in the skirt of the dress. Other fabrics may be thicker and warmer, but may not pick up as much of nature.
There are lots of elements of your elopement day, and I truly want you to feel comfortable through the entirety of your day so you can enjoy every moment to its fullest.
3. Fit, Shape & Length
In consideration with tip #2, this is where the logistics of your previous considerations come into play.
Being able to move in your dress is KEY! No matter what kind of wedding you’re having, it’s SUPER important to do a fit check to make sure you can ACTUALLY move in your dress.
Do a fit check in the store and throughout the alteration process.
– Can you sit down?
– Can you squat?
– Can you walk?
– Can you raise your arms above your head, in front of you and behind you?
– Can you lift your legs up?
– Can you turn around?
Basically do all the moves to make sure you can move every-which-way in the dress. Especially if you are incorporating something like hiking into your elopement, ensure you can move adequately (and then a bunch) in your dress.
As for the shape, most dresses that hug your hips, thighs, and waist (mermaid & trumpet style) can be a bit tricky to move in, especially if you’re hiking. Dresses with a skirt that is flowy and don’t restrict your movements, are not only comfy, but look amazing in photos!
There are a TON of shapes that don’t overly hug your body, that still allow movement, and can show off your body. Whether you want to go for the flowy, fluffy, or form-fitting look.
The length of the dress is HUGE! While you’re hiking in your dress, walk around the store. See if the dress keeps getting caught under your feet. Nearly every dress has the option to be shortened if it’s a bit too long for you. Plus you can ask for a bussell to be added, so you can pin the train of the dress up.
*Extra Pro Tip: If possible, take the shoes you plan on wearing during your elopement with you to try on dresses. If you don’t have the shoes yet, take something of similar height and style with you.
How much do you love it?
If you find a dress you are IN love with in the first hour of shopping, great!! Get the dress. But if it’s taking you a bit longer, that’s okay! Not every style or fit will be for you. Don’t get discouraged.
Take yourself out when you get overwhelmed and take a minute to bring it all back.
If you need help finding a shop, contact me or comment below. I’m happy to provide recommendations!
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