Read now, thank us on your wedding day!
You've probably read countless posts about choosing the right wedding dress, but you've probably never properly read about how to move in your wedding dress once you've purchased it! Of course, it's worth noting that, on your wedding day, you won't be moving about with the same ease and gusto that you do in gym gear and trainers. You'll be travelling at a slower pace and taking extra care. That said, you don't want to be so confined by the dress that you can't fully enjoy the fabulous day you've got planned, which is where our wedding dress fitting checklist comes in!
Think of this as a simple set of instructions to help you test-drive your wedding dress during the alterations process. That way, you can avoid any discomfort or wardrobe malfunctions! The golden rule of alterations is that you start with a garment that's too big for you, and a sewer takes it in. It's during these fittings that you can really achieve a good fit. What exactly is a good fit? Well, stick with us, because we've covered that too!
How to Move in Your Wedding Dress
To achieve the right fit, you'll first need to figure out how mobile you want to be in your wedding dress. This varies heavily on the type of day you've got planned. Most wedding days require very little strenuous activity beyond performing your own personal interpretation of Riverdance during the DJ set. If you're having your ceremony in a forest or trekking up a cliffside for wedding portraits, however, you'll want an extra bit of room in your dress. Before your fitting, have a think about what you'll be doing on the day, particularly in the lead-up to your wedding portraits, as this is when your dress needs to looks its best. OK, now you're ready for your fitting!
What to Bring to Your Wedding Dress Fitting
There are general tips and advice for your dress fitting in this post, but, we've also created a handy checklist of items to bring with you here.
underwear - bring a good quality strapless bra and pants in a colour that's close to your skin tone. shoes - if you've already got your wedding shoes, bring them along. If not, bring something with a similar heel height.
any accessories you've already purchased - these might be hair accessories, jewellery, or even a veil.
make-up remover if you need to remove yours - we recommend wearing as little as possible and make sure to ditch the fake tan, too!
a notebook and pen or somewhere to make notes - you'll need to write down details of further alterations needed, collection dates, etc.
The Essential Wedding Dress Fitting Checklist
There are a few moves you can pull during your wedding dress fitting to guarantee a great fit. Note that we don't use the phrase "perfect fit", because in our opinion, it doesn't exist. A skin-tight wedding dress looks amazing, but isn't practical. A loose wedding dress doesn't look great, but is a dream to wear. You're looking for that sweet spot in between. Before you go flailing about in the dressing room, make sure that the person who's doing the alterations is happy for you to move about, and take it nice and slow - there may be pins or temporary stitches in place, and you don't want to damage the dress at this early stage!
walk around - go for a nice long stroll around the room, keeping in mind whether you'll need to walk up steps on the day or climb an incline to reach a special wedding portrait location.
note your temperature - if the fabric loses or retains more heat than you imagined, you'll need to take extra precautions against the elements.
slouch - in a perfect world, you'd keep your shoulders back, your chin up and your stomach tucked in (the way a model would during a bridal photo shoot) for the duration of your wedding day but, realistically, you'll let that perfect posture slip at some point during a 15 or 20-hour celebration.
sit down - you'll need to sit for a significant portion of the day, including the ceremony and the meal, so it's important that you're comfortable doing so.
mime hugging someone - there's no need to lock the person doing your alterations in an embrace (although you wouldn't be the first one!) Instead, mimic the gesture, then try it again as if you're straining to reach a tall person or bending down to a short person or child. (We know someone who tore her dress hugging guests after her ceremony, so this is an important one to get right!)
dance - there's no need to break into a full-on breakdance, but if you're expecting to stay in your dress for the whole night, it's a good idea to test things out by having a brief bop or two.
raise your arms - you'll be surprised how often this is required on your wedding day, between waving, Meghan Markle-style, at onlookers as you travel to the ceremony, and raising the roof on the dancefloor.
mime getting in and out of a car - it helps to practice entering and exiting a vehicle, particularly if you're planning an unusual form of transport.
figure out your bathroom plan - you've got to be wearing the dress to figure out how to pee in it, and now's a good time to do it! We can highly recommend the Bridal Buddy, check it out!
take the dress off - it's important to know in advance how many people, if any, you'll need to help you get dressed and undressed, and to write down any instructions that you're given about buttons or clasps, as you may not remember them in six months' time!
Getting your wedding dress fitting just right can make or break your big day because if it goes wrong it will be one of the memories that stick with you - so let us guide you into finding the perfect dress and trust in your seamstress to make sure it fits like a dream!
Lots of love
Claire & Christine xx