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Filtering by Tag: dallas wedding planner

Best friends forever!

Rachel Moore

Let's talk a bit about bridesmaids. You've asked them to stand by your side during your wedding because they've always been there for you. They're your people -- the ones you can count on to have your best interests at heart. So show them some love! If you really want to be best friends forever, keep these tips in mind to help minimize stress when picking out bridesmaids' dresses. 

Give them a voice. Ask each girl to select her top two-to-three style and color choices. Then, compile their picks and consider their preferences when making your final decision. You have control over the overall look, but each girl will feel like she's played a part in the process. 

Consider body types. It's a rare group of bridesmaids who all look spectacular in the same dress. Your friends have different bodies, personalities and quirks. Let each bridesmaid pick a dress that offers the appropriate fit and coverage for her assets, and you'll be guaranteed a happy (and good looking!) wedding party.

Order in advance. If you're purchasing made-to-order dresses, place your order 4-6 months before the big day. If you're buying dresses off the rack, purchase them as soon as possible because stores may sell out of popular style/color combinations. Either way, your girls will need enough time for alterations and unforeseen issues. It's always better to be safe than sorry!

Add Sunshine to your Shower!

Rachel Moore

Planning a wedding shower and don't know where to begin? No need to stress. We've put together some tips that are sure to add sunshine to your shower! 

Date. Host the shower around the same date the wedding invitations go out (about six-to-eight weeks prior to the big day). There's an exception to this rule, however. If many guests are traveling from out-of-town for both the wedding and shower, don't ask them to purchase two plane tickets in a six-week period! Instead, spread out the events by holding the shower three months before the wedding. 

Guest list. Determine if it's a women-only party or if couples will be invited. This will impact every aspect of the gathering -- from venue selection and the type of food served to the choice of entertainment.

Timing. If many of your guests have small children, a late afternoon tea on a Saturday often works best. If it's a couples' shower, think about doing something more fun and social in the evening. 

Personalize, personalize, personalize. We consider this the key to any successful party -- whether a wedding, shower or birthday celebration. Who doesn't love specialty cocktails, personalized napkins, customized swag and more? It's the small details that show you care, make guests feel welcome and are most often remembered long after the event. 

Menu. We recommend shying away from food that requires a knife to eat. A shower is a social affair, so serve items your guests can pop into their mouths while carrying on a conversation. Although champagne is always acceptable (and suggested!), take into account the time of day when choosing the drink menu. For a morning celebration, consider serving mimosas or Bloody Mary's, along with a selection of non-alcoholic beverages. For an evening event, you might offer signature cocktails that represent the bride and groom.

Entertainment. While games are not advised -- no need to resuscitate the toilet paper dress --  plan on providing some form of entertainment. (And no, opening presents in front of your guests is not entertaining for them!) You might have the group create hashtag suggestions; try their hand at cookie decorating; or even write down advice, date ideas or predictions on slips of paper to place in a pinata the bride and groom can open on their one-year anniversary. 

And, if you're still overwhelmed after reading these tips, just give us a call. We'll be happy to help you out!

Wedding Dates to Avoid

Rachel Moore

One of the first questions people often ask when learning that you're engaged is, "When is the wedding?" There are numerous factors to consider when choosing a date -- how much planning time you'll need, the season you'd like to get married, and when and where you want to honeymoon, to name a few. It's also good to consider which dates might inconvenience your guests and adversely affect your budget! With that in mind, here are some dates to avoid in 2016 and 2017.

Holiday weekends. At first blush, holiday weekends might seem like an ideal time to host a wedding. Lots of people travel anyway then, you might reason. And many people won't have to work on Monday, so you could potentially hold the celebration on Sunday -- an historically less expensive day for receptions. But think again! In reality, travel and lodging costs skyrocket during these weekends. So do prices for labor, flowers and just about everything else! Besides, holiday weekends are often reserved for family gatherings that people may have to attend instead of your wedding.

Memorial Day
Weekend of May 28-30, 2016
Weekend of May 27-29, 2017

Labor Day
Weekend of September 3-5, 2016
Weekend of September 2-4, 2017

Columbus Day
Weekend of October 8-10, 2016
Weekend of October 7-9, 2017

Thanksgiving (always a Thursday)
November 24, 2016
November 23, 2017

New Year's Eve. We constantly have clients who envision throwing a New Year's Eve wedding. Once they find out the extra cost for the venue and vendors, however, they often decide to choose a different date.

New Year's Eve
Saturday, December 31, 2016
Sunday, December 31, 2017

Super Bowl Sunday. Cross this date off your calendar now...unless you want to rent TV's to live-stream the game during your wedding or risk having die-hard fans miss your celebration!

Super Bowl Sunday
February 5, 2017, in Houston, TX

Religious Holidays. Make sure to check the calendar for any religious holidays, even those you don't observe. Scheduling your wedding during Lent, Ramadan or Rosh Hashanah, for example, may prevent guests from attending due to cultural obligations.

Friday the 13th. If you're at all superstitious, you may want to avoid a wedding weekend that begins on Friday the 13th, which is known as the day of bad luck.

Friday the 13th
May 13, 2016
January 13, 2017 
October 13, 2017 

 

Giving Thanks

Rachel Moore

Although everyone loves getting wedding gifts, the prospect of writing thank you notes can often be daunting. Thank you notes do more than express your gratitude; they let guests know you've received their presents. The gift giving will begin as soon as you announce your engagement and continue well past your wedding day. So follow these simple tips, and you'll find that writing notes may even be pleasant!

Don't skimp on stationary. In fact, we recommend that clients build thank you notes into their wedding budgets. When deciding on stationary, consider the thickness of the paper, the font color and style, border choices, etc. Don't forget to think about the envelopes, too! Maybe you want your envelopes to be a fun color, lined with a gorgeous pattern or printed with your return address. Beautiful stationary makes it more enjoyable to write thank you notes -- and more special to receive them! 

Purchase pre- and post-wedding versions. Because you aren't technically Mr. and Mrs. until after the wedding, consider purchasing some notes that have your first names at the top and others with your new, shared last name or monogram (like the pictures above). While you may want the post-wedding stationery to be more formal and match your wedding theme, feel free to have fun with colors and fonts for the pre-wedding notes! Purchasing extras of both versions will prove handy for years to come. 

Treat yourself to nice pens. Select your writing implement based on your paper choice. Make sure the pen rolls nicely across the page, doesn't get absorbed into the paper and doesn't smudge. We suggest you stick with blue or black ink, depending on your stationary's color scheme. By stocking up on a few nice pens and storing them with your stationary, you won't have any excuse to put off writing those notes!

Stock up on stamps. If you're like us, you love checking completed items off your to-do list! How frustrating to take the time to write a note but not be able to mail it because you lack stamps. Always have a roll of stamps on hand. Go to the post office and purchase nonseasonal forever stamps. That way you can use them...forever!

Don't procrastinate. A little discipline goes a long way. We suggest that clients write a thank you note as soon as they receive a gift. Just turn on some music, pour a glass of wine and start writing! Also, remember to keep track of those you've already thanked...otherwise you might embarrass yourself by sending the same person two notes! 

Personalize each letter. We all know there is a formula for writing a proper thank you note, but make an extra effort to add a personal touch. Thank the person or couple for traveling to your wedding, share how much you enjoyed dancing with them all night, explain how you plan to use the check or gift they sent, share how excited you are to see them at the next event, etc. 

Sign both names. The gift was sent to both of you. No matter who is writing the note, make sure you sign both names!

Say Goodbye to Uniformity!

Rachel Moore

Mixing and matching has never been trendier. Here are some ways to mix and match your way to a gorgeous event.

Round and rectangular tables. Try one long head table in the middle of the room surrounded by round tables, or flank the dance floor with three rectangular tables and fill the remaining space with rounds. Either lends itself naturally to a variety of centerpieces, adding interest to your reception space. 

Photo credit: Amy Karp Photography

Photo credit: Amy Karp Photography

Types of chairs. From cross backs to round backs, chiavaris to ghost chairs, feel free to mix and match -- even at the same table!

Photo credit: Pepper Nix Photography

Photo credit: Pepper Nix Photography

Photo credit: Amy Karp Photography

Photo credit: Amy Karp Photography

Silver and gold. Don't be afraid to mix metallics! You can absolutely use petite silver vases and gold silverware or gold chargers and silver flatware. In fact, we love BBJ Linen's new silver birch linen, which highlights both gold and silver tones. 

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Patterns and textures. There's nothing more fun than a client who opts for mixing it up with bright, bold, patterned linen! 

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

So try a little variety...you'll be glad you did!

How to host a Rocking Reception!

Rachel Moore

1. Hire a great band/DJ and play songs that will encourage guests to dance! You can show off your discerning musical taste some other time. If you want people to have a blast at your reception, play danceable music!

2. Don't give guests an excuse to leave the dance floor. Keep a bar open nearby so they can easily get a refill, and provide comfortable shoes for ladies who decide to kick off their heels (our current favorites are Rescue Flats).

3. Keep the surprises coming. Planning a fireworks display? Don't tell your guests beforehand. Let them be surprised!

4. Offer late-night food to keep guests fueled. Serve munchies (think: sliders, fries, pizza, milkshakes, etc.) about an hour before the end of the evening. You can even ask the catering staff to pass these alcohol-absorbing foods on the dance floor. Again, another reason your guests won't have to stop dancing!

5. Provide lounge seating near the dance floor. Even those dancing the night away may need to take a breather. With lounge seating near the dance floor, guests can relax while still feeling a part of the party.

6. Hand out party favors. Whether you pass out neon necklaces, custom sunglasses, awesome party hats, boas, or glow-in-the-dark musical instruments, your guests will love you for it. Plus, your photographer will capture awesome pictures of your grandmother rocking a funky mask!

7. Keep toasts short. Avoid open-mic night at all costs, and remember that it's quality -- not quantity -- that counts. Nothing puts a damper on a party faster than a series of long, inappropriate, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants toasts. Select individuals who will make meaningful toasts, and let them know that all speeches should be less than two minutes. Schedule most of the toasts for the rehearsal dinner, with just one or two reserved for the wedding reception. 

8. Offer something for "non-dancers" to do. Be sure to plan something for those who want to take a break from dancing. A photo booth, slow motion video, cigar roller, or butt sketch artist are great alternatives to keep people entertained.

9. Be discerning when making seating assignments. If you're arranging the seating, give careful thought to who you are placing next to whom. A well considered seating chart leads to a lively dinner, which leads to a great dance party, which results in an awesome wedding reception!

10. Plan a welcome reception. If you're limiting attendance to the rehearsal dinner, consider hosting a welcome reception for everyone after the dinner. This allows guests to get to know one another, so they can skip the introductions and go straight to celebrating when your reception rolls around!

 

Tricks for Transforming your Venue

Rachel Moore

You don't have to love everything about a venue to transform it into your dream wedding space! Here are some easy fixes for the most common complaints.

Carpet. Don't worry if the carpet wouldn't be your first choice. Once the tables, chairs, stage, and dance floor have been installed, your guests will see very little of the actual carpet. To ensure this is the case, plan a statement piece in the middle of the room that will draw their eyes. Among other ideas to consider are a floral installation hanging from the ceiling or a unique dance floor.

Wallpaper. Does the wallpaper scream country French when you're looking for art deco?  Find a pattern you love and make it into a GOBO (a patterned light projection). By shining this on the walls, you'll elevate the wallpaper into a stunning light feature!

Linens and Chairs. If you're not happy with the venue's linens and chairs, consider renting others! From rustic, wooden farm tables and benches to elegant linens and colored glassware, find the rental items that best fulfill your vision. If budget is a concern, rent specific pieces that will have a big impact -- like a love seat or king and queen chairs for the bride and groom or a specialty linen for the cake table.

To the Rescue

Rachel Moore

Flip flops have become the go-to, wedding-reception giveaway for couples who want guests to kick off their party shoes and dance the night away. Looking for a fresh, new take on this idea? We recently discovered Rescue Flats.

Rescue Flats are foldable flats that can be worn multiple times. The shoes are one-size-fits-all, thanks to the elastic backs that help secure them to your feet. Other features include: faux leather finishes that are weather resistant and provide a dressier look; and flexible scuff proof soles with padding, so they're comfortable, too.

We had a basket of Rescue Flats available at a recent wedding, and guests couldn't stop raving about them! Although a bit pricier than flip flops,  these cute shoes are definitely worth considering. 

Stamp of Approval

Rachel Moore

No wonder couples love getting married in Park City, Utah. Its quaint charm, natural beauty, endless outdoor activities, and laid-back vibe make it ideal for a destination wedding. And we're not the only ones who think so. Conde Nast Traveler recently ranked Park City the third-best small city in the United States! So, be sure to put Park City on your list of possibilities if you're planning a destination wedding.

The Icing on the Cake

Rachel Moore

As some of you know, our founder/CEO Rachel Derman married Eric Moore on October 4, 2014, at The Ritz-Carlton in Dallas, Texas. It was a dreamy affair that created lasting memories for all who attended, thanks in large part to the yeoman efforts of the wonderful vendors who participated. That's why we're especially honored that The Knot chose to recently feature Rachel and Eric's wedding.

Click on this link to check out the details and view the stunning photos: https://www.theknot.com/real-weddings/a-garden-inspired-jewish-wedding-at-ritz-carlton-in-dallas-texas-album

 

Extra, Extra, Read All About It!

Rachel Moore

Check out our latest post on Food & Wine's Style section for tips on how to create the perfect wedding hashtag!

http://www.foodandwine.com/fwx/how-create-perfect-wedding-hashtag

Pretty as a Picture

Rachel Moore

You tried on countless wedding gowns before falling in love with "the one." You spent hours in alterations to make sure it fit like a glove. You married the man of your dreams and had the best day of your life in  this dress. You paid hundreds of dollars to clean and preserve it after your big day. Now what? Don't just pack it away in a box in your closet. Instead, display your gown in a shadow box frame, and you'll have a masterpiece with enough memories to last a lifetime.

Picking Flowers

Rachel Moore

Photo Credit: Joseph Marks Photography

Photo Credit: Joseph Marks Photography

No matter the size of your floral budget, you'll be able to stretch it much further by keeping the following tips in mind: 

Shop seasonally. We know, peonies are your favorite flower, but they're not available year round. Unless you plan your wedding for peony season, you may have to substitute another flower like the garden rose. Flowers are less expensive and in the best condition when they're in the peak of their blooming season. Plan your wedding date accordingly if you absolutely must have a particular flower; otherwise, be flexible!  

Do your research. Having a destination wedding? Be sure to research the local agriculture laws. Since most islands restrict flower imports, for instance, you might want to consider some native exotic blooms that match your decor instead of flying in tulips from your hometown. 

Consider the weather. Whether you're getting married in the winter or summer, stick with flowers that will keep their shape under extreme weather conditions. Ranunculus, dahlias, callas, delphinium and tulips can survive colder temperatures. Adventurous brides may want to embellish their winter nuptials with non-floral accents like pine cones, dusty miller, snowberries and even feathers! Resilient flowers like orchids, birds of paradise, lilies and roses are perfect for beach settings. Keep these blooms in cooler temperatures and out of the sun for as long as possible for optimal freshness.

 

Party Schools!

Rachel Moore

Colleges aren't just for learning anymore. According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, many schools have begun marketing themselves as wedding venues!  

It makes perfect sense. Prime wedding season falls during summer break when students are away and facilities are going unused. Plus, these institutions are able to accommodate groups of all sizes and are adept at meeting their needs. Equally important, most don't insist that you attended school there to marry on their campuses. No wonder the WSJ says that "the number of college-affiliated venues listed" on WeddingWire "has increased by 144%" over the past five years. 

So, if you're looking for a venue to host your wedding, contact your local college or university. It may not be your alma mater, but it may be a party school!

Honoring Those You Love

Rachel Moore

If you’ve ever watched TLC’s Something Borrowed, Something Blue, you understand the pressure many brides feel to honor their mothers by wearing their often yellowed, usually dated wedding dresses. Rest assured, brides, there are many ways to honor the important people in your life without looking like your grandmother’s doily! 

Put the sixpence your mom wore on her wedding day in your shoe. Assuming mom kept her sixpence, wearing it on your wedding day is said to bring your marriage good luck. It may be a bit uncomfortable, but the sentimental value is six fold!

Wear your mom’s veil. It’s less risky than wearing her wedding dress and has much the same impact. Just remember to bring the veil to your dress consultation to make sure you say “yes” to a dress that works with the veil.

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

 

Sew a portion of your mom’s veil or dress into the inner lining of your gown. Be sure to sew it towards the hem so you can easily show it off without revealing too much leg!

Tie your grandmother’s heirloom handkerchief or wedding ring to your bouquet. Although you don’t want your bouquet to look like a charm bracelet, tying family items to it will allow people who are unable to attend the ceremony to be there in spirit.

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

 

Or, attach a small, framed photo of a loved one to your bouquet. One of our brides carried a picture of her deceased dad so he could symbolically walk her down the aisle. Cue the tears!

Photo Credit: Jenny Martell

Photo Credit: Jenny Martell

Bridal Party Gifts that Keep on Giving

Rachel Moore

Although an honor, being a bridesmaid or groomsman comes with responsibilities. Your bridal party spends time and money making sure your day is everything you envisioned and more. So show them some love by giving them a token of your appreciation!

The best gifts are those that can be used even after the wedding. A well-chosen present will prompt your bridesmaids and groomsmen to think fondly of you and your big day every time they use the item.

At a loss for ideas? Here are some popular choices:

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

 

Bridesmaids:

·      Robes or pajamas. Pamper your ladies by giving them something cute to slip into for hair and make-up. They’ll feel extra special and look great in pictures! We love anything from Plum Pretty Sugar.

·      Jewelry. Everyone knows that good things come in small packages! Give your bridesmaids a piece of jewelry they can wear to the wedding and treasure after. Our favorites are from Kendra Scott or Tiffany’s.

·      Tote bags. A great tote bag, with a personalized monogram, will definitely help each girl keep her items together on the wedding day…and thereafter at the beach or gym!

·      Stationary. Handwritten notes on luxurious paper are making a comeback. Give each of your ladies custom stationary, so they can practice this art form in style!

·      Clutches. Your bridesmaids will need to carry lipstick and cell phones (hello, you want them to take pictures and use your custom hashtag to tag them!). A cute clutch for each girl makes an ideal gift.

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Photo Credit: Thisbe Grace Photography

Groomsmen:

·      Ties and/or pocket squares. For a cohesive look, give your guys a dashing tie and/or pocket square to wear on your wedding day. Your bride will be glad you did!

·      Funky socks. Everyone loves fun socks. (And, if they don’t, maybe they shouldn’t be in your bridal party!) Socks are a great gift for two reasons: they create opportunities for awesome photos, and even the funkiest socks are hidden by slacks when your groomsmen are standing at the altar!

·      Watches. One of our grooms gave each groomsman a different watch to match the individual’s personality. All the watches were purchased on Overstock.com.

·      Shaving kits. To ensure your guys look their best and are freshly shaven for pictures, give them classic shaving kits.

·      Cuff Links. More than one groomsman has been known to forget cuff links (look closely in pictures for substitute items like safety pins!). By giving this accessory to your groomsmen, you’ll help them look sharp at your wedding and beyond.

·      Flasks. Let’s be real, the guys just want to party. Let them start a bit early by gifting them monogrammed flasks. For an extra special touch, fill up the flasks with each one’s beverage of choice!

 

A New Twist on Tents

Rachel Moore

Ranch weddings have long been popular in certain states, but recently they've taken on a new twist. Couples are forgoing the standard tented lawn in favor of permanent, centuries-old, post-and-beam barns. We've had quite a few clients build vintage party barns, complete with bars, caterer-friendly kitchens, custom chandeliers, and plenty of room for dancing.

The rustic look definitely comes at a premium. Heritage Restoration is just one company that specializes in relocating and restoring historic barns, mills and houses. Clients can easily spend hundreds of thousands to have a prized barn dismantled and transported to their property. And that doesn't include the additional expenses to update it and make it their own. But once it's done, you'll have the perfect venue for entertaining!

 

 

Destination Wedding: Park City, Utah

Rachel Moore

Thinking of hosting a destination wedding? Trying to decide between a sandy beach or a mountain view? If you’re leaning toward the mountains, there’s no better place than Park City, Utah. With ski lodges, hotel ballrooms, ranches, art galleries and more, there are so many venue options. Here’s a list of some of our favorites:

The Montage Deer Valley — Few venues are as grand and luxurious as this. The Montage is located atop Empire Pass, tucked within the forested slopes of Deer Valley ski resort. Have you always envisioned your wedding ceremony on a beautifully landscaped lawn overlooking the mountains, followed by a rocking reception and fireside s’mores (and maybe even a little late night bowling)? Then, this is your place! Plus, the hotel offers an in-house childcare service called Paintbox, complete with awesome games, arts and crafts, and both indoor and outdoor activities.

Stein Eriksen — Want to feel as though you’re nestled in the aspens in a classic European ski lodge, all the while knowing that the service will be spectacular? Look no further. The only five-Star, five-Diamond resort hotel in Park City, Stein Eriksen is one of the oldest and most unique properties in the area. It offers a wonderful combination of modern amenities and secluded Old World charm.

St. Regis Deer Valley — This truly is a mountainside retreat. Why else would you have to take a funicular to reach the resort?! The St. Regis Deer Valley offers the grandeur known to this brand, while also providing slope-side views and convenient ski-in/ski-out access.

Deer Valley — Do you have fond memories of family ski trips? This is the main reason couples choose a destination wedding in Park City. Proof of Deer Valley’s popularity is that it’s consistently ranked number one in guest service among North American ski resorts. Exceptional customer service, consistent quality and attention to every detail are all part of the Deer Valley experience. Not to mention, with its scenic mountain backdrops, Deer Valley is one of the premier alpine resorts in the world. It boasts three magnificent lodges, each with its own unique characteristics and pristine views.

Park City Mountain Resort — This is the only resort in this iconic ski town that is connected directly to the lodging, dining and shopping of Park City’s historic Main Street. Guests can load on to Town Lift from Main Street and ride directly to one of the mountain’s peaks. Choose from four different wedding ceremony sites in three unique locations, followed by a reception in either the mid-mountain or base area lodge.

The Canyons — It’s no surprise that many couples choose to exchange vows in the alpine setting and natural surroundings of The Canyons Resort. From breathtaking mountain views and intimate settings at Look Out Cabin and Red Pine Lodge to the more formal and elegant ballrooms at the Grand Summit Hotel, this resort is sure to make any wedding memorable.

Sundance Resort — If you’re looking for somewhere quaint, peaceful and stunningly serene, Sundance may be the perfect wedding location for you! The resort features large, adaptable venues in addition to babbling brooks and gorgeous scenery. Your wedding party can bond while participating in a wide array of activities — from creating custom jewelry or pottery in the art studio to fishing or skiing — depending on the time of year. It doesn’t get more “destination” than that!

Blue Sky Ranch — This property combines the rustic feel of a ranch with the most beautiful setting possible. Blue Sky Ranch’s patio is surrounded by mountains and horse-filled pastures that provide a breathtaking backdrop for your ceremony. After the ceremony, you and your guests can celebrate with dinner and dancing in their indoor arena.

High Star Ranch — Nestled in the mountain valley of Kamas, Utah, about a half hour from Park City, this ranch offers the fresh air, stunning views, gorgeous water features and outdoor recreation typically associated with Utah’s mountains. The property is in the process of building an incredibly beautiful, large-scale party barn that will be a huge hit once it’s complete.

Which venue is ideal for you? Call or email us today. We’ll be happy to help plan your perfect destination wedding!

10 Tips to Finding the Perfect Dress

Rachel Moore

No matter how easy wedding dress shopping looks on TV, believe us, it can be stressful. Our motto is: “Know before you go.” So, keep these 10 tips in mind when heading off to your bridal appointments!

1. Choose your entourage wisely. It may seem like a good idea to ask all 10 of your “best friends” to accompany you, but too many opinions can cloud your judgement. Plus, most bridal gown shops only have room for a few extra people.

2. Try on all different styles. You may have “the perfect dress” in mind, but be open to trying on an array of silhouettes and fabrics. You may surprise yourself!

3. Eat breakfast. We know you want to look your best, but not eating before your appointments will just make you hangry (hungry and angry)! Bridal appointments can take time and the dresses can be heavy, so be prepared by fueling your body.

4. Wear appropriate undergarments and don’t be shy. Your bridal consultant is there to facilitate your appointment, and this includes helping you put the dresses on and take them off. (Don’t worry, she’s seen every shape and figure!) Be prepared by wearing undergarments you don’t mind seeing the light of day.

5. Trust your consultant. You may know exactly what you want, but your consultant knows the dresses. Having seen hundreds of brides with varying figures try them on, she knows what silhouette will look good on your body. Tell her what you envision, but trust her to pull some options for you, and be open to her suggestions.

6. Wear makeup. Believe it or not, many bridal gown shops have overhead fluorescent lighting. So, do yourself a favor and wear a touch more makeup than normal. This will also give you a better idea of how you will look on your wedding day.

7. Don’t just stand there — dance and sit! Your wedding dress may feel very comfortable when you’re standing, but you’re going to be doing a lot more than just standing on your wedding day! Make sure you can dance, sit and walk in it. You may feel foolish in the moment, but we promise you’ll be glad you gave the gown a test drive when you’re able to get down on the dance floor!

8. You may not cry. TV shows tell us that you know it’s “the” dress when you, your mom and your best friend all cry. This may not happen, and that’s okay! Everyone experiences emotion differently, so don’t put pressure on yourself to react a certain way.

9. Just because you’re a  size six in regular clothes doesn’t mean you’ll be a size six in bridal gowns. Bridal gown sizing is completely funky, but your trusty consultant will measure you and make sure you order the perfect size. Focus on how beautiful you feel in the dress, and forget about the size on the tag of the dress!

10. Sharing is caring. You may walk into a bridal shop and see another bride trying on your dress. Keep in mind that you are not the only bride planning a spring wedding and envisioning a lace mermaid gown. Dresses fit everyone differently, and there’s nothing wrong with sharing the mirrors, pedestals and even gowns!