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The 3 most important things to do for a successful bridal appointment, according to a celebrity stylist

Samantha Grindell   

The 3 most important things to do for a successful bridal appointment, according to a celebrity stylist
  • It can be intimidating to prepare for a bridal appointment.
  • Celebrity stylist Micaela Erlanger shared her advice for brides with Insider.

Shopping for a wedding dress isn't like buying other clothes.

Not only are you selecting a gown for a once-in-a-lifetime moment, but you're also likely spending more money on a singular piece of clothing than you ever have before.

Plus, most people have never tried on wedding gowns before, so it can be overwhelming to suss out what dress suits you and your big day.

It's an exciting moment, but it can also be stressful since there are so many unknowns.

To help with that stress, Insider spoke to celebrity stylist Micaela Erlanger about the most important things brides should do to ensure they find the dress of their dreams.

Make sure you do some research before the appointment

Erlanger, who recently partnered with Zola to advise brides on how to create a cohesive wedding look, told Insider it's important to arrive at your bridal appointment with some idea of what you want out of a dress.

"Go in having done your research," Erlanger said. "Have an idea of what works on your body."

"Before you're in your wedding appointment, go to a department store and try out a bunch of different silhouettes if you've never tried on evening wear before," she suggested. "Just do a quick try-on to see what looks good on your body."

Erlanger said knowing what silhouette you're interested in ahead of your appointment will make things run smoother, as you typically only have an hour to 90 minutes to try on gowns.

"You're being efficient and productive and you have done your research and you know what silhouettes and shapes you are leaning toward," she said. "It's going to make the life of the specialist who's helping you so much easier. It's also going to yield the greatest result."

Erlanger would also advise brides to research the designers a store carries before going to their appointment.

"If there are any dresses that you want to see in advance, make sure your specialist knows that before you go," she said, adding that some gowns come and go from stores in trunk shows.

Communicating with your bridal consultant in advance will ensure you get to try on everything you want to see.

'Leave the peanut gallery at home,' Erlanger said

Many bridal experts advise brides not to bring too many people with them to their bridal appointment, as they can be distracting or their opinions can make a bride lose sight of what she wants her dress to look like.

Erlanger told Insider it is "actually a requirement that I have for my brides" not to bring a gaggle of loved ones when they start shopping.

"I know everyone wants to have this special moment with their family, but bring them to your second or third fitting once you've narrowed down your selection and trust the professional that's guiding you," she advised.

"This is literally their job, and it is their job to help you choose the most flattering beautiful dress that you feel amazing in," she went on to say. "Your best friend, your mom, your sister, your cousin, whoever might not be a dress professional."

"Let them come in and be excited about the dresses that you've narrowed down as opposed to weighing in on things that they might not really be able to speak to," Erlanger added.

Erlanger said it's important to document the process

Most people take photos when they go wedding-dress shopping, but Erlanger told Insider that she thinks it's a crucial part of the shopping process.

"You want to get photos and video from the front, back, side, and walking," she said.

Erlanger went on to say that it's important to see how your gown will photograph before you buy it.

"Things really do read differently on camera," she said. "After your wedding day, what you are left with are the photos."

"It's really important that if you see yourself in a mirror, feeling and looking one way, and then you see yourself in a photo and it looks and feels a little different, you want to catch that ahead of time," Erlanger added. "You need to look at your photos, and you need to have a really honest dialogue and trust the person helping you to guide you in making the best choice."

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