Wedding Advice

5 tips on shopping for your wedding gown

Her World Brides' Contributing Editor Steve Thio helped Jade Seah decide on her dream dress, and came away with five salient points on shopping for The One.
 

jadeseahdinner2.jpgAt the couple's dinner, at Chijmes. ALL PHOTOS: STEVE THIO/HERWORLDBRIDES

As Jade and I are long-time friends, I was involved in helping her find her wedding dress. With a portfolio of over 60 different looks she sourced online, Jade had too many ideas about what her dress would be like - which made it difficult for the designer to pin down an actual look and design.

I then joined Jade during her appointment and helped her confirm the design of her dress in one visit - the beautiful creation from Calla Bridal that she wore on her big day.

Here, my top tips on helping you decide on the dress of your dreams.  

1. EDIT, EDIT, EDIT
It's useful when you have picture references for your designer, but too many may confuse him or her. Focus on the theme of your celebration, and the venue and mood of your ceremony. Is it held outdoors, by the beach or at a grand location? These factors will help determine which designs are suitable for the occasion. Jade had a traditional church wedding so her gown had to be slightly conservative - she settled for a bodice design with long sheer and lacy sleeves to match her veil.

jadeseahcouple.jpgThe couple, after they got married.

2. DREAM THEME
What is your theme? Would it be romantic, dramatic or avant garde? Your personal taste will help decide the silhouette, fabric and details of your gown. Jade wanted a romantic feel so she had a dress with a full skirt made from sheer layers.

3. HUE AND TONE
Always get the right fabric colour to match your skin tone and hue. If you're undecided, you can ask your designer to recommend or hold up different colour swatches against your skin. The colour of the gown also conveys a certain look and feel to the design. An all-white dress tends to look more pristine and ethereal - great for light floaty princess gowns. An off-white hue is best for something more dramatic and grand. Cream-coloured gowns work best for modern styles. Jade chose an ivory hue that complimented the classic look of her dress.

Up close: Details of that beautiful lace

4. MATCHING PARTS
Jade loved different aspects of various gowns which she wished to incorporate into her final design. I looked through them and got her to confirm exactly which details and dress aspects appealed to her the most. Pulling the various elements together, we decided if the sum of all the parts made sense. The result: We settled on a hybrid design pulled from different dresses, but with details and fabrics from other looks.

5. LESS IS MORE
For your first appointment with the designer, it's important not to have too many opinions; stick to one or two people whose opinions matter. In this case, Jade went with her mother and I, who helped decide on the final gown design.

If you've got questions on selecting your dream gown, or other issues pertaining to bridal fashion, please drop us an e-mail at sthio@sph.com.sg.

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