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Before You Shop: Preparing for Your Bridal Dress Journey

  1. How do I find bridal boutiques to visit?

Finding the perfect bridal boutique to start your hunt can feel like an overwhelming challenge! Social media is your BFF here—Instagram and Pinterest are goldmines for spotting boutiques that vibe with your style. Why not dive into online resources like wedding directories and trusty old Google Reviews to get insider tips and glowing recommendations? Also, follow your local shops on social media to get a sneak peek at their latest collections and real bride photos. And don’t forget to ask your married friends or family members for their favourite spots—they’ve been through this adventure and can share the hidden gems!

  1. How far in advance should I start shopping for my dress?

Timing is everything! Ideally, you should start shopping for your bridal gown about 9 to 12 months before your big day, different boutiques and labels will have varying wait times and you don’t want to be caught short. This gives you plenty of time to find “the one,” order it, and make any necessary alterations. However! If you’re on a tighter schedule, don’t worry—many boutiques offer rush services or fabulous off-the-rack options. The earlier you start, the more relaxed and fun your shopping experience will be. So, get those appointments booked and let the dress hunt begin!

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  1. What should I bring and how should I prepare for my bridal appointment?

Ready to rock your bridal appointment and make the most out of your time? Here are the hottest tips:

  • Bring visual inspiration! Think — Pinterest boards, magazine cutouts, screenshots. Some boutiques may ask for reference images when booking the appointment.
  • Dress comfortably and ideally wear some nude and seamless undergarments to get the best idea of how each gown will look.
  • If you already have special shoes or accessories planned for the big day, bring those too! This will help you envision the final look.
  • Many boutiques will have hair ties/clips and refreshments for you — but you never know! Bring a little kit of essentials you may need just in case.
  • Most importantly, come with an open mind and a big smile — sometimes the dress you least expect becomes your ultimate favourite!

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  1. How many guests should I invite to my appointment and who?

When it comes to your bridal squad, less is more. Stick to two or three of your nearest and dearest — think your mum, sister, best friend, or maid of honour. These VIPs know your style and will keep the vibes positive and fun. Too many opinions can be overwhelming, so keep it intimate and focused on you. After all, this is your magical moment, and you deserve all the love and support without any drama.

  1. What price should I be expecting to spend?

Let's talk numbers! Now — off the rack and sample dresses can cost between $1000 to $3000 AUD depending on the label. A made-to-order or custom piece can cost anything between $3000 and $15,000 at some boutiques. However, there are stunning dresses available for every budget. Be upfront about your price range with your consultant so they can show you the best options within your budget. And don’t forget to factor in extra costs like alterations, accessories, and cleaning. Having a clear budget will make your shopping experience smooth and stress-free, ensuring you find the dress of your dreams without breaking the bank. 

Book your appointment here now and happy shopping!

Charlotte from Maison Oui xx