Part I – Five Tips for Choosing a Wedding Dress
Your Day By Nicole, Fargo, ND
This is an exciting day on the blog! Today we begin a series on all things wedding planning. If you are a bride planning your dream wedding in the Fargo-Moorhead or Lakes Area, this post is for YOU! Reading national wedding blogs to gather wedding inspiration is exciting, but that excitement can quickly turn to frustration when you transition from the “dreaming” stage to the real life planning stage.
When it comes to your wedding, you should be able to infuse the day with your unique personality and not feel roped into choosing one of four basic options. I want you to get connected with good wedding vendors who will listen carefully, take your vision and then ADD VALUE to it. You should be able to bring your ideas to your vendor and watch them come to life. Sadly, many brides default to basic, personality-less options because they don’t have a team of vendors taking their ideas forward.
A couple weeks ago, I met up with Nicole of Your Day By Nicole. I love this little shop because of its bright and airy boutique vibe. YDBN is located on 1st Ave in the heart of downtown Fargo – incidentally located by the Smiling Moose Deli and the Mile-Hi Thai Chicken Wraps I am also obsessed with. Whoa, Abby, don’t get distracted. I spent the afternoon photographing beautiful dresses and watching Nicole and her girls service their customers. The gorgeous Amanda helped model some of the current styles, and Nicole talked me through some tips for purchasing a wedding gown.
Five Tips For Choosing A Wedding Dress
Tip #1: Shop 6-9 Months Ahead
Ordering a gown often takes 3-5 months, so shop early and give yourself a buffer of time for alterations.
Tip #2: Try All Silhouettes
There are a few basic silhouettes to be aware of: Ball Gowns, A-Line, Mermaid, Trumpet. When you first walk into a dress shop, the number one thing on your agenda is to try on at least one of each style. This will give you a better idea of what your body is best suited toward. Don’t think that because you are a curvy or a thin bride that you can only wear certain styles. Have an open mind and you might be surprised at what you see in the mirror! Every dress has a “sweet spot”, the part of the dress where it hugs your body. When you find a dress that hits you in just the right places, it’s magic!
Tip #3: Make Sure You Can Move
Your wedding day isn’t a gymnastics event (Olympics, anyone?) but you will definitely want to be able to move comfortably! Not only will you want to hug your guests and dance the night away, but also you should think about your wedding photo session! During portrait sessions, I’m often asking the bride to bend from the waist, sit, hug and walk! This produces wedding images that are vibrant, romantic and alive. A super-tight wedding dress might make you look 5 lbs skinnier, but it can also make breathing difficult. This is not a good trade-off and the result will be stiff, uncomfortable looking photos. Nobody wants that!
Tip #4: Customize Your Dress
Know that you can customize your dress. You can add straps, add sleeves, alter necklines and hemlines and so much more! Nicole has a lineup of alteration specialists who will meet with you in-store. These alterations help you make the dress your own. Did you know you can even build your dress from ground up? Nicole and her team LOVE working with brides who come in with a unique vision for their wedding dresses. Just a few weeks ago, they helped a bride design an incredible two-piece dress. They ordered a corset top and a skirt according to her specifications so she could have the dress she’s been dreaming of. The sky is the limit, so think outside the box!
Tip #5: Trust Your Gut
Sometimes a bride and her helpers (mom, sisters, friends) have different opinions on what she should wear. It’s hard when a bride has found a dress that she loves but, for whatever reason, it’s not what the helpers had in mind. They encourage her to go with a different dress or wait a few days to decide. In those situations, Nicole recommends that you trust your gut. It’s good to have help, but also recognize that you’ve been dressing yourself for how many years? You know what outfits make you feel confident and beautiful. Trust your gut and go with the dress that feels right.
Meet Nicole, owner of Your Day By Nicole, Fargo, ND!
Tell me about how your business started.
My background is in fine jewelry and I had always dreamed of opening a jewelry shop, so opening a bridal store was never something I intended to do. Your Day by Nicole opened in January 2014, originally as a collaboration with Halberstadts who had a vision for a bridal store in downtown Fargo. As long as they were willing to sell engagement rings in the shop, I was game! Very soon I caught the vision, because I realized that what I truly loved was servicing customers. My husband and I now own and operate the store ourselves.
What is the average wedding dress budget for a bride in Fargo-Moorhead?
$1300-$1500 is our most popular price point. However, we carry a range of styles from affordable $500 dresses all the way to $2500 showstopping gowns.
Tell me about the alterations process.
We work with three independently contracted seamstresses who come into our store and work with brides on their fittings. We operate as the middle-man so that the bride gets the alterations she wants, which is good because some brides are soft-spoken and have a hard time speaking up if they aren’t happy with how something is fitting. We are more than happy to deal with that! Average alteration price is $250.
What sizes do you carry in-store for trying on?
We carry sizes 8-32 in-store, so there are plenty of options for every size!
What styles are trending right now?
Backless dresses are trending everywhere! Dresses with sleeves also continue to grow in popularity.
What makes you different from other wedding dress shops in town?
Customizable products and incredible customer service. Brides often remark on how well they were cared for here. We have a boutique vibe and sell not only unique bridal gowns but also bridesmaid’s dresses, party dresses, jewelry, lingerie, and more. Since we are a new bridal store and not strapped into a reputation in the area, we are able to take a fresh look at bridal and offer something unique. You can be yourself in this store! You don’t have to come and fit into a specific bridal mold.
Check out Your Day By Nicole at 102 Broadway N #103, Fargo, ND 58102
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