Terms to know when going Wedding Dress Shopping

Terms to know when going Wedding Dress Shopping

I remember when my girlfriends took me into my first Bridal dress store. I was so damn excited!! There were rows and rows of different styles and coloured dresses (if you’re confused about the colour, I’ll explain more about it below) and I soon felt out of my depth trying to find the perfect dress. It felt like the sales assistant and seamstress were speaking a whole other language! So let me break down what you’ll need to know before you go to your first bridal dress shop.

Dress Colours

For this blog, let’s exclude all the eccentric wedding dress colours and focus on White. You may already know this but if you didn’t… there are actually several shades of white. Most commonly there is Brilliant White, Ivory, Pearl and Champagne but each one isn’t that much different from one another. And depending on your skin tone the different whites will either look great or terrible on your skin. (But that’s for a whole different blog post! – stay tuned)

Made to Measure / Made To Size

Upon purchase of your dress, you’ll be able to choose between Made to Measure (MM) or Made to Size (MS). MM means making it to your exact measurements and MS means making it to a dress size such as 8, 10, 12 ect… Despite whether you get MM or MS, you’ll always need to do some alterations. MM will include the alterations in their price which makes them a bit more expensive but MS will not include alterations. So it really depends on what needs to be done and how close the wedding day is. You could always go with MS and get a cheaper seamstress but be warned about doing that – this is my experience on my wedding dress.

Dress Trains

Your dress train will affect how you look when you walk down the aisle. It will also influence how long you’ll want your veil to be and therefore the cost of the overall look. Especially when you’re buying MM, you can customise the length of the dress train for both yourself and your bridesmaids dresses! So it’s always good to have this in mind before purchasing.

Dry Cleaning of your Dress

Think about how much it’s going to cost to dry clean your dress! Actually the first question you should ask yourself is what are you going to do with your dress afterwards. Are you sentimental about your dress? Will you want to sell it again? In which case you’ll defintely want to have it dry cleaned. It’s just something to think about. You don’t want a dirty $3k dress just hanging in your closest for all of eternity! (I’m guilty of this – don’t judge!)


You can always ask for the Off-Cuts of either your wedding dress or bridesmaid dresses when purchasing MM to make Ties,Bowties and Pocket Squares. That way – you can guarantee the correct colour match for your groomsmen and your bridesmaids. Of cause, you can always purchase these things elsewhere but their is no guarantee match. It’s up to you as a couple about what you value more.

So go walk in with confidence because you’ve got this shopping thing down packed! Now that you know the language terms!

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