Consider adding a decorative belt to your frock if you're proud of your waist.
Are there any features you can match up to your bridesmaids? Maybe a coloured sash in the shades your maids will be wearing?
You also need to consider your venue. If you're having a traditional religious ceremony you might want your shoulders covered (many dresses come with a separate lace bolero you can take off for an evening party). If it's less formal, you might want a more informal style.
Lace top by Dessy £31
Think about the weather when you're getting married. If you're marrying on a tropical beach, you don't want to be constricted by tight bodices, heavy fabrics or full petticoats because you'll be too hot. Look for looser, less structured styles. On the other hand, if you're marrying in the dead of winter and it's likely to be cold, you can go for rich fabrics like velvets, duchesse satin - and think about a cape or shawl to cover your shoulders when you're outside.
Think about your good points and the not so good. Proud of your shoulders and neckline and ankles? Then find a dress that enhances the pluses and disguises the minuses. If you're very flat chested, a strapless gown probably isn't for you. And if you're full chested you're likely to look top heavy in anything empire style.
You can also go online to buy bridal dresses. However, you need to make sure you're buying from a reputable supplier so that you can be assured of the quality. If you go online, make sure that you allow plenty of time for the dress to arrive (or be returned) and any alterations made.
Once you've made an appointment with a bridal shop, keep an open mind when the sales person asks what you're looking for. These people are EXPERTS and they'll be able to tell by looking at your figure, height and general manner what's likely to suit you. If they pull out a dress that you think is the last kind of thing you'd ever wear, take a deep breath and try it on. You never know until you try it and you may well be surprised.
Destination wedding dress by Dessy. Style 1053
Make appointments with several different bridal boutiques. Go to the High Street, store concessions and specialist bridal boutiques. You'll find different dresses in each by different designers - so it will give you an idea of what's available.
Budget. Oh, I know it's boring. You probably just want to max out the credit card and go off and splash out on your dream wedding gown. But you really, really need to set a budget before you do anything else. Blow thousands on a wedding dress and it might restrict you on other aspects of your wedding day. Stuff like how many guests you can have. Where you get married. What sort of food you serve. How much of the fizzy stuff you can offer. So sit down with your other half and work out what you have to spend on your big day (here's a useful article) and take it from there. Once you have in mind what you have to spend on your dress - then it's time to go shopping.
Will Valentine's Day result in an engagement for you? Or did he pop the question on New Year's Eve?
Either way, if you're anything like other brides, the first thing you'll be thinking of when you get engaged is, WHAT AM I GOING TO WEAR?
Because getting your wedding dress right is crucial to how you look and feel on your big day.
So here are 10 tips to making sure you make the right choice - and having a frock you're going to LOVE!
What about your hair? If you're having an updo, some dresses will show it off to better effect than others. When you're trying on frocks, talk to the assistant about how you're considering wearing your hair so they can bear it in mind.
One thing is for sure. You don't need to rush into buying a dress (unless you're having a whirlwind wedding in just a few weeks after your engagement). Take your time about it. Also remember that if you're having a designer dress made for you, it may take a few months to be created, so you'll need to factor that in.
Have you any other tips to add?
Featured image via Ellie Sanderson Bridal Boutique