CONSHOHOCKEN, Pa., Jan. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- We know that glow. Saying "yes!" to the love of your life can be exhilarating and, if you received a ring over the holiday season, you're not alone. In fact, according to Conde Nast Bridal Media's American Wedding Study, 25% of brides get engaged between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. With all of the excitement, however, comes the planning and countless decisions. Selecting a wedding party, choosing a color scheme and floral arrangements, sourcing venues and most importantly, finding the perfect dress can be challenging to even the most energetic bride-to-be! David's Bridal -- the nation's foremost bridal authority, with more than 270 stores nationwide -- offers several helpful tips to ensure that planning for the day of your dreams is a piece of cake (wedding cake that is): * Mind Your Money: The first and most important step to planning a wedding? Establish a budget and try to stick to it. While many brides dream of a fairy-tale wedding, not all have the fairy godmother's budget. In fact, more and more couples are paying for their wedding themselves -- 32% in 2006 according to the American Wedding Study. Luckily, you don't have to compromise style just because you're keeping finances top of mind. Try a store like David's Bridal that not only has a wide variety of fashionable styles ranging from $299-$1200, but also offers the affordable luxury of designer collections such as Oleg Cassini, Monique Luo and Galina. That way, more funds can go toward starting your lives together as "Mr. & Mrs.," instead of blowing it all on the "big day." * Be Prepared: The old Girl Scout adage to be prepared is just as applicable when planning a wedding as it is when selling cookies. Bridal magazines, websites and bridal shows exist for a reason! Take advantage of these sources to determine what type of bride you are and what type of wedding you want to have before you hit the stores. A great way to do this is to try Dress Your Wedding, an online tool that recently launched on the David's Bridal website (www.davidsbridal.com). Dress Your Wedding allows brides to create the "virtual" wedding of their dreams, experimenting with themes, colors, fashion and accessories. With every bridal gown, bridal party dress and accessory, as well as floral arrangements and tuxedos available in an easy-to view wedding album format, it's a breeze to coordinate wedding fashions. Users can even choose from a variety of background templates, such as a beach, garden or elegant indoor setting, as well as customize the look of the bridal party -- from skin tone and facial features to hair color and style. The best part? Once you've found the fashions that suit your style, you can email a shopping list to your wedding party so that they can print it out and head to their nearest store for a stress-free shopping experience! * If the Dress Fits ... -- Squeezing into a gown that is not the right size is sure to take away from the event and make dancing and mingling with guests more difficult. Make sure to purchase a gown that fits properly and allows you to move freely, so that you can look and feel great as you dance the night away. To ensure the best fit, look for a store that carries a wide assortment of gowns in all sizes, so that you can try on a gown in your actual size. In addition, allow at least six to eight weeks prior to your wedding or portrait date for alterations to ensure the work is completed and ready for pick-up. Another helpful tip: wear the proper foundations and shoes during the fitting so you can envision exactly how the gown will look on your wedding day. * Inquiring Minds Want to Know: To assist in the decision-making process, it's always a good idea to bring one person along whose opinion you value to assist with bridal gown shopping. Having a friend or relative with you will no doubt make the experience more enjoyable, as well as help to ease concerns about selecting the right gown. Besides, who doesn't love to hear the gasps of "you look gorgeous!" over and over again? In addition, between layers of tulle and lace-up bodices, getting gowns on and off can cause some women to break a sweat before even stepping out of the dressing room, so it's helpful to have an extra pair of hands. However, brides-to-be should also listen to the advice of educated consultants, as they are there to help and suggest styles that will fit and flatter their body type. * Keeping it Coordinated: Your wedding is a celebration of your relationship and as such, every aspect should reflect your personal style. To achieve a customized look, try a one-stop-shop that allows you to carry a preferred color theme throughout all aspects of your wedding. If you want to add a splash of color to your gown with a ribbon or sash, David's Bridal enables you to utilize a coordinating color for your bridal party attire. From complementing bridesmaids dresses and accessories to matching invitations and even reception favors, David's offers color coordination both in store and online for all of your bridal needs, ensuring a seamless look. * The Icing on The Cake -- While the bridal gown is undoubtedly the focal point of wedding fashion, no ensemble is complete without accessories. Many bridal retailers carry coordinating accessories or can recommend options that work well with your gown, so it's always good to explore this option first. From tiaras and veils to shoes, handbags, necklaces and earrings, it's the small details that are essential to complete the wedding day look. Once the headpiece and veil are chosen, hair trials are also a great way to ensure that these items compliment your hairstyle. * Time Saving Solutions: Many women don't have the luxury of taking time off to plan their wedding and find it challenging to coordinate all the details while working. To save time and avoid unnecessary stress, look to the internet for solutions. Sites like www.ourweddingday.com have a variety of helpful wedding planning tools such as email-able "save the dates," a personalized wedding website and a detailed online wedding planner that helps with task lists, table planning and gift tracking. In addition to planning, it's also helpful to purchase smaller items online, such as favors, decorations, accessories and bridal party gifts. Try an e-commerce site like www.davidsbridal.com that includes hundreds of creative ideas, as well as the option to design, preview and order invitations online; a key time saver. Using the internet allows brides- to-be to take care of details when it's convenient for them and have items arrive directly on their doorstep. Another tip: guests may also find sites like these helpful, as they can browse a variety of unique and thoughtful gifts for the happy couple. * It's Your Party: Advice from friends and loved ones is important and should be taken into consideration; however, you should never let their preferences dictate your choices. If you want to get married on the beach while Mom wants a big church wedding, talk it out, explain your feelings and ask that she be supportive of your wishes. It is important to remember that this is your day, every aspect should be 100% "you." So, while planning a picture perfect wedding does take time, following these simple suggestions will help to make the process not only a little easier, but enjoyable. So when the special day finally arrives, you can have your (wedding) cake and eat it too! About David's Bridal: With more than 50 years of bridal experience, David's Bridal understands the importance of providing brides-to-be with a vast selection of exquisitely crafted dresses, available at affordable prices. Today, with more than 270 locations nationwide, David's Bridal continues to expand its retail store locations, while maintaining its philosophy of superior quality, value and service. To locate a store nearby, consumers can call 1-877-693-BRIDE or visit www.davidsbridal.com. David's Bridal is a division of The Federated Department Stores, Inc. (NYSE: FD).
SOURCE David's Bridal