Many brides-to-be cherish having close and supportive loved ones with them at the bridal salon. After all, wedding dress shopping can definitely be quality time. Having your mom, mother-in-law, sisters and maid of honor there can be a warm way to hear feedback on potential gown choices. On the other hand, some wedding dress shoppers like to make the initial visits by themselves to get a feel for what’s available without any outside opinions. Both of these approaches are perfectly acceptable.

You are in control

Sometimes brides want to invite the entire bridal party and extended family. Others simply wish for their mom, dad or grandparents or fiancé to accompany them. There is no right or wrong way to go wedding dress shopping. Follow your heart. If a critical personality has you concerned, perhaps ask that one to join you for lunch afterward and take pictures at the salon that you can share for “constructive” opinions.

If Aunt Mildred is hinting that she wants to come with you and she is one of your favorite Aunties, by all means, invite her. However, if Aunt Mildred (or anyone else for that matter) practically invites herself and you prefer that she not come, there are polite ways to put your foot down and you have every right to do so. Consider who you really want to be present with you during this epic shopping trip and do not feel guilty or pressured to bring extra people.

Going it alone

A significant number of brides know their limits and don’t want to deal with any drama or excess anxiety when shopping for a dress. If you feel that your gals are too loud and opinionated to join you, don’t sweat it. Having a large number of people commenting on every aspect of your dress may not be the most relaxing experience. Don’t forget, the professionals who work at the bridal salon are more than qualified to discuss cut, alterations and styles and they will help you pull the right dresses to try on.

Technology is amazing

If you are shopping alone because family and friends live apart from you, or if you are simply missing one key loved one who’s opinion you particularly value, see if you can have an online video conference set up during your appointment to enable everyone to participate from afar. Some salons have everything available for such occasions. Call ahead to see if you need to bring your laptop, iPad or any equipment on your end if this is your plan.

Make a day of it

As noted, wedding dress shopping is quality time. So, why not stretch the experience out and make a day of it? You want to be sure that no one in your crew has low blood sugar before, during or after your trip to the salon. That wouldn’t be right — so go for breakfast, brunch or lunch before your appointment and grab some appy’s afterward. Decision-making on an empty stomach can leave you scattered and shaky. Avoid all this needless confusion with some great food and drink with your best gals.

Veils, jewelry and other wedding accessories

Securing your dress is the main event, of course, but if you still have time and energy, don’t forget all the extra details. The top bridal salons, like New York Bride & Co., strive to have everything you need under one roof. From veils to hair accessories to jewelry, you can find the items you need to polish your look from head to toe.

You really must come see our incredible selection of designer wedding dresses here at NYB&Co. Bring your loved ones (we have large dressing rooms that will accommodate them) or come alone (our seasoned bridal consultants will be happy to assist you) and find the dress of your dreams.