The 7 Dos and Don’ts Of Buying A Wedding Dress Online

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There’s something undeniably magical about going to a fancy bridal boutique, sipping champagne and trying on beautiful, exquisitely made, designer wedding dresses. But for a lot of brides – who can’t or don’t want to – the mere idea of dropping £3000 on a dream dress is completely out of the question!

I think it’s good to have options and so instead of just blindly writing about it, I actually wanted try it out for myself. I ordered two dresses from Adorona.com, based in Shanghai, who sell made-to-measure and customisable dresses online.

There are a number of things you should consider if you plan to buy your wedding dress online, either second-hand (from somewhere like eBay), from an independent designer on Etsy, or via a website that makes and sells wedding and prom dresses from China.

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1. Do check the fabric

First and foremost you should check the fabric of the dress you like, and if at all possible, ask for swatches to be sent to you before you place an order. Sometimes clothing can look really beautiful online, but when you see it in the flesh you realise why it was so cheap! Using lower quality fabrics is one of the most common ways that online retailers keep their costs down.

I’m not going to lie, the fabrics used on the two dresses I ordered were in no way comparable to something you might see in a bridal boutique. However, I was pleasantly surprised. They were a lot nicer than I thought they might be, especially for the price. Most importantly though, the dresses were exceptionally well made. The fabric was thick and the stitching in all the right places. There were no threads hanging off, or unfinished edges, and the embellishments were of a high quality. The dresses were also both super comfortable to wear.

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Travel Themed Wedding Italy: Ale & Bauz

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Ale and Bauz love to travel, so when it came to getting hitched coming up with a theme was easy. They were married in July in Verona, Italy. “Our love story started with a first kiss during the White Night (an all-night arts festival) in Verona”, wrote the bride. “Verona is our hometown but Bauz lived in Spain and he was just back in Italy for work. We had a long distance relationship for two years. After many letters, phone calls and flights, we finally decided to move in together. We lived in Milan for three years and now we live in Madrid. However we knew we wanted to go back to Verona to get married.”

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“The theme for our wedding was born spontaneously: all the travel we had to do when we first got together!” she continued. “Travel is also a common passion that always played an important role in our lives. Also, the marriage proposal came during one of our trips, on a beach in Cuba. Because we don’t live in Verona we also planned the wedding from afar. There was a lot of travel involved there too! Having a cohesive theme helped us to create an harmonic event and simplify the decision-making process.”

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Somerset Festival Wedding: Rachel and Luke

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Rachel and Luke were married in a field at Fernhill Farm in Somerset. They had their ceremony outside and their reception and after party in she sheep shearing barn! “Our legal ceremony was very low key at a registry office in Bristol the day before the wedding so we could have a personal ceremony at the wedding venue”, began the bride. “We asked our friend Doug Francisco, Ringmaster of the The Invisible Circus, to guide our unofficial vows.”

“It was important for us to create a party for all of our friends. We have so many people that are important to us in our lives – especially because of Luke’s festival work – we wanted to find a way to involve as many of them as we could. Creating a festival style wedding seemed the perfect solution, enabling us to use our contacts. I guess lots of people would consider this alternative, but to us it is quite normal.”

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Rachel wore a 1920s style sequinned, beaded dress which came from a high street store. Her shoes were from New Look and in her hair she wore simple silk flowers. Luke dressed very casually, in his favourite hat, jeans and a black jacket. They both wanted to feel comfortable and like themselves.

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Beachy, Relaxed Mexican Fiesta with a Helicopter Arrival: Matt & Lauren

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If there’s one kind of wedding I can’t get enough of it’s ones with lots of COLOUR! I don’t know about you, but seeing it all there together makes me so damn joyful. Even with the dark and moody British skies, Matt and Lauren’s May wedding looks super fun, bright and sunny!

The wedding was held in Cornwall, with the reception at Porthilly Farm. “I didn’t want to create an average wedding. I wanted the guests to be wowed and surprised throughout the day”, wrote the bride. “It helped keeping as much as we could a secret from as many guests as possible. I was not a bride who delegated; instead, I worked hard on DIY projects, and hid anything that would give people clues about the day!!”

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“I wanted to make sure the first impressions of our wedding would set the feel for the day”, she continued. “So I designed the Order of Service and ensured it was fun, casual and didn’t have fancy words or writing. That wasn’t what our wedding was about! I hand-sewed and made each guest a felt flag saying fun words on them to wave during the ceremony. I was determined I wanted a lively upbeat ceremony and figured flags were the best way to do it. That combined with an incredible soul band singing our upbeat choice of songs and hymns resulted in the whole congregation and the vicar enjoying the fun filled but still special ceremony.”

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WIN Some Ombrè, Glitter Magic from Rock n Roll Bride & Crown and Glory!

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Picking a favourite collection from my collaboration with Crown and Glory is flat out impossible, but ombrè and glitter are pretty hard to beat right? So when Sophie asked me if I wanted to run a contest for someone to win a one of the complete sets, the ‘Gala’ designs were my first choice.

This amazing prize includes a belt, a huge bow, a medium bow, a headband and a cuff. That’s one item for every day of the week, OR, if you’re feeling extra lovely, one item for each of your bridesmaids! We designed them to be worn as a mismatched but co-ordinating set, so I’d personally love if you did the latter (and then sent me photos afterwards!)

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Each piece is available in either pink, purple, blue or black, and the winner can pick whichever colours they’d prefer (all the same or mix and match).

To enter, simply like both Rock n Roll Bride and Crown and Glory Accessories on Facebook and come back and comment on this blog post telling us why you want to win. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

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Sock Puppet Wedding at Brooklyn Winery: Lindsay & Jesse

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Married at Brooklyn Winery in New York, Lindsay and Jesse’s wedding was fun, colourful and a perfect reflection of them. It wasn’t all smooth sailing, but you’d never know that to look at these beautiful pictures. The bride wore a striped dress by Hayley Paige and many pairs of custom glasses! They had paper flowers instead of real ones and a Rice Krispy cake in lieu of anything traditional.

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“We decided to just do what we wanted”, began the bride. “We planned the wedding by ourselves with minimal input from friends and family. Any time we began to question our choices, we had to remind ourselves that we were doing it our way, regardless of expectations. We were largely inspired by one of our favorite artists out of Brooklyn, Marty Allen. Marty specializes in large format sock-puppet photography; his work has been a staple of our relationship, as each year we buy a new print from him at the Union Square holiday market. Our apartment is furnished with his colorful-imagination-turned-beautiful-art. We commissioned sock puppets of ourselves for the wedding, which were integral to the décor, featured prominently in our invitations, and proved to be a hit at the photo booth.”

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