The lovely people at Guides for Brides have put together some really clear guidelines for shopping for your wedding dress during Covid-19 & we wanted to share it with you to make sure you're prepared.
Shopping for your wedding dress during the Covid-19 is going to be very different than it was in 'the before times'. Guides for Brides recently published their shopping guidelines in order to help you prepare for your appointment and find your dream bridal dress in the safest possible way for all of us! We wanted to share their advice with you as we believe it is really easy to understand and important for you to know before you visit us at Bellissima Weddings or any other wedding shop during your big day journey!
Guidelines for Shopping for your Wedding Dress During Covid-19
The government recently announced that they intend to allow all non-essential retailers “from department stores to small, independent shops” to re-open from the 15th of June 2020, as long as they are ‘COVID secure’. This means that bridal boutiques and menswear stores will likely be able to open as long as they have the necessary safety equipment and procedures in place. Here’s our guide to help you prepare for your shopping experience and know what you can expect.
Should I book an appointment in advance?
Yes, almost certainly! In order for many stores to be COVID secure, it is likely that they will be by appointment only. Simply popping in to browse will not be a possibility for the foreseeable future. Your entourage will also be limited and you may be encouraged to come with just one person to help with decisions. Some boutiques will be encouraging customers to have a live video link with bridesmaids or other family members to help with any decisions and join in the experience while minimising the number of people in the shop.
Boutiques will want you to have all the time you need to make such an important decision without feeling rushed. There will inevitably be fewer appointments available to allow time for deep cleaning between customers so it is even more important than before to do your research online and on social media before booking an appointment. This is so you know that the boutique stocks the styles you like in the right price range for you. You won’t want to waste an appointment! Many bridal boutiques already have a waiting list for appointments so that they can get started as soon as they are permitted to open. (All the wedding dresses we have on our website are in-store, and we share prices online to help you with your decisions)
Some boutiques ask for a small fee to book your appointment. This is to ensure you are serious about purchasing so that they can dedicate their time to help you; if you purchase your wedding dress from that boutique, they will usually take this amount off the final bill. Each store’s policy is different so check with them individually before booking an appointment.
How should I prepare for a bridal boutique appointment?
Remember, if you or anyone in your household have coronavirus symptoms or have been in contact with someone who is COVID positive, you should postpone your appointment immediately and isolate for the government-recommended amount of time. If anyone in your entourage is experiencing symptoms they should not attend the appointment with you.
Check that their range fits your budget. If there is a particular dress you want to try on, check they have it in stock.
Pinpoint the right boutique before booking an appointment. You can do this by seeing who they stock online, looking at their photos to see if you like their style and then contacting them in advance.
Do your research prior to the appointment and discuss your style preferences with the team to ensure they have what you are looking for.
For many stores, it will be unlikely that you’ll be allowed to spend time browsing as they’ll want to limit touchpoints and their staff will take the dresses you choose into the dressing room.
If you have a particular style in mind, print off pictures to take with you or send them in advance, rather than handing them your phone to look at. They may have the exact dresses that you are looking for or be able to find similar styles for you to try on. (We have a wish list facility on our website which we'll guide you through before your appointment)
Be aware that there may be less stock due to the knock-on effect of coronavirus. So, if there is a particular fabric, style or designer you are looking for, ensure the team knows, so they can advise you prior to the appointment.
Ask the store what their policies are and what you can expect from your shopping experience. They will provide you with information about the safety measures they have in place and any further information you will need prior to the event.
Ask if there is anything you need to prepare or bring with you to ensure that you are complying with the guidelines set by the government. For example, they may not be able to provide you with a beverage and may need you to bring some water with you in your own bottle.
Will I be able to bring my bridesmaids to my wedding dress appointment?
You’ll be encouraged to only bring just one member of your bridal party with you to minimise risks. The other members will be more than welcome to attend via video link though, if possible. While we are still waiting for the government to announce what it means to be ‘COVID secure’, it is worth being aware that the person who attends the appointment with you may need to be someone from your own household. This could prevent a challenge for the many couples wanting to follow the tradition of the partner not seeing the wedding dress until you walk down the aisle.