Frequently asked questions
There is no set rule as to when you can buy your gown. As long as there is enough time before your wedding for it to arrive, you can find your gown whenever you are ready. Most brides tend to start looking between a year and eight months before the wedding. It is best not to overload yourself with trying on hundreds of gowns, you will only end up confused. Do your research and your bridal consultant will guide you through finding the perfect style!
As a rough guide, the gowns take up to 20 weeks to arrive. Each designer is different but this is a good timescale to bear in mind. Some designers can offer rush orders depending on the style and dates. Once your gown has arrived in-store, it is thoroughly checked, and we will contact you to tell you what to do next. Your first appointment is to look at all the beautiful accessories such as veils and tiaras. Most brides try to go to the hairdressers for a trial run first so you can come with a better idea of the overall look in your gown. At this point we can get you booked in for the fittings closer to your wedding.
When you chose your gown, you are required to pay a 50% deposit. The balance is due when the gown arrives in store. This can be paid no later than when you come in for your first appointment to try accessories. Most people pay for the gown by credit card. We accept all major types of credit or debit card.
When it comes to the day you collect your gown, your bridal consultant will advise the best way for you to transport the gown. This will all depend on the size of the gown. f you are getting married abroad, as part of our service, we will pack your gown into a suitcase for safe travel. It will be wrapped in free tissue paper and carefully folded to fit into the case. We recommend having a case or box the size of your hand luggage allowance in order to keep it with you at all times!
At Ann Bridal we have had to rescue disappointed brides who have either bought a gown online or gone to a dress maker, as the results have not lived up to their expectations or they have been the victim of an internet scam. With a reputable retailer you can buy safe in the knowledge that you know exactly what you are purchasing and that you will receive excellent service throughout the entire process. At Ann Bridal we can work with any budget you may have for your wedding gown.
If you are thinking about buying from the internet please consider these points – will your dress be the right one, the right colour, will it fit, will it have been worn already, where will you go for any alterations and where do you stand should you have any concerns/worries about your purchase?
As a test, the Retail Bridalwear Association (RBA), ordered two famous name dresses online and when they arrived both were counterfeit, inferior quality fakes. The RBA is constantly taking calls on their Helpline from disappointed brides who have been let down by fraudulent online traders. The Sun newspaper recently featured a bride who had been let down in this way and were immediately swamped with calls from brides citing similar cases.
Once your gown has arrived at Ann Bridal and been thoroughly checked, we will contact you by email or telephone with all the details of what you need to do next. Your next appointment should be for you to try on your dress and for you to choose your accessories.
This is a great chance to try on anything you have to go with the gown, or to order anything that you may need from us. We have an excellent choice of tiaras, veils, shoes and jewellery to suit every style.
At this point we will then arrange with for you to have the alterations done. It is extremely rare that a gown will not need altering as they are not made to measure but ordered from a size chart to suit your measurements. Our seamstresses work independently from the shop and we currently have three we recommend. The number of fittings will vary from bride to bride to make your gown fit perfectly. Our highly qualified seamstress will carry out the alterations to the highest standard.
It is important that you bring the underwear and shoes that you are wearing on the day to every fitting, as they will affect the fit of the gown.
As the fitting process is just as special as choosing the gown in the first place, we ask that you limit the number of people you bring with you.
Our fittings are carried out mid-week, ideally not on Saturdays. This is due to the fact that Saturdays are very busy and lots of people may be walking around the shop. We don’t want your beautiful gown out with lots of people around. We do open late on Thursdays for brides to come after work to try on their dress and we also are open on a Sunday 11 am–3 pm by appointment only, if this is more convenient.
Your gown will be stored on the premises in its special dress bag prior to your alteration being completed. We can also deliver the dress to our seamstress, then before your big day bring in your dress by arrangement and it will steamed pressed and titivated for you.