Find Your Dream Wedding Dress

The pre-wedding task most Brides look forward to is choosing a Dress. You may have fantasized about the creation from the moment he popped the question, but the chances are you probably haven't yet considered the practicalities of actually finding your Dream Dress.

So, whether you have a clear idea, or your spoilt for choice and don't know where to start, get loads of inspiration from Wedding Magazine fashion pages and use this guide to ensure that what should be lots of fun, is lots of fun.

Spend a day shopping for ideas, set a budget and then make sure you stick to it.

Allow plenty of time to find your Dream Dress - it may take you a while and most shops expect you to order at least three to four months before your big day.

Try on as many styles as you can. Lots of dresses have zero hanger appeal, but look great once you put them on.

Its a good idea to start out with a general idea of the kind of dress you like: traditional, straight, empire line, princess line, etc.

Remember to look at your rear view! Your Guests will have an uninterrupted view during the ceremony, so it's got to look good.

Think about whether you want a theme to your wedding (color, period, style) as this will make your choice of dress easier.

Be practical - a huge skirt will be hard to maneuver in a tiny Church.

Consider the season of your wedding. Late Spring or Summer Ceremonies call for cool silk, chiffon, pure cotton or lace. Late autumn and winter weddings demand warm, heavier fabrics such as brocade, velvet and duchess satin.

Don't dismiss man-made fabrics - a good quality dress is a cost-effective option which travels well (synthetic fabrics crush less) - important if you've a long trip to the ceremony or are getting married abroad.

Generally, a pure white dress looks better on brunettes, while ivory and cream flatters the traditional English Rose.

If your budget is limited consider hiring you dress. You can pay about the same to hire a designer dress as you would to buy a mass-produced frock.

You could recoup some of the cost of a designer dress by selling it after the wedding (if you can bear to part with it). There are several agencies and exchanges that will help but your gown must be in pristine condition.

Make the most of your natural assets. Tall, slender brides look stunning in long, lean silhouettes, while shorter brides should avoid full skirts and trains, opting for smaller details and trims. A V-shaped waist makes you look taller, you can emphasize a neat waist with a sash, show off good legs with a short skirt, hide plump arms under long sleeves and bony shoulders under high necks. Finally, bustles are a definite no-no for the pear shaped!

Always take at least one other person with you (two is best) when shopping for your dress, so that you know what your wedding finery looks like from every angle.

Ask to try on a veil with the dress so you can get an idea of the complete look - a short veil may well turn a dress from ordinary to special, while a long veil might not work at all.

Choose your Bridesmaids' outfits to match detail or color on your dress. And if you have a theme, make sure you tie in with your maids.

Think about the style of your shoes: whether or not you want a heel may affect the whole look of your dress.

Consider any other accessories that you may need to set off your wedding dress - jewelry, gloves, bags, scarves etc. will all add finishing touches and complete your look, but will they bust your budget?

After the wedding, preserve your dress by having it expertly cleaned and boxed.