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Saturday, February 26, 2011

Bridal Timelines




In the past couple of weeks, I have had many customers in the store looking for all types of wedding supplies. Many of them have casually commented that they have lots of time to make a decision because the wedding isn't until late April or even May. In my head, I am screaming, "WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?" That is almost no time at all to order any type of gown and times for ordering accessories is getting short.
So here is my idea for ordering bridal items:

WEDDING GOWN ORDER 6 MONTHS BEFORE WEDDING
This item usually takes the longest to order. Most gowns will run approximately 3 MONTHS to arrive in the store. Then add an additional month for alterations and you don't want the gown the day before the wedding so 6 months is a good measure.

BRIDESMAID GOWNS ORDER 4 TO 6 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
Bridesmaid gowns vary greatly by designer. A decision on the type of gown you would like for the wedding should be made at least 6 months in advance. Then depending upon the delivery schedule of the designer, the order time may be moved to 4 months before the wedding.

MOTHER'S AND FLOWER GIRL GOWNS ORDER 4 TO 6 MONTHS BEFORE WEDDING
These gowns are similar to the bridesmaid and often are by the same designers. Therefore the same lead time is needed. There are a few companies that do a good job of keeping stock for these gowns and do not require as long of time to order. But your decision on the type of gown should be made early enough to allow for the longer shipping times if needed.

TUXEDO RENTALS 6 WEEKS BEFORE THE WEDDING
All orders should be sent in to the tuxedo company at least 6 weeks before the wedding. So if you need to give your groomsmen a time to be measured, give them more than 6 weeks before the wedding. This way there is time to complete the paper work on the order.

GOWN ACCESSORIES 2 TO 3 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
This can include a veil, tiara, jewelry, slip, undergarments and shoes. Again, these items will vary with each designer and store. Just make your decisions early to avoid any problems.

CEREMONY ACCESSORIES 2 TO 4 MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
These items will vary depending upon engraving. If you want items engraved with names or dates, the longer lead time will be needed.

INVITATIONS
Only you can determine this order time. Delivery from the printer will be approximately one month. Then add the time needed to address invitations, mail them and how many weeks in advance you want the guest to receive it.

CAN YOU GET THINGS QUICKER?
Sure, but just be prepared to select from a limited amount of designers or pay a rush fee. Rush fees are available for some gowns and can cost up to $100 per wedding gown and $50 per bridesmaid.

MY BEST ADVICE
Shop early or be flexible!!! And what do I mean by early, at least one year before the wedding date. If you don't have a year to shop, be flexible!!!