Wedding Dresses: How to Find the Perfect Wedding Dress

With the wedding day approaching, there are few things that matter as much to the bride as finding the dress they will wear as they walk down the aisle.

There are plenty of wedding dresses but finding the one for you can be like trying to find a needle in the haystack.

The internet is a great resource for searching online, but even then, it can only make it harder to pick the perfect fit. Every bride’s dress choice is based on different needs. Understanding your needs and personal style will be the first step to your journey.

Long Sleeve Long Sleeve: available at Idora Bridal
Strapless -  Couture in Sydney Strapless: designed by Personalised Wedding Couture
Modern Dress Design Modern Style: designed by Bizzaro Bridal Couture


Every Woman is Beautiful

The theme of the wedding day can have a significant impact on the choice of your dress. You may have preferences for a long sleeve dress or a short sleeve dress depending on the season, whilst also considering your body shape and personal tastes, too. Remember, every woman is beautiful, hence there will always be a dress to highlight your favourite features.

For that reason, we’re going to take a deep dive into how you can both source and choose the perfect wedding dress for your big day. We will look into different styles, tastes, traditions, body shapes and more to make sure you get closer to the one dress that you’ll be proud to wear when saying ‘I Do’ to your life partner.

BluePhoto by Melbourne's Doux Wedding Corp
Steven Khalil Dresses Designed by Steven Khalil, Photo by Doux Wedding Corp



Buying a Wedding Dress Online

The internet has become one of the most convenient tools a couple has at their disposal leading up to the wedding. Not just for wedding attire, either.

Online vendor directories like those at ABIA can help you find music for the ceremony, photographers, makeup artists, cake designers, and a huge variety of different services and stores to help prepare for the wedding day.


Online Wedding Directory


Of course, the web can be a hugely valuable resource when searching for the perfect dress, too. Not only can you use it to help you find the perfect bridal gown, you can use the internet to research different styles, trends, and even accessory tips to further help you perfect your unique style for the day.

However, some brides may seek to skip the legwork and let the internet do it all for them. There are plenty of stores that sell online, but the truth is that you might not always get what you pay for. Before clicking on the order button, you need to look at the key differences between buying wedding dresses online vs. reality.

Online Stores

1) You will never be able to ensure that the measurements fit you perfectly. Unless you’ve tried a dress on personally, there is no telling whether it will fit or not. Even if you’re open to making alterations to your dress to make it perfect, it may alter the entire look of the dress you had expected.

2) Your dress may not be everything you expected it to be. Marketing, lighting and angling tricks can do a lot not only to make the dress look gorgeous but to hide flaws in its design as well.

3) If you change your mind, it may not be as easy to fix it as you would like. While most online stores offer refunds and returns, but it’s a lot more hassle to fix over the internet vs. than with a brief conversation in-store.

4) You may fall into the same trap as many other brides and buy a brand name dress that’s actually a fake.

Why shop at a Retail Store?

1.) You get the opportunity to try on your dress, so you will know for sure whether it’s a comfortable fit or not.


Idora Bridal | ABIA Award Winner
ABIA Award Winning Store, Sydney's Idora Bridal


2) It’s a lot harder to miss imperfections when you have your hands on the dress. There’s no trick photography that can make you miss certain details.

3) The professionals in a dress store can help you in a variety of ways, helping you find a dress based on your needs. If you change your mind, it’s easier to simply take the dress back to the store, too.


Paddington Weddings | ABIA Award WinnerABIA Award Winning Team at Paddington Weddings/Bertossi Brides


4) With an up-close inspection, you can more easily tell whether a brand-name dress is the real thing or a knock-off. The former is much more likely, as any legitimate dress store wouldn’t last very long selling counterfeits.

The conclusion should be clear. Though ordering online may seem more convenient, that’s rarely the case. For your peace of mind and to stop you from desperately hunting for a replacement dress, stick to the real world when it comes to making a one-off purchase like your dream wedding dress. The internet can be great for researching, especially when using a wedding dress store directory, but it might not be wise to use it for much more than that.



The Personal Touch

Finding a wedding dress that suits “me”

Try not to spend too much time on trends, instead remember, the woman makes the dress! That means that your body shape, your tastes, and your needs for the big day should always be the first priority and the guiding principle by which you choose the perfect dress. Here, we’re going to look at some of the main criteria that can help you narrow down your choices.

Paddington Weddings Brisbane Designed by Paddington Weddings Bertossi Brides


Your Body Shape

Beauty comes in every shape and size, but the right dress can accentuate your beauty even more.

If you’re a petite lady, flaunt your silhouette with a fitted and long skirted gown that has a high starting waist. Puffy skirts tend to overwhelm the petite bride's figure, however if you are looking for that dramatic flair, we recommend the mermaid style gown.

High Waist High-Waist: Available at Maison Mangala


On that note, the mermaid & trumpet style wedding dress tends to complement many different body shapes. If you're a curvy woman, do not be afraid to show off your curves, the mermaid dress is a go-to style as it is perfect for highlighting your bust and hip, showing off your gorgeous hourglass figure.


Mermaid Style Mermaid Style: Available at Maison Mangala
Mermaid Style Available at Bizzaro Bridal


Higher necklines are absolutely stunning for the woman who is wanting to elongate her bodice, whilst an a-line silhouette can create a smaller waist and can highlight your feminine features.

Nowadays, more stores are catering to empower the natural beauty of women with plus size gowns, too. Satin’s a great choice for helping to smooth out your figure while you can flaunt your body’s strengths too. If you have trouble finding the exact gown to match your body, you can look for custom-design fit to ensure that it’s just right.



The Wedding Season

If you’re having a Winter Wedding, you don’t want to be freezing to the bone. Similarly, if it’s in summer, you don’t want to be sweltering underneath it all. Consider not the season while you’re shopping but what season your wedding’s in.

Long Sleeve Wedding Dress

For Winter Weddings, using the wedding accessory directory to pick out a faux fur stole, or a cape can work wonders to add a little coziness to your dress. Gowns with long sleeves can keep you looking elegant without getting goosebumps from the wind, too.

If it’s a warmer time of year, then a strapless dress or a halter style can free a little more skin and help you glow under the bright blue sky. Floral accessories can help you better suit the lively nature of the season, too.



The Wedding Theme

You want to ensure that your wedding attire matches with whatever themes you have chosen to base the day around, as well. If you’re sparing no expense in making things as extravagant and luxurious as can be, then your gown should be no exception! Few things say “class” and “beauty” like a little glitz, so bridal gowns with diamonds can ensure that you sparkle.

If you’re opting for quieter setting with more of a heartwarming vibe, then nailing the demure and graceful look might be the better solution, a lace wedding dress can set the scene beautifully. Perhaps your tastes are a little more unique and nostalgic or you’re hosting the ceremony in a place of natural beauty where something over designed might stick out a little too much? In that case, vintage dresses may be the key.


Lace - Hollyrose Couture Wedding DressesVintage Lace by Hollyrose Couture.


If your setting is a little more unique, your outfit should be, as well. If you’re having the perfect romantic day on the coast, fFor a beach wedding, you want to choose a breathable fabric and perhaps something with a shorter style, so you don’t have the risk of trailing your train through the sand. It might be worth forgetting about the veil too.



Your Lifestyle

There are a few extra considerations worth making, too. If you have a daughter and this day is just as big for her, then you should look for flowergirl dresses to ensure they match you flawlessly. If you’re a more mature bride, the best wedding gowns for older women offer clean-cut lines like a column or fit and flare silhouette.


Matching Dresses - Jordanna Regan Couture Matching Dresses by Jordanna Regan Couture.
Vintage Style - Jordanna Regan Couture Vintage Style Designed by Jordanna Regan Couture.

If this isn’t your first rodeo, you may want to get more colorful when choosing your bridal outfit for a second marriage. White is no longer the only option on the menu; pastels and champagne can help you get more expressive and choose a dress that really compliments your own palette. Or, be more daring and go for a black or red wedding dress!
Now that you have your needs in mind, it’s time to get looking. There is a wide range of stores that might have just the inventory to cater to your needs. With tools like the ABIA wedding dress directory, it’s easier than ever to track down the right vendor and, with them, the right dress.



Maybe You’re Looking For...

It’s worth considering the other key players in the wedding, as well. It’s recommended you choose the bridesmaids dresses and your own dress in tandem, so you can make sure that your best girls are all suited to your own look. Similarly, you can use a directory of wedding suit providers so that you and the groom look like the perfect couple with the perfect wedding outfits to boot.

...The High End Brand Look

Perhaps you’ve spotted a dress that you absolutely adore but it simply isn’t accessible. For instance, you’ve seen a designer label that you would love to try out, but you can’t find it in your price range, you can find your nearest boutique and bring examples, so you can find something just like that Vera Wang dress you spotted.



...Traditional Wedding Dresses

If you’re aiming for a traditional wedding that celebrates a certain culture or heritage, then you’re better off narrowing your search. There are niche stores that sell Indian, Japanese, Korean wedding dress, and more. Simply be specific about what tradition or country you want to represent when the directory search bar.


There’s a huge variety of gowns to choose from, to meet every taste, shape, budget, and need. The ABIA Directory can be a huge help in finding the store which sells the wedding dress that’s just waiting for you to find it.