You’ve heard the old wives’-tale: It’s bad luck for grooms to see the bride’s wedding dress before the big day. But in today’s society, it seems like more and more couples are choosing to toss that superstitious tradition out the window—opting to work together to select their entire wedding day outfits.
Shopping for “the one”, together, only makes for an intimate and unforgettable moment that you and your partner will treasure forever. Even more, working as a team allows you both to stay true to the dress code, while finding looks that pair well in photos.
For those nervous about embracing this once unconventional trend, don’t be! We’re here to say that a little collaboration won’t minimize the impact of the big reveal down the aisle. And according to the experts, there are many ways to make this wedding fashion journey as memorable as possible.
To help guide you and your partner through this experience, we spoke to wedding fashion experts Olivia DeAngelo and Angel Ramos, to learn the best ways to shop as a couple—because collaboration is key!
Tips for Helping Brides
Grooms, if you aren’t sure what you can bring to the table when it comes to wedding dress shopping, always remember this key point: Your job is to help make your partner feel comfortable and in control throughout the process. Once you’ve got that locked in, everything else will fall into place.
Olivia DeAngelo, the second generation owner of VOWS Bridal, one of the largest bridal salons in New England, goes further to break down the top three tips to always keep in mind when embarking on this experience. Keep reading below!
Do Your Research
Before diving into your search you and your partner should both research which bridal salon will work best for the bride-to-be. Then, consider what style and aesthetic you are going for, which can help you narrow down your search and save time. “Brides and their partners should choose a salon that carries a large selection of designers as well as a variety of sizes,” suggests DeAngelo.
Keep an Open Mind
To start, you and your partner should both research which bridal salons work best for the bride-to-be. “Brides and their partners should choose a salon that carries a large selection of designers as well as a variety of sizes,” suggests DeAngelo. And if you’re looking completely “wow” your partner, consider taking initiative and finding a few bridal salons on your own. However, it’s important to know what style and aesthetic your bride is going for, which will help you narrow down the search and save time.
Throughout the entire process, be sure to always keep an open mind. Shopping for a wedding dress isn’t an easy task, and your partner may choose a look that you weren’t entirely expecting. Don’t let your idea of what a bride should wear hinder the ultimate vision. Your bride chose to share this journey with you, so embrace that honor by staying flexible and not letting your feelings and judgments get in the way.
Be the Support System
In addition to keeping an open mind, it’s important to remember that you are there to support your bride no matter what. “It’s extremely important for partners to remember that the bride [needs] love and [to] feel beautiful in her gown,” says DeAngelo. “Partners can definitely help by being supportive in the process, but the final decision is ultimately up to the bride!”
Tips for Assisting Grooms
Though brides have been helping their partners choose their wedding day looks for years, there are still a few best practices to follow when going this route. Similarly to grooms, it’s crucial to remember that you are there as your partner’s support system, so keep an open mind and be sure to take their wants and needs into consideration.
To dig a little deeper, Angel Ramos, a custom tailor and men’s styling expert, shares three additional tips to acknowledge when shopping for your groom’s attire.
Start in Advance
“I think brides must stress the idea of working on this ensemble way in advance as they do for their wedding dress,” shares Ramos. “Sadly, men tend to leave this to the last minute and it really creates a horribly stressful situation for all involved.” Ramos notes that brides should help their partner put together a mood board about five to six months in advance—adding three months onto that timeline if the groom plans on creating a custom look.
Keep it Classic
As for guiding your groom on what style to opt for, Romas believes that classic and traditional styles are best. “Keep it simple [and] always shoot for timelessness. [Timeless styles] look best in pictures, look elegant, and keep the attention on bride,” he adds. You can also help your partner pick out accessories—like a special tie or a pair of shoes.
If shopping feels like a tedious activity for your partner, plan a day full of fun activities that will make the experience more memorable. For example, go out to lunch beforehand or meet up with your wedding party after you’ve finished shopping. While it may be frustrating at times, this experience is meant to be positive, one that you both can look back on for years to come.