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By Autumn Krause

 The dress. Let’s be honest. It’s one of the most exciting parts of your wedding day planning. But before you head for the nearest rack of ivory gowns, let’s debunk some common myths about wedding gown shopping.

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Myth #1: You should know exactly what you want.

You’re engaged! It’s common for this exciting fact to cause a wedding dress pinning frenzy on Pinterest, resulting in a digital wedding gown hunt long before you set foot in your first salon. But while it’s great to get some general ideas and establish some guidelines (re: the formality of your wedding—obviously you don’t want to wear an encrusted ball gown to a Malibu beach fete), be sure to keep an open mind. You’ll be shocked at what you love. And that’s the best thing about love: the surprises!

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Myth #2: You should bring everyone you know.

Your mom wants to come shopping. And your grandma. Of course, your sisters have to come. Oh, and your bridesmaids want in on the shopping extravaganza too. Also, you should include your little niece because she’s so cute. And shouldn’t you bring your best guy friend for a male opinion?

Fight the crowds! Each person you bring equals a unique opinion you will have to consider. It’s best to bring three key people whose thoughts you trust. Anymore and you’ll be juggling an aunt who wants you in a beading and a bridesmaid who sees you in lace.

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Myth #3: You should try on gowns out of your price point for fun.

You see a gown hanging on the rack. It looks pretty. Then you see the price tag. $25,000, literally $23,000 over your wedding gown budget. RUN.

It’s enticing to play dress up in high-end bridal gowns. But fight the temptation! If you slip into a gown that’s over your price point, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. There is nothing worse than finding “the one” and being forced to give it up. And after you go couture, it’s hard to go back. But don’t worry. There are so many beautiful gowns available in all range of price points. You will find a gown you can say yes to without selling a kidney.

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Myth #4: You need to order a size down.

You’ve done it! You’ve found your wedding gown and you’re selecting your size with your bridal consultant. You’re measuring into a size 12 but you’re tempted to order a size 10. You’ve signed up for Bridal Bootcamp and you’re planning on going paleo for the wedding. Despite this, the best thing is to order your current size. You can always have the gown altered down but it can be difficult to let a gown out. Plus, it can put undue pressure on you. You are beautiful just the way you are! Don’t worry about ordering a smaller size.

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Myth #5: You need to cry.

You actually don’t. Brides nowadays have so many expectations and pressures to act a certain way when they find their perfect gown. We’ve all been a little brainwashed by “Say Yes to the Dress” marathons. Don’t feel like you need to burst into tears or experience a divine sign. Just ask yourself, “Do I feel really beautiful and good in this?” If the answer is yes, then that’s all the sign you need.