The no-hassle wedding style plan

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The wedding day is most stressful right at the start. There’s makeup to apply, hair to get done, and, most importantly, a dress to put on. But it’s easy to keep the panic to a minimum by following a few guidelines.

Dress To-Do’s

When it comes to looking beyond good – and staying calm, cool and collected – on your wedding day, two words should sum up your smart and savvy approach to assembling your flawless look: Plan ahead.

Most retailers suggest that brides begin their wedding dress shopping nine months before the big day. That may seem a lifetime away, but the extra cushion helps you navigate issues like dealing with ordering from overseas and managing alterations and potential fit issues.

“It’s like ordering furniture,” says Michele Martin, owner of M Bride in La Jolla, Calif. “It’s better to have some time than no time at all.”

Those extra days can help you fit in dress research, such as scouring the web and bridal magazines, to hone in on the best style for your personality, along with scheduling appointments at bridal boutiques. And, when time is on your side, you can save money by waiting for those coveted sample sales (typically geared to those size 8 and under) both offline and on, which can save more than 50 percent off retail prices, especially at luxury flash-sale sites, such as Gilt and The Aisle New York.

Adding Accessories

Once the all-important dress is found, planning the rest of the wedding may seem easier because the gown can set the tone for everything from flowers to the reception.

Focus on accessories about four to five months before the wedding. Borrowing jewelry from family is one way to save money, check off the important “something borrowed” portion of the wedding and incorporate something meaningful into your special day, says Michelle Hanson, owner of Flutter Boutique, a Minneapolis bridal store. If your dress is ornate, stick to simple ornamentation, such as dainty drop earrings or an elegant bracelet.

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