If you've got a wedding coming up then London's bridal scene provides so much opportunity to grab that perfect gown.
Congratulations on your engagement! Choosing your wedding dress is a very personal experience that everyone does a little differently. Thankfully you're in London, and there are a wealth of options available to you - from cheap and cheerful to fabulous and, well, expensive! And there's no better way to explore London's bridal scene than by checking out the various bridal sales and events around the city.
For some brides, this is an absolutely brilliant idea! You hear about a bridal sample sale at a boutique or bridal brand near you, you check out the dress you want in advance, work out the size you need, and then go in and buy it off the shelf at a fantastic discount. For other brides, it's completely unsuitable, as you will often not get the service on the day that you may want from your bridal atelier. You're often sharing the space with other brides, there may be limited changing facilities and help available, and you may only be able to bring a limited number of guests.
Bridal trunk shows - or similarly, designer days or designer weekends - are specialists periods when a particular bridal boutique has an extended range of stock in from a particular bridal designer. You can go in and talk through the entire collection with the bridal boutique's staff, there's often a discount on purchases made on the day, and it's a great way to get inspired and learn about your favourite designer's newest collections.
Wedding fairs and wedding open days are a great way to get your entire wedding planned and to find inspiration. They're sometimes arranged by independent organisers and can range from small gatherings at a local town hall to massive events at London Olympia or at London ExCeL. Sometimes wedding fairs are arranged by wedding venues themselves, who host the event and bring in their preferred suppliers and show you how the entire package can work at their location. There's also an increasing number of wedding fairs organised as alternatives to the traditional fairs, where you'll find suppliers outside the normal "white wedding" range, and that target more casual or themed weddings, or who specialise in weddings for other cultures.
London's wedding fairs almost always cover everything from dresses to stationery to transport to venue to honeymoon - so we'd highly recommend you go to at least one to make sure you've got all aspects of your big day covered, even if you don't actually use any of the suppliers you meet on the day.