What To Wear To A Wedding Dress Fitting (Save Time & Money)

Having all of the necessary accessories and undergarments is essential to your first wedding dress fitting.

One of the bride’s most exciting and anticipated parts of wedding planning is shopping for the perfect wedding dress. Once you’ve found it, it’s important you are well prepared for your first fitting.

Before your first fitting, make sure you’ve shopped for all of your accessories. It is an absolute necessity to bring the shoes you’ll wear on your wedding day, along with the bra and underwear you are planning to wear. Your dress will fall differently on you if your shoes and undergarments change.

I can remember the very day that Lea came home and told me she’d found her dream dress. She was over the moon and extremely proud of herself because it had taken time and planning to get to this stage.

This article is a summary of everything she picked up along the way. So, continue reading for our complete guide of what to expect and what to wear during your wedding dress fitting.

The preparation phase


Before going to your fitting, you must decide what shoes you will be wearing for your wedding. If you haven’t decided which specific shoe yet, then wear a shoe that is the same heel height you plan on wearing.


Even more important than your shoes are your undergarments. Wear the undergarments you will wear during your wedding. This includes bra, underwear, and any shaping pieces you may be wearing.

The first pinning usually is when the hem of your dress is set. A different bra can throw off your hem by an inch or so, so it is imperative you know what you’ll be wearing under your dress.

Make sure that your undergarments are a discrete color. Wear a bra and underwear that match your skin tone and won’t be see-through under (or seen through) your dress. If you have any doubts, try on your lingerie at home with another white or light-colored dress and ask someone to double-check for you in the light.


If you know what accessories you’ll want to wear, bring them along to have a great picture of how you’ll look on your wedding day. Although this is not necessary, especially for the first fitting, it can be exciting to see your final look so soon.

If you’re wearing necklaces, it’ll also be nice to see where the neckline of your dress hits you. Another benefit of bringing your jewelry is if you decide a piece doesn’t look as nice with your dress as you originally thought, you’ll have plenty of time to switch up your accessories before the big day.

Hair & headpieces

If you have a veil or other headpiece bring it to the fitting as well. It is important that your hair is styled similarly as it will be on the big day if you are bringing your headpiece along. While it doesn’t have to be professionally done for your fitting, make sure the general look of the hair is the same i.e. low bun, half-up, down and curly, etc.

Wear an easy to take off dress or comfortable casual wear into your fitting. Many brides opt for a cute t-shirt dress or sundress to wear to their fittings. Wear comfortable clothes that won’t leave marks on your skin for optimal confidence when trying on your gown.

Who to take with you

It’s best not to go to your fitting alone. It is always nice to have a second opinion from a close friend. At the very least, take your maid of honor with you to your first fitting. They’ll be able to give you advice on what looks good and what still needs an alteration.

It is also important that your maid of honor knows how to help you put on your dress on your wedding day. Whether it’s straps, buttons, clasps, securing the overskirt, or the bustle, if they’re at the fitting with you they’ll be confident and ready to help you on your big day.

What to expect at your fitting

Different fittings sessions

Your first wedding dress fitting occurs about 6-8 weeks before your wedding. This is the perfect amount of time for alternations to be completed before your big day.

The first fitting is called the pinning session. It is aptly named due to the fact that you’ll most likely need to make many adjustments for your dress to be perfect on your wedding day. Most likely you will have 2-3 more fittings after your first to ensure the alterations are going well.

Dealing with butterflies

You may have purchased your gown up to six months before your first fitting, and it is the first time you’ve tried it on since that moment. Many brides have the tendency to be anxious about their first fitting. If you are nervous know that this is a very common feeling.

Duration of fittings

Depending on the alterations that need to be done, your fitting may take anywhere from 45-90 minutes. If you are planning on losing or gaining weight before your big day, try to hit your goal and maintain that weight by the time you have your first fitting.

Pay attention!

Each fitting after your first will become less complicated. The first fitting is to tackle all big adjustments. Make sure to pay attention to how your dress feels on your body while your seamstress is pinning you. If something feels too tight or loose, speak up.

Be sure you are able to move comfortably in the dress after the pinning has been completed. If it is uncomfortable for you to move, then you’re going to have a miserable time during your wedding.

Make sure you can breathe, move your arms, and walk normally, basically anything you plan to do during the ceremony and reception.

Ask questions & make demands

Be vocal

You must be comfortable with asking your stylist questions and communicating your needs to him or her. If you want a specific look or for your dress to be tailored in a certain way, voice your wishes so they can accommodate you best.

If you are not completely happy with your dress during the fitting, you will not be pleased on your wedding day.

While it may seem obvious, make sure your dress is the right size, color, and design during the first fitting. Mix-ups are rare, but they do certainly happen.

Be curious

Your seamstress will be looking at you from all angles to see what needs to be taken in, out, and hemmed. Ask questions about what she is doing if you are curious. A good seamstress will not mind answering your questions.

It’ll also give you a better understanding of what you may actually have been expecting from your dress.

While your seamstress is examining your dress, you should be too. It’s not a time for you to check out and relax. Think about how each part of your dress feels and if there’s any part of the dress that has wrinkled strangely due to the alterations.

Be unique

Keep in mind your certain needs. Some people have sensitive skin that can become irritated by beading details on their dresses. Communicate this with your seamstress, and they will be able to remove beads under arms or near the bodice to make you more comfortable.

After your first fitting is done you will need to schedule a second and possibly third fitting. Your seamstress should be able to give you a good idea of how many more fittings you will need before the dress is to perfection.

The second dress fitting

You should be fitted a second time about 3 months before your wedding.

Bring all of the necessities to this fitting, such as your shoes, undergarments, and jewelry. If there are any new pieces of jewelry you would like to see with your dress bring them to this fitting.

This is an exciting fitting because you get to see how your new dress fits after it was hemmed specifically to your body. It is important to walk and move your arms up and down during this fitting.

Check for any tightness, looseness, or anything that is uncomfortable and don’t be afraid to speak up.

Make sure the length of your dress is correct. If your dress is full length, it should brush the top of your shoes without dragging on the ground. You don’t want to trip down the aisle!

Your third (and last!) fitting

Your last fitting will occur around a month before your wedding. Don’t worry, if there are small alterations that need to be made and you need to book another fitting before the big day there is still plenty of time for your seamstress to make the proper corrections.

If your maid of honor was unable to make it to your first and second fitting, they need to attend this one. It is important that they learn about the intricacies of the dress before being expected to help you into it on your wedding day.

This is also the fitting to learn how to care for your dress. You need to know how to get wrinkles out, the best way to hang it, and what to do in emergencies such as a spillage.

Picking Up Your Dress

The final time at your seamstress will be to collect your gown.

Gowns are usually collected around two weeks before the wedding. You will try on your dress one last time to make absolute certain that everything is perfect.

Make sure to have room to transport the dress nicely in your car and take good care of it until your big day.

Phil & Lea Hawes

We are Phil & Lea Hawes and we got married in 2019. We have planned (mainly Lea) two weddings together. The first was a small ceremony in Hong Kong just for us and our parents at a registry office. Our other wedding was a larger family wedding in Taiwan. Having planned two very different types of weddings and dealt with all the demands and hiccups which come with it, we are uniquely qualified as a writing team to give sound advice to other couples embarking on their own wedding journey.

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