True Story: I Ordered My Wedding Outfit Before Seeing It {Desi Brides 2016}

2016 Jan 4 - by Zara
I've said it once and I'll say it again: Desi brides do not have it easy.

On top of the multiple wedding events we're expected to throw, the massive guest lists and the many, many customs we must incorporate, there's also the matter of dress shopping.

Needless to say, most desi brides can't exactly head to the nearest David's Bridal in search of a white gown.

If you're looking for a traditional South Asian bridal outfit, you probably don't have a ton of stateside options. Sure, some cities like Edison, New Jersey and Los Angeles have a few stores that stock items - but let's be honest, the selection is usually not as extensive or impressive as what you can find in India or Pakistan.

Thanks to my jam-packed schedule, I wasn't able to make to the trip back East to go wedding shopping. While I live in Chicago, a city that does have an entire Indian sub-neighborhood, I simply wasn't in love with any of the local options. I've order all of my outfits from India or Pakistan...and I won't be able to see any of them until they arrive just two months before my wedding.

Am I freaking out about this a little bit? No. I'm freaking out a lot. 

If a trip to India is not in the cards for you, don't feel like you'll be stuck with a wedding outfit you hate. Instead, follow these tips to make the most of your international shopping experience.

1. Work way ahead of schedule: The sooner your outfits arrive, the sooner you can make any alterations or changes to them. Pro tip: Tell the people who are making your outfits that your wedding is a few months before it actually is. It sounds naughty but it's well worth it. After all, you want to make sure you have plenty of time to get your affairs in order, so to speak.

2.Get measured professionally: Go to an amazing tailor and have your measurements taken! I can't stress this enough. Even the most beautiful outfit will be lost if it doesn't fit properly. And if you're upping your diet and exercise game, get measured regularly to account for any weight changes!

3. Keep in close contact with the team who is designing your look: Send someone from the design house regular WhatsApp messages, emails and Skype calls. It is so important to make sure you're both on the same page about everything.

4. Request a color swatch: Have the design house you're working with send a small swatch of fabric so you can really get a feel for the color and workmanship of your outfit. It's totally worth it, even if you have to pay a hefty sum for shipping.

5.If possible, pick up a few backup outfits: Even if you don't fall 100 percent in love with anything you find at a local store, buy a few outfits if you like them. You'll probably need outfits to wear to pre-wedding events - and worst comes to the worst, if your wedding outfit just doesn;t work, you can always sub in one of this backup choices.