Getting engaged is exciting but it can also be overwhelming. Not only do you have to plan an entire wedding (with the help of your significant other, obviously) but, more importantly, you have to find the wedding dress of your dreams.
If you’re not into online shopping, then chances are you’re going to have to step into a bridal salon. So, we’ve rounded up the best bridal stores in Toronto that will suit every bride’s needs.
Check out our top eight picks below and good luck wedding dress hunting!
1. Sash & Bustle
Update: Since moving to its new location on Queen St. East, Sash & Bustle’s cozy room has gotten a lot bigger — and more glamorous. The new salon is still relaxed and comfortable, but features a lot more space, not only for the gowns, but for brides and their crews to hang out in. The new location features several change rooms for brides plus spaces for their pals to hang out in, a bigger area for dresses, and a new section dedicated to bridesmaid dresses. All that space also means there’s room for more variety of designers, including Blush by Hayley Paige, Theia, Elizabeth Dye, and Ivy & Aster. It’s a gorgeous space that will make any bride feel like she’s walked into a fairy-tale.
This east-end bridal boutique is small but its cozy and relaxed vibe makes it feel like you’re shopping in your best friend’s home. Sash & Bustle carries wedding dresses that are perfect for the low-key bride who wants to look beautiful but doesn’t feel like she’s wearing a typical “wedding dress.” The beautiful store carries designers such as Vancouver-based Truvelle, which makes effortless, pretty dresses perfect for the bride who wants something a bit more casual.
Selling point: the service. Each bride gets the whole store to herself for the one hour, 15 minute appointment. It’s like being a kid in a candy store!
2. Kleinfeld Hudson’s Bay
When Kleinfeld opened up shop in May 2014, brides were clamouring to make an appointment at the salon that’s famously known for being wedding dress mecca in the hit TLC series “Say Yes to the Dress.”
Let’s start with the space: white and grey tones with tons of natural light and dresses spaced out so that they’re not jammed tightly together gives the salon a couture salon feel. Right away, brides-to-be are made to feel as if they are the most special person in the room with their own personal consultant and semi-private or VIP private dressing area. (They even serve you and your entourage champagne when you say “yes” to the dress!)
Selling point: the range of dresses. Don’t know what kind of dress you want? There are literally hundreds of gowns in stock and you even get to peruse the salon, picking out frocks you like while your consultant goes into the stock room.
3. Lowon Pope
(Editor’s note: Since this article was published, Lowon Pope has closed. Another popular store to check out with a similar vibe is Loversland on Ossington.)
Lowon Pope is all about Old Hollywood glamour. If you’re the kind of bride who wants to channel your inner Rita Hayworth and Jean Harlow, then this salon is for you. Think vintage lace trains, full skirts, long veils and slip dresses.
Selling point: the designer can make customized gowns if you have a special idea that you can’t find in the store.
4. Lea-Ann Belter
All it takes is one glimpse in the windows at Lea-Ann Belter’s impressive east-end bridal store to know that they carry special wedding dresses. Gowns range from short, casual looks that are perfect for a summer’s day to full-on ball gowns and strapless mermaid frocks with elegant lace details.
Selling point: all of the wedding dresses, no matter the shape and style, are elegant, timeless and classic—so you know that no matter which dress you end up choosing, you won’t regret it.
5. Ferré Sposa
If you’re a traditional bride who’s always wanted a princess ball gown, then Ferré Sposa has got you covered. Think beaded corsets paired with endless layers of tulle skirts or ruched satin bodices with delicate floral embroidery. The store also has sleeker sheath dresses, for the bride who wants something sexy but still traditional. Mermaid gowns are also in abundance if you’re looking for that flattering fitted-and-flared look.
Selling point: the prices. Most gowns are priced between $800 and $1500, meaning you can look like a princess for a bargain.
6. Becker’s Bridal
The self-appointed “oldest bridal salon in Canada,” Becker’s Bridal is a staple of the Toronto bridal scene. In short: they know what they’re doing. Brides will find a plethora of gowns from international brands such as Pronovias, Allure, La Sposa and Paloma Blanca. Even better, they carry the Barbra Allin Collection, the store’s in-house bridal line, which handcrafts gowns in Indian and Italian silks, French laces and Swarovski crystals and pearls.
Selling point: the staff. They literally know everything about their dresses and accessories and are super friendly and helpful.
7. The Brides’ Project
Run in owner’s Helen Street’s Broadview home, The Brides’ Project is not your typical bridal salon. Run primarily by volunteers, the shop sells new and donated gowns from brides, salons and designers at about half the retail price, with all the profits going to cancer charities. Prices range from $300 to $1,250 and the selection of dresses is massive, meaning you’ll find anything from a princess ball gown, to a sheath to a boho look.
Selling point: sometimes you’ll get lucky and find a designer gown (like Vera Wang) for a fraction of the original cost.
8. White Toronto
If you want to make a statement, then you want to go to White Toronto. Situated in the trendiest of Toronto neighbourhoods (Yorkville, where else?) the boutique offers a bridal experience like no other starting with the stylish and ultra-luxe space, the high-end designer dresses and ending with a champagne toast à la Kleinfeld. Brides who pour over wedding magazines will see familiar names such as Oscar de la Renta, Carolina Herrera, Monique Lhuillier and Reem Acra. Just be prepared for the inevitable sticker shop that comes with shopping for designer gowns. Then again, if you’re at White, then that probably won’t be a problem.
Selling point: the experience. You’ll feel like royalty in a salon which puts customer experience first. Plus, trying on all those gorgeous gowns will make you feel like a princess.
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