The following is a guest post from Tracy Young:
Searching for communion dresses and products has never been easier with these 3 simple tips.
If your daughter is making her first communion in the spring, you're probably in the market for a first communion dress and accessories. Perhaps you're thinking about going to a boutique on a Saturday with your daughter and walking out an hour later with a divine communion dress? Maybe you're thinking online is the way to go? Both of these ideas are great but you may end up dragging your daughter to way-too-many stores to count because you don't see eye-to-eye, while that online search turned up 2.8 million results. Before you despair, there are a few tips that will help you navigate these turbulent waters:
1) Start early. Most first communions take place in the spring but you'll be left in the cold if you wait until April to start shopping. Stores generally have their first communion products out in January. Shopping early ensures the best selection because stores do not reorder merchandise. Once it's sold that's it until next year. This can be especially important if your daughter is a bit smaller, or a tad taller than the average 8 year old. If the store only ordered 1 pair of communion shoes that your daughter loves, in a size 3.5, make sure that you are the lucky owner of the pair. A fellow religious education instructor lamented to me that she wished she knew this, the year that her daughter made first communion. She waited until April to start shopping and had a difficult time finding something that her daughter liked because a lot of stores were sold out.
2) Know Thy Daughter. Ever hear the expression square peg in a round hole? This is an important thing to keep in mind when shopping for communion dresses. If your daughter is a tomboy, chances are that she's going to fight you on that over-the-top tulle communion dress. Similarly, a girly-girl may be disappointed in a simple white dress, even if it is duchess satin and costs a king's randsom. Talk to your daughter and have her describe what she wants to wear. Take some time together to look online at products. I've found that there are 3 basic styles of communion dresses: old world; contemporary; modern. Old world dresses remind me of elaborate dresses that might have been worn in Italy, Spain and other Catholic European countries years ago. They have a lot of beading, lace details and can be gown-like in length. This style is divine for girly-girls with unlimited budgets. Contemporary dresses are less elaborate than old word dresses. They also have beading or lace details just not as much as old world dresses, and are tea-length falling to the mid calf. Most communion dresses that are sold in the United States fall into this style. Finally, modern dresses have simple lines and minimal details. This is the absolute best style for girls that would rather wear pants to make first communion. In the end, you want to find a dress that both of you love.
3) Get the guidelines. Nowadays, many churches discourage accessories during the mass. They don't want the children fiddling with their prayer book or twirling their rosary like a lasso. Before you add all these items to your shopping cart, find out what's allowed and what isn't. Simply ask the religious instructor for the guidelines. Asking for the guidelines before you you start shopping ensures that you don't waste your money.
So there you have it. A few tips that will save you time and money as you prepare for this blessed event.
Tracy Young is the owner and self-described Chief Princess of A Little Indulgence. The online children's boutique specializes in luxurious first communion dresses, shoes and veils. Over the years, Tracy has helped thousands of moms find divine communion products. You can find her at: