For the bride perhaps the most important item on the shopping list will be her wedding dress and with an increasing number of high quality but relatively cheap wedding dresses on the market today it is possible to have the dress of your dreams without breaking the bank.
For many people a wedding dress should be a traditional full length white gown, symbolizing the bride's pure heart and innocence, complete with veil and train first popularized by Queen Victoria when she broke with the royal custom of marrying in silver and chose a white gown for her marriage to Prince Albert.
This started a craze which continues today with many brides choosing white or a variation of white such as cream, eggshell or ivory.
Today however we see two major shifts taking place when it comes to weddings.
The first is a return to pre-Victorian days when brides married in simpler dresses of just about any color that took their fancy, except for black which was associated with mourning and red which was worn only by "ladies of the night".
This also means often dispensing with the veil, which is said to symbolize virginity, and the train which is very much a trapping of royal weddings and emulates the peacock, which was formerly seen an a royal bird.
The second is a move away from the church wedding towards weddings held in a wide variety of venues, including the increasingly popular beach wedding.
As a result not only do brides now have a much wider choice of color for their wedding dress but, more importantly, dispensing with the veil and train and the need for a full length dress now means that brides can choose from a range of far more simple wedding dresses.
For the cost conscious this is great as informal wedding dresses are also considerably cheaper than the full traditional white wedding outfit.
One other important point here is that the move away from the full white wedding gown also means that it is no longer necessary to purchase your dress from a specialist bridal outfitter who, not surprisingly, will charge a premium simply for the service that is provided or for the name or brand that you are buying.
It's a bit like a pair of running shoes - you can buy two virtually identical pairs of shoes and pay ten times more for one pair than for the other simply because it carries a brand name.
There has never been a better time to shop for your wedding dress and the choice available to you today in terms of color, style and supplier is vast.
It's no longer that difficult to find reasonably cheap wedding dresses and still end up looking like a million dollars in the dress of your dreams.