How to find a wedding dress you can afford
Buying an Inexpensive Wedding Dress
by Dollar Stretcher Contributors
My Story: A Cinderella Wedding
Spend Less on Your Wedding Dress
26 Ways to Cut Your Wedding Bill
Buying an Inexpensive Wedding Dress
Congratulate me! My fiancée proposed to! We're working on our wedding plans now. One problem is that I don't have a lot of money for a wedding dress, so I need to find something that's inexpensive. I have a little time (four months). It's my big day, so the wedding dress is important to me. Can anyone tell me how to buy an inexpensive wedding dress?
Save at Bridal Consignment
We went to a Bridal Consignment store in our area for my daughter's wedding.
Lisa (via Facebook)
Borrow a Wedding Dress
Borrow one. That is what I did. Then I had it cleaned and professionally stored and gave it back to the lovely lady who let me borrow it. (The total cost was about $150 for the cleaning/storage.)
Cristy (via Facebook)
Look at Thrift Stores for an Inexpensive Wedding Dress
I see very fancy, gently-used wedding dresses in my local thrift stores. I know that sounds tacky, but it couldn't hurt to look! Spending $10 to $30 for a dress would certainly help your wedding budget!
Amy in ABQ
Rent Your Dress!
Many bridal shops rent beautiful dresses, and you can have the dress of your dreams for a fraction of the cost to buy. My thrifty daughter rented her dress and no one was the wiser.
Think Outside the Box
The most beautiful wedding dress I ever saw for a simple wedding was bought at a department store and not in the wedding dress department. It was from the summer dress area and was a simple white lace over muslin summer dress, worn with a flower embellished straw hat. It was simply elegant.
Shop for Last Year's Fashions
Winter is a good time to be looking for a dress. With spring weddings in vogue, retailers need to clear out last year's fashions to make room for new ones. Check with bridal and formal shops now, but only look at what is in stock.
Don't Forget the Clearance Racks
My daughter was able to find her dream dress on clearance at a bridal shop. We only paid $100 for the dress. Alterations were $20. She received many compliments on her dress at the wedding.
Would a Prom Dress Fill the Need?
When I got married, I was also on a limited budget. I bought my wedding dress at JCPenney(tm) in the prom dress section. I found a floor length, white dress with thin straps and elegant embroidery. It was on sale for around $100. I paired it with a pair of strappy white dress shoes that I bought for $25.
For four hundred dollars, I bought a new wedding dress in downtown LA, which was beautiful. Although I thought I had gotten an amazing deal, I was searching Costco's website for something and came across inexpensive wedding dresses. If you do not have a Costco card, I am sure someone you know does and can order the dress for you online.
A week ago, here in Philly, a newlywed offered her wedding gown on Freecyle. She listed an in-depth description. There was only a small spot on the underside bottom from a dirty parking lot. The gown had already been dry cleaned. Some lucky gal walked away with a really beautiful gown for free! To play it forward, the gown can be re-offered to some other lucky bride-to-be in the near future, using Freecycle.
Visit Once Wed
In 2011, my daughter bought her wedding dress from a website called Once Wed. Recent brides list their dresses complete with the measurements and height of the wearer. The dress was absolutely gorgeous, and except for a half-inch adjustment in the straps, it fit perfectly. The total expense was $100.
Shop Discontinued Styles
Stores like David's Bridal have discontinued styles marked down to as little as $99. Start shopping now and be patient. My daughter was able to buy a beautiful dress for less than $150 and got many compliments on it. No one was the wiser to the cost.
Take the Next Step:
- Yes, you can afford your dream wedding when you use the ideas you'll find on our Budget Bride Pinterest board.
- For more ways to save on your dream wedding, please visit The Dollar Stretcher Library
Share your thoughts about this article with the editor: Click Here
Prices keep rising while my income remains stagnant and I worry I am heading for debt trouble. Tell us: Yes, I think I am heading for debt trouble and could use some help! or No, I am not in debt trouble but I am always looking for new ways to help keep my budget on track!
More Money-Saving Lifestyle Tips
- 4 steps to a simpler (and more frugal) life
- 6 tips for a fabulously free vacation
- Secrets to living luxuriously for less
- Money-saving secrets of the rich and frugal
- 4 secrets to being a frugal foodie
- 8 social media posts that can cost you
- 4 lessons from the Back to the Land movement
- Hair care on the cheap
- This week's Readers' Tips