Written by Hamish Shephard
Hamish Shephard is the founder and CEO of Bridebook, UK’s leading wedding planning app and is considered one of the UK’s most prominent wedding experts. View Hamish Shephard’s full author bio.
Whether you’ve dreamt of yourself in a beautiful white dress since you were five or whether you only started to even consider it post-ring, the dress is usually a major component of the wedding.
It’s also usually quite a major component of the budget – all too often, you hit the shops, you find the dress of your dreams, you check the price tag…and then see a few more zeros than you expected to, rendering it way out of your generously planned Bridebook wedding budget. Don’t worry! As the home of the UK’s #1 Wedding Planning App, we’re here to help – you just haven’t read our top saving tips yet.
There is a beautiful wedding dress out there for everyone, regardless of how many pennies you have to spend. Read our saving tips and commence the search completely stress-free:
1. Have you always wanted a stunning Vera Wang gown to get married in? Now you can! Most wedding dress designers will have a cheaper line available at bargain prices! (Pssst…For Vera Wang it is the White collection!)
2. On the subject of gorgeous designer gowns, boutiques and designers themselves will host sample sales at the end of seasons. You can find some absolute gems hidden amongst the endless racks, so as long as you’re willing to forego the typical bridal boutique shopping experience and service, they’re definitely the way to go! Contrary to popular opinion, the dresses aren’t ever really really damaged – they usually suffer from easily repairable tiny flaws at worst or are just practically unworn stock in need of shifting at best. In sample sales, all sales are final, so inspect your potential dress carefully for any damage before you buy.
3. Consider a preloved gown. Remember, most brides will only wear their dress once and for just a couple of hours, so the majority of these dresses will be as good as new. It’s also a lovely sentiment to wear a dress that’s previously given so much joy to a happy couple – major good vibes, we think.
4. A great tip to save some pennies is to buy one that is made ready-to-wear. This may need a little bit of tweaking, but the price of an off-the-hanger dress will be much lower than that of a made-to-measure gown. Besides, you will be surprised how many will fit you like a gorgeous glove, and be super comfortable too. Just get out there and try them on! This can also save time, as it doesn’t necessitate months of creation and fittings.
5. If you are having a vintage-themed wedding, vintage shops are great places to find stunning wedding dresses in a great variety of styles. In fact, you might not even buy a dress that was intended for a wedding! White Gatsby-esque evening dresses will look just as impressive as a specially made gown! Do check the dresses for signs of wear and tear (especially on the hem and the armpits) and think of any potential alterations you may want to make ahead of buying. Then, you can put your bridesmaids in dresses of a complimentary style.
5. If you happen to know a fantastic seamstress or dressmaker, you are one lucky bride. It is often much cheaper to have a dress made by a seamstress. Do make sure you check their reputation first and fully discuss designs with them. Whilst any reputable dressmaker won’t copy another design, you can discuss your favourite elements of other designs you’ve seen and bring something together that’s unique to you – then watch the perfect dress come to life before your eyes.
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Check out some more wedding dress advice below!
Or have a look at some more wedding saving tips below!