The cost of a wedding dress really doesn’t sit in until you start trying on dresses. Of course you can look up the prices on some websites, but not all list their prices online. There are just certain dresses that are hard to take them off…until you see the price tag.
Yes, dress shopping is extremely time consuming and tiring. Guys are lucky in the fact that they only have to rent a tux and not stress about finding a dress—affordable at that. I can’t say that I have had an awful time looking for dresses, but so far I haven’t had any luck. The main purpose of this article is to give an idea of how to find a dress and the details that go along.
Where to Start Looking
Before I started trying on dresses I bought a few bridal magazines to get an idea of what kind of dresses are out there. It’s sometimes nice seeing what dresses look like in pictures because you too will have pictures taken in your dress. I definitely recommend buying some of these magazines. They’re a little expensive but the good ones are worth it. Obviously a lot of this stuff can be found online but sometimes a magazine is nice once in awhile. The internet is another obvious place to look at dresses. There are so many bridal places out there it can make your head spin. But I googled wedding dresses and it gave me a list of designer websites.
This designer dress website, Alfred Angelos was the first one that I looked at. I love their website, it’s really user friendly. Plus they list the prices!
Something to keep in mind is that if you see a dress from a designer website, sometimes local independent bridal stores carry these designer dresses. Don’t get discouraged if there is something at a designer store and there isn’t one in your area, the local stores can also order dresses from the designers if they are an authorized retailer. I think this is a great idea because they have so much more experience with ordering dresses and they can help measure you. I went to local store in Fredericksburg that does this. They have racks full of wedding dresses in all kinds of sizes. They don’t have a dress in every size; rather you just buy them off the rack “as is.” But if you do like a certain dress but it’s not in your size, they can order it from the designer with no extra charge.
I mentioned in an earlier post that Pinterest was a great way to find cool ideas. Well it’s also a great place to look at wedding dresses. I recently have found a few awesome dresses on there that other people have “pinned” to the site. It’s also a nice way to see what new styles and trends are. It’s just a thought, but if you don’t have one I definitely recommend it. Especially if you’re planning a wedding, I’ve been able to keep my ideas organized through the site.
This Costs How Much?
I think that one of the bridal stores I went into was ready for my mom and I to leave after we asked, “This costs how much?” after trying on every dress. Don’t be too surprised if you go into a bridal store that carries designer dresses. I’m not sure if we didn’t realize that they had so many designer dresses, or if we really were just shocked at every price. Either way, prepare yourself when you ask for the price of a dress. Luckily the person helping us was very nice and humored us when we almost fell over hearing the price. I know there are people out there that have much bigger budgets than I do and I’m totally fine with that. I also understand that a lot of women getting married rest their entire budget on their dress and that’s fine too. But for me, I have a small budget so paying $1,200 or more on a dress just isn’t realistic.
Lace wedding dress from Allure Bridal, a favorite!
From what I have gathered so far from looking at dresses, there is usually a standard on how much a certain type of dress is going to cost. What I mean by this is, if it is a lace dress you’re looking at $1,000 and up. If the dress has some sparkles on it, $600 and up depending on how much sparkle and how detailed. The style of dress doesn’t really have a huge impact on the price unless it is a dress with an unusually large train or (I kid you not) five layers of fluff. I tried on a dress that made me look like a cake topper and nearly made me fall over from the weight of all of the layers. This dress was about $2,000 from what I remember, but it also had a lot of sparkle.
I know these dresses don’t sound anywhere near as pricey as they could be (if you have ever seen Say Yes to The Dress on TLC you know what I mean, $5,000 and up), but nonetheless, prepare your budget for a dress. I plan on paying for my dress myself that way my parents can put money towards venue and the other expenses.
Also be aware that there are a lot of scam designer dress makers online. Many of them will have a website with the same pictures of dresses from designer websites, making you believe they have that dress. These dresses are listed at extremely low prices compared to the actual dress. These dresses are actually being made cheaply in China and are knockoffs. They aren’t made from the materials that they claim they are. With that said, I have heard of people taking their chances with these online places. Sometimes it works out, and sometimes the dress is far from what they thought they were getting.
I will hopefully have a follow up article once I experience some more dress shopping. Until then, all there is to do is research.