According to the popular wedding planning site The Knot, the average wedding costs about $27,800. Most wedding budgets allow about 10% of the total budget for attire, including the wedding gown. For the average wedding, this means that attire costs $2,780. Engaged couples looking to save money can cut down a lot by spending less on attire. A great option for brides is to look on internet auction websites, such as eBay.com, for inexpensive wedding gowns. A variety is available, from new, to custom made, to gently used.
Bridal Salon Samples
Many dresses available on eBay or other auction sites are samples from a bridal salon. Salons will usually have one dress of the popular styles available in their showroom. This is so brides can try on the dress or at least see it in person. This is called a sample. Since the dress will only be in one size, brides who don’t fit in it can at least hold it up in front of them, or try it on but cinch it up in the back. If the bride likes the dress, she then orders a brand new one through the bridal salon.
Since samples are only relevant while the dresses are being produced by the designer. Once seasons change, the samples are no longer necessary. Before the internet, salons would sometimes hold sample sales and sell the dresses for a fraction of the cost. Now, many salons sell them on internet auction sites. Brides can get a dress in great shape, that might not have ever been tried on, or only tried on a couple of times. Sometimes dresses will have slight flaws, but most reputable salons disclose them. Most people attending a wedding won’t even notice if a dress is from a previous season.
Custom Made Bridal Gowns
Brides can also find custom made wedding dresses on web auctions. These dresses are often made in China, where silk is inexpensive. These dresses will sometimes be knock-offs of designer dresses, but brides have a lot of creative control in making the dress unique. Brides do need to be careful about purchasing a dress this way because they often have little recourse when there are payment or delivery issues with another country. They shouldn’t wait until the last minute to purchase the dress, in case anything goes wrong.
Used Wedding Dresses
Many women try to sell their used dresses on eBay. Potential buyers should be aware that listings may describe a dress as being “only worn a couple of hours” but a lot of damage could be done in a short time. Couples often take wedding photos outside where it could be dirty, and they could get food or drinks on their dress, or even step on a hem or rip a button. Also, pre-worn dresses have also been altered and might not fit true to size. Brides also tend to price their already worn gowns pretty high, to try to recoup their costs. Used gowns can be a great deal, but make sure to read the description closely and request measurements and pictures of any damage.
Bridal gowns can range in price from under $100 for a simple white dress that’s not specifically a “wedding dress,” to tens of thousands of dollars for a top designer dress. Brides have many options, including buying a dress from a web auction, in order to save money on a dress.