Every little girl dreams about her wedding day. Aside from the groom, most of those fantasies revolve around THE DRESS. After scouring the pages of popular wedding magazines (not to mention Pinterest), and watching hundreds of hours of popular wedding planning shows, it’s no wonder that most brides enter their local bridal shop confused.
Choosing a wedding dress involves more than just an idea of what you want. It requires knowing what styles make you comfortable, the kind of wedding you are having (formal or causal), and of course the budget! One of the biggest mistake brides make is fixating on a particular designer or dress before she even knows how much she can spend. At The Perfect Bride, we give brides this piece of advice, “We always recommend that brides set their budget first – then start shopping for their dress.”
How Much Do Wedding Dresses Cost?
Answering this question isn’t easy. There are a lot of factors that go into wedding dress prices:
The Designer. High-end designers always cost more.
The Fabric. More natural fabrics like satin always come with a higher price tag.
The Details. The more beading, lace appliques and hand stitching featured on the dress, the more it is going to cost. Remember, a machine-made dress can run as little as $500, while one that includes a lot of hand details will cost thousands!
The Season. Most bridal designers debut their new liens once or twice a year. Choosing one of last season’s designs can dramatically decrease your cost.
The Store. There are lots of places to buy a wedding dress. Higher end shops may offer more perks, but you definitely pay for that extra attention. Larger retailers can offer good service and are cheaper; while smaller local shops often give you the personalized attention you deserve without breaking the bank. Of course, wholesale outlets and thrift stores are also an option for the bride on a budget as long as she isn’t as picky about the overall shopping experience or options available.
In general, a wedding dress is going to cost between $500 and $5,000, with most brides shelling out about $1,500 or their dream dress.
Set Your Wedding Budget First!
It can be tempting for a bride-to-be to head straight to the bridal shop to try on dresses before she ever thinks about the rest of the wedding or what it will cost. Stop! It can be devastating to fall in love with a dress only to discover you can’t afford it. That’s why it is vital to set your overall wedding budget first. Once you have a grasp on what the entire wedding will cost, then you can decide what you can spend on the dress. Remember, be sure to only try on dresses within that price range.
What if You Can’t Find Something Within Your Budget?
If you have set aside $800 for your wedding dress only to discover that you don’t like anything in your price range, you are going to have to make some difficult choices by cutting other areas of the wedding to accommodate a higher sticker price on a dress.
In general, the food, photographer and dress are top on most couple’s budget list. So if you have a lot of “extras” on your budget, see if something can be altered to free up some needed funds for your dress account. For instance, if you have already scheduled a photo booth, don’t feel bad by cutting out favors (those booth pictures can serve as your favor for the evening). Or if you originally planned on offering an open bar all evening, consider cutting back the hours to free up some cash.
There is no right or wrong decisions when planning a wedding. It is your day, and you should have what means the most to you — and if that means a higher priced dress instead of something else, that is just fine!
The One Splurge You Can’t Live Without!
When it comes to preparing for your big day, be sure that you have a beautiful, and comfortable, pair of shoes! Remember, you’ll be in those heels all day long (and it’s going to be a long day), so you need shoes that not only look great, but you can stand to have on your feet for hours.
Make Your Appointment Today!
Now that he’s popped the question and you have set your wedding budget, it’s time for the best part — picking your wedding dress! Let the experts at The Perfect Bride make your experience one you will remember for a lifetime. Call today to make your appointment!