Shopping for the perfect wedding dress is one of the most stressful parts of planning a wedding for any bride.
You want to look beautiful, but you also don’t want to spend too much money on your dress, because you’ll only wear it for a few hours. If you’re planning on getting married in 2023 or looking for a dress for your 2024 wedding this year, what can you expect in terms of dress pricing at many bridal salons? Here is a detailed guide on the average cost of a wedding dress.
Wedding Dress and Other Special Occasion Dresses Can Be Expensive, But You Have Options
You don’t need to break the bank when finding a wedding dress. There are plenty of options available on the market, whether you’re looking for an affordable gown or something more extravagant. You can even rent a wedding dress if you want one that costs more than your budget allows.
If your budget is limited and there’s no way around buying a new dress, consider buying from second-hand shops like ThredUp or Poshmark (which sell used clothing), auction sites like eBay or consignment shops where owners sell their items at reduced prices.
The Average Cost of a Wedding Dress in 2023
A wedding dress can range from $1,000 to more than $4,500. The average price of a wedding dress in 2023 will be around $3,000.
The average price of a store-bought bridal gown is around $2,400–this figure includes both the bridal gown itself and any alterations necessary to make it fit perfectly on your body.
However, if you have an eye for designer clothing or wish to have something unique that no one has ever worn, then expect the price tag on your dream dress to be substantially higher than this amount.
If you’re considering creating your unique creation with beads or flowers instead of buying an off-the-rack dress sample from one of many local shops near where you live, then don’t forget about all those extra costs associated with purchasing materials such as tulle fabric or silk ribbon. Those are just two examples — there are many others!
If you’re planning on getting married soon and want to spend as little as possible on your dress, keep reading! We’ll show you how to get the most bang for your buck when it comes to wedding dresses — and we’ll even share some tips on making your own if that’s something you want to do.
An All-White or Ivory Dress Isn’t Your Only Option
You can choose a wedding dress in any color you want. There are many shades for your dress and bridesmaids’ dresses, including blue, green and purple. It’s also possible to find dresses with lace or beading accents on them as well. Some wedding dresses are designed to look like bridal gowns but are, in fact, special occasion dresses, for things like prom. These dresses could be cheaper and more your style than you realize!
Check out these other inspirations for acquiring the perfect bridal gown:
- Looking for Your Dream Wedding Dress
- How to Find the Perfect Wedding Dress for a Barn Wedding
- How to Choose the Best Backless Wedding Dress
Consider Purchasing a Pre-Owned Wedding Dress
The first step is to determine what you want. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a new dress, but it’s essential to make sure you’re buying something that suits your style and body type. Think about what kind of bride you want to be. If this sounds like too much pressure, think back on all the weddings you’ve attended. What type of bride did each represent? Do you want an extravagant gown with lots of lace and tulle or something simpler and more modern?
It can be helpful to look at some photos of weddings from previous years. You’ll quickly notice trends in bridal fashion — and if one particular style catches your eye, then go for it! When choosing a dress style, remember that there are plenty of ways for dresses from different eras to be modernized today by using contemporary fabrics and cuts.
Once you’ve decided on a general idea for how your dream dress should look (and whether or not it fits into any specific trends), start browsing through store catalogs or magazines until something jumps out at you as being perfect! This can take time because most stores will have only one or two styles on display at any time — but don’t worry too much since most stores offer free shipping.
Discount Stores Can Sell Wedding Dresses Too!
If you’re on a budget and have your heart set on getting married in a unique wedding dress, it’s time to go shopping. Many discount retailers sell off-the-rack gowns at low prices (less than $1,000). The best part? You can still find designer dresses with beautiful details and intricate beadwork at these prices — and they’re even customizable!
There are several things to consider when buying a dress from a discount retailer:
- Authenticity: Make sure the labels match what the store sells — it should say “Made in France” or whatever country the fabric was sourced in.
- Also, look for tags sewn into seams as an extra sign of quality control.
- Size: Discount stores often carry small sizes and large sizes. If you’re looking into buying an off-the-rack wedding dress that fits well at first glance but doesn’t quite fit after trying it on again later, take note of whether or not there’s room for alteration before purchasing!
Designer Gowns from Bridal Salons and Boutiques Aren’t that Different.
One of the biggest misconceptions about designer gowns is that they’re somehow better than others. While this may be true for some, it isn’t true for all designers.
Many bridal gown designers create their dresses using a standard pattern that’s been used for years and stamp their name on it in hopes that customers will pay more just because they’re wearing a famous designer’s dress.
If you think about it rationally, it makes sense that a wedding dress from David’s Bridal would be similar in quality to one from Vera Wang — they’re both mass-produced and designed with the average customer in mind (i.e., not overly complicated). The only difference between these two companies is how much money you will spend on the name on the tag!
Don’t Stress Over Your Body Shape or Weight
Don’t worry about whether you’re a size 4 or 16, if your bust is small or large or if your hips are wide or narrow. Don’t worry about what anyone else thinks of how you look. You’re beautiful in your way and no one can tell you otherwise! Just think about how good it feels to be comfortable in your skin — it’s worth all the money in the world!
Making the Most of Your Wedding Dress Investment
Most people will only wear their wedding dress once, but there are a few ways to get more mileage out of it. You could:
- Wear the dress again at other formal events, like prom or a fancy party hosted by friends or colleagues. These events will include fewer people and often less expensive venues than your actual wedding, so you’ll save money on both sides!
- Buy an inexpensive evening gown instead of a costly wedding dress. You’ll keep the classic silhouette — long train, fitted bodice, low back — but with less material (and thus less cost). And if you’re having another formal event down the line, where this style would be appropriate again? You won’t have to go shopping again!
- Renting is another option for those who want something more glamorous than what they already own but don’t want to commit long-term financially.
Shop at Bridal Trunk Shows for Steep Savings
Bridal trunk shows are another way to do a test run of your dream dress. These events are held in different parts of the country, making them easy to find. They’re great because you can visit the store, try different styles and get a feel for what you like before committing. If you like the one you’ve tried on at a trunk show — and we think you will — you can buy it there and then!
Online Stores Are Worth the Risk for Huge Savings
Shopping online is an excellent option for finding a deal on your dream gown. You can browse the selection in the comfort of your own home and get access to styles and prices that you wouldn’t have been able to find at a brick-and-mortar shop. Plus, if you don’t like what you see, it’s easy to go back and look at more options without making another trip into town. Suppose you need help with anything along the way. In that case, there are plenty of sites with customer service representatives ready and willing to answer any questions while shopping online (and they’ll even help pick out accessories).
Shop Around to Bring the Final Price Tag Down
There are many ways to save money on a wedding dress. The first is to ask for help from your friends and family, who can be invaluable in helping you find the perfect dress at an affordable price. They might know about sales or discounts on certain styles or stores or they could even look for used options for you.
Another good idea is shopping around before entering the store: online sites like Amazon often run deals on their products, so keep an eye out!
Trunk shows are also worth attending if they happen in your area; designers bring their latest creations to local bridal boutiques and hold open houses where customers can try them on without ordering from the website (which saves time). Going out of our way might seem like too much effort sometimes but remember: It’s all part of making sure you get what you want without breaking the bank — and sometimes doing things in a different way means saving money anyway.
Follow our blog for more tips and tricks and updated wedding dress pricing throughout the year!
As a multi-passionate creative and a self-proclaimed frequent flyer of weddings, Kiara combines her love for the wedding industry and experience as a professional wedding photographer with her writing abilities to share tips, tricks, and helpful information with couples. She is the owner of Switech Studios a popular wedding photography business. With tons of insider information from behind her camera lens on how to have the best wedding possible, Kiara’s in-depth knowledge is sure to put you on the road to wedding planning success.