Dream dress or Practicality

posted 1 year ago in Dress
  • poll: How did you decide on your dress budget or justify your budget

    I bought my dream dress no matter the price

    I couldn’t justify spending a lot of money for one dress for one day

    I fell somewhere in the middle and found a dress I loved for a great price.

  • Post # 16
    1489 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2019

    I only went to one store and ended up finding my dress there. I told them my maximum budget was 2000 (CAD), but that I would prefer to stay around the 1500 mark. Most of the dresses they showed me were around 1500 and they did not show me a single dress over my budget. If I asked about dresses over my budget, they were very up front about telling me it was over 2000. I tried on around 10 dresses and my dream dress ended up only being 1200 CAD (way under my budget).

    Post # 17
    1825 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2019

    My budget was $1500, which I felt fair, and I found my dream dress for $1483 🙂 

    Post # 18
    764 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: March 2019

    I saw my dress online before I even had a chance to think about a budget. The price was pretty steep so I decided to look at some other gowns, but nothing compared so I bit the bullet. My dress was $6k and I could afford it. 

    Post # 19
    2831 posts
    Sugar bee

    I fell in love with a handful of dresses online.  Fortunately, one of them was at a price point I was comfortable with — the others were the same price as a year of college tuition!  

    My dress was still on the expensive side – around $4,000.  I thought about trying to find somthing cheaper but I just loved this dress so much that I decided it was worth it to me.  

    Post # 20
    867 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: February 2019

    Before my wedding I had a rough idea of where I might net out based on what friends had spent and liking the quality of their dresses.  My budget was SUPER wide open.  I wanted to net out around $5-6K but I knew $10,000 was my absolute max budget.  But I wasn’t convinced the dress had to be in that range, there were some $3,000-ish dresses that had caught my eye online.

    Searching and dress shopping made me realize a few things. One, the style of dress I was looking for (a-line with a romantic, ethereal vibe and detail work and subtle sparkle) wasn’t the most common style.  Often I saw LOTS of fitted gowns, but each shop really only had a few that I was interested in.  And from there I realize I am really picky about a few things the kind of lace and applique,how the dress feels on, whether the bodice length seems appropriate (since I’m petite), and having some fullness in the skirt without being too poofy.

    Once all those factors added up to loving individual dresses my top three all ended up at the top of the budget (my #3 dress was over but could have been brought in budget during a sample sale and by choosing a standard size vs. made to measure.)

    I did whatever I could though to get the best deal possible – bought during sample sale & took advantage of the ability to have my dress sent out of state to avoid sales tax (it did add $150 for shipping but was better than 10% of the price of my dress for sales tax).

    For me I could justify it because the rest of the wedding costs are covered almost entirely by a gift from my parents, whereas I bought the dress myself.  I always considered it a separate budget and that it would not take away from what I intended so spend on other things.  I’m also someone who makes a comfortable salary, already own my own, save regularly and have investment/retirement account so it wasn’t as if this money was keeping me from achieving a different financial goal.  But I put a lot of thought into budget and my shopping experience convinced me that for what I was looking for my dress was the best choice.  I love it and can’t wait to wear it in just a couple short months.

    Post # 21
    44 posts
    • Wedding: June 2019

    I didnt try on anything that was over my budget, but I made the most of my budget by going to an outlet store that buys surplus and samples and sells them at a discount. I looked at used dresses too.

    Post # 22
    198 posts
    Blushing bee

    I’m buying my wedding dress from an overseas retailer. I’ve done the research, even joined a FB group devoted to overseas dress makers so I’m not too worried. The dress I’m eyeing is my dream dress and its $250. I cant justify spending a lot on a dress especially when the dress industry charges brides knowing that brides will pay an insane price for a dress. 

    Post # 23
    780 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2019

    I had a budget of 5k or so but I ended up finding a dress that I fell in love with for 2k! Also happened to be the first dress I tried on 🙂

    Post # 24
    3131 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: June 2017

    My “dream dress” could never have cost over 1000$. I got my absolute dream dress on Etsy for just over 500$ CAN. People still can’t believe the deal I got when I tell them, it was to die for. If you set your mind to it you really can find something beautiful for a reasonable price. 

    Post # 25
    273 posts
    Helper bee

    I had a certain number in mind that I felt comfortable with (even though to me it was still quite a lot), and didn’t try anything on that would put me over budget by much. I ended up liking a dress $200 over budget and the boutique gave me a discount to meet my budget. I loved my dress and still do, but sometimes a small part of me thinks about how I could have spent the money on other more practical things… but I hopefully only will get married once so it was worth it 🙂 

    Post # 26
    74 posts
    Worker bee

    My budget was $6000. I tried on dresses in that range, as well as some double that amount and some around the $2000 range. 

    I ended up getting one that’s around $4000+. So there was no real dilemma, but I think dream dresses could be found at every price point! If I had fallen in love with one that’s twice my budget in the five figure range I’ll definitely make something similar and cheaper work haha.

    I’m very aware that the money could’ve gone to more practical purposes though so I’m trying to convince myself to sell the dress. If your dream dress is a popular Pinterest/Instagram kind of dress, you might be able to recoup most of your money back by selling it. 🙂 

    Post # 27
    1744 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    I didn’t want to pay more than 10K. I got lucky and my dress was “only” $3000. It was so worth it to me and I loved it so much. 

    Post # 28
    668 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: April 2019

    Have you looked at dresses yet? I thought I didn’t like a lot of stuff then when I went and actually could see them in real life I realized I liked a lot more. You may just need to get out there and look a little and you can find something you love in your budget.  I originally thought I wouldnt find a dress I liked that was under $4000 from watching say yes to dress etc. I found one I liked for $2000.Definitely keep in mind all the other stuff adds up. Shoes jewelry veil undergarments alterations and if you want to add things to your dress. Sometimes I wonder if I should looked at one more place but I think they had dresses for more money and I’m glad to have the extra money for all the other little things. If there’s something that stands out in your dream dress? Long train sparkle etc sometimes you can play around with on a cheaper dress. I ordered my dress with a longer train and plan to add either glitter tulle or sequin tulle under the lace to give it that sparkle. 

    Post # 29
    881 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2016

    View original reply
    ebbee :  Have you tried on dresses yet? What is your budget? You might very well find a dress you love in that budget. If you find one you love over budget, you can always check sample sales or search for the same dress preowned online. 

    To answer your question, I think it’s okay to go over budget on your dress as long as you adjust your overall wedding budget accordingly. Your dress should not cost more than 10% of your total wedding budget. So if your budget is $20,000, you should spend $2,000 max on a dress. If you go over and spend $3,000, that extra $1,000 has to come from somewhere. (Flowers, Invitations, Venue, etc)

    Post # 30
    77 posts
    Worker bee

    I went to a wedding boutique and tried on dresses without looking at the prices (don’t do this) and I fell in love with the Frankie by Made With Love, but it was 2000. I talked with my FH and my parents about it, and decided to hold off for a few months and do the following:

    -try a few dresses from Azazie

    -monitor sample sales in the spring 

    -try on cheaper dresses

    Then on a whim I ordered 2 dresses from Lulu’s, each were less than $50 for Black Friday, and both are beautiful. Obviously if all things were equal I would go with the Frankie but I found that the difference between the Lulu’s dresses and the more expensive option were not worth 1900 to me. If I had hated all the ones I tried on after or even not been satisfied, we would have considered buying the one I like pre-owned, where I’ve seen it for 700-1000. 

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