(Closed) Where can I find dresses for $500 or less in Illinois?!

posted 7 years ago in Dress
Post # 5
555 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I would TOTALLY recommend Running of the Brides–especially considering the amount of time you have till your wedding.  I did it in Chicago last July and found a 1300 Mon Cheri dress for 250 plus tax.  70% of the dresses there were 250 and others were 500 and 700.  We went about 11 and there were still thousands of dresses to look through and I found my dream dress in about an hour and a half. 



Post # 6
1090 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I’m in Central Illinois too… I got mine at House of Brides and it is the GUARANTEED lowest price. I went to the Oak Lawn location, because I found them a lot nicer in that location. 🙂 Good Luck!!

Post # 7
1701 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Once you know what you want, try the pre-owned sites and ebay.  There are a lot of brand new, never worn dresses.  If someone is close to your price, see if they’ll meet your number.  I second the running of the brides.  Also look for sample dresses at regular salons.

Post # 8
3254 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I don’t know how open you are to online shopping, but I got my gown from J. Crew for $350. It was originally $475 and I had a coupon code. They run a lot of sales, and the dresses are genuine silk. Ann Taylor and The Limited are also selling affordable gowns now, although I haven’t seen them so cannot comment on their quality.

Post # 9
5 posts


I would totally recommend buying a dress online from a knock-off designer wedding shop.  I went through Bestdressprice.com.  Heres some reasons/experences why I went this route:

A.  My friends were spending $700+ on dresses I got mine for $245.00  

B.  I hate shopping, and I really didn’t have the time for it being in med school. 

C. I had to work with a seamstress for about 2 months (met her for 20 mins once per week) on the dress for simple alterations and got her to do french bustles on the bottom.  IT was $150 for the alterations.

D.  Most designers get there dresses made in China anyway.  

E. I didn’t feel guilty the day after my wedding 

F.  My dress was GORGEOUS, and no one could tell at all it was a knockoff since the material was such good quality. 


So maybe look on the website bestdress.com  find a seamstress in your area that knows your situation and can give you a price on multiple fittings.  


Good luck!



Post # 10
2192 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I would recommend White Chicago a consignment store that is online and has a storefront in Chicago.  They sell once wed, never been worn and sample dresses.  I would check it out.  I am totally buying my dress there!

Post # 11
15 posts
  • Wedding: November 2011

Oh, honey… give Craigslist a whirl. (You think I’m joking, but I don’t know why no one else has suggested this!)

I used to do all my browsing on the computer, but since getting a smartphone I can now set up a regular search query (ex: wedding dress) through the notification app Craigslist has. I am about an hour northeast-ish of Champaign, and through the C-U Craigslist page, I found, tried on and purchased a Maggie Sottero new with tags for only 20% ($250) of what it would have cost at a shop. I also search the northwest suburbs of Chicago area because my Future Mother-In-Law lives up that way. Now I’m just looking for a veil, though I might borrow my cousin’s.

Best advice I can give you (whether you look at Craigslist or OnceWed, etc.) is don’t just browse it once and give up. Allow yourself a few weeks and just wait for something great to be posted and snatch it up when you can. (Although I’d been eyeing my Maggie on CL for over a month before I could meet with the seller to try it on! I can’t believe she still had it available for sale!)

Post # 12
10 posts
  • Wedding: May 2012

I checked out The Limited and Nordstrom for my wedding dress.  My budget is $500 (including alterations, shoes, veil… eek!) but it seems like both these websites have tons of dresses in this price range.

Post # 14
1679 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Maybe White Chicago? They sell samples and on consignment, so you could get a gown that’s worth far more than you budget allows.  🙂


Post # 15
381 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Where in IL? I am in LaSalle Peru. You may want to check out Bridal Elegance in Ottawa. They have a TON of dresses. I ended up getting my at David’s WAY OVER my $500 budget.

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