As much as you might love a bridesmaid dress, sometimes walking away is the best choice you can make for the lucky ladies you’ve chosen to be your bridesmaids.
As a bride, you know a thing or two about cost. Even the most inexpensive of weddings these days costs upwards of thousands of dollars. When choosing bridesmaid dresses, typically, the expense of the dress falls on the shoulders of the bridesmaids. A sure way to begin causing disagreements and resentment is to choose a bridesmaid dress that is way beyond the budget of someone in your group. Due to the hefty price tags associated with many bridesmaid dresses, what we recommend is consulting with your bridesmaids first. Do so privately and get a sense on what they are able to afford price-wise. That should give some indication into what to look for.
Always take into account the price points you’ve been given by your bridesmaids when searching for a dress. Because it’s your bridesmaids that will be paying for it, you don’t want to set a number that they’re uncomfortable spending or that they feel obliged to spend. By asking for their input in a private setting, they’re sure to appreciate the thoughtfulness. Provide them with a few different price ranges, such as $100-$200 or $200-$350, and see their reaction. Keep in mind that there are amazing dresses available at almost any price point so forking over hundreds of dollars is not necessarily required, in this case. When discussing finances, also ensure that things like accessories and alterations are remembered, as they will make up additional costs. The average cost for a bridesmaid dress is approximately $150. Yes, you can get them on the inexpensive side, but they may not necessarily be good quality. For $150, you get something that is comfortable to wear to a wedding and at this price point, a bride should be able to find something that appeals to them.
What we recommend is keeping the bridesmaid dress under $200. That said, if you happen to stumble upon the perfect dress and if it costs a little more, some brides may offer to pay for the difference or to help with alteration costs. If there’s a requirement to have hair and makeup done professionally by the same person, helping out with these costs may also make sense. The last thing you want are for your bridesmaids to spoil their time with you by thinking of the money they have to invest. If you don’t think it’s worth it to help out a little, choosing less expensive items is the way to go.
If you’re looking for ways to save on bridesmaid dresses, consider pre-owned dresses. Your bridesmaids will no doubt thank you for the reduction in what they have to spend and you may in fact be able to find something quite glam. If there’s not a local store to browse, check it out online.
For example, let’s say you have five bridesmaids and you find the perfect dress for $300 – except you have one friend who can’t really afford the price tag. Buy four of the dresses and visit online to see if you can find a fifth at a lower cost. Browsing ecommerce sites like eBay, you may be able to find the same dress in the right size. Remember, it never hurts to take a look at what’s available online. There are some bridesmaids who skip the whole shopping in-store experience and go straight to buying pre-owned online. In a sense, it’s all in what the bride wants to see on her bridesmaids.
To keep costs low, renting bridesmaid dresses is another option that more and more brides are taking advantage of. Let’s say you would like your bridesmaids to appear in something from a higher price point, renting can help bring down expenses significantly. To this point, going for a mismatched bridesmaid dress theme makes it even easier to shop for rentals. This way, you still get the look you want for your wedding day but without having to essentially force your bridesmaids to pay a high price point on something that they may only wear the one time.
At the end of the day, how much is spent on bridesmaid dresses are up to the bride and the participants. There are numerous high-end options to choose from in addition to those in the median range and below. The only people who need to be aware of the price point are the bridesmaids. Let’s say that you do choose to go with something a little more economical, you can successfully do so. There’s nothing stopping you and better yet, a lot of the time, it won’t show in your wedding photos. No one has to know the price point. Chances are, if you are researching how to save money on bridesmaid dresses, your best bet is to exercise every option you can. Check out what’s available in your local area and online, and decide if pre-owned or rentals are fair enough.
Being chosen as a bridesmaid is a big honour for anyone. How much it costs to be a bridesmaid can easily get out of hand though so be sure to nail down the financial responsibilities of the role early on. When bridesmaid dress price points are not being looked at thoroughly, the cost can easily climb to $1,500 and above. Don’t let that be you. Do what you need to do – whether that’s finding in-store discounts, trying to land a deal by buying in bulk, or waiting until sales to put in your order.
Browsing online, there are stories of people spending way, way more and way less with some having got by with as much as $60 for the dress, alterations, and everything! By keeping prices in check, you’ll keep everyone happy and ensure that there aren’t any unexpected surprises down the line.