With the average cost of weddings spiraling out of control, we’re always excited about wedding hacks that can save you money. One of the most important (and expensive) items of any wedding is the dress. But what if we told you that a record number of brides are now walking down the aisle in second hand gowns, and guests are none the wiser.
Gently used wedding dresses have exploded in popularity in recent years. Gowns that only worn for a few hours, then dry cleaned, are typically selling for half the retail price. Savvy brides are buying the designer dress of their dreams, while still staying within a reasonable budget.
Leading wedding dress marketplace StillWhite.com shares with us the 5 top tips to save big on the dress of your dreams below!
This $19,000 Pallas Couture dress was snapped up on Still White by a bride in Nebraska for $6,780. See Listing.
1. The search
With over 20,000 dresses to choose from on StillWhite.com, there are styles and designers to suit every shape and budget. If you're looking for a specific designer gown, you can search across the entire globe for your dream dress. For those just starting their search, simply enter your size and budget to browse through thousands of dresses that would fit you well. Use additional filters like neckline, sleeve and length to zero-in on your shortlist. Add dresses you love to your watchlist, and share them with your mom or bridesmaids.
If you can’t find what you're looking for immediately, save your search to have new matches emailed to you. With new dresses added daily, that takes the hard work out of it.
This Grace Loves Lace Alexandra was bought for $2,600 and sold on Still White for $1,400. See the listing here.
2. Ask the right questions
Still White’s safe and secure platform means you can easily chat with one another, and even share photos, and never have to worry about emailing back and forth.
Here are the top questions to ask a seller before you buy:
Measurements - If you know the bride’s sizing, you can compare it to your own and ensure a perfect fit!
Condition - Most dresses are professionally dry cleaned before being listed, but it’s always a good idea to confirm if there are any marks on the hem or pulls in tulle.
Photos - Whether it’s for a different angle of the dress or a close up of some intricate detailing, you may request additional photos from the selling bride.
Shipping - Ask the seller for a shipping estimate to your location, or use an online shipping calculator.
Negotiate - Prices are already amongst the lowest you will find for designer wedding dresses, however there may be for some room for negotiation with the seller. It never hurts to ask.
Your personal contact details are kept private while Still White is constantly monitoring messages for suspicious behavior, to keep everything safe and running smoothly. Support is always available as well, if you’re ever unsure about anything.
Buyer of this Steven Khalil dress is in California. Seller from Melbourne, Australia. See listing.
3. Shipped or try on
If you’re the type of shopper that must try on, search for dresses located near you and organize a time to meet with the seller. If you are going to try on a dress locally, here are some key things to keep in mind. Be punctual and let the seller know well in advance if your plans change. It’s also important that you remember not to wear any makeup or perfume. The previous bride spent a lot of money to make sure her dress was perfectly cleaned for you, so make sure you leave the makeup at home to keep things clean and white.
Over 70% of the dresses on StillWhite.com are purchased online. Remember to include shipping into the overall cost. It is also important to figure in any import duty or tax when shipping a dress from overseas as these costs still apply to second hand items.
Sarah bought her Watters dress for $3,550 and sold it for $1,600. See listing.
One of the biggest concerns brides have when considering to buy a dress second hand is the handling of money. When buying a dress from a bride, it can be nerve wracking to know that your hard earned cash is getting into the right hands. With Still White, you can have the peace of mind because they connect with a secure payment provider to safeguard you against the unknown.
Buyer protection gives you the peace of mind that if a dress arrives significantly different to the seller's description, damaged, counterfeit or doesn't arrive at all, your payment is protected and refunded for the full purchase price up to $20,000 USD. With all this protection, there is nothing to stop you from finding the dress of your dreams, from anywhere in the world!
A lucky buyer snapped up this Inbal Dror worth $7,999 for only $2,500! See listing.
5. Sell it on
Once you buy a dress second hand, you understand the process, and it makes it easy to turn around and sell the dress again after wearing it on your big day. To ensure that your dress is in perfect condition to resell, make sure to look after your dress on your wedding day. Ask your photographer to take front and back full-length shots of you alone in the dress, to use as part of your listing.
The easiest way to get your dress looking in tip-top shape after your wedding day, is to take it to a reliable dry cleaner. The sooner you list your dress, the better resale value you will receive. If you let a dress sit in your closet for a few years, it may go out or style, or lose interest from modern brides. So be sure to list your dress as soon as you return from your honeymoon.When you are getting ready to sell, remember that Still White is here to help. Click here to be guided through the entire process. With just a few minutes of your time, you can recoup part of your wedding budget! Not to mention the joy you will have being able to share your perfect dress with another bride on her big day! Still White makes buying and selling your wedding dress simple, safe and fun! Shop now and see their amazing selection today.
This Grace Loves Inca was bought for $3,090 and sold on Still White for $2,000. See the listing here.
Find more #pretty dresses when you follow Still White on Instagram