Thinking of buying a wedding dress online? It’s no longer the risky venture it used to be. You can certainly save money when you buy a bridal gown online as long as you know where to look and understand the pros and cons. Here’s how to avoid the pitfalls and invest in a dress you love for less.
Still White Bridalwear: the UK’s number one online marketplace to buy and sell your second hand wedding dress
Know your style
Knowing which styles suit your shape is a good start. Run a search for those styles online until you find ‘the one’. Then before you place your order…
It’s important to get properly measured and have all your measurements written down before you start looking as not every designer uses the same set of measurements. A size 8 wedding dress for instance is closer to a UK high street size 10 and a US high street size 4 or 6. Don’t get caught out.
Consider the drawbacks
The two main drawbacks to buying online are that you cannot touch the fabric or try the gown on before ordering. Remember the old adage that you get what you pay for. Duchess satin and real silk gowns with hand-sewn beading or embroidery created by a bridal designer or couturier will always cost more.
Read the small print
Do read the shipping, exchanges, returns and refunds policies before ordering and leave plenty of time for postage, possible exchanges, dress fittings and adjustments. Check the return and exchange policy as some sites will allow you to return the gown but charge a fee for doing so. You could also have to pay your own postage to return the dress. You would not be able to return or exchange a made-to-order gown.
Find a dressmaker
Unless you’re extremely lucky, you might have to make adjustments to your dress to make sure it fits just right. Use a reputable dressmaker you trust, with plenty of experience in tailoring wedding gowns.
A word of caution about fake designer gowns. Be very careful buying from overseas dress makers who show an image of a designer gown and claim to be able to produce an exact replica for hundreds of pounds less. Find out Why Not to Buy a Fake Designer Wedding Dress (please see Related Articles below).
Where to look
Try Kitty and Dulcie for brand new gowns or Still White for pre-loved (that’s a nice way of saying second-hand) wedding dresses. Still White is the UK’s #1 marketplace to buy and sell your second hand wedding dress. Find out more about Still White in the Confetti Directory and see more bridal gowns in Dresses and Style.
Gown by Kitty and Dulcie as seen on BBC3’s Don’t Tell the Bride
Catering for voluptuous, curvy women, Eternity Bridal's Cara Mia Woman collection offers stunning plus size bridal wear. With gowns from size 14 to 28, they are specifically designed to flatter full figured…
Kate Thompson is Confetti's features editor and wedding expert, and has worked in the wedding industry for 15 years. A widely published lifestyle writer, she has made BBC television and radio appearances discussing wedding trends in the UK.