Cheap Bridesmaid Dresses
While every bridesmaid is honored to be a part of her friend or relative's special day many are shocked by the high price tag that privilege carries! Of all the costs associated with being a bridesmaid, the bridesmaid dress is usually the highest. However, there are ways to find and buy a cheap bridesmaid dress - you'll look great without breaking the bank!
Package discounts: many bridal shops offer a discount when the bride and the bridesmaids purchase their dresses together. The discount can range from 10-20 percent. Most shops don't advertise this discount so be sure to ask.
Rent a bridesmaid dress: just like renting a tuxedo, renting a bridesmaid dress can provide substantial cost savings. Finding a store that rents bridesmaid dresses can be difficult. Try looking for stores that rent general formal/evening wear - you may have better luck.
Consignments stores: consignment or resale stores often have bridesmaid dresses on hand. The available colors, styles and sizes will vary from store, so you many need to visit several stores to find your ideal dress. The affordable prices are often worth the extra effort.
Discount designer stores: some of the top designers in bridesmaid dresses and formal wear have discount stores for last year's styles or surplus. The best time to go is early in the day when new stock arrives. Look the dress over carefully before buying it. Some discount designer stores carry "seconds" so the dress may be flawed in some way - a small tear, a ripped seam or dye spots. If the flaw can be easily fixed (for example a stuck zipper) then it may be worth it to buy the dress and have it repaired by a tailor. If the flaw can't be fixed pass on the dress. Also keep in mind most discount designer stores have a "no return policy" - so choose your dress wisely.
Shop at department stores: many major department stores are offering beautiful formal wear that can easily pass as a bridesmaid dress. Most carry a wide range of colors and sizes that rival bridal store offerings. Plus department stores carry "real" women's sizes - so you can actually try the dress on! In addition to purchasing the dress off-the-rack some department stores will order the dress in your size, just like a bridal shop. Instead of months, the dress arrives in a few short weeks or days. Purchase your dress during prom season (for spring/summer weddings), homecoming or Christmas (for fall/winter weddings) for the greatest selection and sale prices.
Sew your own bridesmaid dress: if you or a relative is a skilled seamstress by all means sew your own dress. However, keep in mind that fabric can be quite expensive and creating a dress from scratch is very time consuming.
Don't rush order your bridesmaid dress: rush ordering your bridesmaid dress can add up to 20 percent to the dress cost! Save money by ordering your bridesmaid dress far in advance of the wedding.