When you’re planning a wedding on a budget, there are tons of things you can easily cut corners on. Your wedding dress, however, is not one of those things—but that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend a small fortune to snag a gorgeous dress.
The cost of an average American wedding jumped to an insanely-high $35,329 in 2016, with many women spending upwards of $10,000 on a dress. Hey, we totally get you want to look your absolute best, but it does pay to remember that most of us technically will only wear the thing one time.
If you’re someone who’s not exactly eager to buy a dress for the price of a car, we uncovered 15 places to check out for gorgeous wedding gowns on the cheap. If you’re on a mission to find the dress, we suggest you hightail it to these sites, stat. Because let’s face it: Most of us can’t afford Vera Wang.
Noelle Dress, $588; at Reformation
1. Reformation: Yes, your favorite spot for cool-girl dresses does wedding gowns, too. As of last year the insanely stylish, eco-conscious retailer is also a destination for drop-dead gorgeous bridal dresses at reasonable prices, most of which hover in the $500 range.
2. Adored Vintage: If you’re hoping to unearth an incredible vintage wedding dresses, take the time to sift through the online offering at Adored Vintage—mostly all the bridal inventory ranges between $100 to $300.
3. Free People: Called FP Ever After, Free People’s new wedding line is everything you could ever hope for from the brand that’s come to define haute hippie style. Priced between $700 and $1,600, it’s also refreshingly affordable–at least by wedding dress standards.
ASOS WEDDING Mesh One Shoulder Corsage Dress, $135; at ASOS
4. ASOS: Along with thousands of cute party dresses and summery crop tops, your favorite fast-fashion super-site also has a bridal line called, ASOS Wedding. It’s mainly filled with dresses perfect for bridesmaids, but within the line is also the occasional look perfect for stylish (and thrifty) brides.
5. White Runway: With over 350 ready-to-wear and customizable wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses, White Runway is an easy first-stop when looking for a budget-friendly bridal look. Prices here are hard to beat—you should be able to find the dress and still get change from $200–and if the piece arrives and doesn’t fit perfectly, you can exchange it, no questions asked.
6. Phase Eight: This British brand has a beautiful selection of short and long wedding dresses with prices that fall well below a $1,000 budget.
7. Grace Loves Lace: This boho brand specializes in free-spirited styles that are suited to outdoor ceremonies. Everything is handmade from luxe French lace and silk, and prices start at around $450 for short wedding dresses, with most gowns available under $1,500.
Chiffon Wedding Dress, $720; at Etsy
8. Etsy: You already turn to Etsy for everything else handmade and quirky, so why not your wedding dress too? There are dozens of Etsy stores that sell both vintage and handmade bridal looks.
9. J.Crew: For cool, stylish, low-fuss wedding dresses under $1,500, you can’t beat J.Crew. The bridal line has a wearable blend of traditional wedding gown attributes, mixed with ultra-modern details (hello, pockets!)
Keepsake Morning Shadows Dress, $180; at Fashion Bunker
10. Fashion Bunker: This Australian superstore is home to affordable fashion favorite, Cameo, plus more of the label’s sister brands like Keepsake, The Fifth Label, and Finders Keepers. Among the trendy spring styles are a few standout white dresses that would appeal to any minimalist, modern bride.
11. Daughters of Simone: Lace continues to reign supreme over just about everything else on the bridal circuit–and we can understand why. The fabric is feminine, flattering, and lends itself perfectly to wedding dresses. If you have your heart set on something lace, but with a more bohemian feel, check out Daughters of Simone.
12. Donna Morgan: For traditional wedding dresses under $250 (and free shipping!), it’s worth taking a look at Donna Morgan.
Nasty Gal Catherine Cape Dress, $88; at Nasty Gal
13. Nasty Gal: Can’t think of anything worse than pulling on a conventional wedding dress and veil? Then head to Nasty Gal and pickup a white caped mini or something a whole lot more modern (and affordable!) than a long, lace gown.
14. BHLDN: For frothy, tulle princess gowns and bead-embroidered bridal dresses, check out the offering at BHLDN.
15. ModCloth: If retro vintage is your style, and you want to stick with your signature look for your wedding day, search for something a little more original at ModCloth.
Originally published June 2015. Updated August 2017.