A wedding dress may be one of the most exciting purchases you’ll ever make — but it’s not without its costs. If you’re setting a budget, it’s important to factor in all your expenses including accessories and alteration fees so there are no surprises come your big day.
We spoke to Dami Olukoya, an award-winning designer how much does it cost to make a wedding dress and founder of black-owned womenswear brand Imad Eduso, who shared with us all the different factors that go into making a wedding dress and some tips on how brides can save a bit.
The fabric you choose will have a major impact on the price of your gown. Olukoya explains that “there are countless types of silk and satin, but also more costly materials like hand-embroidered lace and organza.” When choosing your dress fabric, it’s worth considering the type of look you’re after. If you want a full silk dress, for example, expect to pay more than a polyester option.”
When it comes to adding details to your gown, the more intricate the better, and that will inevitably drive up the cost. For example, adding beading or appliques to your gown takes time and adds up, so expect to spend more if you’re after a heavily embellished dress. However, if you’re a more minimalist bride, you can find beautiful dresses that still have a high-fashion feel by opting for simpler styles that can be adorned with smaller accents.”
Brand and location are also factors that can influence the cost of your gown. A gown from a designer label will most likely be more expensive as it’s likely to be made of more luxurious fabrics and have an established reputation. Similarly, gowns sold in bridal boutiques and chains will be priced higher than those sold at local independent stores or online-only bridal retailers (with lower overhead).
Another thing to keep in mind is that if you’re getting married out of state or have found your dream dress online, shipping and handling will add to the cost. For instance, Kleinfeld charges a $25 fee to ship your gown, plus an additional $5 for the affidavit and signature requirement. That extra cost can really add up if you’re shopping out of town or need to send your gown back for repairs.