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Let's be honest, discussing budget is probably your least favorite part of wedding planning, and we don't blame you! While there are many areas you can save (think DIY invitations and guest list), the last thing you want to do is sacrifice style and quality when it comes to your wedding dress, and the good news is: you don't have to!
Expensive fabrics like silk and details like hand-beading can increase the price of a wedding dress. Familiarizing yourself with different types of fabrics can help make wedding dress shopping a little easier.
With a stunning assortment of affordable wedding dresses flooding the market, many coming in under $1,000, you'll be sure to find a dress that fits your style and venue. Hoping for intricate beading? No problem. Aiming for a delicate lace overlay? Yes, it’s possible. Prefer a pared-back slip dress? Gorgeous options abound. See what we’re getting at? Inexpensive bridal gowns do exist, and they’re just as stunning as costlier designer versions.
Read on for the best wedding dresses under $1,000 to suit every price-conscious bride-to-be.
For a Backyard Wedding: Show Me Your Mumu Empire Waist Twist Dress
An empire waist dress is typically one of the most flattering silhouettes out there. At once laidback and glamorous this silky style features a twist at the bodice and flutter sleeves. We're picturing this relaxed maxi dress at a backyard or garden wedding.
For the Modern Bride: Les Rêveries One-Shoulder Ruched Silk-Jacquard Dress
We love a good one shoulder moment and this Les Rêveries number is no exception. Ruching at the shoulder creates a strong and statuesque silhouette, while subtle floral embroidery woven throughout the silk jacquard adds elements of softness and whimsy.
For the Classic Bride: Jenny by Jenny Yoo V-Back Taffeta Dress
This dress is made for the classic bride who is looking for some daring touches like illusion panels and a plunging deep-V back. We love this dress for making an unforgettable entrance at a black-tie wedding.
Best Mini: Amsale Little White Dress Bow Back Dress
We love when a bride goes for a short wedding dress. It's fun, it's flattering (especially for petite types!), and it gives you the chance to show off your legs and a new pair of wedding shoes!
Best Clean and Classic: Off-The-Shoulder Buttoned Back Dress
Still can't get over Meghan Markle's iconic wedding dress? Neither can we and luckily this David's Bridal dress is here to make all of your royal wedding dreams a reality.
For a Black-Tie Wedding: David's Bridal Collection Off-the-Shoulder Ball Gown
A classic ball gown like this one will never go out of style and most importantly, it will remain timeless in wedding photos. Wear yours with a cathedral length veil for even more added drama.
What to look for in budget-friendly dresses
When you're shopping for a budget-friendly wedding dress, it's important to keep in mind what elements might increase the overall cost of a gown. For example, hand beading and embroidery can drive up the price of a wedding dress as well as certain luxe fabrics like silk. Familiarizing yourself with different types of wedding dress fabrics can help you get a better sense of what a gown will look and feel like – especially if you're shopping for one online.
When setting your budget, you should always remember to include the potential cost of shipping and alternations.
What is the most expensive wedding dress fabric?
Silk is one of the most expensive fabrics out there. If you’re looking for a more affordable fabric option that mimics silk, satin is a great choice.
What do I need to keep in mind when shopping for an affordable wedding dress online?
Although online shopping is quick and easy, you should start shopping for your wedding dress well in advance of your wedding date to avoid the stress of shipping delays and to allow yourself some time if you need to exchange any items. What's more, you should always shop from trusted sites and brands and always double-check a retailer's fine print and shipping and return policies.
Why Trust Brides
Contributing writer Sophie Moore is a former fashion editor at Brides and is an expert in all things bridal attire, from couture wedding gowns to the perfect "something blue" accessory. She researches and sources the best fashion items for brides, grooms, wedding parties, guests, and more. Sophie has personally helped many of her friends shop for budget-friendly dresses and believes that finding your dream dress doesn't have to break the bank!