By the time brides pay for their wedding gowns, shoes, and any alterations needed to make their dresses perfect, they're usually at the tail end of their fashion budget. Though a common occurrence, this, unfortunately, oftentimes leads to brides spending above their means or forgetting to purchase their accessories altogether. And while jewelry is an important factor for all wedding day ensembles, it should never be the reason why you choose to break the bank.
According to Lisa Ingram, vice president of merchandising at Signet Jewelers, "When shopping for jewelry, it is important to keep a budget in mind. Once you know the price range you’re shopping in, it becomes easier to narrow down pieces." However, if you're already tight on cash or looking for ways to save a little more, we've put together a cheat sheet on how to buy accessories when managing the remainder of your bridalwear funds. Following the continued expert advice of Ingram, here are the top five ways to save money on your wedding day jewelry, no matter your budget.
Meet the Expert
Lisa Ingram is the vice president of merchandising at Signet Jewelers, the parent company of KAY, Zales, Jared, JamesAllen.com, and more.
Opt for Lab-Created Gemstones
As you may already know, lab-created gemstones are an extremely popular choice in the contemporary wedding space, and a trend we expect to see grow over the next few years. These pieces are flawlessly made—usually identical to their naturally created counterparts—and are affordably priced for all budgets. As Ingram puts it, "Lab-created gemstones like diamonds, sapphires, emeralds, and rubies are a wonderful option for customers looking for a bigger, bolder look at an accessible price point." So, if you're hoping to save money on luxury pieces, be sure to peruse the hundreds of retailers available today that offer lab-grown wedding day jewelry.
Stick to Affordable Metals
Not all metals are created equally, therefore not all metals are priced the same. And while it's always a great option to select premium styles that can last a lifetime, for those trying to adhere to a budget, it is okay to buy pieces that have the ability to tarnish over time.
"Sticking to affordable metals such as sterling silver is another great way to save money on wedding day jewelry. The cost for a sterling silver necklace will be significantly lower than an 18K white gold necklace," shares Ingram. "Furthermore, a 14K gold piece will be less expensive than an 18K gold piece. It all comes down to what the bride is looking for in terms of longevity and style."
Buy Pre-Owned Pieces
"Buying pre-owned jewelry is a great way to save money on wedding day jewelry. When buying pre-owned items, you’re getting great pieces, and sometimes name-brand pieces, at a lower cost," notes Ingram. "KAY Jewelers and Zales offer a wide range of pre-owned jewelry with a selection of everything from engagement rings, necklaces, watches, bracelets, earrings, and more." Aside from the financial savings, though, pre-loved pieces are an environmentally friendly option, as you aren't spending money on something you may only wear once or twice.
Rent Your Jewelry
Similar to pre-owned pieces, renting your jewelry is a great way to minimize your carbon footprint while saving hundreds of dollars on your day-of look. (This option is also great for brides who'd like to wear several different pieces on the big day.) Switch, Rocksbox, Vivrelle, and Rent the Runway are only a few brands that offer quality jewelry rentals with great perks. The best part? Once you've said "I do," you can immediately ship back your pieces and rent another set of items for your honeymoon or future events.
Wear Something Old or Borrowed
We all know the famous saying: "something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue." So, why not opt for old or borrowed jewelry? Whether you wear earrings that are a family heirloom or choose to borrow your best friend's necklace, incorporating a loved one's jewelry will not only save you money but will add a sentimental touch to your overall look.