Many women dream of their wedding dress long before they think about the price tag.
On average, brides spend more than $1,200 on their gown. But Consumer Reports says you can get what you want for a lot less than you think.
Consumer Reports recently asked its staffers whether they could tell the difference between dresses that ranged from $500 to $10,000, and tallied the results.
Most staffers were able to pick the least expensive gown, but it was much harder for them to price the others. In fact, 85 percent thought a $1,100 gown with the most embellishment cost $3,200 or more.
Many of the features that set apart expensive gowns may not be that obvious, like hand finishing and encased seams. Consumer Reports' textile expert says even the cheapest dress she examined would last at least for a day and a night of wedding fun.
Still, how can you get a dream dress without spending a fortune? Consumer Reports says buying or renting a used gown is a great option. Brides can rent dresses on websites like Borrowing Magnolia. To buy a dress for less, Consumer Reports suggests shopping at a local Goodwill or other secondhand shop, and on websites like Tradesy and eBay.
Getting your wedding dress for less
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