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Tips For Buying a Second Hand Wedding Dress

5 Tips For Buying a Second Hand Wedding Dress

Second hand wedding gowns aren't for everyone, but for some brides on a budget, they can mean the difference between hiring a DJ and asking a friend to be in charge of the iPod. Consignment / second hand / thrift store wedding dress shopping takes a little technique, and Good Morning America's Becky Worley (a self-proclaimed thrift-store fashionista) has a few tips for brides on the hunt for a dress-for-less.

  1. "Give yourself a lot of time." Becky spent a month searching second hand shops and found seven dresses that she deemed worthy of another wear.
  2. "Don't limit your searches." Look everywhere; shop in all types of stores and in a variety of neighborhoods.
  3. Ask, and you may receive. When she didn't see any wedding dresses at a couple thrift stores, Becky asked and was pointed in the right direction. She also recommends giving your contact information to store clerks if there aren't any dresses at that time. That way, they can call you when a dress is donated.

To see two more tips,


  1. "Don't judge a dress by its condition." A good cleaning service can remove most dirt stains. But if you see anything yellowed, like caramelized food or perspiration, keep shopping for a different dress.
  2. Budget for alterations: Seamstress Lynn Gallagher said, "Minor alterations, like taking a dress in slightly, altering the hem, or adjusting straps can cost $200-$300. But you would probably also have to do that with a dress you bought new. It's part of the process."

Would you consider wearing a second hand wedding dress?


Join The Conversation
cg130 cg130 7 years
I would absolutely do this, because it's absolutely ridiculous how much money wedding dresses cost.
lickety-split lickety-split 8 years
i did. wore my mil's dress. i don't get the whole "oh i need to find the PERFECT DRESS" thing. it's the marriage that matters most, not the wedding.
graylen graylen 8 years is also a great site to sell on!
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 8 years
I would if I found the right one! why not?
MeredithM12 MeredithM12 8 years is by far the best website to buy or sell a preowned dress. I bought my own dress there and saved over $1000 from retail....and there are tons of testimonials from sellers about how great the site is.
heatherhas heatherhas 8 years
I just found a website called, you can sell your used dresses on there. I am probably going to try to find a used wedding dress to buy on that site.
sorrowja sorrowja 8 years
Yeah I need to sell mines too.
floppyfish1986 floppyfish1986 8 years
any tips for selling a wedding dress? i have a friend that just got married and needs to sell her's.
pharm_chick pharm_chick 8 years
craigslist has sooo many dresses on their site. im sure someone can find what they are looking for there!
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