Inexpensive Options: Bride’s Edition

I was browsing around a wedding gown website the other day and I was totally floored by the prices. $8,000 for one gown that most women will wear for one day? Seriously?

What really blows my mind is that most of these fancy-schmancy gowns are nothing different than what you can find in the Fancy Dress section of a department store or in any of the new pricepoint bridal sections in most big box stores. The key to saving money on your bridal attire is to remember three things:

1. Most brides want white dresses. That's great! But don't get sucked into only buying labels that say "bridal" – many different types of cocktail and evening gowns are made in white or ivory and in a variety fine materials. Look outside the bride section and you'll find a world of affordably priced dresses that look just like bridal gowns.

2. Spend on the important stuff and save on everything else. If a lovely dress is a biggie for you then budget the bulk of your money towards that – then buy cute shoes from Payless or make your own veil from a handful of tulle.

3. Buy good foundation pieces. I do not care what kind of a deal that you got on that incredible Vera Wang dress. If your boobies are hitting your chin and I can see your underwear – it's just not pretty. The good news? Consumer Reports recently did a testing of bras and underwear and found that the best bang for your retaining needs is the Gilligan & O'Malley line from Target. They make a variety of styles, in a large assortment of sizes, and cover almost every skin tone. Here's another tip, create a budget for your undergarments. I know, I know. It's sounds so silly but think about it. If you pick out the right garments, you can use them after the wedding is over. Think of it as an investment for your undies drawer.

So, keeping those tips in mind. Here are three options for your wedding day attire – all under $150.00:

Option #1 (Total Cost of Outfit – $147.57):

Target Isaac Mizrahi Silk Faille Trapunto Bell Dress in French Cream – $79.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

Bless Isaac…the ladies of the world will miss his Target line so very much. Here's your last chance to get a little Mizrahi love. This foundation for the ultimate princess-y bride look is on clearance. Use a 40% off coupon and hit JoAnn's. Buy several yards of cream colored tulle – have a tailor (or yourself) sew the tulle on top of OR under the skirt of the dress for the ultimate in bridal puff.

Target Cinched Clutch in Mocha – $13.59
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

Match this french cream colored gown with a just slightly darker hued clutch to keep the look from being too high school matchy-matchy.

Payless Karols Dress Sandal in Gold – $14.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Payless

Add a little shine to this outfit with these subtle gold kitten heels (perfect for a bit of height but a lot of comfort.

Amazon Scattered Pearl Border & Cut Edge Veil in Ivory – $31.50
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Photo Courtesy of: Amazon

A classic two tier veil scattered with faux pearls for the Princess Bride.

First Fan Pearl and Diamonte Necklace, Earrings and Bracelet Set in Ivory – $7.50
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Photo Courtesy of: etsy

A traditional look deserves a traditional finsh and this faux peral and diamond set is just the thing.

Option #2 (Total Cost of Outfit – $144.94):
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J Crew Silk Tricotine Rebecca Long Dress in Ivory – $79.99

Photo Courtesy of: J Crew

Long, lovely, and a bit dreamy. This is a sexy (but still modest) dress that is perfect for a more casual fete. I also love the ivory color – much more flattering for very pale or very dark skin tones.

Target Turnlock Clutch in Brown – $14.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

Pair this vintage-y looking gown with this small clutch. Just large enough for tissues and lipstick (someone else should be schleping the rest of the emergency gear). This clutch is easy to hold while you're doing all that hugging and cheap enough so that if you lose it – eh!

Payless Kenney Mary Jane Wedge in Teal – $19.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Payless

Your something blue! These quirky shoes work, thanks to the dress's length and style.

GarlandsofGrace Lace Headband in Ivory – $10.99
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Photo Courtesy of: etsy

Such a cool topper for this unique wedding look. I really think this would look wonderful with a full updo.

Target Beaded Blue Layered Necklace – $5.49
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

**PAIRED WITH**

Target Dean Harris for Target® Sterling Silver Pearl Pod Earrings – $12.49
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

A pretty little bit of vintage-ish jewelry that is just clean looking enough to not distract from the neckline of the dress.

Option #3 (Total Cost of Outfit – $147.93):

Target Strapless Sheath Dress in Iggloo – $44.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Target

Another clearance item from Le Isaac (really, sobbing over here). Long and sleek and a classic look for the bride that wants to look like a bride but not a frosted cupcake.

L. Erickson USA Sash Belt/Scarf-100% Silk Charmeuse Solids in – $28.00
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Photo Couresty of: Amazon

It's not your computer screen. That's a green sash and I listed a pink one. Sorry, couldn't find a large picture of the right color. Use your imagination – think of the pink one wrapped around the waist of the long sheath dress above.

Amazon Clutch Purse in Pink – $14.95
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Photo Courtesy of: Amazon

Match the pink sash above to a slightly darker colored pink clutch – in a very classic and clean hinge style.

Payless Unforgettable Moments by Lela Rose Diana T-Strap Pump in White – $24.99
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Photo Courtesy of: Payless

Pair this chic sheath with these classic T-strap pumps.

BellaBridalVeils 1 Tier Elbow Length Veil – $18.00
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Photo Courtesy of: etsy

A simple elbow length white veil with a nice clean satin band trim. Secure this at the top of the crown for a down hairdo or just under the bottom of a lovely bun.

Old Navy Faux-Pearl Choker – $9.50
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Photo Courtesy of: Old Navy

**PAIRED WITH**

Old Navy Faux-Pearl Stud Earrings – $7.50
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Photo Courtesy of: Old Navy

Finish off this clean, classic look with this faux pearl necklace and earrings set.