Bridal gowns are so romanticized in movies that even little girls fantasize about wearing long, white gowns themselves in an aisle and living in a white picket fence. But growing up and facing your own ceremony, you’ll find out that the elegant gown you’re dreaming of has far from a magical price. With all the other wedding costs, the price you have to pay for your gown feels so heavy on the pocket.
Just what makes bridal wear so expensive? In the US, brides usually spend an insane average amount ranging from $1,600 to $1,800 for the bridal dress alone, and take note that doesn’t even include yet the relevant accoutrements. However, compared to bridal dresses, bridesmaid robes are cheaper as long as you choose those made of less pricey fabrics. Here are some that would answer your question:
Wedding Attires Niche Has a Smaller Market
In previous years, the number of weddings runs to 2.1 million in the US and this even dropped during the pandemic and lockdowns, although projected to rise again in the upcoming years. This is a relatively small number compared to the other industries and imagine, this is the number of brides that wedding attire manufacturers will make dresses for. And not all brides will want a wedding gown; some will prefer a suit.
Being in a very niche market with selective target customers, it just makes sense that they price as high as they can, with all their material expenses and much time spent to finish one bridal dress.
Money and Time Spent on the Materials and Making
What makes a bridal gown so stunning and expensive are the materials and the delicate process they take on to create one. Usually, they choose the most elegant and premium fabrics there are, such as silk, chantilly, or Venice laces, which are already expensive as they are when the designers bought them. A lot of designers in the US reject the idea of using cheaper fabric alternatives, such as tulle or cheaper laces.
This is because designers know well what feels comfortable for the wearer and looks jaw-dropping for the beholders. Silk fiber per se usually costs a hundred dollars for one meter, but it’s the most premium quality that can adapt to any given temperature and has a hypoallergenic element that makes it the top-notch choice for people with underlying skin diseases or very sensitive skin.
Moreover, the more intricate the dress is, the more expensive it can get. Embroidery and beading in bridal gowns sure look creative and appealing, but from the designer’s perspective, they require mathematical accuracy and adroitness for the task. They customize the intricacies of the pattern to come up with something really wondrous to the eye.
The time they take for completing the beading and embellishments can even take several days from making the sample to giving you the final outcome. Making the sample in itself takes time; more so recreating the dress to your size and making any other necessary adjustments. Some even embroider diamonds and other sparkling elements that make the gown even more expensive.
Add to that the alterations that have to be made—sizes, ornaments, and any other adjustments. Alteration fees may not be a part of the price you pay for your bridal gown, and for the most part, they take a lot of time, making it all the more expensive. You can only tell the gown’s final price when the alterations and all are done.
These are the main reasons that delicately embellished bridal gowns are pricier than simplistic ones. Gowns manufactured by firms with designer labels are typically at higher prices. But you can avoid having to spend a whopping amount of dollars when you opt for simplistic designs, even gowns without a single embellishment, and splurge on customizations and alterations later on.
For your bridesmaids, you can greatly save when you choose blended and synthetic satin robes, as they are a much cheaper option than silk. Synthetic fibers are usually made of polyester and nylon, so they are easier to produce and more affordable.
Bridal Dresses Are Usually Just Bought Once in a Lifetime
Weddings are usually just a once-in-a-lifetime event, and apparently, you cannot use it other than your wedding day, not even in formal events. Some get away with wearing their bridal gown on Halloween, but for any other events like that, that’s usually it. Bridal designers and manufacturers know you’re just buying them once, which is why they finesse as much as possible and make profits on just one bridal dress.
Designers Use the Most Expensive Fabrics
As mentioned above, designers opt for expensive fabrics than low-quality, cheaper ones. Silk per se, especially when it is of mulberry silk type, ranks as the most expensive type as they require intensive labor and processes just to make some. Silk comes from silkworms, in which cocoons are used to weave the fibers. Manufacturers need 5,000 silkworms to produce one kilogram of silk. Mulberry silk comes from silkworms only fed with mulberry leaves.
Another expensive type of fabric is lace, especially when it is handcrafted, as the best ones come from this process. Some bridal gowns are even made purely of lace fabric, while some only use a little for some aspects. Bridal gowns made of pure lace fabric can be really expensive as making them takes on a really intensive labor process.
When buying wedding gowns, having a lot of leeway time makes you save a great deal. This is because when you purchase one near your wedding day, it will be inevitable to see anything in your dress that needs alteration, so you pay for the rush fees, as they put your dress above their other projects. That fee serves as your compensation for when their other clients get mad that the tailors’ promised turnaround time was not achieved.
There is also the possibility of impulse buying, and when you cannot see anything that you like with simplistic designs, since you only have a little time to work on the alterations, you will apparently end up choosing more expensive ones.
This applies to your entourage’s dresses as well, including the maid of honor, bridesmaids, flower girls, and the mother of the bride. When the size doesn’t fit, then you’ll also have to pay tailors to adjust the robes to the right size for which you will have to pay another rush request fee.
The key to saving for your bridal gowns and satin robes for women is to research vendors and purchase them as early as possible so that you don’t fall into the trap of impulse buying. Alterations and customizations make the total price of these items, so do your best as much as possible to avoid rush requests for any of these projects.