Save on a Wedding Dress

So you've found the man of your dreams, now it's time to find the dress. Dress prices vary from as little as $500 to the price of a family sedan. Common wisdom is that it should correlate directly with your overall budget for the event; the rule of thumb ranges from anywhere between 5 and 10 percent. But before you start shopping, here are some things to consider:

Remain calm
It's a good idea to approach the dress search deliberately and calmly. Remember, dresses are NOT like men: there's a very good chance that there will be more than one that you love, and if you're patient, one of those will certainly be within your budget. If you go in with the thought that there's only for you, then you may shell out more than you anticipated for a gown that's very similar to one at the next store for half the cost.

Remember the add-ons
Don't forget to include the cost of alterations, the veil, shoes, a bra, gloves, and everything else that you'll need. I've heard horror stories from friends who forgot to think of these things and chose a gown with very few options for the accoutrements, which all ended up costing a fortune. Be careful, and be sure to ask about these things as you're trying dresses on, not after you've signed the dotted line.

Payment options
If you have your heart set on a dress that is a bit of a financial stretch, ask what they're payment options are. You may be able to pay for the dress in installments, allowing you to afford a more expensive gown even if you don't have the cash at present.