I woke up this morning, turned on the news in my living room – put a Hazelnut coffee into the Keurig and sat down to check my email. On the news, the local news station was doing a small bit on wedding dress rentals, and how it has become the latest trend among brides. After hearing just that, I put down my coffee and watched the spot to find out more about this trend.
“My wedding dress was just sitting in my closet, in a box, taking up space – I wasnt using it!” – said one of the women who had sold her wedding dress from just a few years ago – to a trendy bridal boutique in NH. Puzzled, I sat and listened through the rest. The owner of the boutique told the reporter, “Brides and Grooms have been doing it wrong the whole time. Brides should be renting their dresses, and Grooms should be buying their tuxedos!” (Insert jaw drop). Was she really saying this? Did she really mean it? Please tell me it was just my morning brain without that first sip of coffee being fuzzy and playing tricks on me.
I then thought about it. Where is my wedding dress? Well, I remember. Its in my closet, in a garment bag. Am I annoyed by it? No. Does it take up too much space? Nope. Am I all fidgety because its there and Im not able to use it? Um, sure Id love to wear it everyday. But Im A-OK with it being unworn. You see, I have a different view on wedding dresses, than this boutique owner does. I believe that wedding dresses should be worn and kept, perhaps to get passed down onto daughters or granddaughters, or whomever else wants to wear them. The whole thought of 20 brides wearing the same rented dress cheapens the whole idea of wedding dresses in general. From the beginning of time, wedding attire was something to be coveted. It was ornate and usually quite expensive. I am highly doubting that Victorian and Edwardian women went to a wedding dress rental shop for their gowns. Sure, dresses were borrowed among family – I once knew of a dress that was worn by three generations of women in the same family. How special that truly is.
As if weddings these days were not sterile and cookie-cutter enough, why encourage women to make their weddings even more impersonal by renting a wedding dress. One bride-to-be during the interview said, “I wouldnt normally be able to wear this $7,000 Lazaro wedding gown, but I can rent it for $699!!” – So that just made a perfect point for me, I hope you got it too. Normally, women dont spend $7,000 on a wedding gown, but perhaps they want others to think they did. Thats what I think, at least.
It is absolutely possible to spend $699 (or less) on an incredible wedding gown. When shopping for my wedding dress, I tried on 100 different styles but finally found a LaSposa gown that suited my taste perfectly. Was it in my budget, kind of. But luckily the boutique in NYC price matched any other store in the area – so I found the exact same dress across the river in Hoboken for $300 less.
So, girls – please, for the love of lace – do NOT rent your wedding gown. Buy one used, remake your grandmothers gown into something more suitable for you or even better, BUY VINTAGE!
Here are a few of my most FAVORITE vintage wedding gowns on Etsy, right now:
A 1930s eyelet lace wedding gown in a VERY healthy size – $386 @ RococoVintage
A 1960s simple white strapless short wedding dress – backyard farm weddings, this is your dress – $400 @ CoralVintage
This 1950s wedding dress will let you channel your inner Kate Middleton! $435 @ DearGolden