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Alterations expert fitting a bride in a wedding dress

The Hidden Costs Of Wedding Attire

Unexpected costs that come with buying a wedding dress.

Besides your wedding dress, there are other costs to factor into your wedding day apparel that you may not have considered—from your veil and handbag to undergarments and shoes. Here are some hidden costs to keep in mind as you budget for your complete wedding look.

Be sure to budget your head-to-toe bridal look.


To get the perfect fit, even custom-ordered gowns usually need a little hemming or a dart to pull in the side seam or bust. Simpler dresses are often easier (and less expensive) to alter than layered or intricately detailed ones.

The cost of alterations depends on your wedding dress’s fabric and embellishments, as well as your height and unique body type. Plus, you have the option of adding bra cups, boning, or special details like sleeves to make your dress one-of-a-kind.


The secret to looking your best? A fabulous foundation, including the proper undergarments and shapewear for the style you’re wearing. These are often forgotten items in a wedding budget. But, good news: The correct foundations can minimize your alterations cost.

The fit, fabric, and construction of your gown all help determine the best undergarments. If your dress has light fabric you may need more support, for example. You’ll also want a slip to fill out the shape of your skirt—whether it’s a ball gown, mermaid, or A-line—and give you the most beautiful silhouette.


Accessories help define your style and let your personality shine. Depending on how you plan to wear your hair, a tiara, headband, clip, or comb can add the perfect finishing touch. And putting on a veil is the ultimate bridal transformation. Short veils start at less than $100, while beaded and lace-adorned cathedral veils could cost a few hundred dollars.

Though you may already have the jewelry or shoes you’d like to wear down the aisle, it’s smart to budget for them in case you find yourself falling in love with something new. And don’t forget a handbag for reception necessities, like lipstick for touchups.

Consider any new accessories you may need to complete your bridal attire.

We’re sure when you dreamt of your wedding day, you didn’t dream about your wedding budget, too. Learn more about wedding budget planning here and opportunities to finance your wedding day look (from the dress to the accessories) with the David’s Bridal Credit Card.

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