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Posted: 6:00 a.m. Friday, March 28, 2014

Wedding dresses starting at $99

Costco, H&M experimenting with wedding dress sales

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By Clark Howard

ClarkHoward.com


If you or someone you know is getting married, I have some suggestions about ways to save money.

A few years back, Costco Wholesale got a round of derisive press for selling high-end designer wedding dresses at a fraction of what they would cost elsewhere. They were pricing them typically somewhere between $700 and $1,200.

Now H&M has announced that it will sell wedding dresses online and in select stores at $99. And that's not just an introductory price. That's the everyday purchase price!

The idea that weddings have to be frightfully expensive to be any good is an odd and amazing thing. I think about my in laws who were married some 50 years ago and it cost them $25. Inflation adjusted, that would be like a $100 wedding today.

Joel, one of the producers on my radio show, got married back in 2011. He and his bride Emily did a very inexpensive wedding, working within the $12,000 budget from her parents.

Emily had fun creating the décor for the wedding. She crafted flowers out of paper instead of dedicating money to a huge flower budget.

Joel says Emily liked the creativity behind the whole process and the saving money part just kind of fell in line with that. For their rehearsal dinner, they opted for catered BBQ and kept prices down that way.

Soon after they got married, Joel and Emily bought a shortsale home that needed TLC and that goal was important to them, not having blown tens of thousands of dollars on a wedding. And they both wanted to travel before they had children, which they recently did. So instead of putting their money into one single day -- as important as that day is -- they wanted to save that money to make memories in other ways. 

If you're a Bridezilla, I would encourage you to take a chill pill. Remember that your vows and having a great life with your spouse are the most important things. A wedding can be very tasteful and it does not have to blow the budget.

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