What To Do If You Hate Your Wedding Dress

So here's the thing about wedding dresses: shopping for them is stressful. From sizing to placing the order to paying for the darn thing, it's a lot. However, for many — and I would venture to say most — The Dress is out there. But what do you do if you hate your wedding dress? You've made the purchase, the garment has arrived, and you realize that it's just not the dress for you. Don't start freaking out just yet, and don't start cutting back on your catering budget for a new dress either — you've got a little troubleshooting to do first.

Thanks to the incredible popularity of television shows like Say Yes to the Dress, many women feel an incredible amount of pressure to bring multiple members of their wedding party into a bridal salon to experience a mythical "a ha" moment. While shopping with friends and family adds a great celebratory air to your shopping experience, feeling the need to please everyone, or even the need to cry and have a "moment" with your dress truly does give too much credence to only one aspect of your wedding. While, of course, your dress might be very important to you, take a deep breath if you hate it and remember that your marriage and the celebration is paramount.

However, I know I would be flipping my lid if I hated my dress, which is why I've got some options for you.

1. Talk To Your Bridal Salon

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Not all salons or boutiques are going to be flexible, but it's worth it to try. Asking never hurt anyone! Consultants and owners understand how important your wedding day is. Have a little faith in the people you're working with. You will probably face a bit of a financial burden, but a some sort of exchange may be possible.

2. Cut Costs


Cutting costs in other avenues could help you purchase a new gown. That peony bouquet you were planning? Maybe downsize it. Three meat choices? Try cutting it down to one. There are a lot of changes you can make behind the scenes that your guests will never even notice. Think about what parts of the wedding are most important to you and your fiancé and go from there.

3. Talk To A Seamstress

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Did you purchase a strapless gown and now suddenly want straps? Did you want a skirt that isn't quite so full? Simple changes can be done by a talented seamstress and will make a big impact. Before having a full blown panic attack, phone your local seamstress or speak to the seamstress at your boutique. Beading changes, removing a crinoline, and adding straps can all be done in-house without completely ditching your gown.

4. Try To Sell

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There are tons of great sites online that allow you to sell your already purchased wedding gown. If you're not willing to cut your budget in other places, looking at websites like or Tradesy are great places to try to make up some money for making a new purchase.

5. Prioritize

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In an essay on the website A Practical Wedding, an anonymous author talks about how, even though she hated her dress, she ultimately realized that her relationship with her fiancé was the most important part of her wedding. Even if you decide to go through with wearing a gown you despise, it's still possible to have a lovely wedding.

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