The Craigslist Wedding Dress: Finding Your Dress for Less!
By Taylor Oddino
I have such a fun story for you this week! My boyfriend’s beautiful sister just got married over Labor Day weekend. It was a perfect day! In the summer we were making plans to go dress shopping when all of the sudden one day she texted me saying she found her wedding dress! As you can imagine, I was a bit confused because we hadn’t even gone wedding dress shopping yet!
Upon the suggestion of a friend, she decided to look on Craigslist for a dress. What do you know – she found one! She said it was meant to be. She went and tried on the dress and it fit like a glove (the seller and her were exactly the same size and height!). She decided that she just had to have it (rightly so – she looked so gorgeous in it!) and that was that – she had her dress!
Oh yeah – and her dress was $350! Thank you Craigslist!
In a world where we’re constantly connected to the Internet, it only makes sense that some of us are doing our dress shopping online. So this week I thought I would offer a few tips in case you decide to shop around on Craigslist. Enjoy!
Ask lots of questions
Don’t be afraid to ask a whole long list of questions! You want to be informed before you decide to take the time and go try the dress on. Ask about the actual size of the dress (size on the tag), but also ask if any alterations were done. Ask about how the dress has been cared for – was it dry-cleaned after the wedding and has it been kept in a proper bag since? Ask if anything spilled on the dress during the wedding, or if any damage was done (loose sequins, ripped tulle, etc.). You might feel like you’re asking too many questions, but you don’t want any surprises!
Try the dress on!
After you’ve asked a good amount of questions, then you can decide if you want to go try the dress on or not. Set up a time to meet up with the seller – preferably at her/his house, not yours (for safety). Ask about putting the dress on and if there are any specific instructions – you don’t want to damage the dress while trying it on and be forced to buy it! Spend some time in the dress and see how you feel. Can you walk/move/dance easily in the dress? Also take some pictures of yourself in the dress so you can look at them later as you make your final decision.
While returns are rare when buying from a classifieds website like Craigslist, it never hurts to ask if the seller would be willing to take a return. The reality is that plans change – so it doesn’t hurt to ask. If plans do change (you find another dream dress with even more lace!) you can always sell the dress yourself if the seller isn’t willing to do a return.
This is just a general reminder – give out as little personal information as possible. A seller shouldn’t need anything more than your first name and perhaps your phone number. Craigslist has that nifty email system where you don’t even have to use your personal email address – they give you one. When you go to try on the dress, make sure you have someone with you. Also, try to pay with cash so they don’t have any of your bank information. Be safe, and be smart!
Have you ever shopped for a wedding dress on Craigslist? Do you know someone who has found her dress on Craigslist or a site like it? What other sites exist? Let us know in the comments below!
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