Wedding Fairs - not good for budget!

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Pandora II

Aug 3, 2006
I decided to go for the full bridal immersion and attend the two biggest wedding fairs in the UK on consecutive weekends.

So last week I went to the "Designer Wedding Show" (DWS) and this Saturday I went to the "National Wedding Show" (NWS)

Well, I confirmed my stationery at the DWS, a gorgeous company called Piccolo Press from a little town in Scotland. They do a lot of letterpress work with the USA. I am having super traditional formal invitations and they have exactly what I want at a great price - and I get to support a small artisan business. Only choice is am I sensible and have the thermographed invites? Or, blow the budget and have proper copper-plate engraving? (or something sparkly instead for being good!

The problem has come with the dresses. I took little sister - who is 22 and despite the fuschia pink hair and multi-piercings, actually has very good taste - along to the DWS and we loved nearly all the dresses we saw - designers were Pronovias, Vera Wang, Sassi Holford, Christina Couture, Ian Stuart etc

I''m very keen on the new Pronovias collection - loads of lace, sheath sillohuette and a chapel train, mmmmm...
But, I really don''t want to spend more than $2,000 on my dress (London is super-expensive).

So, I go to the much cheaper NWS and... I could cry! There wasn''t a single dress I liked. They were all big pouffy meringues that were dripping in polyester lace and cheap crystals and felt horrible. I swear, most of them would have stood up on their own without anyone wearing them.

1) Try and buy this seasons next year secondhand (wedding is 26/07/08)
Con: I am 5ft 10 which means if another girl has shortened it I have big problems.

2) Buy the fabrics from some wholesalers I have contacts with in Europe and find a not too expensive seamstress who is amazing.
Con: I''m paranoid that I could spend $1,000 on great fabric and then find my seamstress can''t make it look good.

3) Find some country where Pronovias are way-cheaper than here!

Saving is not an option - I refuse to spend more on a dress that I will wear for 6 hrs than my e-ring!

I knew I shouldn''t look at dresses I don''t want to afford - but now I''m in love with a certain look and can''t find it on any of the places I can afford - maggie sottero etc

What do you think my chances are of getting a dress like this made rather than buying from them and it looking like this?



Jun 28, 2006
I think you could definitely look into having a dress made. Try They will make anything you want and there are some rave reviews about them on There''s a whole thread about them on the dream gowns board over there. That being said, I think you should definitely wait to order your dress. I wouldn''t recommend getting a dress more than a year before the wedding. Just think of how many seasons of dresses will come out between now and then! I''d say you should at least wait until the next round of dresses come out. If you still love these ones, look into having one copied. You could also try Pearl''s Place or RK Bridal. I''m not sure if they carry those designers, but if they do, you''ll probably get a hefty discount.


Jul 12, 2006
You''re in the UK huh. How much is a plane ticket to Hong Kong, Shanghai or Bangkok? There are fabulous tailors there who can make you a dress like that. I''d guess that for fabric and labor you might be paying US$1000-1500?
I''m only half serious though.
Cause you would have to stay in area for probably two weeks.
But yes, as Robbie suggested, custom made sounds like the way to go.


Mar 21, 2006
At 5''10" I think you have to order new. Or at least I am 5''10" and I gave up looking at used dresses. Its just too hard as most have been shortened or weren''t long enough to begin with. You will probably have to order extra length if you want to wear anything but ballet flats, though some dresses will have a bit more length that their size chart says, you woln''t know unless you get to try on the sample.

I wouldn''t give up on Pronovias since you have so much time. They have a number of different lines and price points and tons and tons of dresses. Many great dresses. In the US they are mostly all called Pronovias but I think they are called La Sposa, San Patrick, etc. but all are same parent company of Pronovias. They''ll have a lot of dresses with that silhouette in different fabrics. Keep looking. If you find something not brand spankin new you can order it at significant discount from one of the US based discounters and just pay shipping. Often new Pronovias dresses would be 40% lower online.
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