25 Stunning (and Affordable) BHLDN Dresses for Under $1K


Plus a bonus: 15 super fab ones under $2K

by Maddie Eisenhart, Chief Revenue Officer

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Adona Dress ($570)

When I was getting married, way back in the pre-Pinterest dark days of 2009, shopping for wedding dresses was a particular kind of horror for someone without a billion dollars at their disposal. I learned the hard way that while $500 or $1,000 (or even $2,000) might seem like a whole lot of money to put some clothes on your back, in the bizarro world of wedding dresses, those numbers were somehow considered “budget.” (How? How?!) And even still, the biggest problem wasn’t the cost. It was that almost every dress in my price range was either a cupcake-y ballgown (not my jam) or so minimal that you could see my, um, anatomy through the fabric.

But bless the Internet. Because now the problem with wedding dress shopping, if any, is that of too many options. Sleeves! Jumpsuits! Dresses not inspired by pastry! And if APW had to pick a staff favorite? It would probably be BHDLN. Because their $500 dresses are often even more stylish than the $3,500 ones, and your APW staff has hardcore champagne tastes on a Keystone Light budget. (At least in wedding dresses. You do, actually, only wear them once.) Plus, BHLDN dresses are sold off the rack (aka in your street size), so you can order them and return them if they don’t fit or look right. You know, like normal shopping. So, since BHLDN just launched their new fall line, and because I’m not getting married and you are, we’ve rounded up twenty-five of our favorite BHLDN dresses under $1K (plus fifteen bonus dresses for under $2K, because $2,000 is still bizarrely cheap in the world of weddings). How’s that for options?

Wedding Dresses Under $1K

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Landry Dress ($560) 

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Mara Jumpsuit ($280)

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Coppelia Dress ($260)

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Reagan Gown ($975)

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Cristiane Gown ($800)

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Alice Gown ($990)

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Billie Dress ($420)

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Naomi Gown ($800)

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Paulette Dress ($490)

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Cate Gown ($800)

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Coral Jumpsuit ($540)

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Julianne Gown ($800)

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Ingrid Velvet Gown ($900)

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Tulley Top & Amora Skirt ($220–$600)

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Brisa Dress ($370)

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Frida Dress ($800)

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Mina Gown ($700)

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Jackie Jumpsuit ($240)

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Naya Dress, center ($350)

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Roane Gown ($700)

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Ilona Dress ($480)

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Annabelle Dress & Marnie Topper ($220–$260)

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Loretta Shift Dress ($520)

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Larkin Gown ($850)

Wedding Dresses Under $2K

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Monica Gown ($1,550)

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Bianca Top & Ahsan Skirt ($220–$1,860)

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Hayden Gown ($2,025. I cheated, but I regret nothing.)

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Jolie Gown ($1,400)

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Fantasia Gown ($1,500)

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Freya Gown ($2,000)

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Ariane Gown ($1,400)

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Bridgette Gown ($1,600)

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Petra Gown ($1,150)

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Elisha Gown ($1,700)

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Cibella Gown ($2,000)

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Rosanna Gown ($1,300)

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Tabitha Gown ($1,700)

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Nina Gown ($1,200)

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Teagan Gown ($1,050)

Bonus, because you need it:

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Sonora Capelet ($170)

This content was not sponsored by BHLDN. However, it does contain affiliate links (which, simply put, help APW pay the bills any time you click and then complete a purchase).

Maddie Eisenhart

Maddie is APW’s Chief Revenue Officer. She’s been writing stories about boys, crushes, and relationships since she was old enough to form shapes into words, but received her formal training (and a BS) from NYU in Entertainment and Mass Media in 2008. She now spends a significant amount of time thinking about trends on the internet and whether flower crowns will be out next year. A Maine native, Maddie currently lives on a pony farm in the Bay Area with her husband, Michael and their mastiff puppy. Current hair color: Purple(ish).

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  • Eenie

    I love their toppers! I ended up just getting a dress, but a bridesmaid dress + topper was the runner up. For the Chicago store, I can say that the entire experience was absolutely fantastic. There was absolutely no shaming about my budget, and the salesperson actually pulled a dress that cost less than the current favorite.

  • Bethany

    I love them! I wanted a short dress for less than $500 and I was slightly terrified of the judgement I might get going to a bridal shop. I ordered two dresses in two sizes from BHLDN and just returned the ones that didn’t work out. It was so easy and I got the dress I wanted without having to go over budget. Could not be happier!

  • idkmybffjill

    I LIVE for BHLDN. My dress is from there and the whole experience made me feel like a million bucks without spending that many.

    • sofar

      Yep! Their affordable dresses aren’t exactly heirloom quality (that’s the biggest complaint people have) but I’m always like, so what? You’re going to wear the damn thing once. And let’s face it, your daughter probably isn’t going to want to wear your dress any more than you wanted to wear your mom’s.

      • idkmybffjill

        Yep. Nailed it.

  • Nicole

    I really really really wish they carried plus sizes. It stinks that almost all of their sizes stop at 12 or 14. :(

    • Eenie

      I agree! They do have some in 16 as well, but I hear it’s hard to find them in stock at a store.

      • clarkesara

        They don’t actually carry any of their sizes in stock in store. They ship your dress no matter what size they order. Mine was back-ordered when I shopped so it just shipped to me whenever my size came in. Also, obvs this isn’t going to help if you’re well over the 12-16 range, but I wear a 10 in street clothes and my dress is a 6. It’s definitely worth making an appointment even if you’re borderline or think they may not be able to fit you. (OTOH their sample sizes are all 12s, I think, which might be disheartening.)

        • Eenie

          I wear a size 10, tried on a size 10 in store, and was given the option to buy the sample or have a new one shipped to my house (the dress sample was stretched and I was worried about the new one fitting correctly). But yes, I agree that they don’t carry the stock in store for all the dresses. I meant samples in my original comment.

          • Nicole

            Thanks for this ladies. I’m borderline with their sizing, and I’d really rather not make an appointment in store and be humiliated that nothing they stock in store or online fits me! I’m a 16/18 and if you want something unique for a size above a 14/16, your options are literally 1. David’s Bridal (not that unique) or 2. an expensive boutique. (I live in NYC are wedding dresses are stupid expensive here.)

            None of these newer sellers of alternative bridal dresses cater to plus size, and it sucks. (i.e. Reformation, Locke Bride, Needle & Thread, Houghton, J. Crew).

            Literally the only 2 affordable options are ASOS or Modcloth (and even then, the plus size girls get waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay less options than everyone else.)

            This could be a whole post for APW, but if anyone knows where else to buy an alternative wedding dress for under $1,000, I’m all ears!

          • Eenie

            http://apracticalwedding.com/2014/01/plus-sized-wedding-dress-shopping/

            I’m not 100% sure about how many things they’ll have in your size, but if you call your local store and ask I think they would be able to give you a better idea. Good luck on the dress search!

    • Emily

      A lot of their dresses are actually by other designers (sometimes the exact color is exclusive to bhldn) so if you find something you love, the designer might offer it in a wider size range elsewhere. Just something to look into!

  • emilyg25

    BHLDN really expanded their lower-cost offerings in the three years since I got married. Their stuff is sooooo pretty.

  • sofar

    I wore a BHLDN dress for my wedding. And every time they come out with new dresses, I just want to get married again so I have a reason to wear them.

    • macrain

      SAME.

    • clarkesara

      Yep. I shopped a little prematurely because my mom was really excited about it, and now I’m a little bummed I didn’t wait till the new collection was out. So happy about my dress sitting in the closet, but some of those are gorgeous and I def would have at least tried them on. (On the other hand, I tried on several dresses in this roundup and some of them really didn’t live up to the hype. So I can console myself with that.)

    • Colleen

      Me, too! I loved (still love) my dress so much but each season I’m more than a little heartbroken that I don’t get to have 200 weddings so I can wear ALL THE BHLDN DRESSES!

    • Caitlin

      Same! I wore the Penelope and absolutely loved it!! But, their dresses are so pretty, I still want more! Already excited for my sister and friends to get married so I can look at more pretty. That or maybe I just need another flowy dress just because? ;)

      • Caitlin

        Note: none of said friends/sister are actually close to marrying, I’m just excited that some will be sometime in the unknown future!

  • Katelyn

    My best friend wore a dress from BHLDN and the lace and beading detail on it was SO GORGEOUS!!! I had a picture of the back as my phone background for a while, I was that obsessed!

  • Alyssa Andrews

    I just scheduled an appointment with one of their new stores opening in my parents’ neighborhood in a couple of weeks. I hope I get to try some of these on! BHLDN always makes me swoon.

    • sofar

      You’re going to have a BLAST. They were, by far, the BEST bridal store experience I had. No “Say yes to the dress” crap, no sidelining me to ask for my mom’s opinion (my BHLDN person actually advocated for me when my mom started trying to grab random dresses), no trying to convince me I “had” to wear a veil, no trying to up-sell me on expensive dresses. They’re really going for the “alternative/no-fuss” bride market, and they own that.

      The best part? They ask you for your top 10 (or so) dresses in advance, so they’re all pulled for you and ready in your dressing room. So, if you have pushy friends or family members, you can select the dresses YOU want to try in advance, from the privacy of your own computer.

      It was a low-stress, wonderful experience.

      • Alyssa Andrews

        Perfect, just what I was looking for! I’ve been ordering and returning dresses from BHLDN for the past few months, and even though I’m based in the SF Bay Area, we almost bought tickets to Seattle to go to the BHLDN store there to try on dresses (and let’s be real, have a girls’ weekend in Seattle with my mom). So I’m looking forward to being there in person and perhaps trying on some dresses I wouldn’t otherwise have considered!

  • LOVE a lot of these dresses, but some of the prices are listed incorrectly in the article (namely the Reagan and Christiane gowns – they are both well above $1,000).

    • clarkesara

      Not sure if they just raised their prices, or you’re thinking of price inclusive of tax, shipping, etc. but I just bought the Reagan and as of July it was under $1000. My budget was $1000, and if the Reagan had been over that it would not have made its way into the fitting room, period. The Reagan is certainly not “well above” $1000. I paid I wanna say either $875 or $975 for it literally just a couple months ago.

      • Ashlah

        Weird, I clicked on the link to their site after seeing Stacey’s comment, and the Reagan definitely was listed at over $1,000 yesterday. Seems they’ve lowered it again, as this morning it shows $975.

  • NolaJael

    Oh Maddie, you crack me up! This “or so minimal that you could see my, um, anatomy through the fabric” sums up my entire summer wardrobe purchasing experience.

  • NolaJael

    These shots are sooo gorgeous! The models are stunning, the landscapes stark, the dresses are jaw-dropping…can I go live there?

  • clarkesara

    I tried on a ton of these and picked the Reagan as my wedding dress, if anyone is curious about this stuff.

  • Cdn icecube

    I love this store, but I really wish that they had a ‘tall’ option. I’m 5’11 and most of their floor-length dresses are just a touch too short. :(

    • Her Lindsayship

      Oh crap, I’m 6′ and was planning to make an appointment sometime! Good to know. Has this been an issue in other bridal stores for you too? I just assumed they made them all super long since… tall women DO EXIST.

      • Cdn icecube

        I think in more typical stores (David’s, chain stores, giant bridal places) they’d be able to add length. Maybe check in store if there is one nearby? I’ve just lurked online.

      • Hannah B

        Depends on the brand. At most bridal stores you order new gowns which are made when you order them (hence the longer time period) vs BHLDN and JCrew stocking things in advance, and so you can add on extra length. This usually does come with a fee so just be aware! Theia and Nicole Miller are two brands that have a fairly long standard length and I’ve never had a gal too tall for them. Just be sure to ask your stylist!

    • clarkesara

      I’m 5’3″ and having to get what seems like about a foot hemmed off. (That said I also plan to wear flats. 5’11” + a high heel and, yeah….)

  • the cupboard under the stairs

    The Cibella gown? God. Damn. I can so imagine my winter wedding alter-ego wearing that!

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  • Emily

    I was at BHLDN just this week, and 95% sure I’m going with the Monica gown (first on the list of “under $2k”). So pumped.

  • Abby

    THANK YOU for putting this together. I’m in the process of looking for a non-traditional wedding gown and these photos gave me some great ideas.

  • EF

    wedding jumpsuits yay!

    i think i need the jackie jumpsuit in my life.

  • I think I could wear the Hayden gown every day of my life!

  • EKTD

    Cool and beautiful clothing design… but did anyone else notice there were 0 models of color here? BHLDN needs to make more of an effort in that regard, imo.