This Is The Best Way To Buy a Pre-owned Wedding Dress #sponsored

Get the glam IRL shopping experience minus weird internet surprises

I was never the little kid who made a scrapbook full of dream wedding plans. But I did spend a lot of time reading Vogue and thinking about clothes. So by the time I was actually getting married, the one thing I really wanted was a designer wedding dress. Oscar de la Renta or bust. (I can’t even tell you why. Some people get stuck on Vera or Monique; I got stuck on Oscar. 🤷‍♀️)

Since my entire wedding budget was approximately the cost of an Oscar de la Renta dress, I knew that (barring my becoming super rich or super famous overnight) I was going to have to find a sample or pre-owned dress—or a miracle. So I took to the internet, searching every single site that sold pre-owned dresses, saving searches left and right until one day I got the email.

A woman sits on the ground in a flowing off-white gown from Our Story Bridal with floral appliqués on the bodice and illusion straps

It was The Dress. And “only” a smidge over budget.

But when faced with the reality of spending my entire dress budget on something sight unseen just because of a name on a label, I couldn’t go through with it. No matter how amazing it looked on the internet, I couldn’t buy a nonrefundable dress without seeing if it, you know, actually looked okay on me.

Two women with long dark hair smile at you. They are Ana and Jacquelyn, founders of Our Story Bridal.

FINALLY A Sample Dress Shopping Experience THAT’S LEGIT FUN

Fine, I thought, I will go to a store and at least now I can bring my people for a second opinion and have an afternoon of proper bridal glam time. Except, it turned out my local bridal consignment store was basically like Marshall’s for wedding dresses. Tiny, crowded, and stressful, with dirty dresses you could only pray will come clean. I actually did find my dress there—Junko Yoshioka for anyone wondering—and the style was nothing at all like I thought I wanted, but it was perfect.

The whole dress shopping experience, however, was not. So when I learned that Our Story Bridal salon in New York City was created to counteract these exact pitfalls of the typical pre-owned wedding dress shopping experience, I was all:

Founders Ana and Jacquelyn are best friends and Wharton Business Schools grads who started Our Story Bridal after stressful experiences trying to sell their own designer wedding dresses, with the mission of giving women a luxe dress shopping experience at a fraction of the traditional cost. As they told me, “We were in our clients’ shoes not too long ago, so we want to give them what we didn’t have but wished that we did! We are here to take all the risks and stress out of purchasing a gently loved dress.” And the result looks like this:

A wedding dress and sheer cape hang on two dress forms in a showroom/fitting room with oversize floral wall paper and modern grey couches with a millennial pink armchair and a mirror at Our Story Bridal

Swoon.

close up of white wedding dresses hang on wooden hangers from a garment rack in front of an oversize floral wall paper at Our Story Bridal

designer dresses meet awesome experience

The Our Story Bridal experience starts with their impeccably curated collection of designer dresses (think Vera Wang, Monique Lhuillier, Carolina Herrera and Inbal Dror) at up to 60% off retail prices (dresses range from $1,000 to $7,000, and veils, sashes, boleros, and headpieces start at around $99). Ana and Jacquelyn personally select each and every one of the dresses to ensure that they are high quality and in impeccable condition. The fact that you can even go drool over check out a sneak peek of their dresses online is a huge perk in my book, as is their super-convenient appointment booking process—bless anyone who doesn’t make me pick up a phone.

Aside from the fact that you get to try on your dress in person rather than playing Russian Dress Roulette on the internet, I think my favorite part of Our Story Bridal is that they don’t treat pre-owned dresses like a dirty secret. And they don’t treat you like a second-class citizen for wanting one. Instead you’ll get that intimate shopping experience where you can feel, see, and try on dresses in a beautiful boutique.

And BONUS: Our Story Bridal is a full-service salon that provides in-house alterations to make life even easier, and of course there’s the fact of getting to see and try on your actual dress and take it home with you ASAP, rather than trying an ill-fitting store model with lots of clips and waiting months for the real thing to come in.

A woman in a mesh style dress with illusion back with floral appliqués from Our Story Bridal with her back to you A woman wearing a simple off the shoulder deep v neck wedding dress with a column skirt from Our Story Bridal. She holds a navy sheer wrap that is billowing behind her.

what to do what the dress that’s been in your closet

Looking to sell, not buy a dress? Our Story Bridal sources its inventory of gowns from across the country, and they are committed to making the sales process just as stress-free, from free dress pick-ups and discounted cleanings in NYC, to keeping your for-sale dress safe and well-cared for, to attracting serious buyers and handling the entire sales process.

a woman wears a white wedding dress covered in floral appliqués with a halter-style neck and a cutout illusion back from Our Story Bridal

Whether you’re buying or selling, customers have nothing but glowing reviews for Our Story Bridal:

I cannot recommend Our Story Bridal enough! I never thought I’d buy a “used” dress, but when I walked in a saw my dream Marchesa gown, which I could never afford or would let myself buy on retail, I was sold. These dresses are in impeccable condition and the team has you browse wearing white gloves out of respect for the brides who are selling their beloved gowns and the for the future bride who will get a steal on a designer/couture gown. It’s a win-win and everyone there is so helpful and genuinely excited to see a bride find her dress.

Like all budget conscious brides, I had been searching through tons of sample sales, but I noticed that a lot of the dresses in sample sales were in rough condition. Then I went to Our Story Bridal. The selection was not just left over sample sizes that had been tried on a million times, but popular dresses brides actually wore. I loved and bought a barely worn designer dress I never imagined being able to afford for sample sale prices.

My dress was originally purchased in London from Jenny Packham, and I researched over twenty vendors to find one that would understand the craftsmanship and market for selling my 1920s style gown. I decided on Our Story Bridal because of previous positive reviews, simple evaluation and submission process, and the quality of the brides and sellers leaving feedback. If you read the reviews, you will find that the group of women here are all interested in positive, fair priced, and pleasant experiences. There are many options to selling your dress, but this has been the most pleasant experience I have ever had. Thank you Our Story Bridal for making it possible!

A woman wears a halter neck white wedding dress with a gauzy overlay on top of a sheer dress with botanical style appliqués from Our Story Bridal. Her top overlay skirt billows around her white wedding dresses hang on wooden hangers from a garment rack in front of an oversize floral wall paper at Our Story Bridal

The absolute best part of my job is when I get to give you guys the thing I wanted most when I was getting married—and Our Story Bridal is it. So go take a peek at the merchandise, ease your anxieties in the FAQs, and then book yourself an appointment and enjoy the dream dress shopping experience I never had.

Our Story Bridal is the perfect backdrop to try on discounted sample and pre-owned wedding dresses without losing out on a special shopping experience. click here to book your appointment today.

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