A wedding is an expensive enterprise. Expenses run into thousands of dollars and, in most cases, the wedding dress can be one of the most pricey details. For most women, the decision of what gown to wear is an emotional one, and hence it is laden with significance. However, after that special day, your wedding dress may just hang in your closet, gathering dust with nothing left to use it for. So, why not make the most out of your dress by selling it and earning some of that money back in your pocket?
In this guide, we’ll take a look at some of the best places to sell a wedding dress so you can sell your used dress and make some money!
Options for Selling a Wedding Dress
Weddings are expensive, so being able to earn a bit of that income back by selling your wedding dress can be highly beneficial. The selling process is actually quite seamless. There are quite a couple of options to explore if you’re looking to sell your wedding dress quickly. The first is consignment stores. Consignment shops sell used wedding dresses to potential buyers. Sellers pay a flat rate to have the wedding gowns put up. Eventually, when the dress sells, the owner gets the dress selling price. Furthermore, you can sell a gown locally or online.
Selling wedding dresses online is the easiest way to dispose of them and get paid handsomely. You can sell on platforms such as Wedding Bee. For some of them, you can also sell or buy wedding-related items like engagement rings. Selling online will mean that you would have to ship the dress with the appropriate shipping labels. To sell a wedding dress locally (still online, but to people within your area), you use traditional online shops such as eBay and Facebook marketplace.
Best Places to Sell A Wedding Dress
Selling your wedding dress online has some advantages over local wedding consignment shops. For one, it broadens the scope of options you have. It can also make the process of finding the best deal and getting your dress shipped out a little more transparent and simple.
When you are looking to sell a wedding dress on any of these platforms, including any that dubs itself the largest online bridal marketplace, you are sure to not run out of customers. There is also the ease that comes with selling a wedding dress online. However, before you settle on any platform, you need to pay attention to a few important details. Some of these include whether the platform has a strong social media presence, the amount of commission fees it charges, and so on. In any case, if you are looking to sell a wedding dress online, below are a few top places to check out.
Making it to the top of our list is Nearly Newlywed. Nearly Newlywed is a fantastic option because it does all the work for you. First, you need to pay the listing fee and fill a form with the particulars of the dress, including your preferred listing price. The platform takes it up from there. When they sell the wedding gowns, you get a notification and then ship the dress to them for onward movement to the buyer. The selling fee on this platform may be a little on the high side, and it does not sell wedding accessories or other wedding items. However, the fact that Nearly Newlywed handles the entire process for you is a great attraction.Click Here To Get Started
Still White is an oldie in the industry. It is even considered to be the largest online bridal marketplace globally. So if you are looking to sell your preowned wedding gown, this platform is the best.
Still White offers two plans for sellers looking to use its platform. The first is the standard plan, where you pay a one-time listing fee of $20 and get to upload six wedding dress photos. The other is premium listing, and you have to pay a premium listing fee of $30. This plan gives you the option of leaving your wedding gown on the list till it gets sold. You will also be able to put up eight photos or a video of the gown on the homepage gallery for 7 days. The great thing with Still White is that it doesn’t charge you commissions apart from the plan that you pay for initially.Click Here To Get Started
SmartBride Boutique is a classified ads site where people buy and sell wedding dresses and other wedding accessories. This includes wedding decorations and other wedding-related items. You need to set up an account to use the platform. However, except you are looking to upgrade from the basic to a premium plan, you will not have to pay any commissions or listing fees while selling your wedding dress using the platform. The premium account comes with features that increase visibility for the secondhand wedding dresses you want to sell.Click Here To Get Started
Wedding Bee is a one-stop-shop for everything related to selling used wedding dresses. It is a wedding blog where you can find information regarding various topics, including the best places to have your ceremony, prices for other wedding-related items, etc. Selling a secondhand wedding dress on the platform is quite easy and cheap. You do not pay for anything, except when you are looking to boost your ad. Thus, Wedding Bee only uses basic listing.Click Here To Get Started
Wedding Recycle does not require you to pay a one-time fee as many platforms do. It also does not allow you to sell support products. Thus, since it does not charge any listing fee, it takes a 4% commission if you sell wedding dresses using its platform. Do not still forget that you will have to take care of the entire process yourself.Click Here To Get Started
eBay is one of the best options for selling locally. Selling your wedding dress locally means that you will be selling to people within your immediate vicinity. This eliminates the need to ship the dress or pay for shipment. Selling your wedding dress locally also means that you most likely will be selling either to people you know or people you can easily identify. Thus, if there is any security challenge, you can easily sort that out.
eBay is a platform for selling almost anything, including used wedding dresses. You need to pay to use the platform, but not in the form of a listing fee. Instead, eBay requires a 10% valuation of the retail price of the used gown you want to sell. This might seem a little higher than what you’ll get on other platforms. However, the benefit of eBay is that you have the advantage of using an existing brand name to sell your product. Based on eBay’s reputation, you could be selling your wedding gown immediately after you put it up.Click Here To Get Started
This is also another great option for selling your wedding dress locally. Facebook Marketplace is a great option because you most likely will find a buyer for the wedding gown, even though it may take you longer. However, the great thing is that you will not have to pay a one-time fee or even a commission. If you are looking to sell a used dress, Facebook Marketplace is a great option.Click Here To Get Started
Tips to Note About Selling Wedding Dresses Online
Apart from deciding on the online space to sell your used wedding gown, there are a couple of things you may want to pay attention to. We will discuss them in detail below.
Sell as Soon as Possible
It is always advisable to sell the wedding gown soon after your wedding. Generally, your wedding gown will still be quite valuable two or three years after you’ve used it. This is especially if it is from a designer brand. However, you must not forget that fashion is always changing. What you find appealing today might not be appealing in a few years. Thus, you will most likely be able to connect with potential buyers just a few years after your wedding, when the dress will is still considered fashionable. Do not forget that even designer clothing goes out of fashion. The earlier you put up the dress for sale, the better for you.
Be Fair with Your Price
A wedding dress is one of the most important decisions every bride makes. So, if they are looking to wear an old wedding dress on their wedding day, they honestly are looking for a fair bargain. Basically, you need to put yourself in the shoes of the bride when coming up with your final sale price. Also, you may want to check out what second-hand wedding dresses are sold for in the market. You do not want to put your price way out of what is generally accepted. But, again, even though it is a used gown, selling it for a pittance does you no favors too. In summary, when deciding on your final sale price, try to strike a balance between setting competitive prices and being fair to your potential buyers.
Set Up Correctly
Part of the selling process involves setting up the dresses correctly. This is not just to help you sell the dress as soon as possible, but it can also aid the buyer’s decision-making process. Thus, ideally, you should take up to four photos or more of the dress. The photos should cover the different angles of the dress. Furthermore, provide all of the information related to the dress. This includes the design, color, fittings, etc. Finally, if there have been any amendments to the dress, do not forget to include that. This is just one way to make sure you are sincere and upfront. Beyond that, anyway, you will be making the job of the buyer a lot easier.
Clean the Dress
You may want to get the dress professionally cleaned before you put it up for sale. In the first place, this communicates thoughtfulness to the buyer. People looking to buy wedding dresses will definitely be impressed by the thought and care your efforts at professionally cleaning the gown will exhibit. Beyond that, getting the used dress professionally cleaned also increases the possibility of a sale.
Selling a Wedding Dress FAQ
How do I determine the appropriate price for my wedding dress?
Pricing a used wedding dress can be a bit of a challenge as it involves several factors. Here are some steps to help you determine an appropriate price:
- Original Price: Start with what you paid for the dress. This will serve as the basis for your calculations.
- Condition: If the dress is still in excellent condition and has been cleaned after use, it will fetch a higher price. On the other hand, if there are stains, tears, or other signs of wear and tear, you’ll need to adjust the price downwards.
- Designer and Brand: Designer dresses tend to retain value better than non-designer ones. If your dress is from a sought-after designer or a well-known brand, it may command a higher price.
- Age and Style: More recent styles are likely to sell for more than older ones. If your dress is several seasons old, or its style is no longer in fashion, it may be worth less.
- Alterations: Significant alterations can affect the price, especially if they limit the ability of a new owner to alter the dress to their fit. If alterations have enhanced the dress, they might add to its value, but if they’ve customized the dress to a very specific body type, they could decrease its value.
- Market Research: Look at what similar dresses are selling for on the same platform you intend to use. This will give you a sense of the going rate for a used dress similar to yours.
- Demand: Certain sizes, styles, and designers may be more in demand than others. If your dress fits into a high-demand category, it could fetch a higher price.
Typically, a used wedding dress in good condition might sell for 50% to 60% of the original price. If the dress is a designer brand or in high demand, that percentage could be higher. Conversely, if the dress is from a lesser-known brand, has been significantly altered, or is not in good condition, the price might be less than half of the original price.
Remember, pricing is also about what a buyer is willing to pay. Be prepared to negotiate and be flexible with your price if necessary.
Should I clean or repair my wedding dress before selling it?
Absolutely! Cleaning and repairing your wedding dress, if necessary, before selling it is highly recommended. Here’s why:
- Presentation: A clean and well-maintained wedding dress is more appealing to potential buyers. Stains, dirt, or signs of wear can detract from the dress’s overall appearance, potentially discouraging potential buyers.
- Value Preservation: Cleaning and repairing your dress helps maintain its value. A dress in excellent condition can typically command a higher price than one with noticeable damage or wear.
- Hygiene: It’s a matter of common courtesy to ensure the dress is clean before selling it. The buyer will appreciate receiving a dress that is ready to wear or needs minimal cleaning.
- Photography: When you’re taking pictures of the dress for your sales listing, they will look much better if the dress is clean and in good repair.
Remember, professional wedding dress cleaning services are best equipped to handle delicate fabrics and intricate detailing often found on wedding dresses. If the dress needs repairs, consider taking it to a professional seamstress to ensure the repairs are done well. If professional cleaning and repair costs are prohibitive, be sure to disclose the dress’s condition honestly in your sale listing.
How long does it usually take to sell a wedding dress, and should I be prepared for a lengthy process?
The length of time it takes to sell a wedding dress can vary significantly and depends on several factors, including the dress’s price, condition, size, style, brand, and the platform where you’re selling it.
It’s important to be prepared for the process to potentially take several weeks or even months. Here’s why:
- Market Factors: The market for used wedding dresses can be competitive, and trends in wedding fashion can impact how quickly a dress sells. A dress that’s in high demand may sell quickly, while others might take longer.
- Pricing: If your dress is priced too high, it may take longer to sell. If it’s priced competitively, it may sell more quickly.
- Seasonality: There are peak times in the year when more brides are shopping for dresses, typically aligning with engagement season (around the holidays and early in the new year) and early spring. Listing your dress during these times might result in a quicker sale.
- Platform: Some selling platforms may have more traffic than others, which can impact how quickly your dress sells.
Remember, patience is key when selling a used wedding dress. It’s important to give potential buyers time to find your listing, consider the purchase, and perhaps negotiate the price. If you’re not in a rush to sell, you may be able to hold out for a better price.
Are there any legal or tax implications I need to consider when selling my wedding dress?
When selling a personal item like a wedding dress, there typically aren’t any significant legal implications. However, it’s always a good idea to be transparent and honest in your interactions with potential buyers. Accurately describe the condition of the dress, disclose any defects, and represent the dress honestly in photos to avoid potential disputes.
As for tax implications, these can vary depending on your location and individual circumstances. In many jurisdictions, selling used personal items for less than their original price is considered a personal loss, not a gain, so it’s not usually subject to income tax. However, if you were to sell a dress for more than you originally paid, this could potentially be considered a capital gain and might be taxable.
If you regularly sell used items for profit, or if you’re in the business of selling wedding dresses, then this income could be considered business income and would likely be subject to tax.
Keep in mind that tax laws are complex and vary widely, so it’s always a good idea to consult with a tax professional or local tax authority if you have specific questions or concerns.
How should I handle returns or disputes if a buyer is unsatisfied with the dress?
Handling returns or disputes professionally and fairly is crucial to maintaining a good reputation as a seller, especially if you plan to sell other items in the future. Here are a few suggestions:
- Clear Return Policy: Establish a clear return policy and make sure it’s communicated to the buyer before the transaction is completed. Whether you choose to accept returns or not, it’s important to be clear about your policy upfront.
- Honest Description: Be as honest and accurate as possible in your description of the dress. Include clear pictures and note any damage or alterations. This can help prevent disputes over the condition of the dress.
- Open Communication: If a buyer has a problem with the dress, try to resolve the issue through open and respectful communication. They may be willing to keep the dress with a partial refund, or they may prefer to return the dress for a full refund.
- Mediation: If you’re unable to resolve a dispute directly with the buyer, and you’re using a third-party platform to sell your dress, you may be able to use the platform’s dispute resolution process. This often involves a neutral third party reviewing the transaction and making a decision.
- Legal Assistance: If a dispute can’t be resolved through communication or mediation and involves a significant amount of money, you may want to consult with a legal professional.
Remember, the best way to prevent disputes is to be clear and honest in your listing, communicate openly with potential buyers, and deliver the dress in the condition promised.
Conclusion: Selling Your Wedding Dress
If you are wondering what you could do with your wedding dress, here’s one suggestion: sell it. To do this, you could use any of the online sites discussed above. Some of the sites above give free stuff to incentivize buyers. More so, they are reputable, meaning that they can serve as a reliable middle man between the buyer and you. Two things you must note, though. The first is that you really want to sell. If you are still nursing the thoughts of gifting the dress to someone, your daughter, for example, then hold off from selling. Also, learn as much you can from the process. Before you choose any site, consider how long they’ve been around, the number and quality of dresses sold, listing fees, and listing price, amongst others. As soon as you’ve sorted that out, then you are good to go and sell your wedding dress!