How to Buy Cheap Formal Dresses

There are some occasions in a woman’s life that call for a formal dress to be worn, but not everyone has a closetful of these types of clothing at home already. The economy today has put the crunch on many household budgets and an item like this can be a real strain on it. There are many ways, however, that a formal dress can be obtained for much less than you might expect. If you are in need of a cheap formal dress, consider some of the following options.

*Amazon and Overstock

There are many websites, such as and, that carry a huge array of items at prices that are incredibly discounted. This includes formal dresses much of the time. The items that these websites sell aren’t out of style or unattractive at all. They are simply items that need to be moved quickly for one reason or another and that can lead to great pricing for you. doesn’t even charge shipping if your order is over twenty-five dollars and the shipping at Overstock is often only a couple of dollars!

*Craigslist is a website where private parties can advertise items that they want to sell. With this site, people typically won’t ship to you. They expect to sell the item locally and have someone pick it up. has gotten so popular that you can find almost anything you’re looking for now.

*Have One Made

If you know someone that’s a seamstress (or maybe you are yourself), they might be willing to make the dress for you for very affordable labor charges. This will give you a unique dress that’s made perfectly fitted for you, in addition to being affordable. You can often find fabric and other accessories needed for incredible prices online or at craft store sales.

*Coupons and Codes

Be sure and look in your local Sunday paper for coupons! You can save a ton with one great coupon, like an “any one item 50% off” coupon. If you can combine these with a good sale, being sure that the coupon can be used on a sale item, you can walk out with a steal of a deal. There are also coupon codes if you are comfortable with online shopping. To find these, just type in “coupon codes for (name of retailer or brand)” in your search box and most of the time, you will find them.

*EBay is a wonderful site for those looking to save money. If you know your measurements or your size in particular brands that you’re looking for, you can use this auction-style site to find amazing dresses at amazing prices. This is especially great after certain events, such as prom, when people will be looking to recoup some of the money that they spent on a dress that will never be worn again.

*Thrift Stores

Thrift stores often get formal dresses in and you can save quite a pretty penny. It may take some searching to find one that is right for you, but the savings will usually make it worth it. If you find something that doesn’t fit perfectly, you can always take it to a seamstress for alterations. If the dress was a good enough deal, you will still be saving after paying for alterations.

*Big Sales

At certain times of the year, there are incredible sales. If the event that you’re attending which requires a formal dress is landing after one of the big sale days, such as President’s Day or Labor Day, you should be sure and check out these sales first and foremost.


If you don’t really need to buy the dress, you can do even better financially by just renting something for the day. Bridal shops often carry formal dresses, such as those for bridal parties, that are rentals, and other formal wear shops do, too. If you don’t typically need a formal dress, renting may be the perfect way for you to go.