Last weekend I got the wedding dress of my dreams at Oleg Cassini without paying a fortune! Keep reading to see my stance on wedding dresses, why I chose the designer I did, and about my wedding dress buying experience!
Does spending big on your wedding matter?
As discussed before, I never wanted to go into debt paying tens of thousands of dollars for my wedding, or my wedding dress. I’ve done a lot of online research, and asking those I know who’ve gotten married what their biggest regrets were from their wedding, and 9/10 it’s been how much they spent.
It’s just not practical, worthwhile, or even necessary. The amount you spend is not an indicator of how much you love each other. At the end of the day, if the most memorable thing from your wedding was something other than marrying the love of your life, you’ve completely missed the point of the day.
The markups on the wedding dress industry
I took this view on weddings with me when looking for the perfect dress. Now don’t get me wrong, you need an amazing dress for your wedding. Just like other important occasions, you’ve got the dress the part.
What you don’t need, is to spend excessive amounts of money on a dress. The wedding industry has eye watering markups on their prices. Just chuck on “wedding” or “bridal” in front of any product, and suddenly it’s tens, hundreds, or even thousands of dollars more expensive.
Most dresses I saw on online catalogues were easily over $15K, some going up to $75K. If it has diamonds, and crystals, and silk woven from gold plated silk worms who have college diplomas than sure, spend appropriately to the materials, time needed to create, and difficulty to create the dress.
But like I said, you don’t need to spend that much. There are so many incredible wedding dresses out there by hardworking designers.
One of them, was Oleg Cassini.
Who was Oleg Cassini?
Oleg Cassini was a Russian-American designer who was most famously the designer for First Lady Jackie Kennedy, Grace Kelly, Burt Reynolds, and Michael Jordan. Cassini’s designs have been instrumental in how wedding dress designs are today, and was known for some of the most iconic outfits in celebrity wear from the previous decade.
My experience getting an Oleg Cassini wedding dress
When looking for a wedding dress, Oleg Cassini in Alexandria was the place I knew I wanted to get my wedding dress.
For complete transparency, I received my wedding dress for free through the amazing team at Sweaty Betty PR, and Mandy the store manager at Oleg Cassini Australia. I fell in love with the dresses online then reached out to them. Why? To help cut costs for my wedding, and because their business aligned with the same beliefs I have for my wedding planning.
Affordable pricing to accomodate everyone? Check. No ridiculous markups? Check. Beautiful, fairytale wedding dress designs? Check. Stunning showroom with all the finer details? Check. The most charming manager, and attentive staff? Check.
Mandy coordinated with me via email for the best day for my bridesmaids, and I to come in, as well as which dresses I wanted to try on. I sent through the full list I was interested in, and when we arrived on January 13th, the showroom was ready for me!
The showroom is lined with exquisite wedding dresses, and bridesmaids dresses in all possible colour schemes. The walls are a soft cream, and the open glass windows filled the space with natural lighting that made each crystal, sequin, and diamond sparkle. On one side was two quilted couches that had pink fluffy pillows, and on the other were two small podiums for brides to stand on, in front of two ornate, gold mirrors.
Behind the wall was six dressing rooms, each sectioned off with thick curtains for privacy. All the dresses I had picked out were awaiting on the clothing rack, and Mandy was there, attentive, and ready to help!
With each wedding dress, she handed them to me for me to slip into, and she zipped, button, and wove the corset for each one. I would walk to the small podium in the showroom which to mimic the height when we wear heels, and I nitpicked each dress to find the perfect one.
The first dress I tried on was a dream. It had many layers, lacey, sparkles, and an off-white with a secondary colour that matched my skin tone. It was perfect. I kept thinking to myself, this is the one.
I tried on more, and more dresses with my bridesmaids behind me giving their feedback. Each time, we mutually agreed, the first one was perfect. After only 40 minutes in the showroom, I had my wedding dress - not pictured.
Mandy informed me it would take a few months to create, which is fine by me as my wedding is in September. The only things that would need to be fixed with was shorten the dress (I’m 5’2”/156cm tall), and to bring in the waist slightly.
The entire team were incredibly attentive to my feedback, and were more than happy to accomodate to my wish that my bridesmaids, and I could recreate that scene in FRIENDS. They EVEN put on the FRIENDS theme song, and took the photos!
I had my dream wedding dress, had what can only be described as the perfect experience getting my wedding dress, and felt like a princess!