Vintage wedding dresses are good for many reasons, but the most persuasive reason brides-to-be should consider one is that they come with a guarantee: You can own and wear something no one else will have seen at any other wedding (in real life or otherwise—we’re talking about Instagram, of course). Not only that, but there’s also a trend for vintage dresses being less expensive than brand-new creations. A hyper-detailed dress you don’t have to fork out the big bucks for? Sounds like a stylish plan.
After becoming obsessed with vintage wedding dresses, Elizabeth Avey began collecting them, and then set up a shop in 2008. She has quickly established herself as sourcing some of the most exciting vintage styles, which include wedding dresses from the ’60s and ’70s. Book an appointment: firstname.lastname@example.org 020.8305.2343. ElizabethAvey.com
Not only does Real Green Dress source some gorgeous vintage wedding dresses (such as this Edwardian one pictured), but it also prides itself on being as “green” as possible when cleaning the dresses, using the most environmentally friendly methods. The store ships its dresses all over the world, and it is a regular presence at vintage fairs, in case you’re not able to get to the Hampshire HQ. Book an appointment: email@example.com. 012.7651.3368. RealGreenDress.com
Most people head to Beyond Retro for an old-school Levi’s 501 fix, but did you know it also stocks wedding dresses? This is a 1980s Frilly Vintage Wedding Dress (£65), which is a total steal for brides on a budget. Shop more wedding dresses on Beyond Retro. BeyondRetro.com
Strictly speaking, William Vintage doesn’t stock wedding dresses. But if you’re looking for a frock that totally wows, such as this couture Yves Saint Laurent dress (that costs just shy of £50,000) then we suggest you take a look at this A-list–adored mecca. Book an appointment: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Glance over the Instagram account for Fur Coat No Knickers, and you’ll see many brides wearing vintage frocks, from long and lacy to short strapless dresses. It stocks both vintage and vintage-inspired pieces from various eras. Book an appointment:
Pennies opened in 2011 in Islington, and it is a trove of gorgeous vintage wedding dresses. From Edwardian crochet pieces to 1920s beaded gowns that are incredibly elegant. Pennies was even featured on Downton Abbey, with one of its wedding dresses worn by Lady Rose (played by Lily James). Book an appointment: email@example.com. 0207 278 3827. penniesvintage.com
Also located in Islington, Annie’s Vintage Clothing is another great place to discover retro gems. While there isn’t much info on the website, we suggest you get in touch or head straight there and browse until you find your perfect wedding dress. And you don’t even need to make an appointment. Get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org 020.7359.0796. AnniesVintageClothing.co.uk
Obsessed with wedding dresses from the ’20s and ’30s? Then Notting Hill–based Jane Bourvis’s shop is the place to go. The atelier specialises in restoring and re-creating beautiful antique wedding dresses, with many of the pieces having featured on film and TV, from Sex and the City to Sherlock. Book an appointment: email@example.com 020.8964.5603. JaneBourvis.co.uk
Spanning from the 1930s to the 1950s, Abigail’s Vintage Bridal focuses on divine Edwardian gowns in intricate lacing as well as long, ethereal dresses such as this satin creation. Styles are constantly changing, although they have about 200 dresses available at any given point. It’s best to make an appointment to see which pieces they have—and perhaps worth a second trip if you don’t find something you instantly fall in love with. Book an appointment: firstname.lastname@example.org 07729.888751. AbigailsVintageBridal.co.uk Next up! High-street wedding dresses have never looked so good.
That said, it’s not easy to find vintage bridal gowns. Sure, some might be vintage-inspired, but when it comes to the real deal, there are only a few select shops and brands that provide what you’re looking for. If you’re a bride who’s been hunting for something more retro, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve put together a curated list of the chicest places to find vintage wedding dresses. From the more expensive couture gowns to the affordable frocks that cost as little as £65, we’ve got something for every budget. Below, click through our gallery of the best vintage wedding dresses.