11/6 {Can’t Afford It/Get Over It} A Claire Pettibone-Inspired Gown For Under $1,000

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Kate’s got caviar taste but not enough clams to fund it. And she doesn’t want to sell her precious pets in order to snag a real Claire Pettibone.

Hello, I have been enjoying reading through your blog, lots of great tips written in a humorous way 😉

I’m a UK bride to be and we seem to have a lot less choices wedding dress and price wise than in the US. I have been totally lusting over the Claire Pettibone Chantilly wedding dress, along with a few of her others. However, unless I remortgage my pets there is no way I could afford even a quarter of one of the CP dresses. If you have any ideas for alternatives I would really appreciate it. I’m looking for a lace/vintage style wedding dress with an interesting or unique back.

Thank you!


Kate, you’re right; Claire Pettibone does amazing things with lace. No one will argue with you there. Unfortunately, few people have her touch. Also, the amazing lace backs that she features aren’t easy to find. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t find something vintage-inspired with lace to have without sacrificing Fido. Stick with that open-minded attitude and let’s look at some options that are less than a sixth of the cost of your inspiration.


Claire Pettibone Chantilly (Estimated retail $6,000 to $6,200)


Ivory French Lacy Chiffon Wedding Dress ($800 at Paula Studio via Etsy)

Beaded Cap Sleeve Gown ($995 at Grace Loves Lace via Etsy)

Scalloped Lace Cut Out Mermaid Wedding Dress ($499.99 at For Her and For Him)


Paloma Wedding Dress (£450 at Phase Eight)

Maria Wedding Dress (£495 at Phase Eight)

If the dream isn’t here, consider piecing it together. BLDHN, for example, has a pretty bridal lace tank top that can be put over a simple white dress. Or, David’s Bridal offers a variety of lace jackets that can be similarly used. Since you seem a little open to other vintage styles, consider checking out a some of our older posts, like the ones inspired by the Catherine Deanes Lita Gown or Pronovias Petunia dress. Lastly, if you’re going to stretch your budget, it doesn’t hurt to check out sites where brides re-sell their dresses, like Pre-OwnedWeddingDresses.com or Once Wed’s used wedding dress listings.  Claire Pettibone is quite popular on those sites.

  • I relish, cause I found just what I used to be taking a look
    for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man.
    Have a nice day. Bye

  • Lynn P

    What I love most about Claire P’s dresses are he stunning backs with the large lace pieces. I don’t see that on these.

    • Hi Lynn! Those backs are certainly gorgeous — and help add to the price. Oftentimes, we have to focus on one or two specific aspects of a gown to help our readers “Get Over It!” Unfortunately, with wedding gowns, the more detail there is, the more expensive they’re going to be.