Three Weddings and a budget

There comes a time in your life when you’re inundated with wedding invitations and dear reader, I have reached that time.

With lots of my friends and family tying the knot in recent years, I’ve been attending weddings right, left and centre.

Now, I love a good wedding mainly because it’s an excuse for a weekend away, a big party and of course, getting glammed up.

However, there’s no denying that weddings cost a bomb between paying for accommodation, wedding gifts and travel. And I frequently have to use annual leave days for them as I’m not guaranteed weekends off work.

So, although part of me would love a new outfit every time, the sensible part of me knows that I can’t afford it.

This year, I had three weddings and I decided I wouldn’t buy anything new from the high street and instead try to re-wear some of my old outfits.

Here’s how I got on:

Wedding number 1: An outdoor wedding in Meath in June.

This wedding was at Boyne Hill House and it was a beautiful day, it didn’t rain, even though there were a few drops on the way down.

The bride was radiant with flowers in her hair, the sun shone and it was a gorgeous civil ceremony. It was really nice to experience an outdoor wedding as I’d never been to one before.

Boyne Hill House wedding venue

I decided to re-wear an Asos dress I bought for another friend’s wedding two years earlier.

This dress actually fits me better now since I lost weight and I paired it with cream shoes from the charity shop which were €2 and threw an Asos white cardi on top.

This dress is from a brand called Elise Ryan and it cost €57.

I accessorised with a silver bag I already had.

Verdict: The dress was perfect for the weather and the occasion but the shoes were not great.

They were tough going on the grass and I felt like Bambi on ice! I gave them away since as they were not for me.

Hot tip: Don’t wear shoes you’ve never worn previously to a wedding, never a good idea!

Blue Asos dress

Price:€0 as everything was from my existing wardrobe.

Wedding no 2: A civil ceremony in Co Wicklow in August

Another gorgeous day out in Brook Lodge and MacCreddin Village in the heart of Wicklow.

The dress I wore for this wedding has been in my wardrobe for 11, yes 11 years!

I originally bought it for a Christmas party in 2008 and wore it to my college graduation in 2010.

Happily, it still fits and I added my hero red high heels which have also been in my wardrobe for a long time, around seven years.

They are the most comfortable heels I own, despite being quite high.

The only new part of my outfit was my hairband which I bought from AliExpress for €10.18 and earrings from Penneys.

I re-used the same silver bag as before – it goes with everything and threw on Ray-Bans when it got really sunny.

Green satin dress

To get the dress ship-shape, I had to gently handwash it as there were some stains on it and the silver straps had gone black so I went over them with silver nail varnish.

A bit of an effort but worth it because I love this dress and I got loads of compliments on it.

Green satin dress

I think this dress has lasted so long because it’s handwash only. It wasn’t an expensive dress but I’ve taken good care of it.

Verdict: This was a really good choice and I’m glad I hung on to the dress all these years. As it’s quite flowy, I had plenty of room for food and drinks and I lasted most of the night in the shoes too!

Cost: €13.18

Wedding no 3: An October ceremony in a refurbished barn in Co Louth

This was my boyfriend’s sister’s wedding so we were very excited about it and I was very emotional on the big day!

It was the cutest ceremony with an alpaca for a ringbearer and the venue, Seagrave Barns, was stunning.

We also got to stay in a wooden pod which was pretty cool.

For this wedding, I wore a dress and bag which were new to me but they were vintage and secondhand bargains.

While browsing in Retro City Lisboa in Lisbon, I came across a beautiful dress with a floral skirt and black upper half with a sweetheart neckline.

It was a gorgeous fit and really flattering on me, so I knew I had to get it. It was marked €20 but they gave it to me for €18.

Vintage dress from Retro City Lisboa

I decided I wanted a different bag this time and I spotted a funky 00s style Oriental print clutch in one of the charity shops in Phibsborough. This was about €6.90 but while it’s cute, it doesn’t open very wide so you can’t put much in!

I added a navy vintage belt with a gold buckle and my trusty red heels again. There were a lot of colours going on this outfit but they all worked together.

I accessorised with a hair clip from Nasty Gal and a small gold necklace which was about €6.

Verdict: A good choice, except I only brought a cardigan and ended up wearing a rain jacket over the dress as it lashed rain all day!

I spent the most on this outfit but it was still very little compared to the cost of a new outfit on the high street.

Floral vintage dress

I think I’ll save the clutch bag for nights out as I tend to bring lots of makeup to weddings and need a big bag.

Cost: €30.90

My total spend on outfits for the three weddings was €44.08, equal to the cost of one dress or pair of shoes on the high street.

Next year, I’ve two weddings lined up and after seeing how little I spent this year, it’s motivated me to re-wear outfits again or choose secondhand/vintage.

It’s possible to re-wear wedding outfits without becoming bored by changing up your shoes/accessories or even trying a different hair/makeup look.

Obviously, I was lucky in that I still fit into those dresses, if I didn’t, I might have had to buy new ones.

Sometimes, you do have to buy a new outfit/shoes/bag, depending on the circumstances and I’m not against that but it’s always worth checking what’s in the back of your wardrobe as well as exploring secondhand/vintage options.

While you might be attending weddings with the same group of people over and over, no-one is going to notice if you re-wear an old outfit, all the attention will be on the happy couple!

Hope you all enjoyed this post and it’s given you some inspiration for wedding outfits.

Thanks for reading and if you would like to follow me on social media,  check out my Instagram and Facebook page.




15 thoughts on “Three Weddings and a budget

  1. Dressing for weddings is always such a headache for me. I hate being stuck with dresses I will never wear again – so this post is super smart. I love the way you redressed each item and my favorite look is the third one – it’s just so chic and retro and lovely.

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