Best Bridal Shops in New York

Bridal dress shopping in New York is talked up as the holy grail of wedding experiences, just like in the movies. With huge ranges of styles, you'll never walk in to a boutique to be met with a blank face and only one dress that suits you. The staff that are yet to reach that jaded seen-it-all-before demeanour nor scoff at you if you have the cheek to enter without an appointment.

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Bridal dress shopping in New York is talked up as the holy grail of wedding experiences, just like in the movies. With huge ranges of styles, you'll never walk in to a boutique to be met with a blank face and only one dress that suits you. The staff that are yet to reach that jaded seen-it-all-before demeanour nor scoff at you if you had the cheek to enter without an appointment.

ELLEuk.com's freelance fashion writer Emily Cronin is an American living in London and wrote me such an impassioned sell on bridal shopping in New York that I've copy and pasted it below. You'll find many dresses a lot cheaper in the states than in the UK. With its huge economies of scale, you can knock off potentially thousands from the price of dresses from US designers like Carolina Herrera, Oscar de la Renta and Marchesa. If you can wrap up choosing a dress on your first visit, you can return again just once for your fitting and collection - and neatly coincide it with your hen?

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The problem comes in getting it back to UK shores. You sadly can't carry it on board because those vicious people at JFK will sniff it out and land you with a tax bill to make any saving redundant. But you can get it shipped and pay around 12% of its cost, or if it's a slip of a thing remove all tags and pack it - but we didn't suggest that. Ask your bridal shop for their recommendations.

On to more exciting things - where to shop. Enter Emily for her advice;

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"Okay, here's the deal: You MUST go to New York. Even though I bought my dress here, I found a far broader range of options and friendlier reception at the bridal salons I visited there than in London. You'll probably end up ordering one from some fab little atelier in London, but NY gown shopping is an experience you shouldn't miss. The places to hit are:

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Kleinfeld A total bridal palace. Lots of Manhattan brides with 10-strong entourages. You won't order anything from there, but you absolutely have to go. For heaven's sake, they have a multi-tier bridal gown conveyer belt system to manage their thousands of gowns!! Carolina Herrera's Lina dress below - available at Kleinfeld.

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Selia Yang Actually, this is where I wish I'd bought my gown. All of her gowns are so beautifully constructed, cut in subtle and flattering ways. The website doesn't do the dresses or the lovely East Village boutique justice. Selia's Chantelle dress below;
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Amsale Every wedding dress you've loved in a movie in recent years has been by Amsale. Crisp, modern, gorgeous. The Dahlia dress below;

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J.Crew They now have an entire Madison Avenue bridal boutique. It opened after my time, but it's supposed to be incredible". J. Crew's Palais dress below;

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