But from the middle of next month, brides looking to cut the cost of tying the knot can choose a wedding dress off the rack for £60 from the Asda supermarket chain. The dress comes in cream with a bias cut and is 100 per cent silk with satin burnout. Those willing to spend an extra £5 can pick up a two-piece polyester outfit consisting of a ruched bustier and a netted skirt instead.
The dress is part a budget bridal collection bearing the label of the supermarket's clothing range, George. The collection can dress both bride and groom for a total of £200, with accompanying bridesmaid dresses in pink or duck egg for £30 and children's pageboy sets for under £20.
The collection - set to launch on Valentine's Day - follows Mintel research which shows that the average wedding dress costs £826 in Britain, with the total cost of a wedding day estimated at £11,000.
Angela Spindler, managing director at George, said the aim was to take the financial pressures off couples and their families.
Deborah Joseph, editor of Wedding magazine, said the success of the Asda wedding dress would depend on its quality. "If Asda's dresses haven't compromised on quality or cut, then great - no bride wants to look cheap.
"On the other hand, if this range opens up a good alternative for the budget bride, can it be a bad thing?" she said.
A supermarket spokesman said the dress would not carry a fashion stigma, as the George label had established itself on the "high fashion" market. "When we talked to customers, we found one element of their lives that was ridiculously high, which was weddings. This way, they can buy a dress, save £750 and spend it on an extra week on honeymoon or extra champagne," he said.
Wedding and engagement rings are also on sale at Asda, with prices starting at £19 for a wedding band.
Asda announced plans yesterday to cut the cost of goods such as televisions in the first three months of this year. This follows predictions from industry experts that shoppers are set to benefit from the fiercest supermarket price war in years.Reuse content