When it comes to budgeting for your wedding, do you have a hard time with the thought of spending a ton of money on something you know you’re only going to use once? We’ve researched some top options for you when it comes to shopping for used wedding decor. Welcome to the hidden world of wedding resale markets!
WHY SHOP USED WEDDING DECOR?
Let’s be real, weddings are expensive. For many, by the time the essentials have been paid for, there isn’t much room left in the budget to splurge on the decorative aesthetics you were hoping for. This is when you know it’s time to get savvy!
Save Time and Money
You DON’T have to spend a fortune on a bunch of wedding items you’re never going to use again. Shopping gently used wedding decor is the way to go if you are looking to stretch your budget while still getting the look you want for your big day.
Sure, there are ways to save money without shopping used but it takes a lot of time. Hunting down coupons, hoping for inventory availability, and added shipping time, not to mention driving all over town to big box stores hoping to find sales.
The perk of shopping used wedding decor is that the inventory is right there for you to see what the seller has available. Better yet, it’s likely a guarantee that the price will be less than new in-store items.
The benefits don’t end with saving time and money. By shopping for used wedding decor, you are also supporting local Central Florida couples looking to make money back from their own costly weddings. It also supports local small businesses, like wedding professionals in the Central Florida area, who are often looking to sell their stash of items leftover from weddings.
Pro Tip: you can sell your items after your wedding too! Talk about a win-win; save money and then MAKE money.
Here’s another benefit of choosing to shop used that everyone can get behind, upcycling to reduce waste! Purchasing gently used wedding decor can decrease the carbon footprint left behind after your big event.
Think of all the materials that can end up getting thrown out if they aren’t going to be used again somewhere else. Signage, centerpieces, silk florals, candles, table coverings, the list goes on! This is an especially cool idea for those with an eclectic or vintage vision for their wedding.
USED ITEMS TO SHOP FOR
By looking for used items, you can save money while still having the wedding of your dreams. Here are some ideas of what wedding items you can buy used and why they work even when purchased secondhand. From decorations to clothing, there are a lot of great options that won’t cost an arm and a leg.
When shopping used wedding decor, some of the most common items couples gravitate to are tabletop decor, things like silk floral arrangements, chargers, table linens/runners, candlestick holders, lanterns, greenery etc. These are excellent items to look for used and are usually very easy to find.
Silk florals alone can be used in countless ways and the best part is that you can prepare them well in advance because silk flowers don’t die. It’s a great budget-friendly option for your bridesmaid’s bouquets. Not sure what to do with them afterward? Resell them to the next bride and make your money right back!
Let’s get into a few lesser-known used wedding items you can make work. Obviously you aren’t going to buy a used custom sign that reads “Welcome to the Wedding of Monica and Chandler” when you aren’t Monica and Chandler. Instead, shop for signage options that can be customized after purchase. Chalkboards, wood slabs, or glass can be written on with a variety of mediums. Save on the sign itself so you can splurge on a calligrapher and have the wedding signs of your dreams!
When planning your wedding, think of things you may actually want to keep and reuse afterward in your own home. Not only can you save money buying these items used, but you also don’t have to worry about wasting your money knowing it’s something you can use again.
Market lights, drink dispensers, cake stands, tiered dessert trays, and even plates/dishes are a few things that come to mind that double as common household items you may want for hosting down the road. If you can find the right deal, it makes sense to buy and own items like this. Think of how fun it will be to break out special pieces from your wedding and take a walk down memory lane!
WHERE TO FIND USED WEDDING DECOR
Are you an introvert looking to shop from the comfort of your home? Or do you prefer to see and touch items before you buy? Don’t worry, there are options for all your shopping preferences in the used wedding decor market. Let’s get into these platforms!
Local In-Person Shopping
Imagine a flea market entirely dedicated to selling gently used and new wedding items. Wedding Venue Map has partnered with TheXpos to bring you a pop-up Wedding Resale Market; the first of its kind in Central Florida and your one-stop shop for used wedding decor deals.
The Central Florida Forever After Wedding Resale Market will feature over 30 sellers including local couples, wedding professionals, artisans, and crafters. All sellers are required to fill out an application and provide images of inventory so the team can carefully curate the market to ensure a balance of product variety for shoppers like you.
Shoppers can enjoy the upbeat atmosphere of the market complete with food trucks, DJ, a cash bar, photo booth and many more high-quality sponsors. Grab a VIP ticket for early access shopping, complimentary cocktail, and a swag bag that boasts additional freebies, coupons, and deals worth the cost of the ticket itself!
The Forever After Wedding Resale Market debuts Spring 2024, at the Ocoee Lakeshore Center. Check out the website for more detailed information about the market and follow on Instagram for updates on the date, time, and inventory as we get closer to this one-of-a-kind event.
Local Online Shopping
Wedding Resale Facebook Groups
Local wedding resale Facebook Groups are a great place to check for what you might be looking for. These groups offer a wide variety of used wedding decor inventory all in one place. While some are locally sourced in your city or state, others are from all over the country. Choosing to shop from local groups is best for saving money; buying from outside your area may result in unwanted shipping fees.
To get started shopping, simply create a free Facebook account and search for groups in your area. Orlando Wedding Swap and Wedding Resale Orlando are a few local favorites. Some Facebook Groups, especially the local ones restricted to a certain area, are private and you may need to request to join so that the admins can confirm you are local.
Because Facebook is a public forum, everyone’s experience is different when it comes to purchase satisfaction. Make sure to read the reviews and any rules/terms! Facebook Groups usually have one or more admins who monitor the group to ensure it stays free of ad clutter and items that aren’t wedding related.
Another Facebook option is Facebook Marketplace for your local area. While you can definitely find some used wedding decor here, this feature is more like a virtual garage sale rather than seeing all wedding-related sellers in one spot.
You’ll likely need to search for one specific item at a time rather than have the ability to “browse” general availability. Similarly, sites like OfferUp and Craigslist will have used wedding decor for sale but availability can be difficult to pick through and the sites are often littered with ads.
National Platforms for Used Wedding Decor
If you aren’t having luck with the local shopping options finding the used wedding decor you need, you may need to broaden your search radius. Many national sites sell new and gently used wedding things online and because shipping exists, there’s no worry about location!
Wedzee is an online marketplace that connects current and former brides, wedding planners, and handmade business owners all in one place to buy and sell used or new wedding items. In terms of online shopping, this one is the easiest to navigate and is packed with inventory. Because of its national audience, it’s also a top contender for best places to resell used wedding decor after your big day.
With all inventory organized by category, color, new, pre-loved, and more, shoppers can easily find what they’re looking for! Narrow your search to your specific wedding color palette or choose from over 80 categories of items to find exactly what you need. Shipping is determined by the seller, but many offer free shipping.
You can rest assured you aren’t getting ripped off with Wedzee’s money-back guarantee that reads, “Receive your items as described or get your money back”. With that said, all sales are considered final. Return requests for any reason other than the item not matching the description will not be honored. So if you buy a dress and you don’t like it or it doesn’t fit, it is NOT eligible for return.
As a seller, there are zero fees to post a listing, but Wedzee takes an 8% commission on any sales made through the platform. They also offer discounted shipping labels to sellers so you can save on reselling items after your big day.
With over 70,000 dresses for sale and 24,000 five star reviews, Stillwhite is a favorite for buying and selling used wedding dresses from around the world!
Shoppers create a free account and answer some general questions to narrow down the search. Stillwhite offers sizes from 0 (XS) to 30+ (4X). A quick filtered search showed results in every single size for UNDER $1,000. Some sizes had as many as 7,000 options under $1,000.
Questions can be answered and prices can be negotiated with the seller through a chat feature within the site. The return policy is very similar to Wedzee, you will only be refunded by filing a dispute that the dress either was damaged, did not match the description, or was never delivered.
Plus side? If you end up not liking the style or the size can’t be worked out you can always turn around and sell it right on Stillwhite. If you’re selling your dress, a one-time fee of $25 is all you need to create your listing.
Honorable Mention: Etsy
It’s true that Etsy sellers more likely fall into the artisan/crafter category. These items are usually handmade customized pieces that are new or upcycled. Still, it’s worth mentioning that some Etsy sellers DO sell used wedding decor, labeled as “pre-owned”.
You’ll need to use the filter feature to search for pre-owned items; similarly to how Facebook Marketplace works, just on a national scale.
Even shopping newly made items, Etsy prices usually beat big box stores and come with a greater level of uniqueness as well as the added bonus of supporting small businesses.
Shopping for used wedding decor is becoming an increasingly popular trend as couples look for ways to save money and reduce their environmental impact. From local resale markets to online platforms, you can see that there are many options available if you’re looking to find unique and affordable items for your special day. Wishing you all a happy shopping experience as you plan your wedding!