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BHLDN, or "Beholden", gets its name from the Dutch word meaning "to keep". As an Anthropologie brand, this Wedding Dress retailer prides itself on having a "passion for tradition with a twist", selling heirloom-quality gowns, camisoles and skirts with "timeless style from another era".
With respect to selection, BHLDN carries a smaller range than many of the stores in our review: 40 designers and 54 gowns in sizes ranging from 0-18. Pricing is typically more expensive as well, with the lowest-priced gown retailing for $600 and dresses up to $3,600. Fortunately, when comparing a particular selection, such as the Nicole Miller "Dakota" gown, BHLDN's prices were very competitive with other online retailers.
Also, BHLDN's return policy is much more generous than many of their competitors. Wedding dresses can be returned within 30 days, provided that they are in original condition with all tags attached and in their original packaging. A prepaid UPS label is included in every shipment. It is important to note that while BHLDN currently has over a dozen brick-and-mortar locations, wedding dresses purchased online cannot be returned in-person.
Shipping is $10.95 for orders of $501 and up, plus an additional charge of $15 for all wedding gowns. We would love to see a more generous shipping policy, like many of the other wedding dress retailers in our review.
What we love about BHLDN is their focus on helping brides find the perfect dress for their special day. Stylists are available via phone or email to help with selecting and sizing the right dress, and brides are eagerly encouraged to make that connection as they shop for a gown. Even using the website is simple: shoppers can narrow down their options by back detail, style (for example, A-Line, Strapless, Sheath, Mermaid, and Ball Gown), and length - or absence - of sleeves.
When looking at a particular dress, brides can see BHLDN's recommended pairings for jewelry, veils, and so forth, or they can choose from the wide variety of accessories available on the corresponding pages on the site. Most of the wedding dresses also have customer reviews that can help shoppers get a real-world perspective on the feel, weight, and fit of the gown. Best of all, BHLDN provides specific hints with respect to alterations. For example, on a gown with detailed beading, the dress's information clearly states that an expert tailor will be required if the dress needs to be shortened.
Although their selection is narrower - and average prices are higher - than many of the retailers we reviewed, BHLDN makes it possible for brides to find a truly classic look in a high-quality gown, and to easily return the purchase if it winds up not being a good match.
Top Wedding offers a wide selection of wedding gowns, with more than 1,700 dresses in a variety of designs currently featured on their website. The site is easy to use, with left-hand navigation that allows brides to narrow down their options by price, silhouette, fabric, body shape, and several other categories. Customers can also sort by designer, but even their most popular one, Amaranta, didn't show up on any other retailers' sites; there are no dresses from more recognized names like Vera Wang or Oleg Cassini.
Top Wedding's customer reviews are a mixed bag. Some shoppers are very pleased with their purchase, stating that the dress exactly matched their expectations, was shipped on time, and that customer service handled any issues promptly. On the other hand, there are more than a few customers who had serious problems with getting orders delivered, with finding that the gown delivered was of much lower quality than what was pictured on the site, or that no help was offered by customer service until they posted a negative review online. Coupled with a discouraging F rating by the Better Business Bureau, these negative experiences make it difficult to know if a bride will receive the dress she wants in a timely fashion and if it will match what she saw on Top Wedding's website.
In fact, we suspect that Top Wedding is similar to other Chinese-based wedding retailers in our review that post images of dresses from high-end designers and then create copies to sell to their own customers. We found several dresses in the Morilee line by Madeline Gardner, for example, that are represented on Top Wedding's site with no mention of the designer, the line, or with any indication that the gowns sold are actually authentic.
Top Wedding's return policy is equally murky. On the return policy page, it says that there are no returns or exchanges on Dresses, unless the product received is incorrect (such as the wrong color, size, and so on). When reading through Top Wedding's detailed return instructions, it becomes clear that only returns that meet very strict criteria will actually be approved by their customer service department.
Although some customers have been very happy with their purchase from Top Wedding, their lack of accreditation and F rating with the BBB, along with seemingly sketchy practices (such as selling designer dresses with no credit given to those designers) leave us with a number of serious questions about the site's credibility. We strongly suggest that brides start their shopping with one of the more reputable retailers in our review.
Best Wedding Dresses
To help you find the Best Wedding Dresses, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of BHLDN and Top Wedding.
A wedding is one of the most special and memorable times of a woman's life. When getting ready for such an important day, every bride wants to feel attractive and confident. That all starts with a beautiful, well-fitting wedding dress.
Finding the right wedding dress, however, can be a time-consuming and frustrating experience. Driving from store to store, trying on different wedding dresses, and agonizing over limited selections can quickly turn the event into a nightmare.
Shopping for a wedding dress online can alleviate all of these frustrations. With the click of a mouse, you can browse through hundreds of wedding dresses from a variety of top wedding dress designers. You can find wedding dresses in all different sizes and colors, and often at a much lower cost than anything you can find in a local store.
However, not all wedding dress stores are the same. You should consider a few important factors when starting your wedding dress shopping effort:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best wedding dress stores available today. We hope this information helps you find that perfect wedding dress for your beautiful wedding!
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