Spring Event Dresses – Under $200

For the last five or so years, I’ve either had a bunch of weddings to go to, or virtually none. Case in point – last year, we had almost zero, and suddenly this year, we have a bunch. My usual rotation of “wedding guest” dresses was feeling a little tired, so I took the occasion to try out a few dresses that I could add.  Here are two of the best ones, and even better – they’re both under $200, but don’t look that inexpensive. The best of both worlds, especially as I don’t usually get the best “cost per wear” out of my event dresses anyway!

I found this Tahari dress while online browsing one evening, and bought it almost immediately. It reminded me an Erdem dress that I had wanted awhile ago, but couldn’t bring myself to purchase due to a seriously scary price tag. I also tried the Zara version at the time, and it was a fail. But this Tahari dress was a nice surprise. And, I think it could work for a variety of ages/events – just depending on how you want to style it (a more conservative look could be the dress paired with nude pumps). Plus, it comes in both regular and petite sizes (I bought 2P).

Tahari Dress Detail

I love the details on the lace – the watercolor effect makes it look like a more expensive dress, in my opinion. Plus, there’s enough color on this dress to make it appropriate for a wedding (except for those with the most zillas of bridezillas). 

Miu Miu Bows

I paired this dress with one of my favorite shoes that doesn’t get enough wear in my closet, these taffeta gingham Miu Mius. I think this dress is great for pairing with a bold colored shoe, and would look fabulous with any of the colored Manolo Hangisi pumps (I love the pink!). Another great option at a mere fraction of the price of the Manolos, are these baby blue Steve Madden sandals.

The second dress I found which I really liked was this striped organza Vince Camuto. I love this style of slightly preppy dress, but previous iterations have always been a little off for me – the skirt too flared, the style a little bit too prep or little girl sweet. I had been eyeing this Dolce & Gabanna poplin dress, but this Vince Camuto, at about 1/10th the price, was  much friendlier option.

I really found that this dress was a blank slate – you could pair it with more bold accessories, like an Hermes CDC bracelet, to make it more modern – or you could pair it with more delicate accessories, to be more ladylike. The colors are very versatile and classic- black, ivory, and navy. And of course, on this style of skirt, pockets are a must!

The dress is very comfortable and I could wear this all day at work, or at a spring/fall wedding. I also took a 2P i this (love that more and more dresses are coming in petite options). For those looking for a slightly more bold look, I also found a more colorful striped shift option with a jeweled neckline, also from Vince Camuto, for $148.

What are some of your go to affordable event dresses?

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  • Sonya
    February 16, 2016 at 8:25 am

    I love the Vince Camuto! I wear a 2 in Oscar de la Renta dresses, what size do you think I should order?

    • Katherine
      February 16, 2016 at 9:36 am

      I would get 2 as well, I only have one ODLR dress but I find the sizing to be quite TTS?

  • Sammie
    February 16, 2016 at 8:39 am

    I love the Tahari dress as I am a total sucker for florals and intricate lace details. It looks great on you and I like how you mixed patterns!

    • Katherine
      February 16, 2016 at 9:36 am

      Thank you! I love florals too, and lace 🙂 So I’m happy to find dresses that don’t make me look like grandma, lol.

  • Revanche
    February 16, 2016 at 9:57 am

    My favorite event dress is the Sue Wong beaded dress that I snagged on sale from ideeli for under $200. It’s peach with gold accent beading and seems to work for all but the most casual party/receptions. It travels really well, too, so it’s easy to toss into the suitcase and not worry about pressing it at the other end of a plane ride!

    • Katherine
      February 17, 2016 at 7:56 pm

      That is a great deal, and a dress that travels well = invaluable.

  • Susie Tunes
    February 16, 2016 at 11:22 am

    Great finds – they look more expensive than they are, particularly with your lovely accessories. You look fab!

    • Katherine
      February 17, 2016 at 7:56 pm

      Thanks Susie!

  • Linda
    February 16, 2016 at 4:25 pm

    All of these are so gorgeous!

    • Katherine
      February 17, 2016 at 7:56 pm

      Thank you Linda!

  • AA
    February 16, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    Lovely dresses, Katherine! So sad CL is not making Decolletes in that particular style/shape any longer.

    • Katherine
      February 17, 2016 at 7:57 pm

      Thank you! I had no idea about the Decolletes – that’s why they looked a little different in the recent shopping photos I’ve seen, I assumed I was just confused though.

  • flawlessskinday
    February 18, 2016 at 7:34 am

    the miumiu pump adds nice touch to your ensemble. love it!

  • Karen
    February 20, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    OMG, the Tahari floral dress came yesterday and I can’t be happier. Haven’t shown to hubby yet as he doesn’t like me wearing lace and floral can be tricky. But I love love love how its on me. I took a 4P and its a bit loose and worried 2P would be to tight on me. Do you perhaps have a side and back view of how to dress looks on you and have it posted on IG, so that I can take a look it? Thanks a lot on the recommendation on this dress.

    • Katherine
      February 20, 2016 at 9:22 pm

      I’m so sorry, I don’t right now! But I’d say to just order the 2P to try on – Nordstrom has free returns, I know its a pain to return but worth it to get the right fitting dress I think.