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Indie high schoolers, you don't have to wait until your wedding to shop at BHLDN. The Anthropologie-founded wedding brand quietly launched a party dress collection in April, offering dresses for prom, black tie, or any other fancy event.
It's a totally new endeavor, but one that makes sense given BHLDN's trajectory: Last year, it announced a push into bridesmaid and mother-of-the-bride dresses in addition to bridal gowns. Now, BHLDN's targeting wedding guests too, as well as prom-going teens.
The collection is a mix of brands that have worked with BHLDN in the past, like Jill Stuart, Needle & Thread, and Marchesa, as well was new brands like Betsy + Adam, Paper Crown (Lauren Conrad's line), and Cynthia Rowley. The selection, compiled by BHLDN's buyers, includes a few pieces that are entirely exclusive to BHLDN, others that simply come in BHLDN-exclusive colors, and a few are not exclusive at all.
BHLDN's party dress collection exists thanks to customers who wanted something special even when they're not the ones getting married. MarketWatch reported last year that it costs an average of $673 to attend a wedding as a guest; meanwhile the average U.S. family plans to spend about $919 on prom-going kids, according to a 2015 article in the Guardian.
"We began the event capsule as a response to customer inquiries; we continued to hear from our in-house stylists, social media team and store teams that she was coming to us searching for more than just her wedding gown," BHLDN assistant buyer for apparel Kaity Gaskill told Racked. "She was searching high and low for the perfect prom and event dresses and craved pieces with the BHLDN aesthetic for these special occasions. We decided to launch an edited capsule of dresses for all events, ranging from black tie to prom, backyard wedding and beyond."
Prices for dresses start at $160 for a swingy cocktail dress, while the most expensive item is a $995 ML Monique Lhuillier dress that could totally work as a gown for a bride who loves ombre. In fact, there are a few affordable white or champagne dresses that could double as wedding gowns, like this casual $200 boho dress.
Of course, since these are party dresses, there's a lot more color and print than in any other BHLDN looks, as seen in BHLDN's shoot with Brooklyn-based artist Danielle Kroll. Browse the collection here, and expect to see even more party dresses from BHLDN in the fall.