Designer for Discount
By Samantha Palmieri
VOWS Bridal Outlet located in Watertown, Massachusetts, has made a name for itself in the greater Boston area. With prices ranging from $99 to $4000, VOWS Bridal Outlet targets the practical yet fashion-forward bride. Rick and Leslie DeAngelo’s unique store attracts buyers from all over North America, and its popularity continues to grow today.
What sets VOWS Bridal Outlet apart from other bridal stores is the high quality of its wedding gowns. Brides can purchase gowns retail-priced at $10,000 to $17,000, for under $4,000. With stock ranging from 800 to 1,000 dresses at any given time, there is a dress for all budgets, venues,and styles of weddings. “We have brides that can afford a high-end gown, but they are very practical and intelligent women,” says storeowner Leslie DeAngelo. She emphasizes that saving money is a smart decision when buying a wedding dress.
Compared to the 90’s, DeAngelo finds that people are “much more open to feeling savvy about saving money.” Brides feel accomplished and proud that they are able to save on their wedding dress. “Explore all options, sample gowns, online sales, and never before worn gowns. There are lots of ways of purchasing a gown and not spending retail price for it,” says Leslie. This new generation of brides is what makes VOWS so appealing to today’s market.
Leslie and Rick DeAngelo travel all over the country to find the wedding dresses they want to have in their stock. They collect overstock and samples from designers and department store warehouses, and they also buy dresses from retailers going out of business. As if they did not already have enough choices for brides, owners Rick and Leslie wanted to accommodate their customers even more by launching their own bridal line Liv Harris Designs. This line of gowns is extremely affordable and has a large range of varying sizes.
Bridepower.com is VOWS’ online site founded over ten years ago by the DeAngelos. It is an online archive of discounted dresses posted by individual sellers. When originally created, there was no other site out there like bridepower.com; it was offering high quality gowns at a discounted price. Bridepower.com is “empowering all women that there is a way to have your dream wedding within a budget,” says DeAngelo.
During the twenty-plus years VOWS Bridal Outlet has been open, it has received awards and acknowledgments from Boston Magazine, Instyle Weddings, Modern Bride, Boston Weddings, and Bridal Bargains. They are also in the process of filming their third season of “I Found the Gown,” a TLC series featuring Rick and Leslie on the road searching for new designer dresses for their stock. “Brides find that the discounts at VOWS are so substantial that even with plane tickets factored into the cost, the gown is still cheaper,” said Leslie. The show has brought a lot of positive attention to VOWS. Since bridepower.com launched, VOWS gained an out-of-state customer base, but the show gave the shop national and even international recognition.
Rick and Leslie DeAngelo opened VOWS Bridal Outlet 21 years ago to offer the greater Boston area high-end gowns for a discounted price. Their designer wedding gowns for a discounted price are appealing to the savvy brides of the 21st century. Rick and Leslie DeAngelo have built a business inspired by the dream that all brides can wear a designer wedding gown with 50 to 80 percent savings.