Decent proposal . . . St John Community Store Oamaru manager Kathryn Sealey with some of the 30 new wedding dresses the store has been given to sell. PHOTO: ASHLEY SMYTH

Saying yes to the dream dress can cause a serious dent in any wedding budget, but here’s a chance for brides to be which might just take the cake.

Thirty brand new wedding dresses have been donated to Oamaru’s St John Community Store.

They were priced for sale at $300 each, although the retail value for some of the dresses was close to $2500, store manager Kathryn Sealey said.

Dunedin bridal boutique Bride and Winter donated 80 dresses to Dunedin’s St John Community Store, to clear excess stock before shifting to new premises, and the Dunedin store was sharing the love with Oamaru.

‘‘So that’s really great for our St John donations,’’ Ms Sealey said.

There were not a lot of options in Oamaru for brides, so it was a ‘‘really good opportunity to keep the donations in the Otago area’’.

There were also new shoes and other wedding day necessities.

The shoes, with a retail value of $150-$170, were selling for about $40.

‘‘We have shawls, we have flower girl dresses, we have hats, we have gloves, we have hair accessories.’’

Two volunteers who worked in the shop were available to offer advice and make adjustments.

One previously had a bridal business of her own and both did tailoring and fitting.

‘‘At that price of $300 for a brand new dress, even to get it modified, you’re still really ahead for the upcoming bridal season, or even if people wanted the fabric for something else.

‘‘Clever girls who have vision have got a very good base product.’’

The dresses got a great reception at the Dunedin store, with some customers buying three or four.

‘‘So I am anticipating that they won’t sit around.’’

The donation meant a lot for Oamaru St John, which had been working hard trying to find a site for a new station, she said.

‘‘So it’s an incredible donation.’’

There would always be somebody in store to help with fittings and there were a variety of styles and labels.

Prices were being kept down so the dresses were affordable, especially with the uncertainties Covid-19 presented.

‘‘That’s always part of our values,’’ Ms Sealey said.