Things to Consider When Selecting Bridesmaid Dresses
You’re working your way through your wedding planning checklist and have just ticked off another item: finding the dress of your dreams. Next on the list, bridesmaid dresses. After scouring bridal magazines and visiting numerous boutiques to find your ultimate bridal gown, bridesmaid dresses should be easy, right? Not always. While wedding dress shopping is critically important (a bride needs to love her dress!), at least you only have your own style and figure to contend with. Bridesmaid dress shopping is a whole new ball game as different personal styles, conflicting opinions and diverse body shapes all come into play. To find the perfect bridesmaid dresses for your bridesmaids, there are a number of things to consider.
Before you even enter a bridal store, consider the colour scheme of your wedding. What colours will you be using for decorations, table cloths/runners and flowers? The chosen colour palette for your wedding will guide your decisions regarding colours for bridesmaid dresses; you don’t want them clashing with the décor! It’s useful to consider the overall palette and have 2-3 colours in mind that will balance the overall aesthetics on your wedding day. These colours will ensure your hunt for bridesmaid dresses is a targeted one, rather than beginning with a blank slate and having to navigate a messy combination of opinions on shopping day.
Once you’ve landed on potential colours for bridesmaid dresses, it’s worth considering the theme of your wedding. If you’re going for an elegant, old Hollywood vibe, it’s best to tell your bridesmaids to avoid short, tight styles. Similarly, if a modern feel is more your thing, there’s no point looking at flowy, bohemian silhouettes that will look out of place. The bridesmaid dresses need to fit the overall theme of the wedding to ensure a coordinated look.
The most important consideration when selecting bridesmaid dresses (or at least equal most important with budget) is the figures of your bridesmaids. It’s critical that the silhouette you choose is flattering on all of your bridesmaids. Your wedding may be all about you, but these are the people you’ve chosen to be a part of your big day – you want them to be comfortable! Let’s be honest, if they’re distracted because their dress clings in the wrong places or the neckline doesn’t sit quite right, they’re not going to be completely present and available to support you anyway.
If your bridesmaids have quite different figures, consider different style dresses in the same colour and fabric. Many bridal stores are offering the same dress with different necklines or slightly different silhouettes, and this is a great way to adapt a dress to different figures while also allowing individuals to showcase their personal style.
Discussing money with friends and family can be awkward but it is vital that everybody is clear on expectations early to avoid discomfort later on. Before you begin shopping for dresses, have a conversation with your bridesmaids so everybody understands who is responsible for paying for the dresses. If bridesmaids are expected to cover the cost of their own dress (standard wedding etiquette), ensure that there is an agreed budget. It may be worth checking in with your bridesmaids individually to confirm they are okay with the budgeted amount and have not felt forced to agree in a group forum. Once everyone is clear about who is paying for what, you can begin the shopping process. Just remember to make sure you stick to the agreed amount and don’t try to push this value up if you find something you love. It’s not fair to guilt your bridesmaids into paying more than they can afford or are willing to spend.
Finding bridesmaid dresses can be challenging, but if you keep the above in mind you can turn the process into a fun bonding experience for your leading ladies!