Tips to Help You Choose the Perfect Bridesmaid Dresses


Choosing your bridesmaid dresses doesn’t have to be stressful. In fact, if you know exactly what to be aware of, it can be a fun and relaxing part of planning your wedding. Here are a few tips that will help you during the process and don’t forget to have some fun trying on lots of styles:

Take your wedding gown style into consideration

Even though you will be the one to stand out, it still looks great when your look coordinates with your girls. If you have a lot of details on your dress, keep your bridesmaid dresses simple.  The same thing applies to necklines – make sure that they aren’t exactly the same. Looking good together doesn’t always mean having to perfectly match.

Consider skin tones and body type

You want your bridesmaids to look and feel beautiful on the day too, so choose a color that works well with their skin tones and body shapes.  You may even want to throw hair color into the mix when deciding on a color. You might even want to bring in a colour specialist to help you narrow down which colour will look good on all of your bridesmaids. The orange-red might look good on one with yellow undertones, but will look awful on someone with pink undertones (who looks better in blue-red!)

Keep the season and location in mind

Before you decide on a look, take the season that you will be getting married into consideration. It’s fine to choose long dresses in summer or short-sleeve dresses in fall, but make sure that your ladies are comfortable. I do a lot of weddings in the forest and see bottoms and hems of dresses being dragged through the dirt and leaves (and I’m sure some critter poop) and they are filthy before we even get the ceremony started. Consider where you will be spending your time and if dragging hems will be an issue.

Start shopping early

You never know how long it will take you to find the perfect bridesmaid dresses so don’t start shopping too late. Plus, you may need to order your dresses and delivery could take a while, so keep this in mind. I always suggest ordering all of your dresses a year in advance if they need to be made and shipped from overseas. Remember, the dress factories in places like China are making and shipping dresses all over the world, so there are a lot of orders ahead of yours. A year gives plenty of time including being on a container ship for a month, and leaves room for alterations. If your dresses are sleeveless it also gives anyone who isn’t in love with their arms to get those workouts in so they are feeling confident in the photos!

Price matters

If you will not be buying your bridesmaids’ dresses, it’s really important to keep price in mind. Your bridesmaids are investing quite a bit of time and money in your big day so make sure that the dresses you choose are actually affordable. Bonus points for choosing a style of dress they could actually wear again to other events.

Get their opinions

Your bridesmaids will really appreciate having a say in their dresses so ask them if they had any ideas about what they would like to wear.  You should, of course, still have the final say, but it’s great to include them in the process too. You might find they all have a different body part they are self-conscious about and end up picking different styles of the same dress to make sure all of your bridesmaids feel good on your wedding day.

Speaking of roping your bridesmaids in

If you want to reduce some of your wedding planning responsibilities and stress, get your maid of honor to research dresses and prices for you. When I was getting married I knew the exact dress I wanted in my head and would spend my lunch hours searching for a dress that matched my vision. I then had to call hundreds of dress shops across southern Ontario begging them to bring it in for me. It was a massive job so I split the list up and asked my girls to help with the calls until we found a bridal shop that at first said no but one of my bridesmaids talked them into it. Many hands make light work!

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