Top Ten Tips for Choosing the Perfect Bridesmaids Dresses

Picking a wedding gown can be a challenge. What about the bridesmaids? There’s a long and sordid history of ugly-as-sin bridesmaids dresses, dresses that are terribly unflattering to one or all of your brides maids. This week Nancy Baker, wedding photographer and blogger, adds her wedding expertise to the Power of Two blog and helps you pick out the perfect bridesmaids dresses.

One of the many big decisions that all brides need to make is just how to dress their bridesmaids. At first glance, this can seem like a pretty straightforward task. Unfortunately, however, the reality is that it can be surprisingly complicated.

Bridesmaids dresses should complement the wedding theme, the bride’s dress, and of course, the individual bridesmaids. Finding a set of dresses that manage to do all three isn’t easy.

Should you find yourself on the lookout for the perfect bridesmaid dresses, here are ten straightforward tips for finding them.

Involve Your Bridesmaids

As a bride to be, it’s you, and not your bridesmaids, who has the final say. It’s important to remember, however, that it is your friends that we’re talking about here. Do you really want to purchase something that they hate? Just because you don’t have to involve them doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t. Try to choose a style that everyone likes.

Size Matters

Take a random sample of five women and you can expect a wide range of shapes and sizes. If you don’t want to drive one of your bridesmaids up the wall, it’s important to remember that one size does not fit all. Try to take everyone’s unique body shape into consideration.

Keep Things Light

When you do take your bridesmaids on a shopping expedition, try to keep things light. Don’t try on dresses for hours on end. Go shopping for three hours max and don’t forget to stop and have a coffee or other treat at least once. Dress shopping only becomes stressful if you make it that way.

Green bridesmaids dresses
Choose bridesmaids dresses that your friends will want to wear again.

Avoid One-Wear Only

If you really want to make your bridesmaids smile, choose bridesmaids dresses that they’re actually likely to wear again in the future. Some dresses are obviously one wear only. Others, however, would make a welcome addition to just about any girl’s wardrobe. As a general rule of thumb, the darker the dress, the more likely it will be worn again.

Consider Individual Styles

An increasingly popular method of selecting bridesmaids dresses is to simply choose a colour and fabric and to then let each bridesmaid choose their own style of dress. This not only takes a lot of the burden off of the bride, it allows each bridesmaid to decide themselves what they think will look best on them.

Three’s a Crowd

Bringing a bridesmaid or two shopping with you makes sense. Bring four or more and the odds of you actually getting anything done start to plummet. The easiest way to involve everyone in the process is to take a camera with you and use email to elicit feedback. Differing opinions are a lot easier to process when delivered in textual form.

Don’t Go Overboard

Bridesmaids dresses typically cost between one and three hundred dollars. Anything within this price range is a perfectly reasonable request. Anything more than that, however, and you might want to consider covering the difference. These days, everyone’s a little low on cash. Try to remember this when looking at that beautiful designer dress.

Think About the Weather

If you’re looking forward to being a July bride, try to think about the summer sun when deciding what your bridesmaids wear. If you’re getting married in the winter, on the other hand, skimpy and strapless probably isn’t the way to go. Aim for something that your bridesmaids are actually going to be comfortable in.

Make sure you stand out from your bridesmaids.

Similar but not the same

One of the more difficult aspects of bridesmaid dress shopping is finding a style that will complement your own on the big day. When doing so, it’s important to aim for a style that’s similar, but not overly so. You obviously want your bridesmaids to compliment you, but it’s equally important that you stand out among them.

Don’t Forget to Delegate

Finally, while it’s the bride’s role to choose the dresses, it’s generally the maid of honour’s role to actually go out and purchase them. Like many aspects of wedding planning, a little bit of delegation is very much recommended. Once you’ve given the final go ahead, leave the final preparations to somebody else.

Author By-Line:

Nancy Baker, the writer of this post, works with She is quite fond of photography and wants to become one of the best wedding photographers in Toronto. Her creativity and passion are what drive her to attain success in her field.