Friday, January 27th, 2012 by Faye

Bridesmaid Dresses Do’s and Don’ts

Let’s get one thing clear, you picked your bridesmaids because you like them and they are important women in your life. Therefore you don’t want to make them look awful with a horrible dress and matchy match accessories. As brides get more and more sophisticated bridesmaids should expect to follow suit!

To help you avoid pissing off your bridesmaids, here are a few Do’s and Don’ts when selecting your bridesmaids’ dresses.

Ask your bridesmaids to foot the bill for a pricey gown. The argument “You will definitely wear this more than once!” does not give you leeway to ask your ladies to spend a fortune.

Make your bridesmaids look bad to make you look better. We completely understand not wanting your gals to steal the show, but purposely putting them in hideous dresses will only make you look shallow. Plus, think of your wedding photos; they will look much better if your bridesmaids feel pretty and comfortable.

Demand and require they wear costly and complicated accessories. Feathered headdresses, Swarovski crystal earrings, and six-inch stilettos may sound like wonderful ideas straight out of the pages of Vogue. But your bridesmaids are people, not runway models! Not everyone can walk, or dance, in crazy high heels, and while elaborate accessories are fun for photos, they are not fun for the pocket book. Pick affordable and comfortable accessories; better yet, make them your bridesmaids' gifts!

Choose a color no one looks good in. There are a few colors that are pretty much unflattering to all. Safety cone orange and sea foam green are two great examples.  Consider the coloring of your girls and pick a hue that will look good, if not absolutely amazing, on all of them.  Or give them a palette to work within, and let each ‘maid choose her own hue!

Pick an affordable bridesmaid dress or help with costs. If you are stuck on one perfect dress for your bridesmaids and know that none of them can afford it, help shoulder a portion of the cost if you can. Or subsidize the expense in another way by treating to the shoes, accessories, and/or helping with hair and makeup costs.

Select a dress that is easy to find. Stuck on one dress you absolutely love but your bridesmaids live in different cities? While we don’t love the idea of bridesmaids in uniform, it’s important that the dress you choose can be easily found online, at a department store, or at a chain store close by.

Set style guidelines, not rigid rules. For items like shoes, hair, makeup, and accessories, give your b-maids general guidelines for what you would like. For example, saying something like—a strappy nude sandal, hair half up, or natural makeup—to your maids will go a long way in making their lives easier. And dictating the exact pair of heels, shade of lipstick and hairstyle that each bridesmaid wears may make you seem like, dare we say, a bridezilla!

Provide help with hair and makeup. Never underestimate how much fun you will have getting primped with your bridesmaids. Providing a hair stylist and makeup artist for everyone makes the whole process more enjoyable, and a mani/pedi day at the spa is perfect for your bachelorette party. Plus, the photos of everyone getting ready are definitely on the list of Must Have Wedding Photos!

Get into 2012’s dress trends. Mixing n’ Matching, sophisticated black, and straight up chic are all hot trends for 2012 bridesmaids, and we don’t see them going anywhere anytime soon.

Consider body types and comfort levels. Different bodies require different dresses, plain and simple.  This is why we are in love with the trend of b-maids wearing different styles (neckline, silhouette, length) of the same dress in the same hue.

Allow for input. If you let your bridesmaids be involved in finding the dress, everyone will be happier in the end. A great way to do this is through a Pinterest Pin Board or a group-shopping trip. Just be clear that you have absolute veto power.