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Bridesmaid’s Dresses Input Wanted

I want your opinion. I mean, I think I know which option I want to go with but I want to hear your thoughts before I make a final decision.

Originally I thought I would give the Bridesmaids a lot of freedom to pick their own dress. I had in mind that I would designate a color like “blue” but that I would let them pick the shade of blue they liked and any style of dress that they wanted.

I suppose I really did have a vision in mind when it came to the blue sand styles everyone would select. As my Maid of Honor (OK…henceforth MOH. I have seen that abbreviation around a lot and it does get long to spell out EVERY time) pointed out that could go really wrong though.  She had a really good point. In my quest to accommodate my bridesmaids I might end up with blues that nowhere match my vision or an array of styles ranging from 80s punk to romantic to ball gown. I thought about how it could realistically turn out given my very minimal lack of direction and the new vision didn’t look pretty. I imagine that the pictures could turn out some random, mismatched mess with no continuity or theme and THAT is certainly not what I imagine.

When my MOH came to visit last week we took a trip to David’s Bridal. While we were there we also looked at the Bridesmaid’s dresses available and had a serious discussion about me possibly being too accommodating. David’s Bridal is cool because they have a poster with about 50 styles of dresses ranging in price from $80 to $150 and then a poster with about 50 colors. You can order any style dress in any of the colors.

After the initial discussion my second thought was that I would pick three styles of dresses from the poster and then pick three colors. I would then allow my Bridesmaid’s the freedom to mix and match the color and style of their choosing. Again, I had a vision of what this would turn out like.

Then came the second discussion: What if it didn’t turn out like I envisioned because there was still too much lack of direction? The second conversation arrived at something along the lines of picking two or three styles of dresses as previously planned but only selecting ONE color or picking two and having two of the bridesmaids wear one color and two wear the other color (I am assuming I will have four at this point and that the MOH will be in a different color blue than either of the Bridesmaid’s colors to stand out).

I am not sold on the last idea though because, to me, it is not aligned with my original spirit of letting the bridesmaids pick a dress that they may wear again. I don’t want to be the bride that forces her Bridesmaid’s to pay for some hideous dress that they would otherwise not be caught in daylight in. However it was brought up that no matter how much freedom I allow with the dress still may not be truly liked or ever get worn again. Also, the girls I am selecting for my Bridesmaid’s like me and want to make me happy so they might willingly wear whatever ugly dress I put them in (kidding).

So my questions to you are this:

  • Which of the three ideas would you like best as a Bridesmaid?
  • As a Bride, which of these ideas do you think you would go with?
  • These dresses range from $80 to $150. I am leaning towards styles between the $80 and $130 range. These styles will, at least in my mind, lean towards the universally flattering and classic. What do you think about the price? Reasonable? I don’t know what typical Bridesmaid’s dresses cost.
  • Any other thoughts or ideas you may have based on experience or personal preferences?

Like I said, I know which idea I am leaning towards but your input will help me make a decision.

Thanks

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12 responses to “Bridesmaid’s Dresses Input Wanted

  1. Would definately stay one color. Different style dresses compliment different body styles more- so like the idea of a bridsemaid being able to pick what she is comfortable in. The prices seem very reasonable and realistic. Have fun!

    • Thanks for your input 🙂 The reason I was going to pick two colors was that I was going for a “beach glass” feel and the colors of blue beach glass vary quite a bit. However I do think staying with one color might be better…especially since we have pretty much decided there will only be three bridesmaids. Alternately, I could pick three different blues and tell them which one they are going to wear (depending on where they were standing relative to the MOH).

  2. I have been a MOH and a bridesmaid, I have never worn the dresses again and they were both hideous and poorly tailored. My current bridesmaids are wearing little black dresses, I picked out one at Red Light for $24 and its adorable. The other was given pictures of my vision for her and then set loose to find the one that fit her well. I did buy them matching tights to wear to tie together their look, and they’re wearing matching hair pieces. Maybe if you give them a clear picture of what your looking for and maybe a couple places they can go to try on then ask them to run their choices by you before making the purchase? Sorry for the rambles, good luck!

    • Thanks. That would probably be my third best option….or really a variation on my first idea I guess 🙂 I am thinking though that what if I approve two dresses and then the third bridesmaid has a hard time finding one that will fit into the spirit of the other two?

  3. I don’t have an answer to all of those questions, but I know, as a bride’s maid, I would want more of a choice. One style might flatter someone’s body, while the same might look terrible on another. Maybe you could ask them the types of dresses that they like, and then narrow the choices down for them. Mixing up colors could work, but only if they are a similar tone. If you’re in control of that, no problem then.

    Another suggestion is to go with used brides maids dresses. I know of one business in particular that sends out dresses for this occasion and you send them back for a decent price. I don’t know all of the logistics, but I’m pretty sure they let you try the dresses on when they are sent. I know that the dresses are similar enough to each other that they will match. Anyway, if you’re interested, it’s http://www.littleborroweddress.com/ . Good luck! 🙂

    • Thanks for the tip. I will check that link out.

      My bridesmaids are scattered all over the country and one in even in China so detailed coordination seems that it would be difficult. Maybe not though. The dresses I am looking right now are all variations of the sheath-style dress with an option of an empire waist….all of which are typically universally flattering styles.

      Yes, if I chose three diffrerent colors I would be chosing the colors so I would be in control of the tone.

  4. matthew s wotherspoon

    Jessica, well your a dam good friend, but.. this is out of my league, got to pass on this one, unless string bikinis with cowboy hats and boots no….. sorry dreaming there for a second, going with the pass option, good luck, Matt

  5. My bridesmaids and I went to I Do Bridal for their dresses. They were more expensive, like $200, but they were silk shantung in VERY classic styles so they could actually wear them again. You can see them in my profile pic on fb. I picked out the color and the designer, and then they picked the best style for their body. I think that they would all say that it was worth the money because they are perfect cocktail dresses that are perfectly tailored. I would stick with one color, unless you are sticking with one style. Different styles in different colors might be a little too much.

    I would also go to a few different places, not just David’s Bridal. You may find more classic and re-wearable styles elsewhere.

    Hope that helps! Granted, I don’t know what your wedding style is… mine was basically old school hollywood/great gatsby (very classic, but hip).

    –Deserae

  6. Beach glass ~ I like that idea! Do you envision something like the Hamptons, a tropical beach, a northwest beach? What style are you going for: romantic, indie, chic, whimsical, casual, eclectic, glamour? I think you’re booking the lighthouse? So that could be classic, nautical, crisp? I definitely like the idea of letting your bridesmaids bring their own personality into the mix. If you put a name and story to the style you envision (for example “romantic”, which would be flowy fabrics, laces, bows and ruffles) you give them direction for searching for their perfect dress. Perhaps turn them loose and then ask to see their final dress choices so you can coordinate with all the bridesmaids for a cohesive end result. You might end up with something really cool. Yes colors can clash, but they can also contrast brilliantly!

    • Thanks for your thoughts. I envision “Northwest Beach with beach glass on it”. Casual…like you are strolling the beach….but with a classic, modern twist. For example, I envision the dresses being simple, classic shapes like modified sheath dress styles. If I let them pick their own dress colors I would give each girl a small box of beach glass that represents the colors I am going for. Still haven’t decided on all of this. I still have time 🙂

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