There are the women and men who will support you no matter what. They have seen you at your best, and you better believe they’ve seen you at your worst. These are the folks who you want beside you when you make the biggest decision of your life (so far!). They’re your bridesmaids, and they don’t want to look ugly on your wedding day.
As the bride, you will receive most of the attention on your wedding day, but your shine will also illuminate those around you, including your bridesmaids. Reasonably, your bridesmaids will want to look their wedding best, but they won’t if you don’t support them with suitable attire. Unfortunately, too many brides make huge mistakes when choosing bridesmaids dresses. If you want to maintain your friendships after you say “I do!” you need to avoid the following pitfalls of bridesmaid fashion.
Mistake #1: Asking What They Want to Wear
It seems benevolent and considerate, asking your bridesmaids for their preferences on their attire at your wedding. Unfortunately, when you ask what they want to wear, you aren’t likely to receive any information at all, let alone anything useful in making fashion choices. It’s your wedding, and if your bridesmaids are good people – which, granted, is not guaranteed – they likely aren’t inclined to prescribe style and colors for the entire event.
A much better question is asking for types of fashion your bridesmaids typically avoid. For example, plenty of red-heads swear off the color orange, and small-chested girls typically aren’t keen on strapless dresses. It is much easier for your bridesmaids to identify what they don’t like than to tell you what they love. By asking for absolute fashion won’ts, you are likely to receive at least a few oppositions that can guide your dress-hunting endeavors. Then, you are more likely to find bridesmaid dresses that look good on everyone.
Mistake #2: Giving Options
You are perhaps the most thoughtful bride in the world, offering your bridesmaids choices for their attire rather than blindly dictating your desires. At least, that might be what you think. In truth, options often confuse and stress already harried bridesmaids. When you say, “Choose whatever you want,” they hear, “Intuitively understand my wedding’s style and coordinate with your fellow bridesmaids without my guidance.” None of your bridesmaids wants to end up with a totally different look than the rest of the bridal party, which means none of your bridesmaids is likely to make any dress-purchasing moves.
Instead, you should give your bridesmaids some parameters. For example, you can choose a designer and ask your bridesmaids to select a dress from a specific collection. Alternatively, you can choose a specific color or pattern (or both) and tell your group to search for a cut they prefer. Still, the best method is to select a handful of specific dresses, collect your bridesmaids, and have them vote on their favorite. The fewer options they have, the more likely you are to solidify your bridesmaid style.
Mistake #3: Choosing Style Over Function
Maybe you have an unshakeable vision of your Big Day. Or, maybe that vision includes high-fashion bridesmaid dresses that look an extremely particular way. But also, maybe you don’t have trouble with asking your bridesmaids’ opinions or giving them options. Maybe your trouble is just the opposite.
Bridesmaids who don’t get any say in their fashion choices aren’t typically upset because the dresses are ugly but rather because they are uncomfortable or inappropriate for the event. Only during a brief period of your wedding will your bridesmaids be standing stolidly by your side; for the rest, they will be jumping around, dancing and celebrating your nuptials with the rest of your wedding guests. That means they need support and coverage. They can only determine this by trying on the dresses before they wear them for your wedding.
Different body types need different functions. For example, your busty bridesmaids likely need straps or build-in corsets. Your leggy bridesmaids might need longer hems and flatter shoes. Style is important, but it is much less important than the comfort and attitude of your bridesmaids at your wedding.
In an effort to avoid seeming like a Bridezilla, you might swing too flexible. This will give your bridesmaids no direction in the dress hunting. Then again, you don’t want to be too rigid in your wedding style and force your bridesmaids into terrible gowns. If you walk the line between these extremes, you should be able to curate a beautiful wedding party that makes everyone glow.