3 Mistakes (Almost) Everyone Makes When Picking Bridesmaid Dresses

If most wedding magazines were taken as gospel, it would be safe to assume that all wedding parties are made up of models. More likely than not, your wedding party is made up of a lot of people who look nothing like each other, but who you love equally. Which makes choosing bridesmaid dresses a special kind of complicated.

1. Asking the Wrong Questions: For the most part, people know what they’re signing up for when agreeing to be a bridesmaid. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still ask questions. Instead of trying to figure out what dress style everyone will love, ask if anyone has a no fly list. Maybe your redheaded bestie hates the color orange, your small-chested sister won’t wear strapless dresses, and your gender non-conforming cousin doesn’t mind dresses, but would prefer to wear something less fitted. It’s way easier to narrow down from a list of don’ts than from a list of must haves.

2. Giving too many options: Contrary to popular belief, more options aren’t always better in the world of bridesmaid dresses. At least, not if you don’t want to field eight hundred texts from your wedding party asking “What about this one?” or “Is this okay?” and then having to figure out what to do when you realize that “Choose anything you want” actually means “Choose anything except the one you just picked.” In fact, “Pick anything you want” can actually be more stressful than just giving some parameters (because no one wants to accidentally end up the odd woman out who looks like she didn’t get the coordinating dress memo). So here’s a helpful tip: if you care about cohesion, then choose a designer you like and narrow it down to a color or color family you like best and let your bridesmaids choose from there.

3. Forgetting to jump up and get down: Let me paint a picture for you: you got to a bridesmaid dress store, find a dress you like, try it on, and it looks great, so you buy it. Then the wedding rolls around. And halfway through Baby Got Back, you realize you just accidentally flashed your best friend’s uncle and now you have to spend the rest of the night dancing with one hand hiking up your gown. Yeah, I’ve been to that wedding too. (I’ve, um, been that person at that wedding.)

Do’s and Don’ts of Picking the Perfect Bridesmaid Dress

DO keep in mind your personal style, especially how the bridesmaid dress will look with your own dress and the overall look of your wedding. Even though you are not wearing it, your bridesmaid dress is still a reflection of your own taste and aesthetic.

1 Color Palette
DO pick a color that will be prominent in the color palette for your wedding but DON’T feel limited to just one color. You can do a color combination or multiple shades in the same color family. Popular mixes are nude/pink/blush, green/turquoise/blue, and ombres such as red to pink.

2 Consider the Cost
DON’T decide on a dress without checking with your bridesmaids budgets. Be sensitive to everyones finances. If you absolutely love a dress that some of your girls might have difficulty affording, consider contributing a portion of the cost or find a similar dress at a lower price poin

3 Choose a Flattering Style
DO keep in mind the body types of your bridesmaids. Are they comfortable in certain styles? Feel free to mix different styles, or pick one that is generally flattering for all body types.

4 Think Timeless
DON’T feel glued to what is trending. Stick with classic styles and colors that will stand the test of time.

5 Remember, Its Your Wedding
DON’T pick something just because you think it is re-wearable. A bridesmaid dress is precisely that, a dress for your bridesmaid to wear to your wedding. If it ends up getting re-worn, that is a bonus, but not something that you should stress out about!