In anticipation of your wedding day, choosing the right bridesmaid dress is a key decision in establishing the look of the event. The stress of getting it right is sometimes a lot to handle. For those that don’t know where to start or if you’re lost somewhere along the way, we’ve put together a basic guide to help provide some insight on what to consider.
When you first get going with shopping for bridesmaid dresses, don’t put any pressure on yourself to buy. Just browse and see what stands out to you. Browse gowns online to see if anything stands out from a design perspective. Be sure to mark down your favourites and consider sharing them in front of your soon-to-be bridesmaids to get their input. Browsing through magazines may also help in giving you some ideas on what your preferences are. After you have a more defined idea on what you’re searching for aesthetic-wise, browse and note the stores in your area that carry bridesmaid dresses.
For most brides, budget will be one of the determining factors in what they choose for a bridesmaid dress. Fortunately, the standard in Canadian weddings are for the bridesmaids to pay for their own dresses. That said, it’s never polite to select a bridesmaid dress with an exorbitant price tag. Be considerate of your friends. Search within an affordable range for all involved. With regards to budget, sometimes renting bridesmaid dresses may be a more attractive option and is something worth at least considering. By renting, you may be able to get higher-end bridesmaid dresses within a more diverse set of styles.
Depending on what sort of shopping experience you want, you may prefer to go it alone or to invite your friends along for additional input. Bridesmaid dress shopping can be a fun friend activity but if everyone is going to be sharing some strong opinions and instigating disagreements in the process, you may prefer to keep things simple. For brides who are still deciding on colour, fabric, or pattern, consulting with friends at home prior to doing any shopping is recommended. This way, there are no arguments, or thoughts on ‘what could have been’ when a dress is selected that wasn’t your friend’s choice.
How soon one should order bridesmaid dresses depends on how much lead time they have. The most important thing, prior to selecting a bridesmaid dress, is to have the wedding gown already picked out. After the wedding gown is picked out, the event and bridesmaid dresses can then be tailored to match it.
From there, realize that six months is the ideal wait time for bridesmaid dresses. By having six months to find and order the dresses, this ensures that they arrive and can be altered in time for the wedding. The average time it takes for bridesmaid dresses to arrive is two to three months. After they have arrived, it’s common for it to be another four to six weeks for any alterations that need to take place.
Bridesmaid dresses are usually made using the bridesmaid’s biggest measurements. Advise each of your friends to order a size larger than they normally would. This makes it much easier to alter. Do everything you can to encourage friends not to order smaller sizes. If they receive the dress and it does not fit, not much can be done. In that case, they will have to order another bridesmaid dress.
Finding the right shade for bridesmaid dresses is actually quite simple. Keep in mind the wedding gown, the venue you’ve selected for ceremony and reception, and the time of year. Rich colours work well for fall and winter weddings in Canada, while lighter shades look stunning in the changing weather of spring and fall. If the bridesmaids have difficulty agreeing on a single shade, consider a multi-shade, mismatched look. For those brides that are really looking to push the boundaries for bridesmaid dresses, floral-prints or prints matched with simple accessories work. Every wedding is going to be a little different and there’s no one clear way to select the perfect shade.
Choosing a shade for bridesmaid dresses should be done keeping in mine skin tones and complementary colours. There’s much potential to match up one or two key complementary colours to make something truly unique. Stonewashed colours, such as blush or sand, are very flattering. Jewel tones can be easily sequenced to fairer complexions. Brighter, bolder colours pop against darker skin. There’s also flattering metallics, dominant colours which can be matched with a print, mismatched sequins, and more embellished dresses. There are so many different options in terms of shades, hues, and complementary colours so have a little fun with it and find what appeals to you.
The last tip we want to give on choosing the right bridesmaid dresses is to ensure they match the lingerie or undergarments to be worn. Depending on the style, bridesmaids may need a little extra support to keep everything where it needs to be. Even the most glamorous of dresses can look unflattering with the wrong undergarments underneath. Investigate the possibilities of buying new bras, whether there are specific panties to be worn, and/or if using body shapers are recommended.
Choosing the right bridesmaid dress can be a breeze when starting off with these tips. Be sure to give thorough thought to what kind of look you want your bridal party to have. Be mindful of the input of others, skin tones, dress styles, and body types.
Make this the wedding of your dreams, bringing together friends and family in a collection of colours that reflect your personality and your uniqueness.