Dress shopping can be a fun experience not only for the bride, but also for her bridesmaids. However, finding the perfect gowns for your task is much easier said than done. For one, your bridal party’s clothes must match your wedding’s overall theme. At the same time, you’ll want to make sure that your bridesmaids are happy with their dresses, too.
Though this task may seem challenging at first, it’s not at all impossible. All you need to do is make the necessary preparations before you go shop tights, shoes, and dresses for your bridesmaids. With that in mind, read on for some quick tips that you should keep in mind to ensure that the entire process goes smoothly:
It’s Best to Decide on a Centralized Way of Coordinating with Everyone
As the bride, you call the shots when it comes to the wedding theme and aesthetics. However, operationalizing your plan can get tricky if you keep it all to yourself. As with any event, working in a team is necessary to pull off your wedding successfully. This means communicating your ideas and needs to everyone involved, and that includes your bridesmaids. After all, you’ll also want to get their input on the final look of the dresses they’ll be wearing to your special day.
So, make sure to identify the easiest way of getting in touch with all your bridesmaids, whether that’s through a group chat, an e-mail thread, or even a simple collaborative task management app. It’s also best to contain all your conversations in a single place. That way, you won’t have to hunt for a specific message across several channels, and you won’t need to send the same messages multiple times to different people.
Once you’ve decided on a centralized communication system, always keep your bridal party updated on how the search is going. Also, don’t hesitate to follow up if anyone is taking a while to respond to you or acknowledge your messages. While you certainly don’t want to give off a bridezilla vibe, they need to know that you mean business.
You Need to Keep Your Bridesmaids’ Budgets into Account
Typically, bridesmaids are expected to pay for their own dresses. Unfortunately, not everyone has the money to splurge on a gown that they may only end up wearing once in their lifetime. Given this, you’ll have to account for each of your bridesmaid’s budgets and find fashionable options that everyone can afford.
Technically speaking, there’s no rule stating that you can’t pitch in or even cover the costs of the gowns for your favorite people. However, it may not be the most practical or feasible choice, given the other wedding expenses you’ll be accounting for.
You May Have to Get Their Outfits Altered or Custom-made
Getting the size of the dress right is as important for your bridesmaids as it is for you as the bride. Though it may cost a little extra, investing in well-fitting gowns will ensure that everybody looks their best for the occasion.
That said, you probably weren’t consciously selecting guests based on their body shapes or clothing sizes. Additionally, your bridesmaids may not all share the same silhouette or proportions, so one-size-fits-all solutions are out of the picture.
This means that if you’re thinking of suggesting off-the-rack options, you may have to get each dress altered for each bridesmaid. Your other option is to commission custom-made gowns from scratch. While this is the best way to ensure an exact fit, custom-made dresses could end up costing more in the long run.
You Have to Get Your Bridesmaids’ Measurements Early
When dress shopping, it’s important that you keep a detailed and updated record of your bridesmaids’ measurements. Doing so will provide you with a reference that you can compare against a fashion brand’s sizing charts. That way, you’ll have a simpler time picking out gowns that are sure to fit your bridesmaids properly.
Should you decide to get the dresses altered, having your bridal party’s measurements on-hand will also make it much easier to coordinate with a seamstress. If you’re planning to have the gowns custom-made, these measurements will be crucial for getting precise quotes from your prospective providers, too.
For uniformity’s sake, decide on a standard unit of measurement that your bridal party should follow. You can also send your bridesmaids a guide on getting accurate body measurements as well as a list of the specific measurements you’ll be needing. Alternatively, you can opt to have your bridesmaids’ measurements taken professionally, as your friends may have a hard time doing it themselves.
You Have to Make Sure the Dresses Fit Well Before the Wedding
Assuming that the dresses will be a good fit without actually having your bridesmaids try them on is a recipe for disaster. The last thing you want on your wedding day is for any of your bridesmaids to find out that the gown they’ve spent their hard-earned money on is the wrong shade or doesn’t flatter their figure. In the worst-case scenario, they may just discover that it doesn’t fit them at all.
To prevent these issues from happening, make sure to accompany your bridesmaids when they’re trying on their dresses. Dedicate a whole day or weekend for this, if possible. Consider it a chance to hang out with your best friends while accomplishing the task of finding their perfect wedding attire.
If you’re choosing ready-to-wear clothes, always check in with your bridesmaids and ask them which options they feel comfortable or most confident in. Gather everyone’s thoughts, and then try to pick the right dress that works for each person.
If you’re having the dresses custom-made, encourage your bridesmaids to point out whether any part of the gown doesn’t look right or fits them correctly. The sooner they can voice their concerns, the more time your seamstress will have to make the necessary adjustments.
Of course, you’ll always have the final say on what your bridal party will be wearing. Still, it’s doesn’t hurt to make sure that everybody’s happy with the outcome. You might even get new ideas for your own wedding attire as you watch each of your bridesmaids try on their gown of choice.
You Don’t Have to Do Everything Alone
If just reading about doing all the above tasks is already making your head spin, don’t fret. You don’t have to do this alone. While you can always reach out to friends and family for help, it may be worthwhile to consider hiring a wedding planner to take care of all these concerns for you. While you’ll still have to take the time to coordinate with your wedding planner, they can take a huge load off your shoulders and allow you to focus on more important things.
By planning ahead and communicating openly with your bridesmaids, finding the best gowns for your besties will no longer be such a stressful affair. As long as you keep all the above tips in mind, and you shouldn’t run into any major problems. And once it’s finally time for your big day, you and your bridal party are sure to look absolutely stunning as you all walk down the aisle!