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Bridesmaids 101

To be chosen as a bridesmaid is perhaps the biggest honour one can receive. The Bride has chosen you to share in the joy and planning of her big day and selected a handful of ladies to walk down the aisle with her and stand beside her when saying her I do’s.

Being part of the bridal retinue comes with big responsibilities and the following blog will assist you as the bride to make informed decisions, ensuring your journey down the alter is a walk in the park.

How do you choose your “bride squad”?

This is probably one of the hardest decisions you have to make purely because you want your girlfriends, siblings, family members or his family member to be part of your wedding day but this is not always possible. Below you can find pointers that may assist you in making those super important decisions.

  • Choose a “forever friend” as a bridesmaid. Not only a girlfriend that shows more interest now that you’re engaged.
  • Choose someone who is going to be there for YOU and will have your best interests at heart. Avoid the drama queen, the person who will make everything about her, her ideas and be more concerned with what she is will wear as a bridesmaid.
  • Do not feel obligated to ask someone that you are not 100% sure of. If your fiancé has a sister who is not your bestie, don’t feel obligated to make her part of your retinue.

Same goes for if your fiancé best-man…his girlfriend/wife/partner doesn’t have to be in your bridal party just because your fiancé has selected him to be his groomsman. Your retinue, your choice.

  • Remember to remain balanced when making your selection of bridesmaids. If you have a small wedding, keep your selection tight. With larger weddings you can expand the number of bridesmaids next to you without creating the vibe that half your guests are sitting in the front row.

Who is responsible for what?

This question below is probably the most complicate but doesn’t have to be if you keep the following points below in mind:

  • Choose a maid of honour. She doesn’t necessarily have to be your sister or best friend but someone that will be in the driver’s seat, organized and you can trust to speak on your behalf. This person has to have your best interest at heart and can take leadership with the other bridesmaids. We all know that a group of girls can be very opinionated so it best to choose a maid of honour to navigate ideas and who can avoid unnecessary conflict.
  • Who pays for the bridesmaid dresses? It’s only fair that you as the bride form this part of your wedding budget. Not necessarily the entire amount but at least a contribution to their dresses. Keep in mind that it’s your wedding that you want them to be part of, however they too will have added expenses in preparations for your wedding. They have to budget for your Bachelorette, Kitchen Tea, hair and makeup for the big day as well as jewellery and shoes to compliment the bridesmaid’s outfit. Please keep in mind that your wedding shouldn’t become a financial burden on them.

The end product to what you have envisioned

For years you have been dreaming of your wedding dress and how your entire look and feel will fit together. Below are tips for you to keep in mind when selecting bridesmaid’s dresses for your girls.

  • The bridesmaid’s dresses need to compliment your wedding dress. This is not to say that it has to have the same neckline, silhouette or fabric as your gown but has to fit into the overall look and feel you wish to accomplish.
  • Include your bridesmaids in finding dresses however keep the selection to a minimum to avoid unnecessary conflict and confusion. Too many cooks in the kitchen may lose track of your overall vision.
  • If you are going to have a relatively large retinue our suggestion would be to select a universal dress that will suit most body types and give all your bridesmaids the confidence to walk down the aisle.
  • Keep in mind when selecting bridesmaid dresses to fit in with the overall theme of your wedding. For example, if your wedding is formal (black tie) its best to select long length dresses instead of short ones. If you have a Bohemian wedding avoid stiff fabric such as satin or taffeta, rather opt for soft flowy chiffon or tulle that will complement your bohemian vibe.
  • Choose a colour that suits your personality instead of what’s tending now. You might like it now but only to look back at your photos in five year time and wonder “what was I thinking?”
  • Don’t fool yourself by selecting a bridesmaid style that you think they might be able to wear again. 99% of the time this won’t happen. Everyone likes to think this idea will be cost effective and will justify spending a bit more on the dresses but there is a stigma around a bridesmaids dress. Even guest going to a wedding would rarely wear the same dress twice to different weddings.

Trending this season:

  • Mix & Match. Not all your bridesmaids have to look the same. Play around with difference textures, fabric and silhouettes to have an exciting new look. If you choose to mix and match your bridesmaids dresses keep in mind to stick with the same colour or colour hue for unity and consistency in your bridal party.
  • Duel colour scheme – Be daring by pairing multiple colours in your retinue for example ivory/white top with a maroon skirt.
  • Top trending colours for this season are:
  • Blush or Dusty Rose
    • Champagne
    • Silver Sage
    • Navy
    • Maroon
    • Emerald Green
    • Dove blue
  • If your bridesmaid dresses are all the same style and colour, play around with difference floral bouquets.
  • Soft flowing fabrics are a top trend this season as it evokes emotions of romance and sophistication with a touch of modernity to your overall look.
  • Off the shoulder, One-Shoulder and Side Cut-out dresses are a hot commodity this season.
Bridal Wardrobe