10 Simple & Stress-Free Ways To Select & Buy Bridesmaid Dresses

Keep stress at bay and follow these easy “how-tos” for finding a perfect dress for your bridesmaid. The wedding date is set, the reception venue has been booked, and now you’re focused on all the tiny details that’ll make your wedding a memorable event. You can ask for some help from your best support group – i.e., bridal party. But juggling time between your shopping trips, selecting proper attire, and setting aside time for any alterations can be frustrating. So to create a perfect look for any wedding and to keep everyone happy, we’ve created this step-by-step bridesmaid dress buying. 

1. Set aside a budget

Jewellery, dresses, shoes, and other items can quickly add up, especially if you are not mindful of your bridesmaid lifestyle. Going for pricier options can mean a financial burden to your bridesmaid. So, opt for more cost-effective solutions, such as purchasing dresses off-the-rack, letting your girls select the dress that fits their budget, choosing the colour and style of the attire yourself, and cutting down costs on alterations.

Other alternatives might be sites like Rent the Runway and Vow to be Chic. Your girls can wear designer clothes without paying designer prices.

2. Set a deadline

Whether your girls are purchasing designer or off-the-rack dresses or renting their dresses, make sure to time it all to ensure nobody is tussling to purchase dresses at the final hours.

Typically, a designer gown takes two to three months to arrive after the order, and an additional four to six more weeks for any adjustments. So setting aside six months for a designer gown is an ideal timeline. And off-the-sack dresses often sell out faster. So as soon as you find a design you like, inform all your bridesmaid to purchase it.

Renting a gown, on the other hand, can take at least two weeks to arrive, so plan accordingly.3. Start the search

Before searching for a dress for your bridesmaid, take your wedding gown. Of course, your gown and their dresses need to match, but they don’t have to be an “exact” match. So, if your gown is strapless, don’t purchase a dress with long sleeves for your bridesmaids. Or, if the attire is romantic, don’t buy modern looking dress for your girls either.

Instead, save your time by choosing dresses that appeal to you the most, and pay attention to the style and colour.

4. Take their measurements

Next, think individual styles and body types of your girls. If you want them all to wear the same attire, select the one that’ll suit everyone.

Or, you can let them choose different attire style in the same colour scheme, which will give them the freedom to express their individuality while also making sure they all feel confident and beautiful in what they’re wearing.

5. Hone In on Hues

If colours are important, follow these simple tips to choose the right one for your wedding.

First, notice the colour schemes (and the colour palettes) used at your wedding reception venue. Second, decide if you’d like everyone at your wedding to wear their dress in the same colour, or if you want, stick to a colour scheme. Add some variety (and fun) by adding different shades of the same hue.

Finally, let the season help you. In the fall and the winter, saturated colours (such as chocolate and deep plum) can work well. And, in the spring and the summer, lighter shades – like iris and celadon – looks great on everyone adorning.

6. Finalize your dress

Once you’ve selected your favourites, finalize the dress with the help of your bridal party. Send emails to everyone in the group with photos for feedbacks. Your girls will appreciate that you asked for their opinion.

7. Size it up

Ask your girls to get measured by a tailor (or a seamstress) if they cannot go to the store when you’re making an order. If you can, order dress that’s a size or two big, which is ideally better than a gown that’s too small.

8. Place your order

When ordering gowns for your bridal party, remember to go through this checklist to make sure you don’t miss any important details:

  • Order all their dresses at the same time.
  • If any of your bridesmaids live outside the city, collect all their measurements and coordinate with the dress store yourself. If you need anything, call “maid of honour” for help.
  • Allow at least 2 to 3 months for the dress to arrive, and allow extra 4 to 6 weeks for alterations.
  • Typically, changes don’t take more than two weeks, but if a second fitting is required, expect to add a few more weeks. And, since your bridesmaids are often busy people, don’t assume every one of them will be able to go to the tailor (or seamstress) on the day the dress arrives.
  • Right after you’ve ordered their dresses, send a quick email (or letter) to your bridesmaid with information about the timeline and what their responsibilities are in regards to the dress.
  • Send them a follow-up email about a week before the attires are scheduled to arrive so that they have plenty of time to plan their arrangements.

9. Find the shoes

Just because you love a pair of four-inch stilettos doesn’t mean that you have to subject your bridesmaids to torture. Their comfort should be your top priority and choose a colour that’ll complement the dress.

10. Do few little extras

And, don’t stop there. Find a few little extras to go along with their dress. Use scarves, pins, jewellery, and belts to dress up or give each attire a unique flair.

But be careful. These little extras can add up to your expense. So, if it’s not in your budget, don’t ask your girls either. Instead, consider giving those few little extras as a gift to your bridesmaid.

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