For decades, bridesmaids around the world have been forcibly pushed to wear hideously tacky dresses in awful colors…all for their brides. We imagine each of these bridesmaids has faced herself in the mirror in her hideous dress, swallowed their pride, forced an apprehensive smile, and walked down the aisle hoping her poofy sleeves were large enough to hide the embarrassed look on her face. Whether brides admit to it or not, this trick is a dirty little secret that they've used just to make themselves look THAT much prettier on their big day.
But now, bridesmaids are owning that aisle like a fashion runway! Current brides are actually choosing to share some of their wedding day spotlight with their squad, and they're looking FAB. It’s a simple women-helping-other-women ritual that everyone can get on board with.
Being a bridesmaid isn’t always an easy (or cheap) task. But your girls do it for you because they love you and they’ve got your back! So it only makes sense to return the favor and allow your bridal party to look and feel just as equally beautiful and confident as you do at your wedding.
However, creating a stunning bridesmaid getup might actually leave you more stumped than just thinking of the tackiest thing you can imagine.
Consider these latest bridesmaid dress trends and alternative options to be sure you’ll leave your squad obsessing over the design, happy with the price, and left with something that they might actually wear IRL.
Most bridesmaids spend a couple hundred dollars on their dress only to leave it on a hanger tucked away in a forgotten corner of the closet, post-wedding, never to be worn again… That’s why dress-rental sites like Rent the Runway and Vow to be Chic are genius for a bridesmaid who doesn’t want to spend a lot, look cheap, or be stuck with a dress that they know they’ll never wear again.
This gives a bridesmaid the option to wear an elegant, designer dress at a much lower cost since she won’t actually be purchasing it, then just ship it away (at no extra expense) and it’s off her hands!
It took the wedding-planning industry a long time to realize that not all women are the same… No single dress will be perfect for every type of body shape, skin tone, or personal preference. Your girls are diverse! Mismatched dresses are an awesome way to incorporate the unique personalities that each woman brings to your bridal party, and they will add more flare to your bridal party photos!
It can be difficult to coordinate a color scheme…but once you have an idea in mind, you can simply provide some guidelines to your bridal party and let them do the work of selecting their own dress. One less decision (in a world of making a ton) that you have to be concerned with!
Skip out on the drama of gathering a flock of women to go shopping for dresses they don’t get to choose. Sometimes, it’s best to be ignorant to all those opinions or complaints being thrown your way and vouch for easier, online shopping instead.
Sites like Azazie or Weddington Way (one of our Bliss Benefits partners!) make it easy for you to browse through dozens of dress options at, usually, a much more affordable price than designer options in store. It’s WAY easier to grab a glass of wine, turn on your favorite show, and do your bridesmaid dress shopping from your laptop ;) Just be sure that, if you have your bridesmaids order their dress themselves, you give them friendly reminders to do it on time!
Psst! When you book with Wedgewood Weddings, you receive an exclusive discount through our Bliss Benefits program for bridesmaid dresses through Weddington Way!
Patterned dresses are the perfect middle ground option if you like a more unique touch but still want your bridesmaids to match. The patterns of their dresses will tie them together but still set them apart from you and make YOU stand out!
The right pattern can even be a key factor to incorporate a particular theme you’re going with - florals will provide a spring essence for a garden or country wedding, polka dots are a fun alternative for a whimsical wedding, black and white stripes give a formal feel for a ‘black tie optional’ wedding - you get the point.
Embellishment & Texture
Dresses with texture are an elegant way to add a more unique dimension and depth to your bridal party, and it’s catching on! Lace, sequins, and beading all add a little more aesthetic interest and character to the group when you’re standing beside your gals.
White dresses may sound a little too unconventional to some, but we’re actually just circling back to tradition with this one! Centuries ago, bridesmaids were actually dressed in the same attire as the bride and used as her decoys to confuse evil spirits or protect from potential kidnappers…LOL!
Now, white bridesmaid dresses are chosen for an elegant, simplistic look and to make your bouquets pop in pictures! And if you’re pulling your hair out trying to find dresses in the just the right shade of “cabernet” or coordinating a mismatched color scheme, this trend may be the break you need!
Shawls & Wraps
If you’re tying the knot in the Fall or Winter, warm up your ‘maids with an extra layer! You can use faux fur wraps or even knit shawls to add texture and a cozy touch. And if you plan to have your ceremony outdoors during a chilly month, your girls will thank you for it!
Even if they never wear their dress again, you can almost be sure that your bridesmaids can get extra use out of a cute wrap post-wedding! You could even choose to purchase the wraps yourself and give them to your squad as their gifts.