Should I let my bridesmaids pick their own dresses?

When planning your own wedding, it’s imperative you learn how to delegate. There are some wedding planning tasks that are best left to your nearest and dearest, with stag and hen party planning just two instances where it pays to hand over the reins. That being said, keeping control over the majority of the wedding planning process will ensure your big day vision is brought to life. This begs the question: could letting your bridesmaids pick their own dresses be a step too far? Read on to discover the pros and cons of letting your bridal party take control of the bridesmaid dress shop…


Something specific in mind?

Every bride and many grooms have a certain vision that they want to bring to life on their special day. Much of that image will be down to what you, your bridesmaids and groomsmen will wear. If you’d like your bridesmaids to look a certain way, complement a certain style or put on a united front courtesy of matching bridesmaid dresses, picking the dresses on their behalf will save you a lot of time and stress. That’s not to say you shouldn’t get them involved if that’s what you want. Providing a detailed brief on what you do, and don’t, want can work too as Jessica Bishop, a.k.a. the Budget Savvy Bride , details:

“If you do want some restrictions on color, material or brand name, tell them immediately. People can’t read your mind and most aren’t aware that burgundy and marsala are two different shades. If you don’t want maxi dresses, tell them. Just because you’re letting them choose their own dress doesn’t mean you don’t get an opinion. I told my bridesmaids to choose something purple, but that was my only requirement. They asked about fabric, length and shade. I told them, if it’s purple, it works. A few of the girls bought their dresses early and they all ended up being dark purple. After that, it seemed to make more sense for the rest to buy dark purple as well. Turns out, it’s a flattering shade for both fair-skinned and dark and blondes and brunettes alike.”

Keep comfort and confidence levels high

It’s likely that each and every member of your bridal party will have a different body type or skin tone, which only adds to the stress of picking the perfect bridesmaid dress when shopping yourself. Each bridesmaid will know what suits her and what doesn’t. Letting your bridesmaids pick their own dresses will help them choose an ensemble that they are comfortable with, meaning they have more confidence on your wedding day.

Save yourself time and money

Life gets a little crazy for both the bride- and groom-to-be when planning a wedding. Depending on what type of planner you are, getting your bridesmaids to choose their own dresses can mean less stress. For self-confessed control freaks, however, letting someone else pick a defining part of your big day (no matter how much you trust them) can have the opposite effect.

Another perk of letting your bridesmaids choose their own dresses is that they can buy or at least contribute to the cost. It will be their choice if they want to opt for a more expensive dress too, meaning you’ll save yourself cash when dealing with fussier members of your bridal party.

Find more great advice on letting your bridesmaids pick their own dresses here.

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