I‘ve been a bridesmaid a few times. Okay, more like seven times in a matter of three years. Seven. That’s a lot of bridesmaid dresses, a lot of groups to coordinate. It’s just a lot. Every single time, the brides asked for my opinion on what their entourage should wear. The conversations usually go like this: “HALP! How do I pick these clothes!?!? I don’t want anyone to be furious, or spend too much money! And of course, I want everyone to look good! But…also…cohesive? I don’t want my sister-in-law dressed for a barn dance in a cotton sundress and my cousin ready for the Met Gala in a ball gown. What do I do?”
While I firmly believe you should choose the clothes for your wedding that make you happiest, I also know that a wedding is the first time you’re not only picking out your own clothes but also telling your best friends what to wear. I mean… no pressure, right? We’ve shared so much information over the years about how to mismatch your bridesmaid dresses, how to keep your bridesmaids happy, and what makes bridesmaid dress shopping so darn complicated — and through it all, Brideside has been here to make the endless choices SO. MUCH. EASIER. They get it because they’ve been there.
Brideside‘s goal is to make the whole process smooth and manageable. We think visiting one of their boutiques sounds too fun (hello champagne and ‘gram-worthy moments!), but if you can’t, their try-at-home options for bridesmaid dresses are the easiest. They will connect you with a stylist to help out (read: make sure you all look like you’re going to the same event) and then they’ll ship your bridesmaids the dresses to try on in the comfort of their own homes. Your entourage can snap photos, send them to you, and the decision process can be easy—so you can make sure everyone looks cohesive, even if you don’t want them to look identical. Brideside gets that friends don’t have to match to go together. You need more things to be this easy in wedding planning.
Some Tricks of the Trade
So, if you want to make sure your team looks coordinated, start by envisioning the big picture style of your wedding. Think about how your bridesmaid dresses will look in your venue, and with your own outfit. If you’re having a barn wedding and wearing a more casual dress, it might not make sense to put your ladies in a modern, sleek style. You might want to go for a casual dress, that has a little flow. If you’re getting married in a cathedral with a correspondingly extravagant veil and train, these floor-length gowns could be just perfect. Aiming for a modern event? Seek out dresses with a sleek look or fun architectural elements. (If you’re still in the market for a wedding dress, Brideside can help you out with that, too! Visit one of their showrooms in Chicago or NYC to try on wedding dresses in sample sizes 4–24.)
Next, think about fabrics. Is your dress satin? It might be fun to pick bridesmaid dresses that have a lace element for a pop of texture to contrast with satin’s sheen, or you could stick with all satin for a unified look. (You can order swatches to preview, too!) It all depends on your aesthetic, and if you want things to be really gracefully matched, or artfully mismatched. There are no rules when it comes to styling your wedding. (And if folx are pushing rules on you, feel free to break them.)
Now let’s talk about how to choose bridesmaid dresses that are going to be the perfect pairing with your wedding dress.
The Modern Vibe
Going for clean lines, a contemporary style, and smooth textures? We’d pair this Collette wedding dress from Brideside, with its sleek cut and crepe fabric, with something streamlined and sexy—less ‘bridesmaid,’ more ‘night on the town’—for your group.
a classic romantic Look
If a more classic, lace, buttoned-up look is your style, Brideside has you covered. This Louisa wedding dress from Brideside would pair perfectly with a classic bridesmaids style that’s been updated. Think modern pleating instead of bulky ruching, delicate necklines, and skirts that give your group the wiggle room they need to get out on the dance floor.
Boho Goddess energy
Find yourself drawn to ethereal boho energy for your wedding dress, like the Clara from Brideside, with its intricate lace and neutral (reversible!) underlay? Be brave with your bridesmaids’ choices—seek out a pattern, bold colors, flowy fabrics, and ruffle details.
This post was sponsored by Brideside, the better way to shop bridal gowns and bridesmaid dresses online or with your loved ones. Brideside makes it easier to focus on what matters with free stylists, multiple ways to shop, and a selection of hundreds of dresses, in size 00–30 to make sure everyone can celebrate in style. Click here to explore Brideside’s bridesmaid dress collection, visit one of their locations, or sign up to get the (bridal) party started!