How To Choose Wedding Party Dresses That Won’t Make Your Bridesmaids Hate You

Leah Bourne
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Every girl dreams of her ideal wedding gown, but the bridesmaids dresses she’ll have to wear to everyone else’s wedding? Not so much. An age-old myth exists that brides pick hideous bridesmaids dresses to be sure that they shine on their big day, but for the most part, the reason wedding party dresses fall short is that it’s really hard to select things that look good on everyone, and suits every friend’s personal style.

MORE: How Much Money Should You Really Give As A Wedding Gift?

That being said, it absolutely can be done. Here, seven ideas for wedding party dresses that’ll ensure your bridesmaids won’t hate you. Yes, it is your big day, but you want your stylish BFFs to have a great day too, right?

MORE: What to Wear to a Wedding: A Complete Guide

1. Select a few styles in a single color and fabric, to give your bridesmaids options.

So you want uniformity in your bridal party, but you also want to ensure that your bridesmaids are wearing dresses that fit their body type? The easiest solution is to choose a few dress styles from the same manufacturer that come in the same color and fabric, that way all of your bridesmaids will ultimately be happy. Some can wear strapless, others one-shoulder dresses, but at the same time the overall look will be cohesive.

2. Choose various colors, within the same color wheel, and have your bridesmaids go from there. 

Get inspired by the ombre trend, and choose various colors within the same color theme, hue, or wheel as the starting point for your bridesmaids dresses. For instance, if you like purple, have a bridesmaid in each of the various shades of purple and lavender. For an elegant twist on this theme, another idea is to have all of your bridesmaids in shades of off-white and nude tones. Looking to add uniformity? Choose a length to have all of your bridesmaids stick to as they select their dress.

3. Find a dress that looks good on everyone. It can be done.

In a traditional wedding party, everyone wears the same the dress. The problem with this is, of course, that not all dresses look good on everyone. If you decide to go this route, make sure to carefully select a style that really does flatter a range of women. Jersey fabric and straps fit well on petite women, while a flowy empire waist allows for extra tummy coverage. The key here is to give all of your bridesmaids a hand in the selection process.

4. Opt for the same style dress in different colors and patterns. 

Looking to do something a bit quirky with the look of your wedding party? Pick the exact same dress in the different colors of your wedding color palette, to give your bridal party a pop of color. For a truly eclectic look choose the same dress in a variety of patterns. We love this idea particularly for summer weddings, because seriously, what would look cuter than your bridesmaids in cute patterned sundresses coming down the aisle?

5. Have your bridesmaids form a rainbow. It will make for great photos.

Wedding bloggers are pretty obsessed with this idea, and we have to admit, it is pretty darn cute—have your bridesmaids form a rainbow with different hued dresses. Assign each of your bridesmaids a color of the rainbow, and then set them loose to select their own dress.

6. Think totally outside the box, your bridesmaids don’t have to wear dresses. 

Since when was it written in stone that bridesmaids have to wear dresses? Skirts ranging from the circle skirt variety to pencil skirts will look just as great coming down the aisle as dresses. Tell your bridesmaids what color top to wear, but have them select their own, to be sure they are wearing a look that is personally flattering for them.

7. Leave it up to your bridesmaids, with some guidelines, of course. 

Have seriously fashionable bridesmaids? Have them pick their own dresses, with some guidelines, of course. A big trend in weddings is having bridesmaids walk down the aisle in a variety of “little black dresses” that they picked out themselves. Willing to give up the reigns even more? Simply have your bridesmaids go to town with their dress selection, just make sure to pick at least one aspect of your bridesmaids’ look to unify the group. This could even be a surprising add-on accessory like a statement necklace.

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