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How to Choose the Perfect Bridesmaid Dresses for a Winter Wedding [2024]

How to Choose the Perfect Bridesmaid Dresses for a Winter Wedding

Experts in the wedding industry have observed that most weddings occur between May and October. Tying the knot between December and March—wintertime in North America—is commonly considered an unorthodox choice. Winter means dealing with snow, wind, ice, storms, and limited daylight—all of which can add to a bride’s stress as the big day nears. 

However, there are many benefits to holding a wedding in the winter. It’s the best time to get married if you’ve always dreamed of an intimate ceremony incorporating winter elements such as snowy landscapes, festive holiday decorations, and seasonal food items. For another, it’s also a convenient period to gather your friends and family members in one place, knowing that many of your guests are on break from school or have planned their time off from work during the season. 

Plus, winter is considered the off-season for weddings. This means that many venues, caterers, florists, and other wedding suppliers offer their goods and services at lower prices than the rest of the year. As a result, you may get bargains on everything from food to fabric or have a looser budget to spend on what you truly want for the ceremony, like live music and boutique souvenirs for your guests. 

But if you’ve set your heart on saying your “I do’s” in the winter, ironing out all the little details of the celebration is vital. One aspect that you should pay special attention to is the wardrobe you and your entourage members will depend on. Considering the season, the dresses and other apparel you choose for your bridesmaids must offer great comfort without compromising style and your vision for the event. 

Below are some guidelines to help you choose the best possible bridesmaid dresses for your winter wedding, plus some other essential fashion considerations. 

Practical Tips for Choosing Bridesmaid Dresses and Outfits

Make Layers and Outerwear Part of the Plans

Undoubtedly, the cold will be a severe concern for you and your entourage. Members of your wedding party can prepare for the low temperatures by layering up with leggings for women or thermal underwear. 

It’s also an option to make what could be extreme temperatures less of a hassle for your bridesmaids by incorporating outerwear in their outfits. Faux fur stoles can do the trick, as they can keep the upper body warm and can be easily removed in warmer environments like your indoor reception venue. But suppose you’re willing to spend the extra money. In that case, it’s also a good idea to order a set of jackets or coats for your entire bridal party, especially if you plan to spend some extended time outdoors before or after the main ceremony. 

Consider customizing items like jackets as a set with the bridesmaids’ dresses. Then, after the wedding, they can be used as everyday jackets or coats for special occasions. After all the memories you’ll have created on your special day, they’ll be excellent souvenirs for your bridesmaids. 

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Maximize the Length of the Skirt and Sleeves

Bridesmaid dresses designed for the warmer months tend to lean on the short side regarding sleeve length and hemline. It would help if you explored the opposite regarding your bridesmaids’ winter ensembles and checked out bridesmaid dress designs with long sleeves, maxi skirt lengths, and high necklines. 

Even if your entourage members are prepared to sport appropriate outerwear and inner layers for your big day, you can ensure they’re more comfortable and better protected from the elements with winter-appropriate dresses. Long sleeves, high necklines, and skirts that hit below the knee can also help your entourage members achieve regal looks—which all of you will look forward to revisiting in your wedding photos.  

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Embrace Thicker Fabrics

Choosing to celebrate your special day in the winter will allow you to use fabrics that you wouldn’t exactly consider for weddings held in warmer seasons. So now’s a good time to look at heavier and thicker materials that will give your bridal party dresses fuller bodies. 

Brocade is an excellent option for playing with texture, as this fabric features jacquard or raised woven designs. If you’re going for a more rustic look for your wedding, try dupioni, a rough silk fabric. 

Gazar might fit the bill for weddings requiring a sleek, smooth look. This plain weave fabric is made of wool or silk and is well-known for its ability to hold its shape. But, then, there’s also velvet, which looks and feels soft, warm, and luxurious. 

Mismatched Bridesmaid Dresses

Focus on the Silhouette

While the chilly temperature might force your bridal party to stay completely covered, this doesn’t mean everyone must look bulky. It’s still possible to highlight your bridesmaids’ silhouettes while keeping the cold out. 

Off-shoulder dresses might not be the most comfortable choice for the time being, so instead, you can highlight your bridesmaids’ figures with elegant necklines and maxi skirts. It’s also an option to wear turtleneck dresses that use luxurious and semi-transparent fabrics and fitted long skirts.

Alternatively, pair empire-cut necklines with bell or bishop sleeves and sarong skirts. These options are just a few combinations that’ll help your bridesmaids share the spotlight with you without compromising their comfort or making them more vulnerable to the effects of the cold. 

Indulge in Deeper, Darker Colours

One of the benefits of holding your wedding amidst a snowy landscape is that it’s straightforward to find colours that will complement your vision for your event. But, of course, you can still expect traditional wedding colours such as white, cream, and eggshell blue to blend well with your neutral backdrop. 

But to make your event stand out, choose darker colours like forest green, dark wine, or navy blue for your bridesmaids’ dresses and wedding theme. Combining these deep colours and heavy, texture-rich fabrics will help you achieve a luxurious look that will pop out in a wintry backdrop.

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Other Fashion Considerations to Make for a Winter Wedding

Winter’s the Perfect Time to Embrace Elegance and Luxury

The snowscape you can expect during a winter wedding is the perfect blank canvas for bold, abundant, and luxurious design choices. So on top of choosing thick, detailed fabrics and deep, eye-catching colours for your bridesmaids’ dresses, encourage everyone to wear statement earrings and other sumptuous accessories. But, of course, your bridal party can’t go wrong with metals in the incredible spectrum of colours, such as white gold and platinum, and jewel stones like amethyst, emerald, amber, and ruby red.  

Pick Beautiful Bouquets to Match Your Bridesmaids’ Dresses

During your wedding, you and your entourage members can also draw your guests’ eyes in with your bridal bouquet and the bridesmaid’s and maid of honour’s complementary bouquets. Match your bridal party’s clothing with flowers that evoke the natural magic of wintertime, with dried flowers, pine cones, berries, and sprigs, among others. 

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bridesmaid bouquet

Schedule Most of Your Photo Shoots Indoors

You and your bridal party may be looking forward to your photo shoots, given that this is the best time during the wedding to bond and celebrate your friendship. But it won’t be as fun to pose or to take candid shots when the weather’s erratic. 

To avoid getting your outfits dirty or wet, and to generally be more comfortable when taking photos, arrange for most of the photoshoots to be done indoors. It’ll be easier for photographers and stylists to control the environment inside, so there’s a higher chance that your photos with your bridal party will turn out as good as you all hoped. 

wedding photos album

You and Your Bridesmaids Shouldn’t Have a Hard Time When Switching from Venue to Venue

Lastly, when it comes to your bridesmaid dresses and any other outfits, you’ll find all sports during your wedding—such as a separate outfit for a surprise dance number—make sure you prioritize comfort, freedom of movement, and warmth. This is especially important if you’ll be moving from venue to venue, for example, from a church to a reception hall. Go for design choices that won’t make it a hassle for anyone to move from place to place. That, in turn, will allow everyone to enjoy the wedding as intended.  

Holding your wedding in winter is a somewhat unusual choice. Still, it will also allow you to make bolder choices regarding the other aspects of your big event, such as your bridesmaids’ dresses and all the other accoutrements that come with your bridal party outfits. Hopefully, the tips listed above will help you create unique looks that will keep your bridesmaids comfy and get everyone in the mood to celebrate your big day with you. 

Summary: Bridesmaid Dresses for a Winter Wedding

  • Holding a winter wedding offers unique opportunities for incorporating winter elements and gathering loved ones during the off-season.
  • Take advantage of lower prices during the winter season for venues, caterers, florists, and other wedding suppliers.
  • Consider the comfort of your bridesmaids in colder temperatures and incorporate layers and outerwear into their outfits.
  • Choose bridesmaid dresses with longer sleeves, maxi skirt lengths, and high necklines to provide warmth and a regal look.
  • Explore fabrics like brocade, dupioni, gazar, and velvet for a fuller and more luxurious appearance.
  • Highlight your bridesmaids’ silhouettes with elegant necklines, maxi skirts, and fitted designs that keep them warm.
  • Opt for deeper and darker colors like forest green, dark wine, or navy blue to complement the winter backdrop.
  • Embrace elegance and luxury with statement accessories and jewelry in metals and jewel tones.
  • Choose beautiful bouquets with wintertime elements like dried flowers, pine cones, berries, and sprigs.
  • Schedule most of your photo shoots indoors to ensure comfort and avoid unpredictable weather conditions.
  • Prioritize comfort, freedom of movement, and warmth when selecting bridesmaid dresses, especially if transitioning between venues.
  • Winter weddings provide an opportunity for unique and bold choices in bridesmaid dresses and overall wedding style.

FAQ: Winter Wedding Bridesmaid Dresses and Fashion Tips

Can my bridesmaids wear shorter dresses for a winter wedding?

While shorter dresses are typically associated with warmer months, it’s best to opt for longer skirt lengths for a winter wedding. Maxi skirts or dresses that hit below the knee provide better protection against the cold and add an elegant touch to your bridesmaids’ ensembles.

How can we keep warm during an outdoor winter wedding ceremony?

Layering is key to staying warm during an outdoor winter wedding ceremony. Encourage your bridesmaids to wear thermal underwear or leggings underneath their dresses. Additionally, consider incorporating outerwear options like faux fur stoles or coordinating jackets/coats to provide extra warmth during colder moments of the celebration.

What fabrics are suitable for winter bridesmaid dresses?

Winter weddings offer an opportunity to explore heavier and thicker fabrics that add richness to your bridesmaids’ dresses. Consider fabrics like brocade, dupioni, gazar, or velvet. These fabrics not only provide warmth but also add texture and luxuriousness to your bridal party’s attire.

How can we highlight the bridesmaids’ figures while keeping them warm?

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To accentuate your bridesmaids’ figures without compromising their comfort, choose dresses with elegant necklines and maxi skirts. Opt for fitted styles that flatter their silhouettes while still allowing them to stay covered and warm. Turtleneck dresses made with luxurious and semi-transparent fabrics can also be a stylish choice.

What are some suitable color options for winter bridesmaid dresses?

Winter weddings offer a great opportunity to indulge in deeper, darker colors that complement the season. Consider shades like forest green, dark wine, or navy blue for your bridesmaids’ dresses. These colors create a striking contrast against the snowy landscape and add a touch of luxury to your wedding theme.

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