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10 new and exciting bridesmaids dress ideas

Bridesmaids in matching outfits, and resembling big balls of cotton candy! These belong to the past. Today’s brides are smart and sensible, and want their bridesmaids to look and feel great on their big day. For this to happen, it is quintessential to toss the old rule book and make way for new rules for dressing up your bridesmaids.

So, here are few ideas that will help you dress your handpicked girls to look fabulous and add extra drama and excitement to your wedding scenery. Enjoy!

Rule 1: Mix up the textures

Here is an interesting way to give each of your bridesmaids their unique style, while keeping the look cohesive–Choose dresses in the same shade but different fabrics. With this simple switch in fabric choices, you change the overall look, but with subtlety. This option also helps brides who aren’t very sure of how to do the mix ‘n’ match concept to get it right. Dresses in the same shade but using different fabrics will easily go together, and the difference in texture will add an extra dimension of fun. Most designer collections give you plenty of colors for each design, and this allows your bridesmaids enough choices. They can choose from lace and tulle, to satin and charmeuse. Another factor is that as the fabric changes, so does the price of the dress. So, this allows your bridesmaids to choose a dress for their budget, as long as the desired color is chosen. As long as there aren’t too many accessories, it is bound to bring all the bridesmaids together. Just make sure you confirm that the dresses are of the same shade, before you give a thumbs up.

We have an example here to illustrate this idea.

Our first pick is the vintage style 8622L from the Alfred Angelo collection, in a gray color and created in soft net.

We have paired it with the 7342L from the same collection, which is an organza gown in a similar shade. Notice how the different fabrics give either dress a distinct personality, even while they come together beautifully!

Rule 2: Color block with one constant

Color blocking is an easy and uncomplicated way to bring more than one color into your bridesmaids outfits. Dressing up your bridesmaids in the same colors can resemble the original pattern of having all matching bridesmaids. This doesn’t do justice to allowing your bridesmaids shine individually. The better option is to mix up color block dresses, with different colors. However, keep one color constant throughout, so that there is a unifying factor that brings their looks together.

Let us demonstrate this with an example. Take a look at the 7344S from the Alfred Angelo bridesmaids collection.  It features color blocking with a black bodice and a gray skirt.

A dress that will work well with it is the 7345S from the same collection with a black bodice and soft beige skirt.  Although distinct from the first, the black bodices are strikingly similar, and this will bind the two looks together. These dresses can be chosen in any color shade in the skirt, and so make a perfect choice to play with color blocking.

Rule 3: Neutral color dresses with accessories that pop

There are two advantages to choosing bridesmaids dresses in neutral shades—your bridesmaids are more likely to use the dress again and the colors are usually easy to mix into any color palette. White, black, brown, gray and navy are neutrals that are easy to work with and form great pairings with most color palettes. These are also shades that look good on almost every skin tone. So, your bridesmaids will not have to worry about how the color clashes with their complexion.

The result is that everyone is happy, except for one small issue; not all neutral colored dresses can make that strong presence you require for your wedding. The solution—dress it up a notch with accessories in bold colors that will not go unnoticed. Choose shoes, belts or jewelry, and it will instantly add the necessary punch of color to your bridesmaids outfits. It will certainly be a better idea than having your girls dressed in unusual colors that they may not appreciate. Since they are paired with a neutral, there is no chance of the accessories going overboard. And, how about making these your bridesmaids gifts? That way, they get to use it on your wedding day and show it off. So, you now no how to add peach, sunset yellow or bubblegum pink to your bridesmaids outfits without making your girls cringe.

Take a look at this picture to see what we mean. Here, the bridesmaids dresses are a sober beige, and a bright dose of color is added through colorful heels and bouquets. By mixing up the colors, the result is interesting and lively.

The colorful bridesmaids
Image Credits: Ms.Phoenix,via Flickr,CC BY 2.0

 Rule 4: Neutral color dresses with zingy metal and jewel tone accessories

For an ultra-stylish and glamorous look, choose neutral colored dresses and pair it with bright and beautifully designed golden accessories. There are two benefits to this choice—your bridesmaids will most likely use the neutral dress again, and the metallic accessories will also work for them on another occasion. So it is a win-win situation, where they can get the best value for their money.

Here is a beautiful black evening gown, the J4003 from the lovely Jadore collection at Best for Bride.

Featuring a wide cut scoop neckline, sheath silhouette and softly sculpted cap sleeves, the gown is a beauty by itself. However, pairing it with an oversize gold necklace, waistband and bracelet makes it a dress that personifies Hollywood glamour. We are sure your bridesmaids will be excited to have a look like this. With such brilliant accessories, they will have that festive dressy look, perfect for a wedding day. The best part is that the dress being in a neutral shade gives them so many options to dress it up differently on another occasion. So, it’s definitely not a dress that will be exiled to the confines of their closets after your big celebration.

Rule 5: Go to different lengths to vary the style

Of the different ways to keep a consistent look but add drama, one of our favorites is to vary the lengths of the various gowns while keeping the color or print constant. This gives you ample choice to choose dresses in lengths that suit different body shapes and ages. So, if you have bridesmaids from different age groups and looking entirely distinct, you can easily vary the look yet bring it all together with dresses of varying hemlines. We look at dresses from the Mori Lee bridesmaids collection to bring you two examples of dresses that can achieve this look effortlessly.

Our first choice is the navy blue tulle 112 bridesmaid gown from the Mori Lee Tulle Affairs collection.

A full-length gown in tulle, with a sweetheart neckline and interesting criss-cross ruched bodice, this dress is elegant and looks best on both tall and short bridesmaids.

Here, we pair it with the Mori Lee 11100 from the same collection.

This dress has an illusion lace neckline and cap sleeves, and a short and fun skirt that ends a little above the knee. Although the two dresses are entirely different, they make a splendid combination because of the matching color. Hence you have suitable choices both for the women who want to look elegant and the bold and fun-loving bridesmaids in your wedding party.

Rule 6: Go from dark to light in a single color

Choose colors like red or yellow, and ask your bridesmaids to pick dresses in different shades of this color. This will keep the spectrum constant, but with interesting variation. This ombre trend has been in the limelight for a while now, and is an exciting way to dress up your bridesmaids. The only thing you should remember when choosing this option for dressing your bridesmaids, is that you should choose colors that cannot vary too much. Green, purple and blue are colors that can go totally wrong, if this happens. This is because colors like turquoise can fall into both shades, although it may look entirely different from pure shades like navy blue and mint green. So, choose colors that can vary only in the intensity of the black and white they may contain, when you choose this method.

Rule 7: One color with different prints

Printed bridesmaids dresses are interesting and exciting. While you may be tempted to choose the same prints for all your bridesmaids, it is a better idea to look around and find dresses in the same color with different prints instead. This will add a subtle variation to the look, and each bridesmaid will be unique in her own way. The unifying factor will be the color that all the dresses feature, and this is all that is required to bring the overall look together. You can also consider mixing up dresses that have prints all over with those where the prints are limited to chosen areas on the dress, like the yoke or hemline. Here are two dresses from the Jadore collection. The first is the J6013 from the Jadore collection, with black prints on a beige base.

The next is the J5009 from the same collection, with the same combination of colors done entirely different.

Rule 8: Alternate plain and print

In this option, your job is relatively easy. All you have to do is finalize a color and choose one plain and one printed bridesmaid dress in it. Alternate this choice for your bridesmaids, so you have equal numbers wearing the plain colored dress, and the same number wearing printed dresses. By keeping the designs uniform and the hemlines of both styles the same, the entire group looks well coordinated and classy.

Here is a wedding party that has achieved this result with alternate plain and printed purple dresses.

@shoopsmoo &#bridesmaids
Image Credits:leesean, via Flickr, CC BY 2.0

The printed purple dresses feature very subtle white floral prints all over the length of the gown. The dresses blend well with the plain purple dresses that the rest of the bridesmaids wear. What we specifically loved about this combination is that the plain dresses are not exactly similar, each one features a different neckline. Thus we can safely conclude that each bridesmaid has her distinct style of dress, and yet gels in with the group seamlessly.

Rule 9: Add variety with infinity dresses

Infinity dresses are basically dresses that can be worn in various different styles. It is the true convertible dress. Here, the fabric left in the neckline and bodice to be wrapped in different ways to yield different looks. By draping the top half of the dress in different ways, you can achieve different necklines like the one-shoulder strap, strapless neckline, cap-sleeve look and more. This dress allows each of your bridesmaids to wear the style that flatters her most. Hence, it is versatile and everyone ends up happy. Check out this article on My Wedding website, which illustrates the different ways in which an infinity dress can be draped. With this choice, you play it safe by choosing the same color for all. Even so, each has her personal style enhanced with a suitable pattern.

Rule 10: Same style, different prints

We have seen prints and plains as well as textures in the same color and pattern. Now, the only one left to experiment with is prints in the same pattern. This is a fun and exciting way to make your bridesmaids stand out from the rest of the crowd. Printed dresses make them look different from typical bridesmaids, but the unifying design brings the entire party together instantly. Here is a sample.

The Lil' Getting Ready Bridesmaid Dress Styled Shoot.
Image Credits: Plum Pretty Sugar, via Flickr, CC BY 2.0

In this picture, the pretty bridesmaids sport strapless dresses with vibrant prints. The hemline is uniform, and ends at mid-thigh. The dress also features a bow detail at the waistline, making all three dresses unusually cohesive.

Hope you now have enough inspiration to mix and match and perfect your bridesmaids dress looks. For more exciting inputs on styling your wedding, as well as for all your wedding shopping needs, continue visiting us at Best for Bride—your one stop bridal destination.

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Bridesmaids in blue

Wedding tradition requires you to have something old, something borrowed and something blue. While you figure out how to do with the first two, we have an interesting suggestion for your something blue. How about dressing your bridesmaids in shades of blue? Blue is a color that goes well with most skin complexions. So, we do not see any of your girls complaining about your choice.

What do you say? Does the idea sound interesting?

We have lined up our favorite blue bridesmaids dresses in all shades of blue, so browse through and make your pick.

Alfred Angelo 7337S

This beauty in navy is as good as a neutral, and can blend into most color palettes. The dress features spaghetti straps and an asymmetrical hemline, with a floral waistband detail adding a special touch. Don’t you think it will look gorgeous at a beach wedding? Pair it with white or blue bouquets, and you will have a stylish combination.

Mori Lee 104

Dress your damsels in this majestic marine bridesmaid dress, and they are sure to love it. A simple design that suits every body figure, the long gown is perfect for a classic reception. The fit and flare skirt and sleeveless scoop neckline elongate the torso, making your bridesmaids look tall and lean. The best thing about this dress is that it will form a beautiful combination with your white wedding gown. I can already imagine how pretty the wedding photos will be!

Mori Lee Affairs 31066

Another one of our favorites from the Mori Lee Collection, this dress is youthful, fresh and just perfect with some fantastic details. The single shoulder strap and angled neckline with the ruffles have a playful vibe. The A-line silhouette is universally flattering, and the gathered waistline with the bow detail will make your bridesmaids look younger. This dress is great for a casual wedding party, and is practical and cheerful for an outdoor wedding. Make this your choice for your summer wedding, and bring the color of the tropical seaside to your wedding venue.

Jasmine Belsoie L174016

Brighten up your wedding ambiance with your bridesmaids in this brilliant blue gown. Perfect for a formal event, the dress has a draped pleated bodice, that tapers towards one side and ends in ruffles that daintily flow towards the hemline. The pattern of the dress is such that it emphasizes the natural curves of the wearer, and your bridesmaids will love to show off their well-toned figures in it. The sweetheart neckline makes it perfect to accessorize with your choice of accessories. It is a dress that isn’t too loud, yet makes a dramatic statement. Your bridesmaids will appreciate the fashionable choice, so you can fall in love with it already.

How did you find this collection of dresses in blue? Most of these dresses are available in other colors as well. So, if you like the pattern, or the dress, or would like to check out other available options, come visit our bridesmaids collection online at Best for Bride today.

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5 reasons we love short bridesmaid dresses

Just like bridesmaids come in all sizes and shapes, so do bridesmaid dresses. From long flowing elaborately embellished bridesmaid dresses, to short and sweet ones, we’ve seen them all. The long evening gown is classic and elegant in it’s own right, but there is a certain charm to a short bridesmaid dress. Here are the top five reasons for why we love short dresses, and you should too!

Bridesmaids 6Image Credit: outreachr.com, via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

1.Short dresses cost less

Less fabric directly translates to lower cost. Of course, this also depends on the dress you choose. But, as a general rule, a similar dress with a shorter hemline will be cheaper than a dress that extends to full-length.

2.Chances of reusing the dress are greater

When a girl signs up to be a bridesmaid, she knows that a new dress is on the cards. However, the bride should remember that she cannot always use her bridesmaid dress again. At least in most cases, and especially when the dress is typical bridesmaid style. The exception is in the case of a short dress, as it may work for her when she goes out for an evening with her girlfriends. So, help your friend get the most of her money by choosing a short dress instead of a long one. The chances of reuse are maximized when the color is a neutral and the pattern that isn’t common bridesmaid choice.

3.They make your bridesmaids look young and smart

Long gowns are ladylike and elegant, while short dresses are fun and cheerful. There is no doubt that a woman looks much younger and more smart when the dress is short and well-fitted. She looks more confident and chic in a short dress, and if she has pretty legs, you would be doing her a favor by letting her flaunt them in a short hemline.

4.The shorter style fits a casual setting easily

The best thing about short bridesmaid dresses is that it is refreshingly casual. If your wedding style borders on semi-formal to informal, a short bridesmaid dress is the best choice you can consider. If your wedding is to be held outdoors, it also makes a practical choice. Remember that your bridesmaids will be running around a lot, so it only makes it a lot easier to manage in a short dress that doesn’t stifle her movements. Short hemlines paired with other casual elements like ruffles, lace and frills make the textures at your wedding photographs interesting. What is more, when you are in a long gown, your dress will instantly be in focus against the shorter hemlines of your bridesmaids, in photographs.

5.Short dresses allow your bridesmaids to choose unusual and interesting shoes

Helen & David-128Image Credit: John Hope, via Flickr, (CC BY 2.0)

We love this idea, which we found on the Exclusively Weddings blog. Unlike a long gown, which covers up most of the leg and gives you less chance of showing off stylish footwear, short bridesmaid dresses allow you to give your bridesmaids a cohesive look with the same style of shoes. In winter, consider having them wear chic boots that look dressy. For a summer wedding, you can have your bridesmaids in a neutral colored dress, and add that interesting pop of color by choosing similar shoes in a vibrant shade.

So, what do you say? Do you prefer short bridesmaid dresses to longer ones? Let us know.

Visit our bridesmaids dress collection on Best for Bride, and make your choice from the best you can find, whether you prefer long or short dresses for your favorite girls.

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How to get the mix ‘n’ match bridesmaids dress trend right—5 Dress combinations that work

The Mix ‘n’ Match bridesmaid dresses trend is catching on, and with good reason. Having all your bridesmaids dressed in the same attire from head to toe is boring, and the uniform does little justice to helping your girls shine in their entirely similar outfits. Today’s brides are intelligent, smart women who want to make sure their best friends and sisters look splendid on their big day. Appreciating their individuality by choosing different dresses for each of them goes a long way in reinforcing this idea. Plus, bridesmaids are your favorite girlfriends, and you want them to be satisfied and comfortable in what they wear.

There is however a catch to employing the mix ‘n’ match trend. It is not something that will just fall into place. You, as the bride, have to play a big role in building a cohesive look for your bridesmaids, as only then will your bridal party acquire the intended effect when they all come together. Fortunately, you do not have to seek the services of a personal stylist to get this right. An idea of what combinations work can help you get through, and here are some sure hits.

1.Same color but different styles

One place where many brides go wrong is in choosing a particular color and giving bridesmaids free reign to pick a dress that they like as long as it falls into this color spectrum. Well, it may work for certain colors like black, gray or gold, but not any other. Unless your bridesmaids go shopping together and you or someone else oversees what they choose, you will not know if the shades they pick will work together. This is a recipe for disaster.

Let me make things a little clearer. There are a thousand different shades of green, some with hints of blue in them, others with hints of yellow. If your six bridesmaids each picked out their own version of green, it is likely that at least one of them will look drastically different from the rest.

Instead, give your girls free reign over the style of dress they choose, as long as they stick with dresses from a single designer collection. This is because most designers offer the same colors, in different styles. For example, these different pink dresses from the Dessy Collection would work like a charm, don’t you think?

2.Pretty in prints and patterns

In a welcome deviation to the single solid color for bridesmaids dresses, you can render a personal touch to each outfit with interesting prints and patterns. Not only does this add oodles of style, it is fashionable and your girls will get better use out of these dresses than just at your wedding. One unique idea I found on the Every last detail blog is to limit your bridesmaids to a single shade, but pick a patterned dress for your maid of honor. How interesting is that? Check out their blog page at the link above for more details and pictures related to this idea.

You could also mix patterned dresses and dresses in the same solid base color for a different effect. Above is a stunning dress from the Dessy Bridesmaids collection with a speckled pattern. Imagine how beautiful it would look when mixed with a dress in solid grey or navy to get a beautiful effect. For example, the dress featured below could be a befitting combination for this rococo speckled gray dress.

The soft texture and speckles of prints on the rococo lace dress complement the beautiful gray chiffon dress with the ruched bodice. Although both dresses possess individual style, you can still create a cohesive look with both of them.

3.Mix and match textures to impress

Yet another great way to mix and match bridesmaids dresses, but in a safe way is to mix textures in exactly the same color. Take a look at this image of buoyant beautiful bridesmaids in lavender. Notice how each of the dresses are entirely different from the other, but the breezy fabrics used in different ways in each of these dresses render a cohesive look to all the women. The main attractive factor about this style of mixing and matching dresses, is that you can find dresses that suit the personalities of all your bridesmaids. This allows you to not just find stylish dresses for each of them, you can also make sure that all their looks come together.

2015 bridesmaid trends
Image Credit: Parekh Cards, via Flickr [CC BY SA-2.0]

When opting for this method, remember that you will have to invest more time and effort, as slight differences in color or entirely different fabrics can change the overall look. To make sure you nail it, you will have to see all the dresses together, and have a dress rehearsal to make sure that they go together as intended.

4.Dusty and pastel palettes

Give each of your bridesmaids her unique look by choosing soft pastels or dusty barely there colors that do not compete with each other. Although we initially discussed that different hues in a single color are not a great idea, pastels are an exception to this rule, as all the colors are muted, and create a beautiful palette with a subtle hint of refreshing color.

Bridesmaids 6
Image Credit: outreachr.com, via Flickr [ CC BY 2.0]

A pastel palette is perfect for your bridesmaids dresses, if you are a bride who wants color at her wedding, but not ones with overpowering intensity. Pastels are pleasant, but soft, and so they are bound to mix together well. Imagine your beautiful bridesmaids in a rainbow of pastels similar to what you see in the image here. Need I say more about how stunning the effect will be?      Dusty colors look sophisticated, and they add grace and elegance to the stride of your bridesmaids. Since most dusty colors are almost neutral in appearance, you needn’t worry about whether they will blend together. This is in fact one of the easiest ways to coordinate your bridesmaids outfits. Experiment with different necklines, patterns and styles by keeping the fabric uniform, and you simply cannot go wrong.

5.Varied necklines and unified hemlines A simple but effective way to employ the mix and match trend, without experimenting too much, is to simply choose different dresses in the same color, and vary necklines. There are two advantages to following this idea

  • You allow your bridesmaids to pick a neckline that they are most comfortable in
  • The color and length are unifying factors, and you needn’t worry about whether the bridal party look will come together.

Let’s face it, not all your bridesmaids may feel comfortable showing off their shoulders and decolletage in a dress with a sweetheart neckline. A few of them, on the other hand, may appreciate the chance to showcase their slender neck and toned arms in a strapless gown. By varying the neckline and sleeves, you make sure each girl has a dress with a unique style quotient, and this makes it easier for them to find a dress that suits them. You will also have to put in lesser effort to find your bridesmaids dresses. All you have to do is choose a color that works, and then explore the various options in sleeves and necklines and find those that will work for each of the bridesmaids. It is easy to find bridesmaids dresses in different patterns but the exact color, when you choose from a single collection. Here’s a wedding picture, where they’ve got it right. Don’t you see how it is cohesive, yet individual?

bright bridesmaids
Image Credit: Jodie Wilson via Flickr [CC BY 2.0]

Now that you have enough pictures to draw inspiration from, you are all set to go shopping for your bridesmaids dresses.

Before you go start, we thought of running you through the common mistakes you should try to avoid.

#Forgetting about texture

We cannot stress enough on the impact that is created by varying textures. The same color can look entirely different when it is applied using two different types of fabric. So, pay close attention to texture when you choose the dresses. This is especially important if your bridesmaids go shopping individually, as you may end up with entirely random looks when they come together, if the textures are distinct. The best way around this is for you to specify the fabric.

# Not paying attention to the mood of the event

I’ve said it a hundred times before, and will reiterate that everything boils down to cohesion. Not only should the bridesmaids dresses go together, but they should also coordinate well with the venue and the ambiance. Before you finalize your bridesmaids dresses, make sure that they are suitable for the style of wedding you have planned. Dresses that are appropriate for a formal indoor wedding can be totally inappropriate for an outdoor beach wedding. The fix is to first determine the venue and understand the mood of the event; then choose bridesmaids dresses that will complement the theme and style of the wedding.

# Choosing bridesmaids dresses in the main theme colors, however bright or bold they may be

Many brides believe that their bridesmaids should be dressed in the central color theme, even if it doesn’t complement their skin tone. Do you agree? If you do, it is likely that your bridesmaids will not be smiling with satisfaction at your wedding. After all, they too want to look great on your big day. Wearing a color that isn’t flattering but does the opposite will ruin their chances of looking good in your wedding pictures.

Fortunately, there is an easy fix to ensure everyone is happy. All you have to do is dress your bridesmaids in a neutral color that complements your wedding palette. Check out this article on universal bridesmaids dress colors for some valuable tips. Bring in the central color used in your wedding theme through your accessories. There are many smart ways to incorporate this. You can opt for colorful bouquets, attractive accessories like shoes or belts, or a beautiful necklace. Now, do you think your bridesmaids will be a lot happier with the colors you’ve chosen for your wedding.

#Varying more than two features

While mixing and matching is fun, you should limit the extent to which you use it. Stick with just one or two factors. If you vary several features all at once, it will not only look disjointed, but the entire intent of using it is defeated. The last thing you want is to put in all that effort in planning your bridal party look to the last detail, and leave your guests to believe that you just went with what was available. Remember that it is difficult to satisfy everyone of your bridesmaids. So, draw the plug on what has to be uniform. Keep the fabric and color uniform, and allow them to choose their favorite neckline or sleeve length. Or keep the neckline and hemline uniform, and vary the pattern and color. By doing this, you can ensure that the overall look isn’t chaotic.

This covers all you need to know, so your bridesmaids are happy in different dresses that tie to the central theme, yet different in their own respect. Will you be going with this trend for your wedding? If so, what will your choices be based on? Do let us know through your comments.

Finding bridesmaids dresses of any type, size, pattern or color is now easy with our collection at Best for Bride. Make your choice from leading designer collections including the Dessy Bridesmaids collection, Mori Lee, Angeline Faccenda, After Six and more. Whether you would like to stick with a single designer collection, or check out your options from different designer collections, we have all the options you want in-store, along with some fabulous offers to help you save money.

Visit our online bridesmaids dress gallery to browse through all our collections and choose the ones that you like best. Remember that every pattern you see online is available in a range of colors, so customization has never been more easy. With every dress featured here available in all sizes, you needn’t look anywhere else to find all you need for your entire bridal party.