If you’ve been following Brideside or Betches Brides, you know that they’ve got a great podcast focused on all aspects of wedding planning! For “How TF do I plan a honeymoon?” to “Why TF are alterations so expensive?” Betches Brides has been answering burning questions posed by brides and bridesmaids with the help of industry experts and influencers.
In the Nov. 21st episode, Brideside co-founder Nicole Staple joined Betches founder and CEO Aleen Kuperman Dreksler to talk wedding party attire. We’ve recapped some of the most important takeaways for brides-to-be to know before they embark on bridal and bridesmaid shopping. (We promise: It can be fun AND encouraging!) Keep reading for 3 major takeaways when it comes to wedding fashion.
1. Give your bridesmaids helpful direction
Says Nicole, “I think the biggest challenge for brides is that they have vision and they just don’t know how to execute on it. They’re working with different variables, different body types, different places… They’re making a lot of decisions!” So, how do you strike a balance between fulfilling your exact wedding vision and letting your bridesmaids pick dresses they love? You want your bridesmaids to look a certain way, but you also want them to be happy and comfortable. The truth is: your bridesmaids are your closest friends and more often than not, they want you to be happy too!
Nicole points out that that you don’t necessarily need to micromanage everything or, in the other direction, be vague in the details of what your want for the sake of being flexible. “Just giving a color can be more confusing sometimes and creates more anxiety. They [Bridesmaids] don’t know if they’re making the bride happy,” she says. Ultimately, it can be helpful to give some specifics, like an exact color name from a designer you like, or a collection of dresses your bridesmaids can choose from. Aleen adds, “Not everyone knows what a warm pink means.”
Specifics will help your friends pick something that better aligns to your vision and eliminate the stress of confusion.
2. A bridesmaid stylist is your best friend
Nicole says that, as a bride, looking at bridesmaid dresses ahead of time can be beneficial — online or even in person. Brideside lets you actually work with a stylist prior to a full appointment to find bridesmaid dresses you really love. That way, your party just has to pick what they want to wear from a pre-approved list of dresses. They know their parameters, but they still have freedom to choose a style they feel confident in.
Nicole advises, “We think it’s really important, when shopping together in person, to find a place where everyone can try something on.” At Brideside, she says, you can call ahead with the approximate sizes of your bridesmaids and your stylist will pre-pull dresses for you. Brideside carries bridesmaid dresses in sizes 02–28 for try on in store and through our try-at-home program. (Sizes 00-32 are available online!)
The other benefit of working with a stylist is that you have a great advocate. They understand your vision and what you want (if you don’t have one, they can help you develop that too!). If your bridesmaids start veering off in another direction, your stylist can bring them back on track. It’s nice to have the support and guidance from a wedding industry expert.
3. Make the most of your wedding dress shopping experience
Nicole and Aleen also called Brideside Bride stylist Caila to answer some questions about shopping for a wedding dress. Caila offered some great tips for wedding dress shopping for the modern bride and here are some of our favorites:
- Wondering when to buy a wedding dress? Caila says to get your wedding dress early to avoid the stress of trying to figure it out while you’re trying to do other wedding planning tasks. It’s common to order a dress around 9 months out, 5 months at the latest, with limited options. Find more tips on ordering a wedding dress in 5 months here.
- Being able to try on a dress close to your size is super helpful, and you should have the opportunity to feel beautiful in every wedding dress you try on! Ask ahead of time what sample sizes are available in store. (FYI: Brideside Bride carries 04–24s in samples to accommodate many different shapes and sizes!)
- Get cute before your wedding dress appointment. And by cute, we mean how you expect to look on your wedding day! Try to style your hair in a similar way so you can see how it looks with a veil and accessories. Not only will this help you see the full vision, but it will also make you excited when you flip through the pictures later.
- Speaking of pictures, take them all! Caila recommends taking a video or two as well so you can see how the dress moves from every angle.
- Trust yourself! Caila notes that it’s very common to freak out after saying yes to dress because you don’t see it again for months. If you’re worried, it’s totally ok to ask your stylist if you can try it on again and even a different style to make sure. Most of these brides who do this, she shares, end up feeling affirmed in their original choice.
Ready to sign up for a bridal or bridesmaid stylist? Let’s get started!