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Bridesmaids Gowns

Bridesmaids_GownsLegend has it that the whole point of picking out bridesmaids' gowns is to try to find the ugliest possible matching outfits that you can get away with -- since after all, you don't want any of the bridesmaids outshining the bride, do you? Naturally, most of us are aware that this is just a tongue-in-cheek assessment of the situation aren't we? Yeah, right. Try talking to a few experienced bridesmaids: many of them are sure that the bridesmaid dress selection process is one aspect of a concerted effort on the part of the blushing bride to make her look better at the expense of her friends and it's possible there's the tiniest little grain of truth in that.

Be that is it may, choosing the bridesmaids' dresses is one of the bride's responsibilities in any traditional wedding, like it or not, so don't let all those whiners get to you! You know that you're just trying to be a gracious hostess, by providing lovely dresses that compliment the figures, hair colors, and complexions of your bridesmaids, while doing your best to stay within your budget both financially and time-wise. It's not exactly an easy task choosing your bridesmaids, after all. You have to decide how many you need and who to ask, without offending those you don't ask. Once that's taken care of, you have to get commitments from everyone who's accepted, and then you have to get their dress sizes and preferences.

Of course you're a gracious bride, so you should ask them to help with the dress decision. Find out, first of all, what your bridesmaids' tastes are -- especially their clothing likes and dislikes. You want them to be as happy as possible with your selection, because if they're not, you can be sure it'll show. Ten years after the event, you don't want your first grader asking, "Mom, why does Aunt Cindi look like she's sucking on a lemon in your wedding pictures? And what does that gesture mean?"

When shopping for bridesmaid dresses, it's best that take all your bridesmaids out at the same time, so they can try on various dresses while you give them the thumbs-up or thumbs-down. Unfortunately, this adds another layer of responsibility that you (or, if you're lucky, your wedding planner) will have to manage during the wedding planning process. It's not easy for a group of people to juggle their schedules so they can all meet up at a bridal boutique at the same time. It's recommended, therefore, that you limit the number of bridesmaids, so you can all get together more easily. Three to five is a good number, and ten is surely too much. Remember that for every individual you add, there's that much more hassle to deal with. And if you make the momentous decision that you'd like all your wedding attendants to match, from the flower girls on through the groomsmen, you're just asking for a huge headache -- so it would be best to limit your stunning theme to your long-suffering bridesmaids. In any case, do be sure you document everything while you're going through the process of choosing their dresses. This will limit the problems in a process that's already stressful enough.

Fit, comfort, and affordability are all aspects that you should take into account when choosing gowns for your bridesmaids. While you want to choose dresses and fabrics that compliment your bridesmaids, making them look so smashing that the Best Man just might decide to elope with one, in some situations good enough will have to be good enough. While it would be great if every one of your bridesmaids looked just perfect, that's unlikely to happen. These dresses have to match -- and given the fact that people vary so widely, it's unlikely that the same thing is going to work out best for everyone. You'll have to do the best that you can. However, do keep in mind that skilled tailors and seamstresses can work magic with the needle, so that every dress can be fitted as nicely and as comfortably as possible. Your bridesmaids are going to look great no matter what, and since they'll be dancing to all hours after the wedding, they'd better be comfortable, too!

This brings us around to affordability. If your wedding budget allows you to pay for the bridesmaid attire, that's splendid. If not, ask your bridesmaids how much they're willing to spend for their own dresses. (Don't forget the shoes, too.) This will doubtless limit what's available, but look on the bright side -- that'll only help you come to a decision more quickly. Whatever style and color you end up choosing, be sure that necessary fittings are included in the cost; or if they're not, find out the cost of each, and determine how many fittings are needed for each bridesmaid -- and don't forget to write everything down. In this case, it would be best to let the bridesmaids pick their own appointments with the bridal shop to get their dresses fitted. There's nothing like a little courtesy to ease a difficult task. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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