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Sticky Situations: Should You Ask Your Bridesmaids to Buy Their Own Dresses?

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Should You Ask Your Bridesmaids to Buy Their Own Dresses?

How would you handle this sticky situation? You’d love to have all your bridesmaids in gorgeous coordinated dresses, but you’d rather not have to carry that cost on your wedding budget. Are there situations that would make it most practical to have them purchase their own outfits? And is there a way to let the ladies know without seeming thoughtless? We’ve listed a few of our own thoughts below. We’d love to hear from you, too!

Is it okay to request your bridesmaids to choose and pay for their own dresses?

Yes IF…

  • They are your family members or long-time friends who would understand.
  • You are honestly on a tight wedding budget and can be candid about it.
  • There are practical constraints like how to have fittings if your bridesmaids are from out of town or overseas.
  • You assure them they may choose a style that flatters them, as long as it’s in the right color.
  • You suggest dress vendors or outlets that offer lovely choices at great prices (see our dress picks below).
  • You offer the option of dress rental to keep their cost down (example: Rent the Runway).
  • The wedding is on short notice with a time frame of less than 3 months to plan.
  • Your schedule makes it impossible to coordinate the purchasing process.
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What about you? Are you planning to take this option? How will you let your bridesmaids know? Or if you’ve already told them, do share how you handled it and how they responded!

Dress Suggestions for Your Bridesmaids

Our considerations in making these pretty choices were style, price and wearability even after the wedding. Shorter lengths tend to cost less, plus they can be worn at various occasions. Separates are a great option, too, since your friends can mix and match them with other pieces as needed, and they are surprisingly affordable. Still, a long dress or gown is a lovely investment for any lady—especially with these lovely finds!

Is it okay to request your bridesmaids to choose and pay for their own dresses?

1 – Aida Dress – A beaded bodice and softly flowing tulle skirt grace this floor-length dress from BHLDN.

2 – Color Block Twist Sheath Dress– A sleek and stylish design by Cynthia Rowley, available at Rent the Runway.

3 – Midi Length Strapless Bridesmaid Dress – Such a lovely color and flattering feminine cut to this dress from Dessy.

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4 – Alfred Sung Dress – An elegant sateen twill gown in blush bouquet colors, via Dessy.

5 – Sequined Tulle A-Line Dress – A sparkly sequin top and a full, soft skirt perfect for an evening affair, available at Macy’s

6 – Short Chiffon V-Neck Bridesmaid Dress with Ruching – The knee length and classic cut and color of this dress make it wearable anywhere, from David’s Bridal via Amazon.

7 – Liv Cami Top & Rockport Skirt – Love the versatility and simple, chic style of these separates from BHLDN.

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