The Wedding Party
Article thanks to Lauren Sargeant Bride Online Columnist

Bridesmaids' Dresses Checklist

Choosing the perfect bridesmaids' dresses, whilst avoiding sartorial-related fights, can seem like a mammoth task. How do you ensure everybody (including you!) is satisfied with their options, without feeling like any of your friendships have been compromised in the process? In short, we’ve found that timeline of your checklist has a powerful part to play: it allows for you to set up clear goals and boundaries; gives your bridesmaids time to explore their budgetary limitations (hey, sometimes it takes sitting down for a few hours with a calculator!), choose their preferred styles, organise the string of necessary fittings, and- lets be honest- provides the time- cushion that’s so often needed to hash out any remaining style issues. This checklist is just a guideline and doesn't necessarily need to be followed exactly, but it should offer some helpful tips and timelines. Communication is the key. So, make sure you and your maid of honour have a copy of this list, talk about things throughout the whole process, and it should all be relatively smooth sailing.


(Courtesy colincowieweddings.com)

6 Months to Go

• Ask the bridesmaids to work with the maid of honour to start scouting for suitable dress styles. If they're emailing each other, make sure that they CC you in, so you can offer feedback and suggestions.

• Get the girls to visit a dressmaker, to have their measurements professionally taken.

4 Months 

• Send the maids out on a dress-search expedition.

• Once they've narrowed down a few options, you can tag along with them to the stores and choose your favourite dress for the occasion.

• As soon as you've come to a decision, make sure that all of your maids put down their deposits and order their dress in the right size.

• If they're having the dresses tailor-made, make sure the dressmaker has all of the correct measurements.

3 Months

• Check in with the maid of honour and make sure that the financial side of the bridesmaids' dresses has been taken care of.

• Put down your foot on what style of shoe you have in mind for the bridesmaids (see what I did there?).

2 Months

• Make sure the bridesmaids have all of their accessories, including shoes, stockings and jewellery.

• If they're purchasing their dresses from a store, they should have arrived by now. Send the girls off to pick them up from the store. If they need some alterations, now is the time for them to visit a dressmaker.

1 Month

• Whether their dresses are tailor-made or store-bought, all of your ladies should be having their final fittings by now.

1 Week

• Make sure the dresses have been picked up and that they are wrinkle-free.

• Ask the girls to wear in their shoes, so they don't get blisters at the reception.

• Make sure that their shoes have enough traction on the bottom. If not, they can scuff up the soles a bit or glue on some little Velcro dots.

The Big Day

• Take a deep breath and try to enjoy yourself, while you have your hair and makeup done with the girls.

• As they're helping you into your dress, do a quick inspection of their dresses, too. Make sure that they're all tucked in and comfortable.

• Pose for some pre-wedding photos together, in your gorgeous dresses, and giggle like little school girls, as you look at the playback on the photographer's camera screen.

Post-Honeymoon

• A little thank you gift for all your bridesmaids is a lovely token and goes a long way in ensuring that your wedding evokes happy memories, in their minds, for years to come. The gifts you choose don't necessarily have to be physical. You could take all of the girls out for lunch or a pampering session at the spa – just something that says "I appreciate everything you did to make my wedding day extra special".

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