(Closed) Brides with out-of-state BM's..please give me some advice!!

posted 6 years ago in Dress
Post # 3
9917 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

If I go with the one bridesmaids dress I’m thinking of, I’ll take their measurements, order the dress for them, and then we’ll work it out about fittings.

OR I might go with JCrew, in which case they’ll all be able to order their own.  This might be easiest for you.  There is JCrew and Ann Taylor.  

Post # 4
2281 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

As long as you choose a David’s Bridal dress that is also available online, all your girls should be able to get what will fit them, even if they’re out of the country. 

Same for @peachacid‘s suggestions of jcrew and Ann Taylor. They can order the dress – if you’re paying you can have them tell you what size and you can order it and ship it to them – and then they can find a local alterations place  to have it fitted to them. 

ETA: I had only one attendant, and she lives several states away, and I didn’t even see her until 2 days before the wedding. I bought her dress and sent it to her, and then left alterations up to her. She looked amazing.

Post # 5
2105 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I have 3 girls that are literally at 3 different corners of the US and one girl that’s in Canada (none of them are remotely close to me geographically).  I emailed them all and told them the colors I want, knee length chiffon, and sent them pics of Alfred Angelo dresses as examples.  I told them they don’t necessarily have to be from AA, but just something to help guide them.  They all were good with it!

Post # 6
1006 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

All 3 of mine lived out of state and I looked in traditional bridal stores at first but the process seemed so overwhelming without them there.

So I looked at two other options: David’s Bridal and JCrew. Both have locations around the country where the girls could potentially try stuff on.

I ended up going with JCrew for a few reasons.

1. There are a variety of styles that come in the same fabrics and colors so each girl could get the dress that best suited them but they all coordinate perfectly.

2. Quality and material. The JCrew dresses are pricier yes, but the quality is far superior to many traditional bridesmaid dresses. They are truely – rewearable.

3. Customer service. Each girl was able to order the dress either online, phone or in person AND best of all – return the dress if it didn’t fit.

I wish I had been able to find a cheaper option but with the challenges of all the girls being spread out in the country – this was the best option. Everyone was really happy with their dresses and we were all thrilled that it was relatively stress free.

Post # 8
241 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

My BM’s were not local either, so we did the same thing as others, we only focused on chain stores like David’s Bridal, JCrew, etc  and any online retailer when we did the shopping to make sure that each girl was able to have access to the store. Strangely enough, we ended up buying the Bridesmaid or Best Man dress online at Macy’s and/or Nordstroms (they both carried the same dress in their wedding dress section), it all worked out becuse you can order it from anywhere in the world and it was on sale in both stores! ๐Ÿ™‚ Good luck with the dress shopping!



Post # 9
569 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

My BMs all live quite far from each other and it just wasn’t possible to get everyone to go shopping (plus taking them all shopping together wouldn’t necessarily have gone very well due to various politics). This is what I did:

– Asked them to keep an eye out for dresses in the colour I wanted (purple).

– I also sent round suggestions of dresses I liked.

– We all agreed on a dress. We used an online retailer with a good returns policy so anyone needing a different size, as two of them did, could do an easy swap.

– One Bridesmaid or Best Man talked to me about having alterations done and I helped her find someone local. The others either haven’t needed them or have figured it out themselves.

It was all pretty straightforward in the end.

Post # 10
2693 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Three of my 6 BM’s are out of country.  So what we decided to do is get their measurements and have my seamstress make their dresses (she’s making the dresses for the other 3 bm’s and made my wedding dress).

We’ll do a final fitting as soon as they arrive for the wedding, which will be 2-3 days beforehand.

Post # 11
1941 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I’m in NoCal, my Maid/Matron of Honor was in SoCal, one Bridesmaid or Best Man was in NoLA, and the other 2 BMs were in FL. I drove to SoCal, went dress shopping with my Maid/Matron of Honor, then had all my BMs call the shop and give them payment and measurements for the order.

I emailed the 3 out of state girls a list of stores they could go to in their areas, along with addresses and phone numbers, if they wanted to try it on. None of them tried it on beforehand, and they all ended up loving the dress. If you go this route, make sure your girls all get professionally measured. Most dress shops should do it for free, and it will ensure that their dresses will fit them ๐Ÿ˜€

Post # 12
57 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I’m in a very similar situation to you: I have six bridesmaids, and four are out of state, though none are out of the country.

I made sure to choose a fairly simple A-line satin dress which I knew would be both flattering and forgiving for all my bridesmaids. 

What I ended up doing was finding a local shop that carried the brand that I’d picked. In my experience, non-chain-stores are often willing to go the extra mile for a sale–at least, more so than chains.  Of course, you might get someone at a chain who’s willing to be extra helpful.  ๐Ÿ™‚

I went to the shop, and talked to the owner.  I explained about the situation.  She offered me several options.

First, if we all ordered the dresses through her store she’d give a 15% discount to each of the bridesmaids.  (Nice!)

Second, for the four out-of-town bridesmaids, she could take a phone order with a credit or debit card for the dress.  All they had to do was go to a tailor and get professionally measured (that should cost them no more than $5-$10 at the MOST), and then give her their measurements over the phone at the time of ordering.  She’ll plug their measurements into the brand’s sizing chart, and order accordingly. 

Third, she can handle alterations in-store.  Now, this is probably unusual, but she can do an alteration turnaround time of 2-3 days for basic alterations.  Since these aren’t complicated dresses at all, the most they’ll need for altering will be hems for the shorter bridesmaids and maybe a little nipping in here or there.  The girls can have her do the alterations to their measurements when the dresses get in, and they’ll be ready for me to pick up for them a few days after they get to the store.  Alternately, for the girls who get in two or more days pre-wedding, they can go to her store for a personal fitting.  Finally, if any of the girls do lose/gain a little weight, they can have their measurements retaken when the dresses get in and have them altered to the new measurements.

Anyhow, this is how I handled it.  Of course, I only just had the girls order their dresses, so they haven’t come in yet….:P

Good luck!

Post # 13
3697 posts
Sugar bee

If you’re cool with it, letting your ‘maids pick out their own dresses might be a good option for your. You’ll have enough to do coordinating everything else – letting them dress themselves will take some of the pressure off your shoulders.

If you really want them all to match, PPs have given some good suggestions for how to go about doing it. Keep in mind that if you also want matching shoes, accessories, etc., that increases the amount of work on your part, while leaving those decisions up to them might make things easier. (Maybe ask them to email you pictures for approval, etc. if you feel better doing it that way).

If you do decide to let them pick mismatched dresses, other threads have had really good suggestions about things like having them send you a picture to approve the dress before they pull the trigger, or you picking out about 15-20 options you like which you then send to them and let them choose the one they prefer, etc.

Best of luck to you!

Post # 14
7904 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

I had one Bridesmaid or Best Man (MoH) 5 hours away and one in PA. I went with my MoH to choose a dress and we found two we liked. A few weeks later, I sent her and my other Bridesmaid or Best Man to get measured (most salons and seamstresses do this for free as a professional courtesy) and they called the boutique with their measurements. The associate ordered the dresses and had them sent to the girls at home. You in no way need to go with a national chain. It’s totally normal for Out of Town BMs to call or fax in their orders.

Post # 15
310 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Girl….tell me about it.  This was one of the most stressful part of my wedding.  In hindsight, I’d get their measures, order, and pay for the dresses myself.  Hopefully they’ll arrive for the wedding early enough that any fixes can be made.  Really wish I had done this. 

Post # 16
2106 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

3 BM’s all out of state. They were in town one weekend (I suggest the shower weekend or bachelorette) and they tried on a ton of dresses. We picked one and then they ordered from their local David’s bridal. The one girl who needs hers shortened has pictures of the length of the dress on the other girls to get it right. 

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