Post # 1
I could really use some advice.
So I decided to go with mismatched bridesmaids dresses in warm colors for my fall wedding. There are eight girls and four colors (coral, apricot, watermelon, and light pink), and (after asking each BM/MOH which color she would prefer), I sent each girl a David’s Bridal swatch with her color and said to “buy a knee-length, sleeveless dress in your color.” I didn’t specify price, material, stores (though I did let them know they’d get 10% off at DB’s because I bought my dress there), or anything else. Most of the girls bought dresses that they love and I love, and it’s been awesome.
But one of my girls recently became pregnant (which is awesome and exciting!) and is now shopping for maternity dresses. She’s made it clear that she doesn’t want to spend a lot on a dress she’ll likely never wear again, which I totally get! So I’ve been sending her links to cute dresses in the right color at a variety of decent prices ($80-$150 range). However, she’s sent me several pics now of dresses that are way off (like fuschia, which isn’t even in my color scheme), especially considering that her color is light pink. These dresses are super affordable (most are consignment store finds), but they don’t match my color scheme!
Am I being unreasonable in hoping the girls will at least get a dress in the right color? I sent a swatch and an inspiration pic, and I’ve tried to be super laid-back and lenient so far. Am I expecting too much? Am I being a (and I hate this term!) “bridezilla”? I *so* don’t want to be that girl who demands too much of her girls, but mismatched dresses can be hard to pull off, and I really need them to at least try and stick to their swatch! What do I do?
Post # 3
She agreed to stick to the “light pink” shade so it’s not unreasonable to expect her to follow through with that. I think you should gently and nicely remind her of that.
Post # 4
@licoricetea3: It sounds like $80-150 is out of her budget. Can you try to help her find something below that? I don’t think you’re being unreasonable by asking her to stick to a particular color, but I think you should try to be a little more understanding of her situation. Could you offer to offset the cost of the dress as a compromise?
Post # 5
Post # 6
I usually side with bridesmaids here, but in this case, you’ve given her a pretty good amount of latitude with colors, and on top of that, you’re amenable to her looking elsewhere than DB, and you’re responding to all her photos. I’d say you’re being very flexible.
If I were you, and I had the money, I’d say something to her like: “Hey, you’re finding some awesome dresses but they aren’t in the four colors that everyone will be wearing, and I really want to stick to those colors. I know you’re trying to keep the price down, so maybe we can split the cost on a dress in one of those colors? Because it’s really important to me that everyone wears a gown in one of those shades!”
If you can’t afford to help, it gets trickier, but do you live near her? Because if so, you can set aside a day to go shopping with her for a dress in the color you want, and that would be simpler and probably feel less frustrating than having to reply in the negative, one by one, to all of these photos she’s sending.
If you can’t afford to help AND you can’t go shopping with her, I’d just be blunt: “I adore you and I cannot wait to have you in my wedding, but please please help me out by sticking to one of the four colors!” Scour the internet for cheaper possibilities for her — I’m sure they’re out there!
Post # 7
@licoricetea3: I don’t think you’re being unreasonable – it looks like you’ve given them a lot of choices, which is awesome! Most brides don’t do that. I would say something the next time she shows you a dress – like, “oh that’s cute! does it come in light pink?” Or maybe amp up your own searching for a cheaper light pink dress. Try the recycled bride or once wed classifieds for some light pink dresses!
Also, I was in a wedding 2 years ago where the dress wasn’t specifically materninty, but the material and draping allowed the MOH -who was 7 months pregnant- wear it and look totally gorgeous!
Post # 8
@calendula: I second everything you said. Very good advice!
Post # 9
Post # 10
Can you pay for the dress or share the cost with her if you really want certain colors and for her to be in the wedding? I had an issue with my MOH so I just paid for her dress. My other 5 bridesmaids were fine.
Post # 11
Thank you all for the suggestions — I really appreciate it!! I just sent her an email offering to split or pay for the dress and apologizing for the fact that it’s been harder than we thought to find the right dress. I hope that helps! 🙂
Post # 12
@licoricetea3: I don’t think you’re being unreasonable at all! Actually, I love how you handled it! Allows for coordination (SO important in pulling off mismatched dresses!) but allows your girls a LOT of freedom in their choice! It’s perfect.
What about preowned sites? Check the classifieds here, or preownedweddingdresses.com
Here’s a size 4 empire waist (flattering for ladies who are expecting, IMO) DB dress in Petal Pink on preownedweddingdresses for $49.
They also have three cute DB dresses in Watermelon (same dress, sizes 4, 8, and 10) for $55 if it was possible for her to trade colors with a girl who had chosen watermelon?
I hope you can find a solution, because I agree the dresses have to at least be in the color scheme. 🙁
I hope it works out!!
Post # 13
There are a few reasons I think this will be difficult for your bridesmaids. Usually, if you’re doing a really specific color but mismatched dresses, the bride needs to either (1) pick a very clear color like black, or (2) be fine with a lot of different shades/tones (like anything from light grey to charcoal, or anytihng orangey pinky no matter how light or dark), OR (3) if the bride wants a very specific shade (as you do), then usually all the dresses need to be from one store (brides do this w/ j. crew often) or be actual bridesmaid dresses.
Option 3 is the least flexible and lenient on the bride’s part- it’s fine if the bride or bridesmaids can afford it, but it sounds like yours can’t. Option 3 is the only one that really works if you want the girls to differentiate between coral, apricot, watermelon, and light pink (because I’m pretty good w/colors and I’m not 100% sure of the difference between some of the colors you named).
but Option 3 is pricier, so if there’s a max that the girls can spend, you can’t supplement it, and you and your bridesmaids can’t find j. crew dresses or bridesmaid dresses way on sale to fit within that budget, you might need to reassess and decide if having these 4 ultra-specific shades is really worth it or if it’s actually okay and will look great if you do option #2 and give the girls more general guidelines- like anything in the general fit/style you want that is in the coral/salmon/apricot/peach family (so that pinky orange range).
Post # 14
@Shkragoldfish: Thanks for your reply; I agree that it can be tricky doing the dresses the way I did. In setting it up this way, I knew that I would get some variation in shades –even though I gave them each a swatch — and that is totally fine as long as they’re each working off/trying to get close to their color. These colors are (luckily!) in season this spring, and almost all of the other girls (including my also pregnant FSIL) have found dresses in their color and within their price range without a problem. Still, it seems that this particular BM can’t find a dress in her price range and color, and the issues is that she’s finding colors that are completely off and not even part of the overall range. So as a lot of PP’s suggested, I contacted her today and offered to pay for her dress (and apologized for the fact that it’s been difficult to find a dress so far). Hopefully that will help make this easier on her!
Thanks again for all of your help and suggestions!!
ETA: Not sure why the font is all weird in this post … sorry about that.
Post # 15
@licoricetea3: Yes, once I saw you offered to pay for part, that made sense and you’re doing the best you can. I hope it works out.
Post # 17
@licoricetea3: I think this is a very generous option and hopefully will work out well! And for the record, I didn’t think you were being too bridezilla-ish at all!