Post # 1
which stores should I be looking at? I’d really like to try to find dresses that are actually wearable again (I know this is very difficult), so I was thinking of looking around some stores that carry cocktail/evening dresses rather than going the traditional bridesmaid route.
I’ve looked at RW&Co and Le Chateau, but haven’t been able to find anything in navy. Ideally I’d like something with lace or beading.
For those of you that went the off the rack route, where did you buy your dresses?
Post # 3
I wanted to do this, it was my BM who was against it. I was specifically looking at Nordstrom.
Post # 4
Guessing you’re in Canada based on the store names. If you’re in or can get to Toronto, Mendocino would have a lot of dresses. You might also want to look in the dress dept at the Bay and Aritizia.
If you are quick at making decisions and can get everyone together at once I’d hit Zara as well (you need to be quick because their stock changes so often.)
To get a more summery dress you also might have to wait until the spring if you’re going off the rack.
What about online? J. Crew would be a good option.
Post # 5
Oh and there’s also Club Monaco.
Post # 6
@futuremrs1986: I only had 1 MOH and she found her dress at Cache. It was on sale for 60% off and wound up costing 70 total!
Here was her dress
Post # 7
I had the same plan in mind, but it didn’t work out. I looked at Nordstroms and Lord and Taylor for an off the rack bm dress. It was just too hard to find a dress in my color (dark purple) that also worked for all the girls who are very different sizes and shapes and went with the style of my dress. We didn’t have any luck.
I ended up buying a Bill Levkoff dress at a bridal salon and everyone absolutely loves it. His dresses aren’t super “bridesmaidy.” They are really simple and elegant and look much more like something you would buy off the rack (and around the same price point too). The plus to that is that that can special order a dress in their size and even add more length if they need. Also, he has tons of really similar dresses, so you can easily mix and match dresses that will go well together but will fit each girl a bit better.
Post # 8
I’m doing J.Crew for my girls. They have multiple styles in the same color/fabric (particularly chiffon), so they can choose the one that looks best on them but still match. I have multiple J.Crew cocktail dresses and they are flattering, comfortable, and high quality. They don’t look like bridesmaid dresses and I have worn them to weddings, so I am confident that my girls will be able to re-wear them.
My other advice for choosing dresses that can be worn again is to be mindful of color and go with a more neutral/subdued shade.
Post # 9
I wanted to do this, but I will have a couple plus-size BMs and most off the rack dresses at stores don’t have enough of a size range for it to work.
Post # 10
I started looking at those places (Le Château, RW and CO) and also : Zara, BCBG (check online), Simons, Macy’s, Sears, Laura, but I failed to find longer dresses that I could see myself wearing for the bid day. I finally went on Kijiji and that’s where I found my dress (it’s a wedding dress though). I also checked thrift stores, and bridal stores (not that many around here) in the Bridesmaids or Prom department.
Post # 11
All of my girls dresses are of the rack. They all seem happy with them.
Post # 12
I just told them all to pick any little black dress they like.
My FSIL got one from Cache already (three days after I told her the plan haha), my sister has a style in mind and is hunting, my one friend doesn’t own a LBD but I told her to use this as an excuse to buy a decent one, and my other friend… well, I don’t know what she’s up to but I trust her.
Everyone is also wearing silver/grey shoes. I don’t care where they buy them, or whether they wear old ones, etc.
I wanted to try and make this as enjoyable and inexpensive as I could for them.
Post # 13
- Wedding: September 2014 - Waldorf Astoria, Chicago
I did off the rack from Nordstrom’s. It was a pain b/c we all fell in love with a dress that was from the previous year Holiday season…I have 5 in my bridal party and tracking down a dress for each of the girls in the right size was a nightmare, but I did it 🙂 It wasn’t much cheaper then ordering from the bridal salon…the dress I was going to do from the bridal salon was $310 but they would never wear them again, and the one’s from Nordstroms were $278…and they can be worn again!
Post # 14
For my Hawaii wedding, they just worse a blue summer dress that was 50 bucks.
Post # 15
The Bay is carrying a lot of cocktail formal dresses recently (at least the one in my hometown really expanded their dress department)
Post # 16
I too wanted to do this but didn’t. The dresses I liked were half price as they were in the sale, though then time was of the essence and all my BMs live in different places and it was difficult seeing what they would’ve all looked like. As it was then a risk and early in the planning stage I didn’t do it.