Post # 32
I am the first of my friends to get married, and I had never heard about the bride paying for dresses until I started reading Weddingbee several months into my planning. It never even occured to me to pay for their dresses.
I guess I have to say that I don’t necessarily think it’s the bride’s responsibility to pay for everything. As another poster said, my dresses were under $120. That’s not cheap, but they knew it was coming and it was paid in installments. I’m paying for their hair, make-up, wasn’t picky about jewelry or shoes, and I don’t think I have a responsibility over that. I’m in a friend’s wedding this summer and it’s the same thing.
I do agree it’s a little insensitive to say that bridesmaids know what they are getting themselves into, but with anything comes a financial commitment. And I really do think it’s special to be a friends bridesmaid (again, I haven’t done it yet, so maybe I’ll change my mind!) and it’s worth the cost of a dress and some presents, and the bridal shower and bachelorette party. Especially because when I think about it, I would probably be buying/paying for all of that stuff whether I was her wedding guest or her bridesmaid.
Post # 33
If it’s in the budget I will. I wish FI’s friends would help us out a bit. It’s going to cost him at least 850 to be in this wedding. If I go with him across the country it will cost upwards of 1200. This isn’t including meals everyday or a gift for the couple.
Post # 34
I made sure to pick dresses that my girls could wear again, and they are wearing black shoes which they all already own. I got them tote bags in black with their initials embroidered in light blue, and black bamboo shawls to go with their dresses. I figure they can reuse everything that I am getting them and they can even wear their dresses again which is nice since I can’t afford to pay for their dresses since we’re paying for our own wedding
Post # 35
I agree with the OP. I think it’s in poor taste to ask the bridal party to spend over and above what any other guest will spend. So while I don’t think it’s the bride & groom’s responsibility to pay for hotel rooms, rental cars, and things like that, I do think it’s their responsibility to pay for attire IF they dictate what attire the bridal party will be wearing. If I’d chosen a paticular dress for my girls to wear, or even a particular style and/or color, I’d be paying for it. Full stop. However, I don’t want a traditional bridal party, so I’m having more of a "house party" and each person can wear whatever they please. If they choose to buy a new dress, fine — but I’m not requiring them to do anything of the sort. And if they want to wear something they already have, so much the better. Same for the guys. All the girls will probably have our hair done, for which I will pay.
And no, I don’t have a ton of money…but I budgeted my bridal party expenses into the overall cost of the wedding just like cake or chair rentals. It just seems like the right thing to do, even if it’s not American "tradition."
Post # 36
I also agree with the OP. I was under the impression that the bride covers all the expenses her girls will have as a result of being in the wedding. I’m paying for my girls’ dress, shoes, hair, makeup, mani/pedi, and hotel room for 2 nights… And like some of the other posters, I’m NOT made of money — I just added these expenses to my budget and cut in other areas. For the weddings I’ve been in, the bride has always paid for our dresses/shoes/other expenses.
That being said, If I were a Bridesmaid or Best Man and the bride asked me to pay for my dress and shoes, I’d be completely okay with it as long as it wasn’t outrageously expensive.
Post # 37
Hmmm…the responses must be very regional or maybe cultural. Ive been in 4 weddings. I paid over $1000 to be in each wedding when you add in hair, dress, shoes, hotel, tickets…but NOT including the shower, bach party, or gifts. One wedding I was in, the dad paid for half of our dresses and shoes, but I still had to pay $200 towards the dress, which gives you an idea of how fancy the dress was.
I guess a ton of people will think this is tacky, but it never even occurred to me to pay for the BMs. I have made considerable efforts to control the costs (BMs picked out own dresses + shoes, I am paying for half of make up, I had no bach party and only locals attended my shower). That being said, I am not paying for rooms, hair, etc. I have 9 BMs and I have been a Bridesmaid or Best Man in most of their weddings. I told the girls up front that I would understand if it was too much of a financial burden/commitment and anyone couldnt be a Bridesmaid or Best Man. A few took me up on that and are no longer BMs.
Post # 38
Before I started into wedding planning, I thought as the bride, I would cover the Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses…until my Maid/Matron of Honor said no the BMs PAY for that! It was hard to believe at first, but considering we’re paying for our wedding, it’s going to be helpful. I’ve tried to find more affordable dresses for my Bridesmaid or Best Man but they love what they love and a couple have mentioned they can definitely wear it again. They are fine spending money on it. My Maid/Matron of Honor might be the only one close to spending $500 (for a dress and plane ticket) but I am covering her hotel for all 3 nights and whatever else I can!
I think the bride and groom should at least help, even if just a little bit!
Post # 39
I don’t think it’s my responsibility. They can say no, they don’t have to be a bridesmaid. I have never heard of not paying for your own dress- I did it for my Maid/Matron of Honor, I’ll do it for my other Bridesmaid or Best Man.
I only have two attendants (my sisters) and I’m making their jewelry, embellishing their shoes, and buying them nicer than average Bridesmaid or Best Man gifts (haven’t thought of it yet though) I just don’t make enough money to cover everything that I want, though if I did I would buy everything for them in a heartbeat.
EDIT: Oh, I forgot to mention that they can pick out any style that they want as long as they match in color and style. So that gives them the option to pick out something less expensive.
Post # 40
I covered quite a bit of costs for my bridesmaids, mainly because they were travelling from either the west coast or UK and it was a destination wedding of sorts (Cape Cod). I paid for the dresses for both of the girls coming from the UK, paid for their hotel room, paid for one night in the hotel for the girls from the west coast, and paid for everyone’s hair and makeup. Yes, it did set me back quite a bit and we were on a budget, but I felt honored for them to be there for me, and know they paid so much to travel so far for my special day.
Post # 41
I just wanted to say how wonderful i think it is that so many brides are SO considerate in regards to helping out their BMs, whether it’s being not too picky on styles or offsetting their hotel or SOMETHING as opposed to, "be my Bridesmaid or Best Man, but you pay for it all yourself". I just think it’s wonderful! Everyone knows the economy sucks! I just never wanted to feel like I was sticking them with this massive bill. I think it’s a wonderfu way to thank them for being such a great friend all these years and being there with you on your wedding day.
Post # 42
A bride should be more thoughtful of her bridesmaids financial situations. However, according to wedding ettiquette, the bride is to choose the dress she would like the girls to wear, and the girls are supposed to pony up without complaining. After all, this day is about the BRIDE and GROOM not the bridesmaids. If a bridesmaid cannot afford the dress, then she should politely tell the bride that she has to drop out of the wedding because of the financial burden.
That said, as my bridesmaids’ gifts, I bought them all of their snazzy little bridesmaid dresses. I’m even paying for one of them to get her dress altered because the store did not carry one in her size. I love all my bridesmaids, but I also know them all too well…they would definitely be unhappy if I purchased a dress from anywhere other than David’s Bridal, because of the cost factor (thinking that DB actually is a cost saver) and I really wanted them to wear J.Crew dresses- and have them look simply stunning!
One last thing I want to add in here, is that I really am getting tired of reading about the snarky bridesmaids who don’t want to pay for their dress, shoes, bridal shower, bachelorette party. The bride has enough stuff to stress about. I too have been a bridesmaid, and will probably be a bridesmaid for the other girls in my wedding that aren’t married yet. What goes around, comes around. Its very unrealistic for a girl to agree to become a bridesmaid and not expect to spend a couple $100…
Post # 43
My view is this: the bridesmaids I chose were already people who would’ve come to the wedding anyway, so I don’t feel that I need to pay for a hotel room/travel/dress/make-up etc because they would be doing those things as a regular guest (they are allowed to buy any dress in either green or brown & don’t need professional hair/makeup).
I am going to try to impart upon them that they don’t need to get extravagent with showers/bachelorette parties (they won’t be paying for my drinks all night), so they don’t spend crazy amounts of money there. I’m also not expecting them to buy us a wedding gift: being IN the wedding is the gift.
In my opinion, it’s rude for a bridesmaid to complain if a bride doesn’t pay for her "expenses". When someone asks me to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man, I think about the type of bride they are. If they’re going to ask me to break the bank, I decline. Thankfully, most of my friends have been reasonable. But I would never assume that the bride should pay for things like my dress, hotel, etc.
PS. What kind of person is spending $500 to be in a wedding? Us bride’s budget, don’t regular people budget too?
Post # 44
I would love to help my BMs pay for their dresses, but since I can’t I’m searing for $50 dresses. They can wear whatever shoes they want, and they can wear their hair & make up however they want too.
What I do think is over the top is when brides ask their girls to spend over $150 for a Bridesmaid or Best Man dress, I really think that anything over $150 is just way too much, esp when you arn’t letting the girls pick the style of dress it is. I am a Bridesmaid or Best Man in my friends wedding and the dress is $170 and is NOT cute at all, BUT I am paying it and wearing it happily b/c she wants us to, but I do wish she would of bargin shopped and found something more affordable, b/c it is the simpliest brown dress ever.
If brides arn’t paying for their Bridesmaid or Best Man I think brides should be open about the costs, my friend kinda sprung the amount on me w/o asking how much I could afford. That is why I asked my BMs and they said $100, which is why I’m aiming for $50 🙂
Post # 45
I didn’t want to make my wedding a huge financial burden (in the past being a Bridesmaid or Best Man for me has ranged from costing an extra $30 up to several hundred dollars above the cost of travel/hotel/gift which I would have paid for as a guest anyway). I wanted to minimize the extra costs, so pretty much the only thing my BM’s are paying extra for is a dress. I let them pick the cut they wanted (but they’re still Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses and realistically, no matter how nice they are the only one I’ve ever worn again was as a Halloween costume), and tried to pick a pretty inexpenisve line (all of the cuts were under $150). They voted on shoe color. And I don’t really care what they do for hair and make up. I’m buying them gifts, and we’re buying them Indian outfits for the Indian event the night before. These are actually fairly expensive (~$300), but I definitely wouldn’t expect them to pay for those.
Post # 46
Very generous of you to pay for all the Bridesmaid or Best Man essntials!
I myself on the other hand debated long and hard! When my FH and I were planning our 1st wedding (we called it off) we had planned to go to Mexico for a destination wedding. We were paying for the flights of all of our wedding party (8 in total) as well as paying for their dresses/kilt rentals (no tuxes for us) because having a destination wedding was so much more inexpensive with the budget that was set forth for us (both parents were contributing)
Now because that wedding was called off and were trying a new start we wanted to stay in our home city and have the wedding there, which intails more and more costs. The money for buying the bridal party attire was just not something we could swing in our budget. I was originally thinking of paying half for their dresses, but didnt think in the end it would work.
I am however going to be buying them their jewellery, as well as paying for their hair and make-up and possibly for their nails to get done as a nice little thanks for all the help.
I feel cheap you have no idea, going from a wedding where we were spending at least $2000 on each of them, to such a mere amount, but you have to do what you have to do