Post # 1
I have 5 bridesmaids and we are now in the process of starting to look at dresses. I had originally wanted to keep the budget under $100 for their sake, but it is proving difficult to find what we are looking for in that price range.
I know for a fact that four of the five girls would have no problem going up to about $200, which is the price point we are now having to consider. But I know one of the girls would have a hard time spending that much.
My question is, is there any way that I can split the difference (from $100) with just one of the girls? I feel like I would have to do it privately to avoid offending anyone. I want the one girl to feel like I am making the offer to all the other girls, but I would really not.
Is that ok? Or do you have any other solutions for me? I cannot afford to pay the difference for all five girls.
Post # 3
I don’t think it’s okay to help just one girl and not the others. Even if you kept it hush hush, what if they found out? I think instead you should talk about the situation with the other four girls. Maybe they’ll all be okay with looking hard and wide to find a dress the 5th girl can afford. Or, you can have them all buy different style dresses, just in the same color. That way, they could all pick price points that work for them. You never know, maybe your maids will offer to help the 5th girl, and $100 four ways is a lot easier than you spending a whole $100, and nobody feels bad!!
Post # 4
I would either do it privately with this bridesmaid or let the girls choose their own dresses. I think it would be wrong to discuss this girl’s finances with the other bridesmaids.
Post # 5
I don’t see why it would be a problem. Everyone’s socioeconomic status is different and should be respected. I don’t know that you have to tell the other girls, if you are SURE the other 4 are okay with a higher budget.
I had this sort of happen, though it wasn’t planned and she’s going to slowly pay me back. When we all went to order the dresses (that we got for $149 I think) the shop owner informed us all that the girls had to pay in full before they would order. Two of the girls said “No problem” because they had their parents’ credit cards (they are younger, just out of college and starting their jobs) but my Maid/Matron of Honor about had a heart attack. She had brought half (what we originally thought they had to put down) and didn’t have the rest, so I offered to pay for the other half and she can pay me back. She lives on her own (not with parents like the other two) and is just in a different place. I didn’t think twice. Maybe it’s different since she is paying me back though…
Post # 6
@julies1949: I wasn’t suggesting you go into details. I don’t think it would hurt to say something like “So & so has a tight budget, so instead of $200, we need to try and keep it under $100.” or something like that. You could always ask the girl before you say anything to the others
Post # 7
Before getting married I would have said no. After getting married and being in a few weddings, I would say its OK.
I would do it quietly, but if others found out they would know the reason why. They would understand that someone can’t afford it.
However, I would say the dresses they wear really don’t matter that much. Yes, you get pictures most likely they will never wear them again. When you look at the pictures (and most of them will not be of your BMS, but of you, family and guests) I would settle for something cheaper. Have you looked at non-bridal dresses in department stores? Often you can get something great, especially paired with coupons and sales.
Post # 8
I would be offended if my friends, who you’re obviously close with if you asked them to be bridesmaids, didn’t understand that you had to help one girl out. I’m having 3, and I know one girl would have trouble even spending $100 on a dress. If my friends wanted to complain about of getting it for her, they can bitch in private:)
Post # 9
I would offer, but yes most certainly it should be private and confidential exlusive offer. She should also be aware of the delicate nature of this offer so to not go brag about it.
Post # 10
I think it is fine to do it for one bridesmaid as long as it is done in a discreet and respectful manner
Post # 11
If I was a bridesmaid I would have no problem with the bride helping another bridesmaid out who wasn’t in as good of a financial position.
Post # 12
i did this for one of my BMs and i didn’t even keep it hush hush! i didn’t think i needed to because the Bridesmaid or Best Man whose dress we paid for in entirety was my DH’s 17 year old niece. she was still in school and between part time jobs like Tim Horton’s. So for us it was a no brainer that we would buy her dress. So much so that i assumed the other BMs would understand. but then i had 2 (of my other 5) BMs make comments to me that made me realize i should have been more quiet about it. and the only reason i told them was because we did a huge order through netbride.com and so it came out i was covering the cost for our niece’s dress. but i didn’t think i needed to hide it!
anyway, so based on my experience i would say do what you need to do, but keep it quiet from the other girls. I am not sure you can get away with the Bridesmaid or Best Man thinking you are doing it only for her. Because you basically have to tell her that its between the two of you or else you run the risk of her mentioning it to the other girls.
Post # 13
Are you planning to put all the girls in the same dress? I think if you are requiring them to wear all the same dress, shoes, accesories, etc., you have an obligation to help them out all equally (or not help them out all equally). If you want to be more cognizant about money, I would recommend allowing the girls to pick out their dresses themselves if they are paying for it themselves. I think that if you keep the same color family and style/length/fabrics, then it will still look cohesive.
Post # 14
@lefeymw: That is exactly what I am looking for – dresses that are not from bridal stores. I want a more down to earth feel. It’s just hard finding the color and “look” that we are going for: soft, romantic in light grey or yellow.
Thanks for all the advice, everyone!
I actually just thought of doing those wrap dresses that are convertible like this: http://www.etsy.com/listing/69705680/golden-sunset-satin-daffodil-convertible
I know David from My Fair Wedding uses dresses like these a lot. They are only $80 and could definitely be worn again. Plus, each girl can have their own style. My only concern is they can sometimes be too “booby” haha, not sure how else to put it.
Post # 15
That’s a really tough situation to be in, (for both you and your BM’s). If I were the girl that couldn’t really afford the dress I know that I wouldn’t want the other girls to know about it. If you are going to help her out you really should keep it just between you and her. That being said though when you agree to be a bridesmaid you know that you are going to be expected to pay for certain things.
Post # 16
I think that your other BMs should understand, especially if you all are friends, maybe they will step up and offer to help so you don’t have to.
I also like the idea of that wrap dress. I have seen those on My Fair Wedding, they are awesome and they seem to be “boob” friendly LOL. And each one can configure it to their personality.
And the price is awesome 80 bucks, sweet:) but I honestly think they should understand, I would understand. and I think its very generous of you.
Let us know what happens, now I am curious!