(Closed) Do Bridesmaids keep their dresses?

posted 6 years ago in Bridesmaids
Post # 2
297 posts
Helper bee

I’ve never heard of the bridesmaid giving the dress back… but I guess if the bride paid for them she has a right to get them back

Post # 3
2748 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2015 - St Peter\'s Church, East Maitland, and Bella Vista, Newcastle

I’m in NZ/Australia and my sister paid for our dresses when I was her Bridesmaid or Best Man and we kept them; I’ll be paying for my girls’ dresses and they’ll be keeping them – I plan on gifting them their jewellery but no other gift. I’ll also pay their hair and makeup. They’ll get their own shoes but I just said silver heels, don’t care if they don’t match.  Both are traveling for our wedding so it’s only fair really.

Post # 4
7638 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I’m Australian and I’ve been in both situations (bride pays and Bridesmaid or Best Man pays), but either way the Bridesmaid or Best Man kept her dress. I can’t imagine the bride getting very much selling them.

And I got my girls another gift as well as giving them the dress. So do you get them a dress and a gift? Yes – the gift is a thank-you for being part of the wedding.

But I think it’s fair enough to say that if you’re paying for her dress, you wouldn’t get her as an expensive a gift as if they were paying.

Post # 5
460 posts
Helper bee

My mum bought my original wedding dress and four bridesmaid dresses and also my sisters wedding dress and four bridesmaid dresses as we were getting married within a couple of months of each other.  She then sold them to a woman who was opening a bridal shop!!  When I was a bridesmaid as a kid I kept both dresses and my mum shortened them so I could wear them as party dresses.  

These days I think maids tend to keep their dresses and I am certainly looking at evening type dresses for mine that they can wear again.

Post # 6
849 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I’m in the UK, bought my girls their dresses, hair, make-up, jewelry, they bought shoes, I was intendin too but they sorted them out temselves and I never got round to paying them back. They kept their dresses as what would I do with them? Plus they were not typical bridesmaid dresses at all, and chosen by the girls so hopefully they will be able to wear them again. We also bought them a thank you gift. In my opinion it should not have cost them anything to be part of my wedding, though I also know they spent out for my hen party, I’ll just have to throw them brilliant parties too when their time comes.

  • This reply was modified 6 years ago by  .
Post # 7
9115 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

I am in Australia and we paid for everything for our bridal party and the girls kept their dresses. I also bought them a thank you gift. The dresses, jewellery and hair and make up were props for my wedding and the gift was to thank them for their time and support. Two very different things in my book.

Anyway by the time you got them back and dry cleaned there would be no money in selling them.

Post # 8
4521 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

US bee, so I paid for mine, and kept it a while before donating since I will only wear pink satin in public for very close friends 😉

Post # 9
1668 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I bought my dresses for my maids (I’m in the US) and I would never thought of them giving them back to me. What on earth would I do with them? 

Post # 10
2173 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

View original reply
CherryAndWhite:  I think if you’re going to ask for them back to sell them, you should let the bridesmaids know this well before the wedding so it doesn’t come as a surprise. I am from the UK so I also paid for my bridesmaids’ dresses, and I have never heard of the bride taking the dresses back. 

I made no demands re jewellery, hair, makeup or shoes and didn’t ask for much help with planning, so I didn’t buy gifts for my girls. I think a thoughtful thank you card will be enough. If you are asking them to pay for those things or spend hours planning with you, I think a gift is appropriate. If you are paying for everything, I don’t think you need to get them a gift as well. Hope this helps. 

Post # 11
3038 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

I’m from Sweden, but lives in Canada, and I asked my maids to pick a dress that they liked and then I paid for them. It would have felt very awkward to ask them to hand them back to me after the wedding! As for other outfit related items: they could wear whatever shoes they liked and I paid for their hair. As a gift I gave them a traditional Swedish bracelet the evening before the wedding. They were not asked to wear it during the wedding day, they just both opted to.

Post # 12
854 posts
Busy bee

What would you do with the dresses if you took them back. My girls got gifts and and then they kept their dresses.

Post # 14
235 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Maybe it’s a tradition that your mom has always dealt with?  I don’t know … maybe!  I never heard of BMs giving back their dresses.  My BMs paid for their own dress and shoes are doing their own  hair and makeup (they chose to) and they love their dresses that of course they want to keep them because they are dresses that they can always wear again for another special occassion. 

I am giving them gifts because I really have appreciated their help and support during the whole wedding planning.  We girls talked about this.  If I had bought them their dress, they would have considered it a gift from me because they know how expensive weddings are and they are very understanding when it comes to finances.  But since they insisted on buying their own dresses, I still want to get them a gift for everything awesome they have done for me.

Post # 15
2696 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

View original reply
CherryAndWhite:  I’m from Canada and have never heard of that!

When I was a Bridesmaid or Best Man I did not give my dress back, and I do not expect my BMs to give me their dress. That’s strange.

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