Post # 1
Just got done reading another vent on the Bridesmaid or Best Man dress dilema and I was thinking why is it that BMs are responsible for buying the dresses in the US?
The UK has the right idea IMO. These people are wearing the dress for the couple not for themselves so why on earth are they supposed to buy a dress of the bride’s choosing?
It seems like a lot of arguments would be settled if the bride was responsible for it, then she also might not demand $300 dresses when she realizes that she cannot afford them.
It just seems strange when you think about it. It’s basically I want you in my photoshoot so this is the outfit you need to buy. Shouldn’t the outfit be provided by photoshoot orchestrator?
Anyway, I’m not interested on advice of setting budget with BMs and compromising, I’m more interested in how come it evolved like that in the US and Canada I think, while it is the opposite in the UK. (Donno about AU).
Post # 3
I totally agree with you. I bought the dresses for my girls, although I don’t think they appreciated it.
Post # 4
@Atalanta: i don’t know why it’s the norm, actually. and i agree with you that it’s odd. however, it’s considered the exception to the rule when the couple buys the bridesmaids dress, although it does happen. its just a cultural ‘thing’ here, i guess, that bridesmaids take on the cost of their own dress, and the bride works with them to find something theyre all happy with in their price range.
and then you get girls like my bride. 😉
Post # 5
@Atalanta: I completely agree. I chose not to have bridesmaids because I really didn’t want to spend money for hair/makeup/shoes/dresses. And I would never want them to pay for it themselves.
I’ve seen brides on here expect their BMs to pay for shoes and dresses (which could easily add up to $200 or more) and then complain about how “THEY DIDNT EVEN GET ME A CARD!” (which is usually code for gift)
Why do they need to give you a card? They’re your bridesmaid – you know they’re happy for you and they spent a lot of money on you to prove it.
Post # 6
@Atalanta: I got flamed for this suggestion before!! Though the bride pays for all this stuff in Ireland so I really don’t get it. The level of drama is way lower here.
Post # 7
@Atalanta: I’m in the US and I thought that brides were supposed to buy/provide the dresses for the bridesmaids as a gift/thank you! I was just replying to that recent thread about dress drama and thinking the same thing.
I didn’t know it is considered OK in the US for bridesmaids to be made to buy their dresses. That seems weird to me and I wasn’t really planning on doing that to my bridesmaids– I figured I might actually make the dresses for them (I’m a seamstress and am making my own dress).
I ought to be from the UK instead. 🙂
Post # 8
@Atalanta: It’s also important to add (ok and yea – it’s every brides choice)
But if you’re going to spend a fortune on something like flowers and expensive invitations….you can afford to buy their dresses. I’ve been to a 150 person wedding where the flower bill was 12K but the bride made the 3 maids pay for their own dress and hair/makeup? That’s crap.
Post # 9
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
It doesn’t really bother me. I find the cost sharing generally acceptable. I’m glad that I didn’t have to find another $1000 (plus, then more if we were doing the tuxedos too) to pay for the BMs’ dresses at the time of my first wedding, but I paid out that money by being in the weddings for those same women over the years, but that was much easier for my budget to handle.
Post # 10
Yeah, I’ve been feeling a lot of guilt about asking our BMs to pay for the dresses actually for this very reason, even though I know it’s normal here. But I don’t really have room in the budget to pay for all of them. I’m thinking of going half way and saying we’ll go splits on the dress… would that be weird?
Post # 11
@MrsTVLover: Its expected here so it’s not about it being appreciated. Normally it’s the bride who is appreciative (of the support, the hen party etc). The bride pays for the dress, shoes, accessories, hair, make up as well as a gift, and in my case, room the night of the wedding.
Post # 12
I’d love to know the background on this, too. I bought my dress in the two weddings I was in and my bridesmaids paid for their dresses, too. No complaints with my girls and I never minded buying my own dress. I think some people get upset over this unnecessarily. If you don’t want to buy your dress, then don’t be in the wedding. No?
Post # 13
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
@FleeSircus: I actually had a Bridesmaid or Best Man who didn’t give me a card, and I was honestly really hurt that she didn’t give us even a card, and I mean just a card. I understand she spent a lot to be in the wedding, but we also spent a lot to host her and on a gift we gave her and this was a major moment in my life. A card would’ve been nice. Another Bridesmaid or Best Man couldn’t afford a gift and she gave a card and also appologized that she couldn’t afford a gift (which wasn’t exactly necessary but was appreciated). I had no problems with that and was quite grateful to have the card as a memento of her well wishes.
Post # 14
holy crap! 300 bucks for a dress. yeah i had my BMs buy their own but it was 50 bucks. i wouldnt expect that much for a dress. i think having them pitch in for the dress is just to help out with the wedding in a small way, since the bride (well in most situations here) and groom are paying for everything else. for us that ment the food for the night, dance and drinks. plus a gift for the wedding party. i also had my Maid/Matron of Honor choose the dresses instead of myself. but now that i think of it, two wedding ive been in they have bought the dress and shoes for me. so maybe its not really the country but the person? the last wedding i was in she let us pick any dress we want as long as it was a specific color and she could approve it. but i had to pay for that. i found a great one on ebay for 20 bucks.
just curious but how do you guys do it? and do you cover other things for the BMs, also a gift for them? and do most of you pay for the whole wedding out of pocket? do you also do an open bar? we had also put on the rehersal dinner and bought a limo for the party to ride back from reception in. and i guess you could count that everyone got a nice favor to take home too. Some of my guests actually started grabing some of the small shells and starfish i had for decor. which didnt bother me. so would it be too much to ask for them to pay a $50 dress? $300 to me is insane to ask a friend, even 150 though!
Post # 15
@Creiddylad: Totally threadjacking here, but you need to post your dress when it’s done! Or even in progress. (and you need to tag me when you do so I get an alert!)
I’m also a seamstress (not professionally, but I do have a fashion design degree and have been sewing for over 17 years), but was told I wasn’t allowed to make my own wedding gown because I’d stress myself out too much. Haha. So instead, I’m making the dresses for my bridal shower, the rehearsal dinner, the bachelorette party and the flower girl’s dress. 😉
Post # 16
@Atalanta: I totally agree! Our FG’s Mom was like “How much is the dress?” And I was like “I’m borrowing your kid for my pretty pictures… The least I could do is pay for the dress!”
But I think my ideal situation would be that brides buy the dresses/shoes/whatever, and the $150 Bridesmaid or Best Man gift goes to die. I feel like a thank you note and treating them to a mani or to coffee (or even lunch) to say thanks would be more than enough if they weren’t buying $200 dresses and $50 shoes!