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How to Choose Your Bridesmaid Dresses

bethannOct 12, 2010 | edited Oct 12, 2010 - by @bethann

Your wedding is coming up, and you have your eye on the perfect date, but do you have a plan for your bridesmaid dresses?

Bridesmaid dress shopping doesn't have to be a dramatic affair.

If you plan ahead, you can find the bridesmaid dress of your dreams at a price that's not a nightmare.

Our guide, how to choose your bridesmaid dresses, will help you choose the dress that's right for your bridesmaids body type, style and budget.

Step 1: Determine Your Budget

Before you proceed, you'll want an idea of their budget so you can determine what dresses are within reason.

1. Even though you're far from purchasing your bridesmaid dress, having a sense of price range will help you narrow your options.

2. Figure out how they will pay for the dress. Will your pay? Will they have to pay?

Or, will it be a combination, like Eliza Smith's agreement to chip in to get the dress she really wanted?

3. Keep in mind that dresses are available at all prices; just because a dress is expensive doesn't mean it's automatically chic.

4. If budget is a serious hurdle for them, be sure to look into all retailers both online and off line that make bridesmaid dresses available at affordable prices.

Step 2: Find Inspiration

Arming yourself with pictures of dresses you like will make narrowing down the search easier.

1. Wedding magazines like are always a good place to start, though keep in mind they might not always adhere to your budget.

2. Many trend experts will give interviews to discuss what's hot this season.

Recently on ABC, a trend forecaster said the following were popular this year:

o Bold colors
o Jewel detailing
o Prints and patterns
o Ruffles
o Pastels

3. Why not watch some old wedding movies to get some ideas of great dresses from the past?

Gather a bunch of bridesmaids and analyze the bridesmaids dresses for inspiration.

4. Many bridesmaid find inspiration from films that have nothing to do with weddings.

After Keira Knightley's 1930s green gown made its debut in the film Atonement, many girls wanted one like it.

5. Also think about your style icons: Madonna? Kate Moss? Beyonce? Track down some of their best looks in old magazines or online and think about how you might recreate the look or narrow your search according to one of their styles.

6. Magazines on the newsstands right after an event like the Oscars can be great to help you find styles you like, too.

Step 3: Start Looking

For better or worse, the best way to look for bridesmaid dresses is to try on a whole bunch of them.

Start looking early‚??you don't want to hit the stores after they've been ravaged by every other bridemaid in search of the perfect dress.

Step 4: Accessorize

Nothing complements the perfect bridesmaid dress like the right bridesmaid accessories.

Accessorize your bridal party with Bridesmaid Jewelry

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