Your bridesmaids play a huge part in your wedding day, not only as supporters but also as key members of your bridal party.

As a bride, you want your bridesmaids to look and feel their best on your special day, which means finding the perfect bridesmaid outfits are crucial.

However, shopping for bridesmaid dresses can be a daunting task, especially when you have different body types, styles, and preferences to consider.

In this post, we’ll share our top tips and advice for brides and bridesmaids on how to find the perfect bridesmaid dress. From shopping options to dress alterations.

Whether you’re a bride or a bridesmaid, our guide will help you navigate the process of finding the ideal dress, ensuring that you all look and feel beautiful on the big day.

bride and 3 bridesmaids all in white on wedding day posing

Bridesmaid dress shopping options

When it comes to shopping for bridesmaid dresses, there are two main options: in-store and online.

Each option has its pros and cons, so it’s important to understand them before deciding which option to choose.

In this section, we’ll provide an overview of the different shopping options, discuss the pros and cons of each, and provide tips for making the most of each shopping option.

two bridesmaids crying at a wedding wearing satin pink dresses

Online Shopping

Online shopping for bridesmaid dresses has become increasingly popular in recent years. It offers a wider selection of dresses, often at lower prices than in-store shopping. It also allows you to shop from the comfort of your own home, at any time that is convenient for you.


  • Wide selection of dresses
  • Lower prices than in-store
  • Convenient and can be done at any time


  • You can’t try on dresses in person
  • Quality can be difficult to assess
  • Sizes may not be accurate

Tips for making the most of online shopping:

  • Read reviews and look for photos of the dress on real people to get a better sense of how it looks in person
  • Order swatches of the fabric before purchasing the dress to ensure that it is the right colour and material
  • Take accurate measurements of yourself or the bridesmaids to ensure that you order the correct size

Useful blogs for bridesmaid dress shopping online:

The ultimate guide to buying bridesmaid dresses online

The best places to buy bridesmaid dresses online

a bride and her bridesmaid wearing black dresses walking down steps heading to the ceremony

In-store boutique bridesmaid shopping

In-store shopping for bridesmaid dresses can be a fun and exciting experience.

It allows you to try on dresses in person, feel the fabric, and get a better sense of how the dress will look on you.

It also gives you the opportunity to work with a knowledgeable salesperson who can provide advice and recommendations based on your preferences and body type.


  • You can try on dresses in person
  • You can get advice from a salesperson
  • You can feel the fabric and see the dress up close


  • Limited selection compared to online
  • Higher prices than online
  • Time-consuming to visit multiple stores

Tips for making the most of in-store shopping:

  • Make appointments in advance to ensure that a salesperson is available to assist you
  • Wear appropriate undergarments and shoes to get a better sense of how the dress will fit
  • Be open to trying on different styles and colours to find the best fit for everyone
bride with bridesmaids all wearing monsoon dresses

When to order bridesmaid dresses

You should order bridesmaid dresses around 6 months before. Like with most things, this is just an average time.

If you have pregnant bridesmaids you may want to order theirs earlier or later. Depending on when they are due.

If you are having custom-made dresses then you might want to order these 8 to 12 months before to give time for changes, fittings and alterations.

Top tips for couples when bridesmaid dress shopping

You want your bridesmaids to look and feel their best on your special day.

However, choosing bridesmaid dresses that will flatter all of your bridesmaids, coordinate with the overall wedding theme, and stay within budget can be a challenging task.

In this section, we’ll provide top tips and advice for brides on how to choose the perfect bridesmaid dresses.

1. Flattering All Body Types

When choosing bridesmaid dresses, it’s important to consider the different body types of your bridesmaids. One style may look great on one person but not on another. Consider choosing dresses with a universally flattering silhouette, such as A-line or wrap dresses. You can also consider choosing dresses with different necklines or lengths to suit different body types.

This can be a tricky one so we have a full guide to help you. Choosing Bridesmaid Dresses for Different Body Types.

2. Coordinate Styles and Colors beforehand

You want to be well prepared and have a clear idea of how you want the bridal party to look. Work with your wedding style, do lots of research and have a moldboard or example pictures ready before you go shopping.

3. Set Expectations for Cost and Selection

It’s important to set expectations with your bridesmaids regarding the cost and selection of dresses. Be clear on who is paying for what. What style and extra items you may want them to have: hair and make-up, jewellery, shoes, etc.

You can also provide guidelines for dress styles and colours to ensure that everyone is on the same page if they are choosing their own. It is also a fun way to get them excited about dress shopping.

We have more blogs to help with these subjects:

Who pays for bridesmaid dresses?

How much do bridesmaid dresses cost?

4. Give Your Bridesmaids Input

While it’s ultimately up to you as the couple to make the final decision on the bridesmaid dresses, it’s important to give your bridesmaids input and take their preferences into consideration.

Consider setting up a group chat or Pinterest board to gather inspiration and ideas from your bridesmaids. You can also provide them with a few options to choose from to ensure that everyone is happy with the final choice.

Bridesmaid in emerald dresses

Top tips for bridesmaids when dress shopping

As a bridesmaid, choosing a dress for a wedding can be a daunting task. It can be difficult as it is not just about what suits you.

If you are all wearing the same dress it can mean it has to suit different body shapes and sizes. While also matching the theme and style of the wedding and couples attire.

1. Find a Dress That Fits Your Body Type

One of the most important aspects of choosing a bridesmaid dress is finding a style that flatters your body type. Take into account your body shape, height, and other physical features when selecting a dress. Choose a dress that accentuates your best features and is comfortable to wear.

If you are all wearing the same dress then this means you will need to find one that does this for everyone. You may have to compromise.

This can be a tricky one so we have a full guide to help you. Choosing Bridesmaid Dresses for Different Body Types.

2. Coordinate with the Other Bridesmaids

To ensure a cohesive look, it’s important to coordinate with the other bridesmaids. Consider discussing the dress options with them and selecting a style and color that suits everyone.

Trying the dresses together is the easiest way to make sure this happens. If this isn’t an option make sure you talk it through and are comfortable with the end dress choice.

3. Listen to the couple

It’s important to communicate with the bride about your dress preferences. If you have any concerns about the dress, such as the color or style, make sure to express them to the bride in a respectful and thoughtful manner. The bride will appreciate your honesty and will likely be willing to work with you to find a solution.

But unfortunately at the end of the day, it is the couple’s choice. It is their special day and it has to work for their wedding day.

4. Be prepared

When trying on bridesmaid dresses, whether at home or in a boutique, make sure you are prepared. Wear the underwear you will be wearing on the day. Do your make-up and hair to feel your best. Wear similar or the shoes you will wear on the day.

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