Dressing the ‘Maids

4 Mar

(Original title is original.)

I know it’s been a while guys! I’ve been trying to get my thesis done for university and at the time of publication I have just received pro-pics! We’re still waiting on some images though, so hang tight.

Now, after reading all the newbee blogger blog posts, I realised something: I never talked to you about the bridesmaids dresses. To be 100% honest, this was the most difficult part of the wedding (that, and groomsmen shirts – detecting a theme here?). My dress – easy. Groom and groomsmen suits – check! But bridesmaids dresses? Gorramn, it was flipping difficult.

After some talks with the girls, we set some criteria:

  • We needed a colour that would suit all the girls and that they would feel comfortable in.
  • We would keep the dresses similar in colour and fabric, but different styles. All the girls have different body types and we all agreed that different styles might better flatter each type instead of sticking to one style.
  • We were keeping all the dresses “knee-length” (as in, either just over, under or on the knee)

And off we went in search of the perfect bridesmaids dress. Cue Indiana Jones music here.

Now, I expect fancy-shmancy dresses to be about the $AU100 to $AU200 range. It’s a given. The materials are supposed to be “luxe”, the design beautiful, and the tailoring at oftentimes difficult. However, the prices on some of the dresses I found would’ve given me a stroke had I had the inclination to have that sort of thing!

I wanted the mismatched look. To me, the mismatched, same-coloured bridesmaid dresses look gorgeous and they’d suit the different sizes of my bridal party. I have short, petite ‘maids; tall, athletically-built ‘maids; and broad-shouldered ‘maids. So I needed to find a happy medium, like this bride did:

grey bridesmaids dresses 2

Love their shoes. Love! / Photography by Jill Thomas Photography via The Brides Café.

Also, I love all their shoes. Love. But I digress.

Unfortunately, when I began to look at actual bridesmaids dresses, they were eeeexpensive. I don’t know about you girls in the Americas (or even the Europe or Asian brides), but in Australia, I’ve heard of bridesmaid dresses costing upwards of $1500.

Fifteen. Hundred. Dollars. That’s a lot of money on one dress. I almost fainted when I heard that!

I was paying for my girls’ dresses, and I don’t have that sort of cash lying around. So when it came time to look for a dress to purchase, I was desperately trying to find a place that sold pretty, well-tailored dresses for a fraction of the price. I tried the brick-and-mortar stores as well as online Australian stores, but the prices were over $AU200 at the very least. At most, I had seen a dress for over $AU500. My budget was under $AU200 for each dress.

After weeks upon weeks of looking for something within my price range, I was close to giving up. And then BM Superhero sent me this:

LITB_chiffon-dress

The “A-Line V-Neck Knee-length Chiffon and Stretch Satin Bridesmaid Dress” from Light in the Box.

Digression: BM Superhero really is a superhero. I think I’ve mentioned that… like, a million times.

Amazed, I quickly sent her back a reply. “Where did you get that,” I asked, “and how much is it?” Her reply was sending me the direct link and when I clicked it, my jaw dropped in astonishment. It was under $US100.

So with that, hive, I turned to the internet.

I know it’s controversial to some, especially as it takes the business away from the bridal stores, but I literally did not have any alternatives. I looked high and low for a dress that fit into my criteria and my budget and it was only through that one simple click of the link that I found it. And so, I looked through Light In the Box.

Admittedly, all the dresses were gorgeous. Here are just some examples:

example_LITB-dresses

Some of the Light in the Box dresses that fit into my criteria: (1), (2), (3), (4).

They were within my price range, gorgeous and came in a variety of colours. I stalked the site for a few months but before I could pull the trigger, I decided to look up reviews. As most of you might already assume or know, they weren’t exactly stellar. It was mixed. Some people received dresses with impeccable tailoring. Others did not.

I was, however, ordering five dresses, and I didn’t want to risk that type of mistake. So I did something which every (ok, not every) bride does in these situations.

I panicked.

Where would I get their dresses from if Light in the Box was a no-go-zone? Should I turn to the other online stores, even though they look significantly dodgier? What was a girl on a budget to do?

Up next, you find out what a panicked Miss Big did. Don’t worry, it’s not that bad!

Who else suffered a metaphorical stroke when you saw the price tags on bridesmaid dresses?

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One Response to “Dressing the ‘Maids”

  1. brideway March 4, 2014 at 12:29 #

    Wow! $1,500 is crazy! I’m in the US and thankfully not buying my maids dresses, but my favorite dress for my maids is $150 dollars and I thought that was a lot! I’ll have to thank my lucky stars after your story. Wedding world is a crazy place, especially for prices! I wish you the best of luck!

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