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The Vintage Bridesmaid – Styling and Etiquette

Hello again, lovely wedding blog readers! I have a little feature from Kate at Queens & Bowl for you this morning – with some great tips for every vintage bridesmaid. It’s a great article for brides-to-be to read and share with your best girls – with tips on choosing styles, matching or mismatching your bridesmaids and paying for their dresses. I hope you’ll find this one useful! Claire xxx

vintage bridesmaid photo credit chris milner

Vintage bridesmaids on English Wedding Blog. Photo credit Chris Milner – click to see the full wedding (Beautiful bride Katey’s headpiece is from Queens & Bowl)

While I was browsing for beautiful vintage bridesmaid dresses and accessories (it’s a tough job, I know), I kept coming across similar testimonials from dutiful but slightly unappreciated bridesmaids.

While some brides seem to ask a few small favours from their bridesmaids, such as organising a hen party that doesn’t include ‘L’ plates, some naughty brides seem to be guilty of being demanding, unyielding and forcing their nearest and dearest friends into dresses they hate.

Yikes! So I’m showing a little TLC to the vintage bridesmaid, it’s all about striking that balance between understanding it’s the bride’s big day (so she may get a little stressed) and appreciating your bridesmaids also want to feel special at your wedding.

Choosing your vintage gown can be tricky, but luckily there’s so many beautiful dresses and bridal accessories to choose from it won’t take you long to find that dress of your dreams. Deciding on vintage style bridesmaid dresses can be more of a challenge however, so I’ve compiled my tops tips on choosing beautiful dresses and appreciating your bridesmaids.

Vintage bridesmaid style

The era you’re going for will help you narrow down styles for bridesmaid gowns, making the choice a little less daunting! If you’re setting your sights on a 1920’s or 1930’s style wedding, beautiful lace and flapper styles can look stunning, but personally I would recommend opting for a knee length cut so your bridesmaids aren’t confused with the bride.

Organza Bridesmaid Dress

I love soft and feminine styles and this beautiful organza dress is perfect for a summer wedding.

A 1950’s style wedding will allow you to choose a fun and fresh prom style dress with a layered A line skirt, tailored bodice and halterneck straps. Some brides really like the effect that mismatching their bridesmaids gives and the advantage of this is that your bridesmaids will have more flexibility so can choose a dress they feel completely comfortable in.

Dusky Pink Prom Style Dress

This dusky pink prom style dress is eye catching yet subtle.

If your bridesmaids vary from young children to adults older than you, it can be very tempting to dress them similarly. A word of caution though, this isn’t often appreciated by your adult bridesmaids who would like to show a little of their individuality.

I’m personally a big fan of keeping the same colour scheme for all your bridesmaids but slightly altering the cut of the dress. This attention to detail can look beautiful and allows your bridesmaids to tailor their dress to their own figure.

Bridesmaid Dresses

Etiquette

So, who pays?  This is a difficult topic, some seem to strongly believe the bridesmaid should pay and think any other option is preposterous… whereas some seem to believe the exact opposite.

In this instance I’d suggest a little discretion: are your bridesmaids financially secure? Would they wear their dresses, shoes and accessories again? From their perspective if you really want them in a peach cap sleeved dress but realistically this wouldn’t be their usual choice, it may be the fairest option if the bride considers covering the costs.

Many brides and bridesmaids believe that a thoughtful and personal gift to the bridesmaids is greatly appreciated, after all your team of bridesmaids may have spent most weekends for a good few months following you around changing rooms! Many bridesmaids also seem to agree that while they can’t wait to be a part of your preparations, remembering they can’t always be at the bride’s beck and call will stand a bride in good stead!

I hope you and your bridesmaids have a fantastic time choosing your gowns, remember I have a beautiful range of vintage wedding accessories that are also perfect as gifts!

Kate x

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1 COMMENT
  • I love the idea of the same colour scheme, with different cuts. Or even, adjusting the colour scheme slightly with different fabrics. I’ve also seen wonderful examples of having a few colours – one for each bridesmaid (and a groomsman/usher cravat and pocket handkerchief to correspond with the bridesmaids).

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