We often hear brides and grooms wondering aloud how to ensure their wedding parties look as stunning in photos as they do in person. To help you better understand what to keep in mind, we’ve compiled these tips for wedding party attire. From the parents of the bride and groom down to the small child attendant, these guidelines will help you dress your wedding party in style!
Dressing the Bridesmaids
When dressing your bridesmaids, remember that they’ll be standing right next to you in photos, so you’ll want to ensure that their gowns complement your own in some way, perhaps including some small element of your gown in their own. Also, take care to pick colors that will unify with your surroundings, wedding theme or style, or season.
Consider your bridesmaids’ figures when choosing gowns to ensure each one will feel comfortable wearing the style you choose. Or, if you prefer, pick a color and allow them to choose their own from a few different styles of necklines and hemlines. After all, they’re purchasing the dresses, and will be more likely to wear them again if you take care to consider their tastes and comfort. If you’re worried the group won’t look cohesive enough wearing different styles, you could ask that they all wear the same jewelry and/or shoes.
A few more tips for ensuring a smooth process: Give your bridesmaids plenty of time to order their dresses, and consider their budgets when choosing gowns! Ask that your ‘maids try on their dresses and accessories well before the wedding to ensure everything fits. Also, while it’s not necessary to choose long-sleeved, long-hemmed gowns in winter and shorter ones in summer, you should try to keep your bridesmaids comfort in mind. If the weather will be chilly, you might invest in a wrap for each ‘maid, or if it will be hot, you might consider giving out fans or at least allowing shorter hemlines.
Dressing the Groomsmen
Your groomsmen should wear the same or similar attire as the groom for a cohesive look. All the men should be given ample time to order their tuxes or suits and be fitted prior to the big day. If you want them to wear matching shoes and/or cufflinks, be sure to let them know so they can be assured that they have all the components of their outfits with them before leaving the tux shop. While the groom should, in general, match his groomsmen, he might choose a different color vest and tie, shoes, or even an entirely different color tux in order to stand out from his attendants.
Consider the groomsmen’s comfort as well. If the wedding will take place on a beach, shorts or jacketless outfits may be more appropriate, while black tuxes complete with vests and cummerbunds would surely make them sweat.
Parents of the Bride and Groom
Traditional etiquette dictates that the mother of the bride chooses her gown first and then let the mother of the groom know of her choice so they can complement one another in some way. However, this is sometimes considered to be an outdated rule, so know that the most important thing is for the moms to feel comfortable in the outfits they’ve chosen. Of course, the gowns should complement the wedding party’s in some way, though color matching of bridal gowns or bridesmaids’ gowns is still largely considered inappropriate.
Fathers of the bride and groom should also be allowed to choose their own attire, though it too should complement the wedding party. Some fathers wear tuxes that match those the groomsmen wear, while others choose to wear formal suits or tuxes or their own choosing.
Ringbearers and Flower Girls
Your child attendants should wear gowns and tuxes that match the grownups, but that are better suited to children’s bodies. A strapless gown would not be appropriate for a flower girl, for example.
The overarching idea or tip for wedding party attire in general is to ensure all the outfits are unified in some way. From parents of the couple to ringbearer and flower girl, everyone should try to stay in a similar color family or wear complementary colors. It would look very odd indeed if the mother of the groom were to wear a bright red dress while the rest of the party is dressed in pale yellows and carrying pink flowers.
These tips for wedding party attire are meant to be a guide only, and you shouldn’t feel that you need to adhere strictly to each one if it goes against your own personal vision for your wedding. However, you should try often to picture your bridal party standing together in a single group and consider how their outfits will look on camera. Also, try to keep their comfort in mind at all times—a happy wedding party looks much better in photos than a miserable one!
Ready to plan your own wedding? Call Craig Collins Photography, one of New Jersey’s Premier Wedding Photographer, today at 973-335-1505 to book your wedding and receive more tips and ideas to plan your perfect day!