Little Star
Expert April 2019

Sorta bridesmaids?

Little Star, on April 19, 2018 at 10:19 AM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 23
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I am working on staying within my budget so FH and I decided not to do the whole wedding party thing. We are just having two witnesses, my best friend of 15+ years and his sister. However, I have two sisters and a few very close friends I’d like to include in photos with us. Would it be appropriate for me to ask them to wear a certain color dress? I’d be giving them a few color options and they could choose whatever style they wanted. I also wouldn’t have any issue with them wearing a dress they already own. I just wanted to make sure this was okay to ask of a guest. My wedding will be slightly non traditional. I’d also like to give them a little gift for participating in this to show my gratitude. Thoughts?


  • Going to the chapel
    Master July 2017
    Going to the chapel ·

    I wouldn't ask them to wear a certain color dress. The majority would probably have to buy a dress in that color when they may not like that color, have a dress in their closet they would prefer to wear or don't want to or can't afford to buy another dress. Let them wear whatever they want and don't say anything about them kinds sorta being BMs. You can still get great photos with them.

  • LB
    Champion November 2016
    LB ·

    IMO, no, it's not okay. You're basically telling them that they aren't important enough to stand up with you, but you want them to dress a certain way for pictures. Seems like you're using them for a prop. Definitely take pictures with those that are important to you, but don't dictate what they wear.

  • Sarah
    Master June 2016
    Sarah ·
    No that’s not appropriate. They can be in pictures with you without you dictating their color scheme.
  • caitlin
    Super May 2017
    caitlin ·
    I agree with PPs that you can't tell people what to wear to your wedding. but honestly, what you've described wanting to do is basically having them as your wedding party--maybe reconsider having a WP if you really want to include them? you can totally have people stand up with you and be part of your VIP circle without it turning into a giant production. just some food for thought.

  • BlueHenBride
    Master March 2017
    BlueHenBride ·
    I agree that it is not okay to ask guests to wear specific colors. You can still take pictures with your sisters and friends without them wearing a certain color, and the pictures will look wonderful.
  • Little Star
    Expert April 2019
    Little Star ·
    Thanks! I’m not trying to be rude or a burden to others so I’m glad I asked.
  • R
    Devoted September 2018
    Robbi ·

    Sounds like we are somewhat in the same boat. No wedding party, just two witnesses; my best friend and his brother. My friend and I thought it would be fun to just go shopping together to get a dress for her to look nice stipulation on colors, etc. Life happened and she went shopping herself and sent pictures to me. We both found one that looked happens to be black with a nude undertone. Another close friend that is helping with the wedding loves black and wanted to buy a black dress for the wedding. Great....with that being said, there are other close friends of mine that I have mentioned to them "Hey, so and so is wearing black to the wedding, I know I don't have an official bridal party of anything, but they all seem to be wearing the same color, it might be kinda fun if you wanted to do that too. Suggestions? Really though, I could care less what you wear. Just show up! lol" Sooooooo, I don't really think it's a big deal. It's not really a request, more of letting them decide. It would be kind of fun...

  • Little Star
    Expert April 2019
    Little Star ·
    Yes, I was going to give them black as an option if they wanted to do that. Everyone looks great in black. Black is also one of my wedding colors! But I don’t want to seem rude, so I’ll nix this idea. I wish I could have a large wedding party and include everyone but our budget is tight.
  • MrsSnez
    Super October 2018
    MrsSnez ·
    We're having a DW with just immediate family and people asked what they should wear. We coordinated about as much as we would for regular family pictures. I told them what colors the flowers are (we have no bridal party so literally the only colors coming into play are the flowers) and everyone just basically picked something that wouldn't clash.
  • M
    Dedicated November 2014
    Mandy ·

    I had a bridal party that didn't wear matching outfits, although they did stick to a general color scheme (jewel tones: essentially just non-pastel versions of blue, red, purple, green, etc., or silver, or if they really wanted, black). They also didn't walk down the aisle, or stand at the front. And no one (not even us) were introduced or listed on a program. So according to many people's definitions we didn't have a bridal party at all.

    What costs are you concerned about? I did buy them all a gift, but it was a token of appreciation. And they came to the rehearsal dinner (although we didn't have a rehearsal, so it was really just a dinner the night before, and pizza or something would have been fine if we were saving money). We did all get ready in the same area, and we provided some snacks, but that's not expensive. What costs are you concerned about?

  • Melissa
    Dedicated August 2018
    Melissa ·
    I was asked to do this for a wedding and had no issue with it. She asked that two of us to wear red. I look awful in red but managed to find a dress I loved - and I’ve even worn it a few more times (bonus!)
  • rica
    VIP September 2018
    rica ·
    View Quoted Comment
    I agree with this. If you’re already buying a small gift, there’s really not much else it would cost you to just have bridesmaids. I think the only additional expense I have is paying for their dinner at the RD.
  • rica
    VIP September 2018
    rica ·
    View Quoted Comment
    I will also say that I personally wouldn’t have an issue with this. I usually have to buy clothes for weddings anyways, and I would be fine with a specific color.
  • An
    Super September 2019
    An ·

    This would leave a bad taste in my mouth, I don't think it's at all necessary to have a coordinating color scheme for photos and definitely wouldn't risk hurting anyone's feelings to do that. I also agree with PP's that if you really want to have a WP you should go for it. Your gift to them doesn't have to be super expensive and RD can be pizza and beer/wine.

  • FutureMrsD
    Rockstar July 2019
    FutureMrsD ·

    I think within a color scheme is perfectly fine, as long as they are normal colors and not colors no one owns dresses in haha! If someone asked me that, and I knew they were tight on money so they couldn't have a true bridal party, I would 100% do that for the sweet pictures.

  • earias
    Champion December 2017
    earias ·

    Well you are basically doing everything already that would make them be bridesmaids except have them walk down the aisle and stand up with you. As a bridesmaid they would be expected to buy a dress in the color you want (or the exact dress you pick) and you would give them a small gift of appreciation. There aren't any other expenses from you except if you required them to get their hair, makeup and nails done or required a certain shoe. So, why not go ahead and make it official?

  • Lauren
    Dedicated August 2019
    Lauren ·
    Last year my friend got married and asked a group of us if we'd wear blue. Being such a big group of friends I understand that she didn't want us all to be bridesmaids, but we were all happy to oblige because blue is such a versatile color - and the pics turned out great!

    If you do this, be flexible and choose a color that the girls may already have in their closet, allow for different shades/patterns, and of course different dress styles.

    Sorta bridesmaids? 1
  • The Nuptials
    VIP July 2018
    The Nuptials ·
    Meh, I don't have a bridal party because my dear friends practically begged me not to. Instead we have friend pics before the ceremony. Our wedding is black tie and these friends were all ok different pages about what to wear etc and asked for some guidance. I sent one email that said that most guests will likely be in gowns and that our family is wearing shades of pinks. They wanted to know colors to stay away from, and I said not wearing solid black may help but that it was up to them.

    Everyone wrote back back that they were happy to have some guidance and some of shared fabulous gowns that they have rented or purchased.

    They threw me a fabulous Bach and my late spade shower is this weekend. The day of the wedding they are coming to the suite for a champagne lunch and I've already given them gifts. In my situation I think it was a win win.
  • The Nuptials
    VIP July 2018
    The Nuptials ·
    *kate spade shower*
  • Karma
    Devoted April 2018
    Karma ·
    View Quoted Comment
    All this!!!

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