Bridesmaids Guide to Wedding Dress Shopping with the Bride

Your best friend asked you be a bridesmaid and you jump with excitement. Now, she wants you to go dress shopping with her. You’re about to enter uncharted territory where you have to be both a cheerleader and life coach for your bestie, while she finds the perfect wedding dress. To make this arduous process a little easier, we’ve compiled a mini guide on how you can help the bride while wedding shopping.

Before the Bridal Salon Appointment

Helper her research. Before making a salon appointment talk to the bride about her dream wedding gown, research online together, and create a list of designers, fabrics and styles that she likes. Use a tool like pinterest to collect wedding dress inspiration before going to the bridal salon. You can create a secret board where you, the bride and other bridesmaids can share your favorite wedding gowns.

Find the perfect bridal salon for her. After getting a few ideas about the bride’s vision for her wedding gown, research bridal shops with similar styles and designers. Spend time going through the bridal salon’s shop and blog gathering more ideas and narrowing down the ones the bride loves most. When she feels ready, make a list of the bridal shops she wants to visit for fittings. Ring the shops to find out if they have in stock the styles the bride is interested in.

Figure out with her who to bring dress shopping. This decision is up to the bride, but you can suggest that she only brings her mom, you of course, maybe her sister or another bridesmaid. It should be people that know her style well, have the bride’s best interest at heart, and that can be calm and honest.

Things she should bring to the bridal salon. The bride probably knows what she needs, but you can double check and make sure that she’s not missing the essentials. She needs to do and pack the following before her appointment:

  1. She should do her makeup and hair a little bit.
  2. Pretty and modest underwear.
  3. A supportive strapless bra.
  4. Various pieces of suck-it-in shapewear.
  5. Shaved legs and armpits.
  6. Shoes with the same heel height she’ll be wearing with her dress.
  7. A good digital camera or phone, if the bridal salon allows it.

During the Bridal Salon Appointment

Ask if she wants your input. Depending on the bride’s personality, she might want your opinion while at the bridal salon with every detail or she might just not want to hear it. Find out what she needs by asking her directly how much input she would like from you. Let the bride know that she has permission to tell you in you’re being “too helpful.”

If you dislike a dress she loves… You have two options be honest or zip it. If she’s happy and feels good in the dress, let her have what she wants. But, if the dress is beyond her budget or doesn’t fit, be honest with her and tell her your opinion. Be kind and gentle, chances are she’ll still pick the dress even if you dislike it.

If she doesn’t find “the dress” and hates everything… It’s possible that she’ll go to a few fittings and won’t find her dream wedding gown. This is why she has you. You can distract her by taking her out for a spa day or help her focus on a less stressful wedding task. Remind her that although she didn’t find “t