You've set the date, booked the venue, found the dress...now what? Perhaps one of the trickiest to-do's of all, is finding dresses to suit each of your maids. With so many overwhelming options, we decided to take this one to an expert–so we sat down with Kate Lerman, Owner and Planner of Chicago Vintage Weddings, to discuss the year's biggest bridesmaid dress ideas and trends, and which ones are right for your big day.
1. Pops of pattern
"More and more brides are falling for patterned bridesmaid gowns," says Kate. "Expect to see an influx of florals in particular, especially come Spring and Summer!" If you don't want to fully commit to patterned gowns for the whole bridal party, a great alternative is to outfit the maid of honor in a printed number, while the rest of the maids wear a solid color.
Great for: Laid-back, beach, and outdoor weddings in the Spring or Summer, or destination weddings.
2. Mix & Match is here to stay
Don't expect the mismatched trend to go anywhere this year! "Mixing and matching is still going strong in 2015," Kate says. "Some brides pick a particular color and gown length and let their brides choose within those guidelines, while others let them run with any gown length, and just a general color family or two." Not to mention, since it gives bridesmaids more freedom than usual, it's almost always a bridal party pleaser!
Great for: Rustic-glam, casual, barn, or outdoor weddings. (As well as extra finicky bridal parties!)
3. Illusion necklines
Popping up just about everywhere is the elegant, illusion neckline. Perfect for more formal weddings, especially if your families are conservative. The higher neckline provides more coverage than usual, but the peek-a-boo, sheer element keeps it from feeling frumpy.
Great for: Upscale, black tie, country club venues.
4. Lace, lace and more lace!
Once solely reserved for the bride on the big day, lace has become a popular trend among the bridal party members due its feminine, versatile qualities. It comes in just about every variation under the sun, making it a great choice for any kind of wedding.
Great for:Well...everything, really!
5. Short-term silhouettes
"We expect to see a lot of bridal parties in rental gowns this year," Kate explains. "The rental business is growing exponentially in popularity, especially in cases where the bridal party is on a budget." Rental companies are adding new styles each season, which makes it possible for a bridal party to wear all of these trends, on a shoestring budget! (No complaints, here!) Not sure if renting is right for you? Check out our comprehensive guide on bridesmaid dress rentals!
Great for: Bridal parties on a budget.
How will you dress your bridal party? Let us know which of these bridesmaid dress ideas you love for your ladies in the comments! Jess Keys is a graduate of Indiana University, a Chicago transplant and Founder of The Golden Girl Blog. She was first bitten by the wedding bug at age 11, when she purchased her first Brides magazine in the Lexington, KY airport. She's partial to red lipstick, French Bulldogs, and a lover of the written word. You can often find her at the closest Dim Sum establishment, or exploring the Windy City with her camera in tow.