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I was the matron-of-honor is two weddings a few years ago, one in February one in May. Needless to say my stress was high, my wallet was empty and though I have no regrets I was exhausted and broke for some time afterwards. Though both brides selected amazing bridesmaid dresses for both weddings...I have yet to wear either of them since. They're sitting in my closet- looking amazing- but one is too formal to wear to anything less than a black-tie event and the other is fitted from before I lost a little weight so it's not quite as flattering as it used to be. Plus each dress cost a pretty penny, and after shoes, matching jewelry and dress jackets were purchased (as both were winter weddings) the total was astounding (not to mention shower gifts, wedding gifts and bachelorette party!)
When choosing your maid's dresses there are a few new trends that can help make your bridal party save money, save the environment and have more fun. Maids who feel extremely comfortable in their dresses are more likely to dance at the wedding and smile in all the pictures.
Kate Harrison of The Green Bride Guide: How to Create an Earth-Friendly Wedding on Any Budget says ..."Having perfectly matched bridesmaids is falling out of fashion. Today there are many ways to create a unified look for your bridal party that won't hurt anyone's wallet or the environment. Instead of asking your maids to buy a new dress, let them wear something they already own in a generic color...or encourage them to buy a dress that has been worn before. Either option will save them a lot of money and will reduce waste generated by producing and shipping..."
The best way to pull this off is to not pick one color for your theme. This works for any season. Winter = whites, silver, navy blue. Spring = light yellows, greens, sky-blues, pinks. Summer = yellows, reds, aqua-blue, moss. Fall = browns, oranges, goldenrod, reds. Make sure the bouquets also reflect a myriad of colors as well and even the most mix matched dresses will seem beautifully coordinated- and your maids (and the environment) will thank you!
Images courtesy of Faye and Greer Blog