We've all heard...or seen...the horror stories associated with bridesmaid dresses. Whether it's from movies, stereotypes or personal experience, bridesmaid dresses have always been a source of potential drama + tension in the history of wedding planning.
How on earth was it ever decided (let alone made tradition) that it would be a good idea to stuff a variety of women, therefore a variety of body types, with a variety of budgets + variety of comfort levels into a single dress that is often not even going to be worn again...?
Now, it isn't exactly a new trend to allow bridesmaids to pick their own dresses, or to have only loose guidelines for what they're to wear, but nonetheless I'd like to share my reasons from a photographer's view. My view is that it's not only a great option for keeping everyone happy, but it can also have a significant effect on your photos!
1. You've got enough on your plate
Easy as that. It doesn't matter if you're eloping or throwing an extravagant three day event...planning a wedding takes time + energy. The less time you have to spend searching for the "traveling dress" that somehow makes everyone happy, the more time you can spend looking for your own killer wardrobe...crushing out your guest list...or at the freakin' beach not planning. Yay!
2. Fit, comfort + individuality
This is probably the biggest, most obvious reason this trend has caught on - and in this category are mini categories...here they are:
- Style -
In the same way that we know "One Size Fits All" is a joke + a myth, "One Style Fits All" doesn't always work out so well either. For example...I have very short legs + a longer torso, which comes into play with almost every piece of clothing I
I'm short, so I have to shop in the petite section...despite my torso being
long, straps are typically too loose - you get the point. A single style dress usually means lots of alterations...which brings me to my next point.
If you've been in a wedding before, you'll know that it usually comes with some form of monetary obligation (even if it's small).
Leaving the dress choice up to each girl gives them the option to treat themselves to a fancy new dress, find something secondhand or even wear a dress they might already own!
That way no one is put in an
unnecessary + uncomfortable situation...
...cause no bank account number should limit your ladies from feeling badass while celebrating you!
- Individuality -
Your girls aren't clones, don't dress them as such. Style guidelines such as color palette + fabric keep everyone looking cohesive, while allowing them to be themselves and wear something they will likely wear again!
Everything I've mentioned above contributes heavily to this particular point - and the one that will affect your photos most - confidence. Nothing shows through photos more. Whether you're oozing with it or lacking your edge, it comes through the photos in the form of body language, positioning, facial expressions + sometimes altogether absence.
You don't need to have modeling experience to kill it in front of the camera, you just have to be yourself, and be fully present in experiencing the day. Don't let something as simple as your wardrobe hinder that!
4. Visual texture
Since I got glasses in seventh grade, and again when I got LASIK after college, I have always been absolutely obsessed with texture. So it shouldn't be a surprise that I always recommend incorporating a variety of textured fabrics to your decor, wardrobe...you name it!
Silk, cotton, chiffon, lace...they all photograph completely differently. They way they catch light + shadows, how they lay when draped or flow in the wind. Visual texture adds a beautiful element of detail to photos that I simply cannot get enough of!