How to choose bridesmaid dresses that complement the bride

Once you’ve chosen your dream wedding dress you might be thinking that the hard part is over, but there’s no challenge like finding bridesmaid dresses to complement your gown for the big day. Shopping for bridesmaid dresses isn’t easy, you’ve got to factor in multiple different body types, budgets, opinions, and preferences. 

When you add complementing your dress into the mix it can quickly become overwhelming and it’ll feel like you’ll never find the perfect dresses to complete the picture in your mind. Don’t worry, all is never lost! We’ve put together this guide to help you narrow down the ideal dresses that your bridesmaids will love and will work with your wedding dress too. 

Think about co-ordinating your dress style with the bridesmaids 

If complementing your wedding dress is an important factor for you when shopping for bridesmaid dresses you should keep every detail of it in your mind, especially everything related to the style. It would be a bit disastrous if your dress was vintage and traditional and your bridesmaids had very modern, fashion-forward style dresses. 

This doesn’t mean your bridesmaids need to look identical to you, there’s a fine line between complementing the wedding dress and copying it. After all, it’s still your wedding day and you should stand out as the bride. What we’re saying is if your dress is a certain style then you can choose bridesmaid dresses that fit within that bracket too. If your dress prioritises romance and princess elegance, then bridesmaid dresses with ruffled sleeves and a flowing whimsical fabric will work beautifully with that for example. This leads us on to our next important point… 

Avoid bridesmaid dresses that are too similar to yours 

This won’t apply to all brides as everyone is different and some might prefer to have their bridesmaids looking as similar as possible to them on the special day. However, for many brides who want to stand out at their wedding, you will want to take care when selecting bridesmaid dresses. You will of course have chosen your wedding dress because you love all the features it has, its style, colour, shape, fit, etc, so it wouldn’t be too surprising if you found yourself drawn to the same types of gowns when shopping for bridesmaid dresses. It’s easy to get caught up in all the excitement but you don’t want to reach a decision, get your bridesmaids on board, and have them pay for their dresses (or pay for them yourself), and then end up changing your mind because you get home and realise that the bridesmaid dresses are too much like yours. 

You’re the bride and it’s your wedding day, like the role of the bridesmaid themselves, their dresses are there to support yours, not mirror it exactly. An example of how you can avoid this is if your dress has one style of neckline then don’t choose bridesmaid dresses that share that same neckline, but instead look at similar necklines that offer that sense of connectivity without being too much like the bridal gown. 

Emphasise specific details of the dress 

If there’s certain elements on your wedding dress that you love, why not look at bridesmaid dresses that will complement those aspects? For example, if it’s made from a specific fabric like satin, choose satin for your girls’ dresses, if you’re wearing a colour that isn’t white, opt for colours that will work with the shade of your dress. Equally, if your dress is in a classic white and you don’t want bold colour dresses that will contrast yours too much, you can’t go wrong with stunning nude bridesmaid dresses

Make the most of accessories 

The dresses aren’t the only way you can make sure your bridesmaids complement your look on the wedding day. Accessories are a great way to tie everyone together and the best part is that they are extremely personal, so you can decide how much you want your bridesmaids look to complement yours. If the dresses are already quite similar you might not want to do too much similarity with the accessories. 

Alternatively, if the dresses are more contrasting, having the same or related accessories is a good way to bring everything together and create unison in the bridal party. One of the most useful accessories to achieve this is the bouquets. The flowers themselves or the colours in the bouquet can play a key part in how similar or different your bridesmaids look compared to the bride. For example, if you have pale peach bridesmaid dresses you will want to choose colours that will work with them and your bridal gown if you’re all having the same flowers. 


Hopefully this guide has been beneficial in helping you shop for bridesmaid dresses that will complement your wedding dress. Don’t be afraid to get creative and make the most of your shopping experience, it’s meant to be fun for you and your girls. 

At Maids to Measure we have a wide range of beautiful bridesmaid and maid of honour dresses for you to choose from in various styles, fabrics, and colours, so you’re sure to find your ideal dresses from us. Explore our extensive collections today and don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team if you have any questions.