How to style a bump with maternity bridesmaid dresses

If one of your bridesmaids has just broken the news that she's pregnant, it goes without saying that you're over the moon, but it's only natural to feel a little nervous – where does this leave you?

No doubt you will have lots of questions, is there such a thing as a maternity bridesmaid dress or will you need to have something altered? And will she still match the rest of the bridal party or will you need to start your shopping again? In this blog, we'll help you style your mum-to-be bestie in a way that works for you both.

Choosing the right dress styles

There used to be just one option for pregnant bridesmaids and it resembled something that looked like a tent! Thankfully, those days are long gone and now there is much more choice, all with flattering silhouettes for a growing baby bump.

When you're shopping for bridesmaid dresses, look for something with an adjustable or elastic waist (or even no waist at all). This gives your bridesmaid the room she needs to grow without having to make expensive alterations along the way. Don't forget there's often a long wait between ordering the dress and your big day, so build in flexibility.

A popular choice during pregnancy is the empire waist line – not only can it accommodate a growing bump, but it's usually finished with a full skirt in a soft, floaty fabric that combines comfort with stylish glamour.

For inspiration check out our maternity bridesmaid dresses in dusty blue.

If your bridesmaid wants to show off her bump, a body con dress or a sheath dress is not out of the question. The best material for this is either a jersey fabric, mesh, or elasticated lace – and don't forget that the lining will need to be stretchy too.

If you do opt for a fitted dress, we recommend choosing a suitable maternity version to get the sizing right. This isn't the kind of dress you can buy in a bigger size and hope it fits. To flatter the curves in just the right way, it needs to be designed for a baby bump.

Just because they're a bit roomier doesn't mean your chosen maternity dress has to be a floor-length maxi dress. Knee-length, tea, or midi are all flattering lengths on pregnant women, and paired with the right accessories they can be just as glamorous.

Keep it uniform or go with mismatched?

If your plan was to have your wedding party in matching dresses then your vision could still be a reality. Lots of designers offer maternity versions of their standard fit dresses, so it is possible to have all your bridesmaids in the same colour and style dress.

For the more adventurous, having a pregnant bridesmaid is a great excuse to design a mismatched bridal party.  Simply choose a colour or a colour palette and let your girls choose a style of dress to suit their body shape.

The key to mismatched dresses is to have something that ties it all together, and if colour is your matching element, then be specific. Dress designers all have a different take on what you might consider to be the same colour, so set the boundaries early on with clear guidance on the shade or the palette you'd like them to stick to.

The ombré effect is still trending and if you're brave enough, mismatched blocks of vibrant colours are a really fun way to reflect your bridesmaid's personalities.

There's a lot to be said for letting your bridesmaids choose their own style of dress. Being surrounded by comfortable women on your big day will surely put your mind at ease, as they take on their role with confident, happy smiles.

Top three from Maids to Measure

To give you some inspiration, we've picked our three favourite dresses suitable for your pregnant bridesmaid from our collection here at 'bridesmaid HQ' in London.

Grace Cloud Blue Dress, £175.00

Dusty blue maternity bridesmaid dresses, like this one, are elegantly timeless. The cinched empire waist on this dress is perfect for covering a growing bump and is finished with a long, fluid skirt. The flattering V-neckline across the front and back is well suited to a bigger bust, and the light-weight chiffon makes this dress easy to wear.  

Also available in: cream soda and misty green.

Amy Floaty Dove Grey Dress, £175.00

This is one of our most popular designs and it's easy to see why. The full skirt in soft chiffon has a lightweight, fluid feel, but it's the small train and elegant bow on the reverse of this dress that makes it fit for a special occasion. Grey is the new 'neutral' of the fashion industry, and grey maternity bridesmaid dresses are trending right now.

Also available in: pink, blue, burgundy, cream, mauve, green and peach.

Heidi Cream Soda Dress, £150

A firm favourite as a maternity option, the Heidi wrap dress in a soft crepe fabric has a luxuriously lightweight feel to it. The V-neckline and waterfall hem are suitably flattering for all body types, but what makes this dress different is the sleeves. The Heidi is the ideal choice for any woman who prefers to wear a dress with sleeves.

Also available in: blossom pink, cloud blue, and misty green

These versatile dresses are designed to flatter bridesmaids of all shapes and sizes – pregnant or not. So, you can opt to have all your girls in the same dress or go with a mismatched theme. And at Maids to Measure, you can shop by colour, so once you've picked a shade, your bridesmaids can choose their own style of dress.

When you're browsing our selection of maternity bridesmaid dresses, remember to have fun. You have two reasons to celebrate now, and who better to share your day with than your most treasured friend who all too soon will be counting on your help!