Traditionally, there was a strict list of who purchases gowns in what order. While this timeline is very specific, the thing to remember about your modern wedding is that it is YOURS. Some brides may be closer to their step mother than their own mother. The groom’s mother might have passed away and his grandmother helped to raise him. Just as unique as your family and friends are, so is your bridal party.
Bridal Party Gown Purchase Checklist:
- The Bridal Gown is the first dress purchased for a wedding. This sets the overall tone for everyone else’s attire for the day, all the way from length and color to formality and styling.
- Bridesmaids should purchase their gowns second. This sets the color palette for the wedding in stone. If the bride is going to go with a specific shade of pink, the other members wouldn’t want to choose a gown that could clash.
- The Mother of the Bride would be next to purchase her gown. She should purchase a gown that compliments the bridesmaids’ color and style, but doesn’t match exactly. The only way a mother of the bride would wear a short length gown is if the bridesmaids also wear shorter dresses. The MOB’s dress should be longer than the bridesmaids’.
- The Mother of the Groom is traditionally the last to purchase a gown. She should communicate with the Bride and her mother to ensure her gown flows with the overall wedding party. However, her dress doesn’t match anyone. The Mother of the Groom’s dress should also match the length of the Mother of the Bride.
- Grandmothers of both the Bride and Groom are often included as part of the wedding procession. They should be kept in the loop on what colors are appropriate for them to wear, as well as the formality of their attire, but there is not necessarily a certain time they should be shopping and purchasing a gown.
- If the Bride or Groom have a Stepmother, she is traditionally considered an honored guest at the wedding, but not a part of the bridal party. Her attire should be somewhere between the formality of the wedding guests and the Mother of the Bride and Groom.