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So you’re looking for a bridesmaid dress, but you’re not looking to replicate that strapless chartreuse gown you wore to junior prom when you were basically a child. Yes, it’s tough out there. If you are a bridesmaid and you’ve wondered, “Who picked this color?” or, “Is this even a color?” — just know that you’re not alone. Solidarity is cool, right? Or maybe, you’re a diplomatic bride who wants her girl gang to sport the best modern bridesmaid dresses you can find because you’re a supportive and loving friend like that. (And because you’re a wise woman who knows that you should do unto others as you would have them do unto you when they walk down the aisle.)
Now that we’ve established that you’re someone who wants to look less Molly Ringwald at the end of Sixteen Candles and more Amal Clooney at the Met Ball — hey, a woman can dream — let’s talk about where to find great bridesmaid dresses. The completely modern, not too trendy, and decently affordable bridesmaid dress can feel like an elusive unicorn, but they’re definitely out there.
The pro tip of all pro tips? Give your bridesmaids flexibility. (And yes, if you’re a bridesmaid who had been relegated to “any chartreuse floor-length dress,” we’ve still got you.) If you’re a bride who wants her wedding to look like it took place after 2007, give your brides some options. The way to mitigate any of your friends’ questionable taste? Choose a great designer. (Or store! Not all dresses have to be wildy expensive.) Here’s where to find modern bridesmaid dresses your crew is sure to love.
Reformation is a brand, but more importantly, Reformation is a bastion of good taste. They take modern trends and make them simple and timeless. Their bridesmaid collection offers untraditional silhouettes in classic colors, but don’t be afraid to check out their other dresses as well. A lot of their midi dresses would make for great bridesmaid dresses — or even jumpsuits — your friends will actually be pumped to wear again.
Jenny Yoo bridesmaid dresses are sleek, romantic, and are incredibly size inclusive. These dresses are all available in sizes 0 though 24, with some available up to size 32. The flowy styles are a perfect fit for an outdoor occasion. Want to give your bridesmaids even more options? The “Nabi” is a convertible dress with straps that can transform the dress’s look.
You probably took a peek at BHDLN, Anthropologie’s bridal line, when you first set out to find your dress. What you might not have noticed was that they have a great array of bridesmaids dresses that come in a variety of styles, with a range of price tags, while all remaining incredibly modern looking. This is an especially good resource if you’re going for a dramatic, floor-length look.
If you really want to give your bridesmaids a modern look, stick to actual brands rather than bridal-only lines. Lulu’s is an incredibly budget-friendly place to find some really great bridesmaid dress options. Peruse their wedding guest dresses, or even just their patterned maxi dresses, and choose three or four options within your color palette for all of your bridesmaids to sift through. The best part? They won’t have to spend more than $100.
Looking for a modern bridesmaid dress that won’t cost you a week’s pay? It’s right in the name — ModCloth is a great site for cute and affordable dresses. You’ve probably bought a bathing suit or casual clothing on the site, but definitely check out the maxi dresses for your bridesmaids as well. Especially if you’re going a more casual, “pick-your-own” route. An added bonus? ModCloth has an excellent plus-size line.
Written by: Kimmy Foskett