How to Style

Wedding Stylist Chelsea Hobbs from The Wedding Suite at our Downtown Seattle store offers ten tips for dress shopping that every mother of the bride can cherish.

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Searching for the perfect bridesmaid dresses for a black-tie affair? Look no further than the new Jim Hjelm styles, like this floor-sweeping, one-shoulder black dress.

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Jim Hjelm Occasions One-Shoulder Dress | Robert Rose Teardrop Earrings | Robert Rose Jeweled Cuff Bracelet | David Tutera ‘Joy’ Sandal

Soft chiffon drapes the bodice and shoulder in a unique asymmetrical shape and overlays an A-line skirt. With an emerald shoe and a set of black and iridescent rainbow jewelry (think bridesmaid gift!), the look is elegant and modern. We can see ‘maids in this style with dark red bouquets, lined up next to a bride in a wedding dress accented with a black sash and a groom in a classic tux.

For more bridesmaid dress ideas—and ideas for how to wear them after the wedding—check out our bridesmaid shop online or make an appointment with a free wedding stylist in your local Wedding Suite!

 

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It was love at first sight when our buyers first spotted lace bridesmaid dresses from Amsale at the latest Bridal Fashion Week. Now we’re bringing those styles to you, via lovely maxi dresses in delicate floral lace.

We are especially smitten with this style, an alternative to a strapless dress, with pretty lace straps that veer into a V shape in the back. The deep purple color (aptly called ‘Raisin’) seems fitting for a fall or winter wedding, so we styled it here with darker accents in pewter and black—like these extra-long, moody Alexis Bittar earrings and some sassy lace sandals from Ivanka Trump.

  Amsale Pleated Lace Sweetheart Dress | Alexis Bittar ‘Miss Havisham’ Linear Earrings | Menbur ‘Vintage Bride’ Clutch | Ivanka Trump ‘Haizel’ Sandal

Love this idea? Shop bridesmaid dresses by fabric for more lace styles, or browse more dresses from Amsale and consider mixing fabrics like chiffon and lace!

You can also get help from a free wedding stylist by making an appointment at your nearest Wedding Suite!

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“I want a bridesmaid dress that can be worn again after the wedding.” How many times have you heard this, or even thought it yourself? We hear you loud and clear: This is a big deal to both brides and bridesmaids alike!

We also know that it helps to get a little inspiration on how to wear a dress again and again. How can you turn it into an outfit for work, for a date or for a night out with friends?

To offer some ideas, we teamed up with one of our favorite wedding stylists and bloggers: Summer Watkins, aka Lady Grey, of Grey Likes Weddings. Working with three popular bridesmaid dresses—a Monique Lhuillier ruched sheath dress, an Alfred Sung structured satin dress and a flowy chiffon Jenny Yoo dress—we styled each look for the wedding and beyond.

Introducing Wear Now, Wear Later! Click through to our site to see details about the dress and styling items in each look.

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Read on for our exclusive interview with Lady Grey:

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The Wedding Suite: Summer, you are rocking it in the wedding world with great ideas and beautifully styled photo shoots. How did you get your start?

Summer Watkins: In college, I worked part time for a floral designer, and that job planted the seed of my love for weddings and design. As a result of the skills I picked up, I was asked to do the flowers for all of my friends’ weddings. One thing led to another, and after I started the blog, I received similar requests for styling! Eventually, that led to wardrobe styling, which is actually my favorite genre! It’s so much fun, creating looks for different seasons and themes!

The Wedding Suite: What is your favorite part of working in the wedding business?

SW: The never-ending possibilities! Weddings combine all the best things from every world: fashion, food, mixology, florals, interiors… it never gets boring!

The Wedding Suite: Totally agree. OK, so how many times have you been a bridesmaid? Do you have any best or worst dress stories for us?

SW: I’ve been a bridesmaid seven or eight times. None of the dresses were horrible because—duh—I got to help pick them out! I always feel at my most gorgeous and confident when I’m in a dress of my own choosing, so brides, let your ‘maids have an opinion, and they will be so much happier!

The Wedding Suite: What are your tips for wearing a bridesmaid dress again after the wedding?

SW: My simplest tips are adding layers and jewelry. Think about layers that you’d wear every day: a scarf, a blazer or leather jacket. A collared shirt under a dress makes it look like a jumper. A sweater over a dress makes it look like a skirt. Add tights and boots, and no one will ever know it was a bridesmaid dress.

Next, think jewelry and accessories: A statement necklace or a belt can make a big difference. Although you may wear more delicate pieces for the wedding itself, you can wear chunkier, heavier pieces with the dress later.

Finally, you can always alter the dress as well: Make a long dress short or remove the sleeves!

The Wedding Suite: We know you just got married yourself (because we stalk you on Instagram). Huge congrats! Any tips as a recent bride on picking dresses for your ‘maids?

SW: My tip for brides is to relax a little more. Let your gals choose from a few options, so they feel comfortable. And don’t be afraid to mix it up: A few different hues from the same palette can end up being so pretty!

We couldn’t agree more! Shop more bridesmaid dresses online or make an appointment with a free Wedding Stylist for help outfitting your wedding party—or just for freshening up that old dress you already have!

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New bridesmaid styles from designer Lela Rose are here! We’re falling in love with the soft silk chiffon and drapey silhouettes of these three dresses, which come in dusty shades of plum, rose and lavender. Today, we’re sharing not just one but three ideas on how to accessorize for different wedding destinations and themes.

For a downtown affair: Statement earrings in mixed metals, plus neutral—but glam—accessories take the light pastel shades from sweet to chic.

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Lela Rose Bridesmaid Draped Chiffon Dress in Suede Rose | Alexis Bittar ‘Elments – Jardin de Papillon’ Earrings | Whiting & Davis Crossbody Bag | Vince Camuto ‘Wessi’ Sandal in Gold

For a garden party: A floral headband in rosy shades, paired with heels and a gold and nude bracelet, top off this romantic maiden look.

Lela Rose Bridesmaid Draped Chiffon Dress in Smashing | Whichgoose ‘Paradigm’ Headband | Melinda Maria ‘Jessica’ Bangle | Jimmy Choo ‘Lottie’ Sandal in Nude

For a beach bash: Take this maxi gown to a destination wedding with mother of pearl accents, like these chandelier earrings and colorful clutch. Don’t forget sparkly flats for the sand!

Lela Rose Bridesmaid Draped Chiffon Dress in Taupe | Judith Jack ‘Amore’ Earrings | Rafé New York ‘Maryanne’ Minaudiere | Nina ‘Keegan’ Sandal in Ivory

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A fit-and-flare silhouette, a cute cut-out in back, a neat side bow: these are a few of our favorite things about this new Isaac Mizrahi New York silk mikado dress. But that’s not all….

It also comes in six other colors, making it a match for many wedding color schemes. The pleated skirt makes it sweet, and the polished fabric makes it chic—especially when dressed up with sleek accessories.

We love the pop of red in a slim patent clutch, and ladylike-yet-glam gold pumps. Match the bow on the dress with a stack of sparkly kate spade new york bangles and you’re ready to make the bride proud—and also look great on the dance floor!

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Isaac Mizrahi New York Mikado Fit & Flare Dress | kate spade new york ‘skinny mini’ bow bangle | Stuart Weitzman ‘Raz’ Bag | kate spade new york ‘licorice too’ pump

Shop other bridesmaid dresses from Isaac Mizrahi and more of our best brands online, or connect with a free Wedding Stylist to help your ‘maids find looks they love too!

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Tulle is one of our favorite fabrics for wedding dresses, as it’s soft, ethereal and feminine (like in these Roses by Reem Acra gowns.) So it’s no surprise that we’re loving this tulle bridesmaid dress by ML Monique Lhuillier. Exclusive to Nordstrom, this ruched sheath has a super-flattering sweetheart neckline and off-the-shoulder “wrap” sleeves. With an open back, it gives the look of a shoulder topper, but it’s all one piece!

In our styling, the cool slate color is accented by a new sparkler by kate spade new york, a brocade clutch with hints of gold and lavender patent sandals. A gorgeous bridesmaid option—and totally re-wearable for post-wedding events!

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ML Monique Lhuillier Bridesmaids Tulle Dress | kate spade new york ‘baguette bridal’ necklace | Nina Floral Brocade Clutch | Charles David ‘Karis’ Sandal

 Want more bridesmaid dress ideas? Search by fabric, by color or by length!

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We are swooning over printed bridesmaid dresses, especially in bright florals that feel summery and flirty! This one-shoulder chiffon dress, called ‘Rhea’ by Donna Morgan, fits the bill.

It could work for a full group of bridesmaids, or as a special dress for a maid of honor, paired with other shades of solid blue and green for a bigger bridal party. We see it in a garden or beach setting with a single-shade bouquet.

We mixed neutral gold and nude accessories to bring out the hints of yellow in this bold dress, with ankle-strap sandals, drop earrings and a sparkly, jungle-themed clutch!

Donna Morgan ‘Rhea’ Print Dress | Anna Beck ‘Gili’ Drop Earrings | Tasha Crane Clutch | MICHAEL Michael Kors ‘Karlie’ Pump

 

 

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The Little White Dress. You know we love it. We think a bride should wear white as many times as she can, so why NOT rock a LWD for a shower, bachelorette party, rehearsal and reception? You may only wear your wedding dress once, but the great thing about these short, sweet dresses is that they are totally wearable again and again!

Here are a few of our current favorite short white dresses, styled up for bridal events. Have a favorite look? Tell us, and then pin it on your wedding board (you know you have one!).

HeroJill Stuart Embroidered Mesh Fit & Flare Dress | Valentino Couture Bow Pump | kate spade new york earrings | Cara Veil Hair Comb

Sue Wong Embellished Cap Sleeve Dress | Menbur Floral Minaudiere | Jimmy Choo ‘Nova’ Pump

Jill Stuart Embroidered Organza Fit & Flare Dress | Blue by Betsey Johnson ‘Gown’ Sandal | Necklace similar to Nina ‘Acacia’ Necklace | Expressions NYC Caged Clutch

Shop more short white dresses online, or make an appointment with a free wedding stylist to help you get your best looks for all your bridal events!

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This brand new dress from ML Monique Lhuillier Bridesmaids is so fresh and pretty, we just HAD to style it and share with you. With its ruched sweetheart neckline and floaty skirt, it can be dressed up for a modern affair, down for a beachy soirée, or anywhere in between.

We took one look at the soft blush color and knew it would look perfect with this floral headpiece by Whichgoose (from our Etsy + Nordstrom Presents: Weddings collection) for a romantic, fairytale maiden look.

The picture is completed with a vintage-inspired bracelet from Nina and neutral metallic Badgley Mischka heels. Just add a dashing man on a white horse!

ML Monique Lhuillier Long Chiffon Bridesmaid Dress | Whichgoose ‘Paradigm’ Pink Bud Headband | Nina ‘Hallie’ Faux Pearl Bracelet | Badgley Mischka ‘Bessie’ Sandal

Want a gorgeous white Monique Lhuillier dress to go along with this bridesmaid look? Browse our Bliss Monique Lhuillier lookbook with eight NEW gowns!

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