These days, the whole idea that every bridesmaid has to wear the exact same dress in the same color is long gone. Instead, bridal parties are sporting gowns in different styles and even various shades. After all, not every woman is built the same, so why dress them all the same? Allowing your bridesmaids to choose their own dresses can make them feel just as confident as you standing up at that altar. Here’s how to give them direction for choosing their complete ensemble – dress, shoes jewelry and all – while still giving them a choice:

Search for dresses on your own
Head to the store by yourself first and go check out a variety of styles, colors and fabrics to figure out which cuts might complement each of your bridesmaids’ figures best. This will help you get a good idea of what will fit your wedding style without constantly giving your girls your opinion every step of the way. You can also search through Pinterest to get an idea of what you love and don’t love.

Set general guidelines
To ensure that the whole party looks coordinated and confident on your big day, set a few guidelines first. Offer your bridesmaids a fabric, designer, color or color family and length of dress that they can choose from. This will make it much easier for them to narrow in on a dress, and you can be sure that it fits your wedding vision. For example, these lovely ladies all chose gowns in the same fabric and opted for different color pastels. Do the same with jewelry and shoes. Maybe they all have to look for silver teardrop earrings and heels in a neutral color.

Share your vision
You can’t expect your girls to read your mind when it comes to what style and color of dress you would like them to wear (although some of them probably could). Take all of the guessing out of the equation by showing them pictures of what you’re looking for. Create a Pinterest page of all your favorite style of dresses and share them with your girls – they will love being part of the process.

Make sure that every girl is comfortable
You may love the strapless style dress, but not every bridesmaid may feel comfortable wearing that on your big day. It’s important to be reasonable and find a balance between what you want and what makes your girls feel most comfortable and confident. Ask around to see if there are any styles that one of your bridesmaids absolutely wouldn’t want to wear.

Are you having your bridesmaids wear different dresses? Share your thoughts with us!