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Beautiful Bridesmaids

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Style choices for your best girls

bridesmaids.jpgEvery woman knows the dreaded bridesmaid tale. We’ve either heard it or had it happen to us. As women, we take solemn oaths that when we are brides, we will never subject our girlfriends to the public humiliation of sea-foam green, frou-frou frills or oversize florals. No, we’ll choose something classic, elegant and fabulous — something that will stand the test of time.

What once may have been a dream (for anyone married in the ’80s, at least) is now a reality thanks to designers who have filled their showrooms with figure-friendly designs featuring understated florals, sumptuous shades and simple detailing.

Brides have begun to opt for the same color but different style of bridesmaid dress, allowing their bridesmaids to choose the one that flatters them best. One girl might be busty or hippy, another may have long legs and yet another may need a maternity gown! The realization that the same dress looks different on different women has given designers the idea to create halter, strapless, V-neck and boat-neck-style gowns all in the same hue and fabric. Stores all over New Orleans, such as Wedding Belles and With This Ring, offer this option.

Will they ever wear it again?
With years in the bridal business, Mimi Bowen of Mimi on Magazine Street knows what trends brides are looking for in bridesmaid gowns these days.

“More recently, there is a trend toward the tea-length-style gown,” Mimi says.

Color is also an important factor in choosing a bridesmaid dress. Everything shouldn’t be one color. Try to mix and match with the colors of your flowers and linens, and remember to keep in mind the colors of the season. Don’t pick a winter color for a summer wedding; match the color and style to the season.

“I’ve seen a lot of lavender, pale green in the summer and spring and a lot of navy and chocolate-brown in the winter and fall. I love the chocolate-brown because of its elegance,” Mimi says.

Dresses with clean lines and cuts are hot, hip and an item that your girls might actually wear again. Strapless gowns are always a sure thing when it comes to a no-brainer gown choice. “The trend is definitely strapless dresses,” Mimi says. “For wedding gowns as well.” The line is elegant and sophisticated, but shows enough skin without your girls feeling too bare.

Here’s the bottom line: When it comes to your bridesmaids’ gowns, the most important thing to remember is that simple elegance goes a long way. It’s always in style and will work with any figure or personality. Big sleeves, bright colors and oversize bows went out with the ’80s. Let’s leave them there