Attempt #2 - lengthy vent about bridesmaids and dresses . . .

I am so fustrated and need some advice BADLY! This may be a long vent so just bear with me please.


A little background - We are an encore wedding couple. Both of us were married before for a VERY long time (21 years for me). Neither of us had a wedding the first time either in a church or with our family present. Both of us are Catholic and went through all of the requirements to get married this time IN the church. We are very involved in our parish and absolutely LOVE our church. Both of us decided that getting married in our church and with family/friends present are important to us. Both families have given their blessings - as that they see that we are great together. Our priest is even excited about our wedding.


When I married the first time I was pregnant. My two sisters got on a soap box at that time and not only refused to attend the wedding they took it upon themselves to give me a very difficult time because I was pregnant and wanting to wear a wedding dress/have a wedding. They were so poisonous that eventually none of my siblings attended my wedding. I married in a small ceremony with very few people on my side but the only family I had there were my parents. I was broken hearted but my mother and my then groom got me through the planning and day.


Fast forward MANY years and I'm planning to marry my soulmate in our church and want my family to be there. When we started planning we decided upon four attendants on each side. Each of us chose my future sister in law as my MOH, one of my brothers as the best man, as bridesmaids I chose a good friend, neice and daughter and as groomsmen he chose a good friend, nephew and my son. We carefully chose these people because they love and support us and are closest to us.


Over the years I've had some healing time with my sisters and though we are much better than we were many years ago - I wouldn't call us "close". However having a wedding surrounded by family is important so I asked my two sisters to read during the Nuptual Mass. Both agreed but my youngest (and prettiest) sister kept pitching mini fits about being a bridesmaid. For the longest time I told her I didn't want a huge wedding party and that I couldn't in good conscience have one sister without my other sister be a bridesmaid. But in a moment of weakness (because my parents were present) I agreed to add both sisters. That is when my wedding planning nightmare began!


My younger sister married four years ago for the second time (her first marriage lasted 16 years and she was pregnant when she married but that is a story for another time). She didn't have either of her sisters as bridesmaids because she wanted a small bridal party and not have one sister without having the other. However - she DID have a huge, expensive and extravagant wedding.


My older sister just married off two of her four children last year and spent a boat load of money to do it. Because she planned two weddings last year she is now an expert on planning weddings and wedding style.


When we started planning our wedding in the church - we took the church guidelines to heart. They say that dresses should be modest; shoulders should be covered; backs should not be exposed and knees should be covered. I looked forever to find a dress that I liked that would suit those specifics. In the process I found inspiration from vintage weddings such as Audrey Hepburn:


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-1


I didn't really want that full of a gown but I did want a bateau neckline and A-line dress. I found this one that I love and that suits the church requirements. I may shorten it to be more Audrey-like but I haven't decided yet.


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-2


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-3


 


Anyway - to go along with this style I found several dresses through Alfred Sung that I like. Specifically these which I feel would look wonderful not only next to my dress but also within the look that I'm trying to acheive.


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-4


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-5


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-6


We all met in Atlanta this weekend looking at dresses. Three of my four bridesmaids were good with whatever style I chose. My neice was following the lead of my two sisters with whatever THEY wanted NOT what I wanted. My older sister poo-pooed my selections saying that none would look good on a big girl (she is much larger than any of us and has the taa-taas to match). She says if she hadn't just gone through it twice last year she wouldn't be so vocal. My younger sister kept wanting styles that were NOT what I wanted.


My younger sister pitched a fit and said she wants to wear this dress.


 


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-7


Both of my sisters say the above dress will suit the look that I am going for . . . but it will NOT. Besides it is a halter and does not meet the requirements set forth by the church.


Then they both decided that this dress would be a better choice . . . which I disagree with completely.


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-8


 


Finally they found this one which would be a compromise between what I want and what they want (a more flowy fabric):


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-9


But the last dress does NOT cover the knees. So I'm not sold on it yet.


 


As a last resort - I looked online and found this number that I think will suit everyone and that I actually LIKE but after the fiasco of this past weekend I'm not sure what to do.


I am so fustrated photo 3408169-10


THis dress comes up to 3X and I think it's fun, flirty and meets the church criteria. We could add color with the crinoline and I do like the pattern. The problem is that NONE of the bridesmaids have emailed me back about the possibility and now my older sister is saying she doesn't "have to be a bridesmaid" that she can just read instead.


Ugh! I am SO over this whole bridesmaid dress thing and wish I could demote BOTH sisters back to readers . . . but family is important to the both of us which makes me want to be a peace keeper.


The kicker of the whole thing is the blue dress above with the lines that I like and the fabric that they like is $225 and they want a cheaper dress. I can understand my older sister saying that but my younger sister who is an attorney? WTH?


Help! I need words of wisdom!

Posted on September 27, 2012 at 12:04 pm
Memphis_Bride
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Memphis_Bride

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(12) Comments

ellewinfrey
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04/19/2013
ellewinfrey

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Dresses are expensive especially bridesmaid dresses that most girls only wear once. I understand where you are coming from and them... Maybe you could offer to pay part of it? I personally wouldn't want to spend over 200 for a dress.

Or tell them to find a suitable alternative that you approve of in a price they feel comfortable paying.
Posted on September 27, 2012 at 12:18 pm
janandgerald
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I've been a bridesmaid and paid way more than $200.00 for a dress.But right now you need some sound advice a out family and hiw to deal with this problem. Maybe your other sisters will decide they rather do reading as well, but if not maybe a compromise dress that you all like that has your Audrey feel and complys with the church. Good luck!!
Posted on September 27, 2012 at 12:35 pm
kplusd
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09/08/2012
kplusd

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you have EVERY right to be frustrated. espically with the stink they caused your first wedding. i sometimes cant wrap my head around how catty grown women can be! i would take a deep breath, sit them BOTH down at the same time, and say something along the lines of:


"(insert FI's name) and i are both very passionate about our church and are looking forward to being married there with all of the people we love most in attendence. with that being said, it is VERY important to both of us, and namely the church, that we follow guidlines with the attire. i completely understand that all of my BMs have different styles and body types, but for this ONE day, i really need you to comply to what i would like, and what i invision. i am also completely understanding of the fact that this may make you uncomfortable, and i would not be upset if you would just rather read. either way, id love for you to be a part of my day, but i am getting frustrated by how hard it is for people to agree on a decision that is ultimatley up to me"


and then just see what they have to say! they may think that they can get away with being snippy toward you, and just need a reality check! if you sit them down, they will probably initally gang up on you, but its better to get it all out at once! or you could email them and then give them time to cool off and realllly think about what they want to do. they might like the fact that you are giving them the "power" to choose their job for your wedding, after which they may be easier to deal with because they will feel as if they got to make a "decision". GL and let us know how it goes if you talk to/email them!!

Posted on September 27, 2012 at 12:53 pm
Memphis_Bride
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Memphis_Bride

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@ Elle - My vent wasn't about their desire not to pay over $200 for a dress.  I wanted and tried to keep the cost of the dresses LESS than $150 and the ones I chose would have done that.  The dress that THEY chose is the one that costs OVER $200.  In fact the dress that I love the most is $112 but THEY refuse to even entertain the idea of wearing it. My point of venting about the cost of the dress is that the sister doing most of the belly aching is an attorney earning a healthy salary and the one who was the most vocal.  In my mind - don't pitch a bitch and insist on one particular gown then snub your nose at the cost.


@ Jan - You are exactly right. I'm looking for sound advice about what the heck to do.  I can't figure out why in the world anyone would push themselves into being a bridesmaid then belittle the bride about the dress options that the BRIDE likes and desires for her wedding.  I honestly wanted to tell them to go back to being readers BUT that would hurt feelings and piss them off to the point that perhaps they wont attend the wedding.  I don't want to cause waves but WTH?


 


By the way - the black and white number that is posted last only costs $124 which is WAY less than $200.


 

Posted on September 27, 2012 at 12:56 pm
janandgerald
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janandgerald

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Family. is there away you can sit them down and talk to them. You are not going to like this but you may have to put your foot down and say this is the dress if you really don't like the dress I understand ,but I really want you to be a part of my wedding so would you please do the reading because it is really important to me. Also by doing this you could wear what you would like.
Posted on September 27, 2012 at 1:16 pm
aggiebride
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02/04/2012
aggiebride

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oh goodness, that is so hard! I actually had trouble with the dresses too. We CHOSE two dress styles, and everyone agreed upon them, and then only two ended up buying them... and only one ended up recieveing her dress. -.- It all worked out in the end, but stick to your guns. It is your wedding and despite the fits they are throwing, YOU are the bride. Here is a picture of my sister in law in the full length version of one of the Alfred Sung dresses: they looked AMAZING on!


oh goodness that is photo 3408241-1


She also felt uncomfortable with her shoulders bare, so she wore the little cardi- maybe something like that could be a compormise during the ceremony?


Good luck! <3

Posted on September 27, 2012 at 1:41 pm
mrsharris2012
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09/02/2012
mrsharris2012

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I'm sorry but this is YOUR day! If they want to be in the wedding they wear what YOU like! Simple as that. Women can get very catty around this time for some reason but just stick to your guns. If you have a certain look and criteria you want to go with then do it! Sit them down and say hey this is what i want and thats it. If they choose not to be in the wedding over your dress choice then sweetie they weren't meant to be in the wedding!
Posted on September 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm
Uhlease
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09/02/2012
Uhlease

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Gosh this sounds so horrible to deal with! I'm sorry that it seems like you've had problems with your sisters regarding both of your weddings...it may stem from some other problems. :( I think a good compromise is that last dress you chose. Like you said it's great that you are compromising iwth them, but if they continue to butt heads, then maybe just ask them to do readings instead. I honestly don't understand people sometimes. Hopefully your niece isn't learning all of this awful behavior.

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 2:48 am
rebecca_bell
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imho.. I would tell them it has become too much for you to handle everyones opinioon and they are really stressing you out about the subject.  Give them a couple options of what YOU want, and what will work with the church. (Since that is a huge part of this)


AND.. If they dont like it, they dont have to be a BM.  But that is the requirements and THATS IT!


Just my two cents though  :)

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 3:09 am
Memphis_Bride
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Thank you ladies - Can I ask which of the above dresses you think go with my vintage theme?

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 9:47 am
janandgerald
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The Dessy's that you picked at first. They so gio with your theme. The neckline is perfect.
Posted on September 28, 2012 at 10:10 am
karenrose
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10/20/2013
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I am having my five bridesmaids wear Alfred Sung styles and they all have very different body types, including some plus-sized BMs (both are usually around size 16, but the one who recently had a baby when we tried dresses on was a 18-20).  The samples were a little small for some of the styles, but in general they still looked pretty good on them.  I must say, though, the ones with the pleated skirts are more flattering than the bunched skirt.


Also, I had a friend try on the Alfred Sung dress that is similar to the one your younger sister wanted to wear (with the ruffled collar), and it just looks ridiculous and unflattering.  It looks great in photos, but it is definitely not for everyone.


Would you be against having your BMs wear a shrug or bolero?  It would make it easier to find something a little flattering.  We found that the most flattering Alfred Sung style was this:


I am having my photo 3409142-1


If you are concerned about the price, you can order the dresses online from NetBride or Brides of California/Perfect Bridal for a much better price.  I personally am ordering from Perfect Bridal because I live by their actual store.  HTH!

Posted on September 28, 2012 at 11:18 am

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