Should Your Bridesmaid Dresses Have Sleeves? (Guest Post)

Should Your Bridesmaid Dresses Have Sleeves?

Iowa wedding - Bridesmaid Dresses in a store front window

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The modern bride has so many options for her gown and bridal party that it is hard to choose. When the subject of the bridesmaid gowns comes up, the decision is often based on more than just fashion.

Some brides are happy to let the bridesmaid make her own choice. But traditionally, the bride decides the basic such as color, cut, length, and neckline. She must also choose if their gowns will have sleeves and if so, what type.


Why it matters

Religious Ceremonies

In some religious ceremonies, it is improper for women to have bare shoulders, low necklines, and plunging backs. The bride will follow her religious customs and she will expect the same from her bridal party. Even if the bridesmaid is not a religious person, she must show respect for the customs of the location of the wedding.


The Weather

You may think a strapless, short dress is adorable. However, if you live in an area that has harsh winters and it is mid-winter, your lovely bridesmaids are going to be shivering their lips will be blue.

If you want to have a wedding with those dresses, schedule it in a place and at a time when they are appropriate for the weather. If not, go for a dress with more coverage (and warmth). Even add a cute shawl or cape for outdoor photographs.


When you need sleeves, but it is just too hot

So maybe your wedding is very elegant, or you have a religious ceremony planned and you really need sleeves, but your bridesmaids are begging for sleeveless.  Worse, if forced to wear sleeves there could be some embarrassing perspiration spots on the dresses and the photos.



There are options that will give you to look of sleeves but the coolness needed for comfort. Ask your professional bridal experts for suggestions when shopping for bridesmaid dresses with sleeves. They will know how to help.

One example is the off the shoulder cap sleeve. It gives the illusion of sleeves but leaves the wearer cool. If you want to push the envelope a bit, try (small to mid-width) strap. They can be worn over the shoulder but if you prefer, wear them off the shoulder modestly.

If you want to compromise, there are other options. The bridesmaids can wear sleeveless gowns with round or square necklines, and wear a short, fuzzy sweater with them. The sweaters can be ¾ sleeves and feel free to embellish them with pearl buttons, and beads. However, they look really cute without embellishment. They can be removed after the ceremony for the reception.

Some bridesmaids are wearing light colored sleeveless gowns and adding a dark-colored lace top. The top should be long-sleeved and the hem should end at the waist. As for colors, think of a gray gown with a cream or red lace cover-up top. Sage green with coral or blush pink is another option.

If you want to add some fun and a make a major fashion statement, cover the shoulder area with an ostrich feathered bolero. They are stunning and if too pricey for the bridesmaids, consider one for yourself. They make a beautiful addition to any bridal gown.

The options are available. You just need to ask for help from the bridal professionals. They will find the right look for you.



Author Bio

Wendy Dessler

Wendy is a super-connector with Azazie who helps businesses with building their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. Wendy frequently writes about the latest wedding trends for My Wedding Tips.

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