Tips for Choosing Your Bridesmaids Dress Colors

Are you in the process of choosing your bridesmaids dress colors? If you’re currently planning your wedding and you’ve reached this part of your to-do list, you may have already run into a few issues. After all, choosing your bridesmaids dresses and colors can prove a tricky task. Do the dresses flatter your bridesmaids? Will the colors complement the decor, flowers, and other elements of the wedding? Are the bridesmaid dresses beautiful? While it’s easy to feel overwhelmed at the outset, don’t let your anxiety get the best of you. We’ve put together a collection of helpful tips for choosing your bridesmaids dress colors that will help you narrow your palette and make the bridal party happy as well.

Tips for Choosing Your Bridesmaids Dress Colors

  1. Get Inspired
  2. Choose the Dress Before You Decide on a Color
  3. Check Out Swatches to Build a Palette
  4. Mix and Match Your Colors
  5. Consider the Environment
  6. Build on Your Everyday Preferences
  7. Phone a Friend

Get Inspired

choosing your bridesmaids dress colors bouquets

If you’re trying to choose your bridesmaid dress colors and you’re unsure where to start, you can look for inspiration in some expected and unexpected sources. First, a quick Google search will yield top-ranked results, hopefully based on people’s good tastes. You can also jump on Pinterest and browse your topic of interest, or in this case, bridesmaids dress colors. Beyond Google and Pinterest, however, you can look at other elements you’re considering for the wedding, such as the flowers. Nature is great at putting together complementary color palettes, and the bouquets or centerpieces you’re looking to build may hold the answer for bridesmaids dress colors. Others have used favorite items in their household as inspiration for choosing a color scheme.

Choose the Dress Before You Decide on a Color

choosing your bridesmaids dress colors cicinia options
Photo by Cicinia

If you realize that you’re gravitating toward a particular designer or boutique, you might save yourself a bit of stress from the color-picking game and look to see what options the designer has made available. If the color options are limited, this will greatly reduce the amount of time you spend worrying about choosing your bridesmaids dress colors.

On the other hand, if you haven’t yet found a dress, perhaps you can begin your search here. Specialized bridesmaid dress designers like Cicinia offer numerous options with a variety of silhouettes, necklines, hemlines, fabrics, and of course, colors, among others. The styles featured on the designer’s site may also influence your color choice, and you’ll have the comfort of knowing the color you like is available.

Check Out Swatches to Build a Palette

mix match bridesmaids dresses
Image by Lin and Jirsa

Similar to the prepping phase of painting a room (or several), it can be helpful to seek out color swatches to get some ideas for putting together a color scheme for bridesmaids dresses. Hopefully, you’ll be able to get your hands on actual fabric swatches in the materials you’re considering for your dress. This will give you a truer representation of the color in action. Or, if you can manage it, make some appointments and visit a couple shops to try on options in your desired color range. Doing so will allow you to see if the color wears as well as you imagined.  To build out your pallet, we recommend using Adobe Kuler, a free tool that provides color combination ideas.

adobe kuler mix match
Use Adobe Kuler for Color Combination Ideas!

Use the “60-30-20” Rule

If you’ve never heard of the “60-30-20 Rule,” don’t worry, you’re not alone. Basically, this rule will help you limit your color palette to three colors: a primary color, a secondary color, and an accent color. The primary color gets used across 60% of the wedding day, which includes use in bridesmaids dresses, groomsmen attire, invites, and other various bits of decor. The secondary color, meanwhile, should only be used in 30% of wedding day elements, including flowers, decor, and other accessories. Lastly, the accent color will show up in 20% of the wedding day’s design, typically in flowers and other highlights.

Mix and Match Your Dresses & Colors

classic bridesmaids photo jason vinson
Image by Jason Vinson

Unlike in days of old, it’s perfectly acceptable to mix and match your bridesmaids dress styles and colors. Just as each member of your bridal party is unique, so too can be their dresses.

Mixing and matching your bridesmaids dresses can benefit your bridal party in a number of ways. First, allowing your bridesmaids to individualize the dress will allow them to find a silhouette that flatters their body type. After all, one fashion does not necessarily fit all. Furthermore, the dress they choose can also serve to highlight their individual style, which should allow them to feel more comfortable throughout the event. This can go a long way in getting better wedding photos, believe it or not. The more we feel like ourselves and have confidence in our appearance, the more authentic and upbeat our images will be.

Here are some tips on how to mix and match your bridesmaids dresses.

Mix and Match Option 1: Choose the Same Color for Different Dresses

choosing your bridesmaids dress color mixed option

This option for choosing your bridesmaids dress colors is pretty self explanatory, really. Let your bridesmaids choose their own dress style so long as they wear the dress in the color you’ve chosen. This look creates a nice uniform appearance while still allowing your party to express themselves in unique dresses.

Mix and Match Option 2 for Choosing Your Bridesmaids Dress Colors: Pick the Same Dress in Different Colors

choosing your bridesmaids dress color mixed colors
Photo by Lin & Jirsa Photography

Take the previous option and flip it. This time around, your bridesmaids will wear the same dress, but in slightly different colors. More often than not, the dress colors will fall within the same family or color hue. This option allows for a little bit of variety while maintaining a more cohesive look.

Mix and Match Option 3: Mix Both the Style and Color of the Bridesmaids Dresses

mixed options
Photo by SLR Lounge

In this third option for mixing and matching bridesmaid dresses, you’ll find the most variation. Both the dresses and their colors can vary. However, it’s important to note that the dresses should not deviate too far from one another in either regard. In other words, the dress length, color/pattern, or other design features (neckline, fabric, and so on) should remain somewhat consistent so that there’s still cohesion between the group. Your bridesmaids can also use certain accessories, like belts, necklaces, or even flower bouquets, to tie everything together.

Consider the Environment

Chances are you’ll have chosen a venue and time of year to get married before you get to choosing your bridesmaids dress colors. These earlier decisions can help you pick a style and color that will work well with the weather, vibe, and venue-based colors of your wedding day. For example, let’s say you’re planning a spring or summer wedding in a beach or desert environment. Something from the pastel family, like mint green bridesmaid dresses, will vibe particularly in these locations and times of year. If the weather’s warmer, opt for a shorter dress style in chiffon, which will help keep your bridal party comfortable.  Is it a beach wedding?  Is it a chic downtown city wedding?  Is a rustic boho wedding?  The type of venue and the decor you choose to style your wedding should factor in.   Here are a few color combinations and general rules to follow.  Of course, rules are meant to be broken, so feel free to get creative and do what fits your desired look.

  • Beach Weddings – Beach weddings often go well with blues, teals, pastels and other light colors.
  • City Weddings – Golds, sequins, blacks, reds, and other “red carpet” like colors look great with city weddings.
  • Boho, Barnyard, Nature-oriented Weddings – Earth tones like greens, tans, browns, and pastels look great with boho weddings.
Pastels and Boho Are a Great Combo

Build on Your Everyday Preferences

Unless you work from home, and maybe even then, you probably get dressed not long after you wake up each morning. What might the clothes in your closet have to say about the direction you take your bridesmaids dresses? You can always look to your own personal fashion preferences to inform your wedding choices. Ask yourself the following question, and then use your answer to kick off your search for the perfect bridesmaids dresses: “An adjective that best describes my personal style is…”

Phone a Friend

phone a friend

At the end of the day, if you’re still struggling with making a decision, you need not bear the burden of choosing your bridesmaids dress colors on your own. It’s perfectly okay, and even recommended, to consider input from others. Check in with your significant other and ask for some feedback based on what you’ve put together. Also, the bridesmaids themselves will likely be ready and willing to share their opinions. If the old adage is true that two heads are better than one, then imagine what you’ll come up with if you invite the bridal party into this part of the planning process.


We hope you found these tips for choosing your bridesmaids dress colors helpful. So many elements go into making the perfect wedding day, and the importance of this task is often underrated. The decisions you make here can go a long way toward helping your bridal party look and feel good. Using the tips above to narrow your options and make a decision will allow you to confidently check this item off of your to-do list so that you can focus on other areas of the wedding, not the least of which is finding a great photographer. Of course, we can help you with that!

Reset Password