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'Matching' Bridal gown to Bridesmaids dresses

I am in the process of shopping for my wedding gown and am told that the bridesmaids dresses need to coordinate with my gown.  However, the 'maids are looking at dresses that are strikingly similar to mine and I keep thinking I want to stand out, not match!  What are the general guidelines for coordinationg gowns?  Just dress material?  (And please no '[It's Your Day, do what you want' stuff.  I already know that.  Hee hee).  Thanks ladies!

Re: 'Matching' Bridal gown to Bridesmaids dresses

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    I honestly didn't really think at all about them matching me. Of course it should be similar in.. formality and such, but other than that I see no "rule". I'm in organza, they're in matte satin. I'm in a mermaid, they're in an A line. We both have sashes at the waist? That's about it!
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    I wouldn't worry about matching the fabric, just the level of formality as MIlk Duds pointed out.
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    Anniversary
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    Thanks.  I didn't think once about this until a bridesmaid mentioned it.  I thought about length only (in terms of formality) and didn't worry about anything else.  Glad to know I'm knot the only one that doesn't see the big deal! 
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    They don't need to match... if the one they are leaning towards is too similar in your opinion (which it sounds like is the case) then speak up and say something.  Steer them in a bit of a different direction and tell them your reasoning.
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    The only thing that should match is the level of formality.  And don't worry, even if the dress resemble the shape of your dress a little you will still stand out against your girls...you will be the only one in a white wedding gown (hopefully!)


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    sometimes people will opt for 2 differet fabrics so that in pictures there is a contrast. there is no set rule, whatever you want!

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    My gown is charmeuse/satin and my bridesmaids and in a sort of satin, just as shiny, but the cuts are completely different.  Like MilkDuds had said, my gown and BMs gowns are all formal so it works :)
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    No they don't have to match. As you said it, your day=your way!
    I agree I want to stand out on my day. I have a sweetheart dress with a slight mermaid look. My BMs are doing black dresses that are halter A-line with red sashes. YOu need to stand out!

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    I am just having a MOH and her dress compliments mine nicely (they are both satin and have a v-neck), but obviously have differences, too (color, length, embellishments). I personally like that they have similar fabric - it ties the "look" together.

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    I agree with MilkDuds
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