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Wedding Party

Would you rather

Have the bride buy your dress and use that as your gift or spend $100 on a dress that you will wear once and have a more personal gift. This is stemmed from a discussion I am having on facebook with some friends. Personally, I think if you are okay being in the wedding party, you are okay spending $100 bucks (or whatever you can afford) on a dress. The bridal party gift is a gift for saying thank you for spending all this extra time and money on me.
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Repeat this to your self: My Wedding Party is made of my family and friends and I should treat them as such.
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Re: Would you rather

  • It would honestly depend on what the dress looked like, what my budget was and my interpretation of the couple.If I was hard up at the moment, any help would be well-received assuming I thought it wouldn't hurt the couple to help.  If I didn't care at all, I'd pony up for what the bride wanted without expecting anything more than a hug.
  • When I'm in a wedding, I expect to have to pay for the dress.  As you said, I look at the gift as a nice thank you, so I think a separate gift is more appropriate. 
  • It would depend on my fiscal situation. When I was very very poor I woudl have loved it now when I can afford the dress with ease a gift that actually shows that the couple considered me as a person would be better. However the dress is still better then anything engraved or mornogramed or a tote bag full of bath products or a coach wristelet or a pasmina or jewlery to wear in the wedding all of which I view as useless junk that is clutter in my life and goodwill material
  • I think I'd prefer a separate gift unless I was totally flat-broke.  Then I think I'd be so grateful that I didn't have to pay for the dress that I wouldn't really care.
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  • I would rather have the bride buy my dress.
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  • I'd be grateful for pertty much any gift and would expect to buy my own dress if I agreed to be a BM. But as long as we're debating the topic ... I think it'd depend on the gift. If it was something really thoughtful that I would've bought myself with $100 of my own money, then that's great. If it's something intended as a keepsake that I wouldn't get use out of, I'd rather her just put the money toward my dress and call that my gift.
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  • I'd rather have the bride buy my dress. I'd think it was kind of tacky she didn't get us a gift, but I'm not big on getting gifts anyway. I live in an apartment. Unless it was a Coach wristlet... Seriously, though, if she TOLD us, "Listen, I'm on a tight budget but I'd really like to pay for your dress. I don't want this wedding to burden your financially in any way. Unfortunately, that's all I'll be able to pay for." Sounds good. Rock on, actually.ffmaid, I hope you live near me if you're donating designer stuff to Goodwill. Though Goodwill actually ebays anything that's of real value.
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  • I'd rather have the bride buy the dress. After all is said and done, being in a wedding is expensive and if I don't have to buy the dress, all the better (even though I go into it expecting to pay myself)I'm tough to shop for, not a big fan of "stuff," and not overly sentimental. I'll take the unpopular opinion and be bratty here, but unless the gift is something that I was planning on buying for myself anyway and pretty equal in cost, I'll take the dress.
  • I've always been able to pick out a dress I love (and was able to re wear) in a reasonable price range, so I'd rather have a gift. But a gift the bride puts time and energy to pick out. Not some random wedding related crap.
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  • This is a really good question! I'm with PP in saying that it would depend on the dress. haha. But, of course, I would expect to pay for it anyways.
  • I'd rather go for the bride buying the dress for me.
  • I am some what suprised by the responses! I group the dress along with bm jewelry. It's for the wedding, not the girl. So do you feel that it's something for the wedding and not for you and you are just happy to not spend the money, or do you consider it a good gift?
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    Repeat this to your self: My Wedding Party is made of my family and friends and I should treat them as such.
  • It's not that it's a good gift so much as it is that I would appreciate not having to spend the money. Most BM dresses (even the pretty ones) still look like BM dresses. That means that I won't wear it again. If I got to pick my dress or if it was something that my bridal party is wearing like black cocktail dresses then I would rather pay for the dress and get a gift. Either way though it doesn't matter. I expect to pay for the dress...and while a thoughtful gift is always nice...I never expect one.
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  • I would rather the bride by my dress and I get to keep the $100 in my bank account. IRL, however, I have always accepted the invitation to be a BM in someone's wedding with the expectation that I will pay for my own dress. The one time I didn't have to, it was a pleasant suprise!
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  • I would rather have the bride pay for the dress and be given a well thought thank you detailing why she appreciates me being part of her day, as her friend, etc. than a gift. I have never re-worn a bridesmaid dress. 2 of them never went to the cleaners and went directly to a charity (and one was over $600!). As well-intentioned as the brides were, neither dress meant nearly as much to me as it did to her having us all match. One of my bm is in an unfortunate financial situation. I want her to be part of my day and have offered to find a dress we both like in a style flattering to us both and pay for it. After the wedding, she'll leave me the dress and it's beneficial to both of us - she doesn't have the added expense and I get a new dress.
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  • I'd probably prefer the bride buy my dress. I'm basing this on the assumption that it is a typical BM dress, where really, I'm only wearing it once (Let's face it, that "Cut it and wear it again" schpeil tends to be nothing but bull-honkey-doo-doo). I hate the idea of spending a lot of money on something I will only wear once (wait for it) that I absolutely hate anyway. This also may stem from the fact that I've yet to be in a WP party wear my only "gifts" were the jewelry and on 1 occasion, the shoes. And I never wore ANY of the dresses (That after alterations cost me well over $200) again.

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  • hmm...wouldn't matter to me. everytime i have been asked to be in a wedding, i have known full well i'd be buying a dress, and have never expected a gift. i think i'd rather get a gift, that way a have a keepsake from being in the wedding! and btw...."However the dress is still better then anything engraved or mornogramed or a tote bag full of bath products or a coach wristelet or a pasmina or jewlery to wear in the wedding all of which I view as useless junk that is clutter in my life and goodwill material" .......so ungrateful.
  • Although I'd expect to pay for the dress, if the bride offered to pay for it, I'd be all the more happy without a separate gift. Then again, maybe it's because I've always known many of my friends to give gifts that I would never get for myself, so the dress seems like the better option for me and my back account.
  • I think the gift for your wedding party should be more personal. If you ask someone to be in it they should take in to consideration the money they will have to spend on a dress, shoes, hair, and so on before they say yes.=) laura
  • I would rather buy the dress myself and have a 'gift'. I've been in two weddings, and both times I picked a dress I could wear again. I would have been able, in fact, to wear the same dress twice, but the color was wrong for the second wedding. In both cases, the bride offered to help pay, or outright pay, for the dress, but I was thankfully able to work it out.As far as the gift goes, most brides spend a lot of time thinking about the gift they're giving their girls. I know that for my own BP, I'm trying to think of what fits them (and is in the budget). That way, it won't be 'useless junk'.
  • I felt bad for my BMs because the dresses that we decided on were $200 and the hair and makeup for the day would've ended up being $150 each (because we're getting hitched on a Sunday).  That's kind of a lot, so I offered to split their dresses with them and the hair and makeup.  So my contribution was $175 and I also got them a Vera Bradley wristlet and a pashmina as a token gift so they can open something at the rehearsal dinner.But it's all about what the bride is willing to spend and what the budget is.  I completely expect to pay for my dress as well as appreciate any gift that the bride gives, no matter how cheesy or impractical.  It's a gift.  I couldn't imagine giving anything my friend gave me to Goodwill.If I had the choice, I'd probably go with the dress though. 
  • I bought my girls' dresses. I found knee length black dresses at Macy's, they were on sale for $30 and they can absolutely wear them again. They all love the dress. I figured instead of buying them all the useless stuff they won't use, I bought their dress, I am making their jewelry (stuff I know they'll wear--each girl's jewelry & flowers will be their favorite colors) then I will give them a little goodie bag.
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  • I have to agree with Blackfire5th on this one.  I plan on being in two weddings the summer of 2010.  I wouldn't have agreed to be in both if I didn't think I could afford to buy my own dress, shoes and help to pay for the shower and bachelorette party.  When you agree to be in someone's wedding, you agree b/c you want to be there to support and celebrate one of the most special moments in their lives!! You shouldn't be looking for the bride/groom to pay for you dress.  I mean if they are willing great... but since many couples are paying for their own weddings today it most likely they will not be able to afford to also pay for their bridal party's attire. If you can't afford it ask the bride what her plans are for attire... if she really wants you to be a part of her day she most likely will work something out with you. As for the gift... it is the thought the counts!!!
  • I LOVED stage manager's answer, she said what I pretty much was thinking, but I am pretty sure, she said it better than I would done.
  • I would rather buy the dress myself & receive a gift.  For my BMs I allowed them to pick their own dresses as long as they were all the same fabric, floor length & color.  My BMs are all different sizes so they picked dresses that fit their body type & every single one of them LOVES their dress. 
  • id rather have the dress bought for me.  i have never liked the gifts bridal parties receive.
  • Definitely buy the dress.  If it's a great dress you'd wear again, it's a fantastic gift.  If the dress is terrible, I'd be happy to not waste money on it... and if the dress is bad, it's hard to imagine the gift would be great.
  • Ditto Stagemanager -- very well said! I'm with Paula too -- if it's a great dress I'd wear again, then I'd consider it an even better gift!
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