Wedding Woes

Bride who expects bridesmaids to pay for too much. Help please!

The bride of a wedding that I am in is expecting us bridesmaids to cover all of our expenses - dress ($225), shoes, makeup, accessories, etc.  We are going on a cruise for her bachelorette party/bridal shower b/c that's what she wanted and it is costing each of us over $500.  Furthermore, some of us are traveling from out of town which involves airfare and hotel costs.  She initially told us that her makeup artists would do the bridal party's hair and makeup as well but now she's backing out and saying that there is no time in the schedule/she doesn't have to budget for that.  

The expenses associated w/ this wedding have definitely made a dent in my bank account since I am a full-time grad student and have had absolutely no income for the past year.  I personally cannot afford to get my own hair and makeup done.  I know that it's not required for us bridesmaids to get our hair and makeup but I feel it's the least the bride could do for us considering how much we have already spent towards her wedding I feel it's the least the bride could do for us considering how much we have already spent towards her wedding and since she originally offered it to us.  Am I being unreasonable?  Should I bring this up with her and if so what would be the most diplomatic way of doing so?  Or should I just keep my mouth shut?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated!  Thanks in advance!  

Re: Bride who expects bridesmaids to pay for too much. Help please!

  • edited December 2011
    Fran, you need to be honest with her about your lack of funds. I would buy the dress, do my own hair and makeup, and skip the cruise,
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  • hmonkeyhmonkey member
    Ninth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    here's some life advice:  do not ever keep your mouth shut when someone is trying to spend your money. 

    you can and should say something if you can't afford it, or even if you don't want to pay for it. 
    image
  • franny1105franny1105 member
    Fourth Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Unfortunately, the cruise has already been booked so it's too late to back out of that.  We tried to suggest more affordable bachelorette/bridal party options but that's what she wanted.  I also felt that I was obligated to go on the cruise since I'm the MOH.  We also tried to suggest more affordable bridesmaid dress options as well but she was really set on the ones we ended up getting.  This is the first wedding that I'm in so I'm not all too familiar with etiquette and when it's appropriate to speak up.  

    The bride is incredibly stressed out right now and I'm hessitant to say anything about the hair & MU issue cause I don't want to stress her out even more.  Ultimately, it looks like us bridesmaids are going to have to do our own hair & MU but none of us are savvy at that kind of thing so I'm afraid we aren't gonna look as polished as we should.  
  • edited December 2011
    So, you're going to eat ramen noodles for the next 3 months because the bride has hightone taste(a new word I just heard...love it)

    Girl, talk to that chick.  It sounds like the other ladies have the same feeling you do, and no one is saying anything.

    I've been in a lot of weddings, and I had to pull back a bride that thought $250 dresses were so ok. I was in grad school too at the time, and I had a "come to Jesus meeting with her, and I found a similar dress that she liked and so did our wallets.
    image
  • *Barbie**Barbie* member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    it sounds like this is going to be a very expensive lesson for you to learn. The other ladies are 100% right. You need to speak up and say that you can't afford all of this, and do what you can to minimize any additional costs.
  • edited December 2011
    I have been there before, girl!!! The Bride is obviously a friend and I don't know about you and your circle of friends but friends look out for each other, meaning you don't ask for ridiculous things because your getting married!! You need to talk to her, i'm sorry that you are already too far in the planning process to change alot of the financial decisions but you should let her know that you can't afford anything more, because as sad as it...after the shower, bach party, and your day of attire there are still random last minute things that she might expect out of you.  So you need to let her know that is it and you love her but your not going to be selling the clothes off your back to make sure she has the experience she wants.......Friends look out for each other and if she can't see that, she may not be someone you want in your life!
    ever thine ever mine ever ours
  • franny1105franny1105 member
    Fourth Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for all the input, ladies!  

    Ultimately, the problem is twofold - 1. the bride never asked us what we can afford and 2. none of us ever spoke up about being uncomfortable with the expenses.  

    She was able to negotiate hair & MU for the bridesmaids w/ her MU artist but now she's sort of guilt tripping us about "burning through money" for her wedding.  We also finally started talking about expenses and apparently, she doesn't think that she has over-asked of us and that the cruise is reasonable since it's 3 days and inclusive of meals.  This just goes back to the fact that we really should have sat down at the start of all this to discuss what she expected us to spend and what we all felt comfortable with spending.  I'm at the point where I want to step down as a bridesmaid but can't b/c the cruise & dress are non-refundable.  I just can't sympathize with her complaints about breaking her budget and her claims that all she has done is try to alleviate expenses for the bridesmaids and that she's constantly thinking of us and the pains we are going through while putting her own pains on hold. Ahhhhh.

  • VarunaTTVarunaTT member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    Okay.  Deep breath.  It sounds like cruise and dress is too late to do anything about.

    Go to Sephora or some other "let me show you how to do this for free" place or grab a makeup book from the library.  Practice.  Quite honestly, a moisturizer with tint, some mascara, eyeliner and lip gloss should get you by minimially and still look "polished". 

    The hair depends on what you all have.  I think flat ironed hair up in a pony tail is very "polished" but truly just do it nice and neat (no fancy updo required) and don't worry about it.  No one is going to be looking at you anyway.

    Kibosh the jewelry and other accessories.  She can have matching black shoes from Payless. 

    At this point, y'all need to stick up for yourselves.  "Sorry you can't afford X, but neither can we, so we won't be doing it."  Worst case scenario, she fires you all.  Take your nice cruise and let her be a brat on the other side of the ship.  Also, I guarantee if you all stand up and say "No" nicely AND she REALLY wants it?  The money will miraculously appear.  But enough is enough.  I thought my dresses were atrociously priced, but they were what I wanted....so I cut budget someplace else and paid for them.  Not every bride is a holy terror and she needs to be reined in.

    Oh and also, I don't think she should pay for you guys, b/c of the money you doled out in the first place.  She should pay, b/c she told you she would, but she's backing out.  Do what you can.  You agreed to everything, this is really mostly your fault for not sticking to your guns earlier.  Yes, she's unreasonable, but like HMo said, don't let other people spend your money.
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