Delarah Banner

Mismatched Bridesmaid Dresses – Pros, Cons, and How to Make It Work

Mismatched bridesmaids dresses

As Wedding Know How editors, we write about things that we love and we think you'll like too. We have affiliate partnerships and sponsorship and may generate some revenue from these at no cost to you.

For the longest time, brides have tended to prefer uniform dresses for their bridesmaids. This is now changing as many brides allow their bridesmaids to choose outfits that appeal to their tastes and body size. With mismatched bridesmaid dresses becoming a popular trend, you might be wondering whether it’s the right route for your wedding.

It’s important to consider the decision of having mismatched bridesmaid dresses carefully to ensure they are a fit for your event. Here’s a look at the pros and cons of mismatched bridesmaid dresses and how to pull it off.

Delarah Banner

Pros of Mismatched Bridesmaid Dresses

If done well, mismatched bridesmaid dresses can be appealing. Here are the advantages of taking the mismatched route.

Portrays Your Caring Attitude in Uplifting Your Bridesmaids’ Individuality

Bride and bridesmaids

Your gesture of allowing your bridesmaids to buy what suits them will make them feel like they’re a part of the celebrations. The thought of choosing something they love, whether it’s just the dress style or length indicates that you’re a caring friend who values their choices. They will be happy all through knowing that you gave them the chance to choose rather than pick everything for them.

The Bridesmaids Can Wear the Dresses Again

Bridesmaids mismatched

When your friends have some leeway to choose what to wear, they will go for something they like, are comfortable in and will wear again. Mismatching will work well with your girls who will appreciate spending their cash the way they want.

Allows Bridesmaids to Dress in Comfort and on a Budget

Mismatched bridesmaids dresses

Your bridesmaids have different body types ranging from tall and slender to short and plump. Giving them some allowance to decide what to wear will boost their confidence and make them comfortable.

It will also not confine them to one bridal store especially if they are on a budget. They will have the freedom to search for the dresses online or in other stores that may be cheaper.

It Makes Your Wedding Interesting and Unique

Mismatched bridesmaids dresses

Having mismatched bridesmaid dresses elicits an interesting and creative look. Your wedding will have a unique and attractive look that guests are sure to admire. Mismatching dresses customizes your wedding, as there are endless ideas you can incorporate for a fashionable, yet exciting outcome. The wedding photos will also be captivating and a break from the uniform appearance everyone is used to.

Cons of Mismatched Bridesmaid Dresses

While there are a lot of positives to mismatched bridesmaid dresses, there are also some downsides to the trend. Here are some cons to help you make the final decision of whether to settle for a mismatched or uniform look.

Your Bridesmaids Might Be Too Mismatched

Mismatched bridesmaids not cohesive look

If the bride does not manage her bridesmaids’ choices well, the colors, fabrics, and styles of their dresses may be too much of a mismatch. This may make your wedding appear messy with a lack of adequate planning. For instance, shoe and fabric colors can clash, spoiling the overall aesthetic of the wedding.

Mismatching May Lead to a Disjointed-Looking Bridal Party

Mismatched dresses not matching

For a large bridal party, mismatching dresses results in a non-cohesive outlook. This may happen when you are too overwhelmed to give your bridesmaids clear guidelines. It’s worse if some of them live out of town and you don’t get to meet often to go over the details.

If you’re having just a few bridesmaids, say two or three, mismatching their dresses may make them look like guests instead of part of the bridal party so this is something you’d need to consider as well.

Focus May Shift Away from the Bride

Focus shifts from bride

Mismatching can go overboard to the extent of drawing the guests’ attention away from you, the bride. Too many clashing colors and inconsistent styles can be a distraction. Your guests may spend most of the time gazing at the bridesmaids’ fashion instead of paying attention to the wedding celebration.

How to Make It Work

To avoid a total mismatch that could be off-putting, carefully think about the level of mismatch that will be pleasing to you and your guests. Below are some ideas you could consider.

Make a variation of their accessories or hairstyles.

Different hair styles bridesmaids

Your mismatch can be in the form of individual accessories and hairstyles, the dress style and colors can remain the same. Allowing the bridal party to choose necklaces and other jewelry reveals their taste, which can complement each other’s taste. 

Vary the bridesmaid dresses in the following ways:

Beautiful mismatched dresses
  • Go for varying shades: State a color and allow the girls pick a shade they prefer.
  • Opt for different necklines or waistlines: The bridesmaid dresses can be the same color and length but each of the girls can select her own necklines and waistlines.
  • Adopt the same length with a mix of color family and style: Choose the dress length and color family you’d like and let the bridesmaids pick their particular color shade and dress style.
  • Consider same style but different colors: Stick to one style for everyone but let them choose a shade from your main color family.
  • Use transition colors: You may want different blocks of colors rather than those in the same family. Avoid going for colors that are next to one another in a color wheel. For example, green and blue wouldn’t go well together and neither would pink and purple.
  • Pick various patterns and textures: The color can be the same but the fabric type can be different.

Let the maid of honor stand apart.

Maid of honor

You can tone down on the mismatch by having a different dress for the maid of honor only, but the rest of your bridesmaids can have dresses in the same style, color, and length.

Compile a list of stores.

Muslim hijab bride bridesmaid

Some of your bridesmaids could be too busy or may not know where to go dress shopping. To make things easier for them, put together a list of your favorite stores that you’d like them to visit. Your list should have both online and local stores like JCPenney, Forever 21, Etsy and local boutiques.

State clear guidelines.


Set clear parameters of what you would like in the dresses to avoid confusion. Be specific about the color, length, fabric, neckline, and any other detail that should be focused on.

Show them examples of dresses.

Bridesmaids same theme

Show your bridesmaids some examples of dresses you would like them to get. Pinterest is a good place to find dresses and you can create boards on this platform to help them see what exactly you have in mind. You may also consider pre-selecting dresses so that they can pick what they like without straying too far from your wedding theme.

Listen to your bridesmaids.

Tips on doing mismatched bridesmaids dresses

Your girls may have valuable suggestions that can help. Find out from each of them what they think about your color and style choice. You can then make adjustments to their dress code accordingly based on their feedback.

Wrapping Up

As you decide what dresses to settle for, know your priorities and stick to your wedding theme. Mismatched bridesmaid dresses accentuate the wedding aesthetics if you’ve done deliberate planning and are specific about what aesthetic you’re trying to achieve. Ensure you have cohesion in accessories, makeup, or shoes for the mismatched dresses to fit in properly.

For information on how to choose bridesmaids’ jewelry, read our detailed article. Alternatively,