Modern weddings can be an interesting mix of timeless traditions, current trends, and personalized touches. Today's wedding celebrations are often the beginning of new traditions. Yet couples are still interested in wedding etiquette. Many standard wedding practices have remained intact throughout the years. Some wedding standards, however, have fallen out of favor while others have adapted to the changing times.
Historically, parents of the bride and groom footed the bill for the flower girl expenses. In recent history though the parents of the flower girl are expected to pay for the flower girl dress and accessories such as capes/jackets, shoes, stockings, and gloves. They are also generally required to pay for the headpiece - unless it is a fresh flower arrangement.
The bride and groom cover the cost of the flowers - flower baskets, bouquets, petals, and floral hair wreaths. The bride chooses the flower girl dress. This standard tradition (the bride choosing the dress, the parents of the flower girl paying for the dress and accessories) still holds true for today's weddings.
Most traditions are born of practicality and the same holds true for this one. It is logical that the bride should choose the flower girl dress. Her wedding day is her day! It also makes sense that the parents of the flower girl are considered responsible for the costs of the dress.
When shopping for a flower girl dress, it is best to choose a dress which can have a life beyond the wedding. Many flower girl dresses can be used for special occasions in the future. Indeed many brides choose special occasion dresses (holiday, Easter, pageant) as their flower girl dresses. Easter dresses are perfect and practical choices for summer weddings. They come in soft, pastel colors and sweet designs and are often discounted after Easter.
It is more difficult to find uses in the future for mini-bride dresses. Hispanic tradition, however, favors the mini-bride look. If a couple is honoring that tradition, flower girl dress choices will be limited to that style.
Shopping for flower girl dresses doesn't have to take place in a specialty store. Online sources as well as department stores have excellent selections. There are choices to suit every taste and budget. A bride should always consult with the parents of the flower girl. The final price needs to fit their budget. A bride should present the parents with options in different price ranges.
If the purchase of flower girl dress/accessories will put a strain on a parent's budget, it is acceptable to break with tradition. In such instances, the bride may want to pay for the flower girl outfit. Indeed, there can be varied reasons why the bride would decide to take responsibility for the purchases.
Sometimes the bride and groom want to give the dress as a gift to the flower girl. If the parents pay for the outfit, however, they can't consider it to be a wedding gift for the happy couple. Wedding etiquette suggests that the parents should also buy a gift. The flower girl will probably continue to enjoy the dress on other occasions.
Often brides will have more than one flower girl. Formal weddings or Victorian theme weddings may require two or more flower girls. If the purchase puts financial strain on just one set of parents, then the bride may want to help in that circumstance. Arrangements can be worked out in a discreet manner while avoiding any embarrassment.
Preparing the flower girl outfit for the wedding is a shared arrangement. Both sides must cooperate to create the ultimate flower girl experience. The parents of the flower girl must respect the bride's right to choose the style and color for the outfit. The bride, however, must make her decision in relation to her flower girl.
The bride may get a sense from the flower girl about her favorite color or style. Since flower girls can be very young children, the bride often relies on the parents for input. A bride needs to know if an older flower girl wants only to wear an A-line style. She needs to be aware if a younger flower girl wants only to be a pink princess.
The parents need to see that the flower girl can move easily in the dress. They need to check that the flower girl can walk safely in the chosen footwear. The parents will want to be certain that the dress fabric is suitable for the season. The better the cooperation, the better the chance of a stress-free wedding celebration for everyone!
It is helpful to know wedding etiquette. The guidelines help set standards and outline certain expectations. Etiquette, however, is designed to make people feel comfortable in every situation. In regards to paying for flower girl dresses, wedding etiquette specifies that brides choose and parents pay the bill. If that arrangement isn't comfortable for everyone, then the true essence of etiquette points in the direction of change. The perfect plan puts everyone at ease and gets the pretty flower girl down the aisle in perfect style.
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