Eight Bridesmaid Dresses for Less than £80 by Resident Guru Samantha Birch

Eight Bridesmaid Dresses for Less than £80


 Borrowed Blue Old New tasked The High-Street Bride’s Guide author Samantha Birch with scouring the rails for the most beautiful budget looks for your BFFs


We’ve all been there: drooling over the £200-a-pop bridesmaid dress, imagining our best girls walking down the aisle in identical shades, turning the heads of the ushers we’ve been carefully matchmaking them with ever since someone said the words ‘seating plan’ (even if we are still putting the actual planning of said plan off). But it doesn’t take a lot of mental maths to work out that £200 times the number of besties we’ve got equals… well, way too much.

The answer? Instead of cutting out the cake, the DJ and the favours, let your ladies try a few high-street and online stunners on for size — that’s what my ’maids wore on the day (Oasis, Banana Republic and eBay, since you’re asking), and not only didn’t no-one notice they weren’t apparently-lust-have labels, I was still getting Facebooks from people who weren’t even there asking how I got them so co-ordinated months after the day. Seriously. So what are you waiting for?

All Ways Are My Ways 


Think those multi-way dresses that can be tied differently for each ’maid are out of your league? Not if you’re at M&S they aren’t. They’ve just cottoned on to the trend and dished it out in shades from cherry red to fawn — just make sure you look online before you make your choice: they’ve squirrelled away several web-exclusive shades.

Tot it up These versatile little lifesavers from M&S are £55 to £59 each, colour-dependent.

Flower Power




If detailing’s your deal, prepare to have a Moment: the 3D flowers on this Elise Ryan lovely are nearly too just-have-to-have-’em to handle. There’s nothing like these little extras to whisper ‘quality’ as your girls sashay down the aisle — and as if that wasn’t enough, the super-sweet soft pink ramps up the romance of your big-day palette.

Tot it up It’s a thrifty £55 for this look at ASOS. Um, what are you still doing here?

Bump it Up 



Leading lady just told she’s got a baby on board? Put down the Rescue Remedy and reach for this instead. Available in black, cream or navy — latter two as one separate listing — I heart this maternity must-have from Rock-a-Bye Rosie for its gorgeous lace, sexy scoop back and all-round bump-loving beauty.

Tot it up Your mummy-to-be MOH isn’t the end of the world when Rock-a-Bye Rosie are only after £55 for this luxe look.

Maximum Impact




Wallflowers, look away now — this bright red beauty from Warehouse is a shade that’s definitely not for the faint-hearted. If you want to start your day off with a ‘wow!’, send in your girls ahead of you in this top-to-toe scarlet jaw-dropper that makes an impression without baring any flesh. Nans: happy. Best men: do we see blushes…?

Tot it up Pick up this pretty from ASOS for £75 a head.

Green with Envy




Oasis have some smart cookies on staff: they’ve clearly figured out how form-flattering this cowl-neck shift is since they put it out in a different shade every season. Last year one of my ’maids took to our aisle in the yellow version, and six months later I bought myself the coral pink incarnation as a wedding guest outfit. It worked equally well on my long-legged bridesmaid and my personal petite five-foot frame, so it’s a great choice if you’re after a cut that will cut it with variously vertical ladies.

Tot it up At £68 a piece from Oasis it’s one you can afford to fall for.

Ladies First





Elegant much? If you’re all about the formal feel and oh-so-sophisticated touches, truss up your ladies in this navy loveliness from VLabel London. The sweetheart neckline is super-romantic while the wrapped hemline gets their legs some love — a one-stop way to them feeling beautiful without being too look-at-me for shy types.

Tot it up Just £72 a time from ASOS — yes, your budget stretches to a strut.

Indigo Dream



Damn do I love a Coast sale — and you can see why when this deep purple deliciousness now falls under our budget. It’s the little things — the wrapped bodice, the hidden boning, the detachable straps — that I can’t get over, and that’ll keep your posse and your pocket happy.

Tot it up This Coast beauty was £115. Guess how much now? £49. Hey, where’d you go?

In the Fold



Mini-mes on your mind for your aisle? Dress your matchy-matchy ’maids in the shade of the day with this architectural stunner from Vesper. Those origami sleeves are what it’s all about for me — perfect whether you’re working an Eastern theme or rocking a swish modern style.

Tot it up Nab it from ASOS and it’ll set you back just £54.
 
Want more tips on saving money but still having a beautiful day? Samantha Birch is the author of The High-Street Bride’s Guide, available now on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

Available as a Paperback and on  Kindle 



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