Bridesmaid Dresses

What It Costs to Be a Bridesmaid

Five bridesmaids tabulate their wedding-related expenses. Brides, take note!

Photos: Love Me Do Photography

Katerina, sister of the bride and maid of honor in Philadelphia

"I spent more than I'd expected to, but it wasn't excessive—after all, this was my big sister Veronika's wedding! As for the wedding gift, I gave her and Bryan a mix of flea market, handmade, and store-bought finds in a range of prices, so it was unique, affordable, and tailored to Veronika's eclectic tastes."

The Budget

Bridal shower: $30

"One of the bridesmaids hosted the shower at her house; I gave Veronika a nightgown from Anthropologie."

Bridesmaid dress: $198

"Veronika asked us to choose our own pale pink dresses—she helped me find mine, a Frock by Tracy Reese dress, at Anthropologie."

Alterations: $35

Clarksville Cleaners, Clarksville, MD, 410-531-6353

"The waist of my bridesmaid dress had to be taken in a bit."

Shoes: $40

"We could wear any style of shoes; I found nude satin slingbacks by Liz Claiborne online at DSW."

Accessories: $2

"I carried a vintage clutch that I found at a flea market."

Hair: $30

Lena Guard, Fringe Salon

"I told Lena, the hairstylist, she could do whatever she wanted—she's actually Veronika's hairstylist, so I trusted her."

Makeup: $35

Aleksandra Ambrozy

"I requested a natural look."

Travel to the wedding: $50

"I attend college in southern Maryland, so I spent $50 in gas and tolls driving to Philadelphia for the wedding."

Hotel: $75

Windsor Suites, Philadelphia

"The night before the wedding, I shared a room with some out-of-town family members."

Wedding gifts: $225

"I spent the summer in Switzerland and purchased wedding gifts there, including antique postcards from a flea market, dog-themed bicycle seat covers, and a watercolor painting of Bryan and Veronika that I commissioned a Swiss graphic designer to create. I also gave them dish towels and dessert plates from Anthropologie."

Total amount: $720

NEXT: Katie's bridesmaid budget

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