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White Frocks

September 28th, 2011 by Jeannine

White Frocks

A great way to save on your wedding dress is by buying a bridesmaid dress in white. I set out to look for some so I decided to pay a visit to Canada’s only store dedicated to bridesmaids, Frocks Modern Bridesmaids. I met up with Catherine Staveley, co-owner of Frocks, at their brand new location on Main Street in Vancouver. Catherine and her business partner, Deb Viccars, started the company 5 and a half years ago after planning Catherine’s wedding, when they realized how tough it was to find bridesmaid dresses that can be worn again for another occasion. They decided to do something about it and opened the first Frocks store on Broadway in January of 2006, and this August they moved into their new location which, Catherine tells me, is double the size of their old space on Broadway.

A good part of their need to move to a larger space was a result of the demand for a more simple wedding dress from their brides which, the majority of the time, is brides choosing to wear a bridesmaid’s dress in white.  About 95% of the dresses at Frocks come in white and that there are usually four common factors as to why a bride chooses the bridesmaid dress option: personality, budget, size of wedding, and/or type of venue. Bridesmaid dresses normally have simpler lines, with little to no pouf or train, which are perfect for brides with more conservative tastes or if they are getting married in a more intimate or casual setting like a beach, their parents’ backyard, or somewhere more rustic. A lot of bridesmaid dresses are knee or tea-length as well, which fits some brides’ playful personalities and unique styles. They are great for anyone who doesn’t want a cookie-cutter wedding dress. Bridesmaid dresses also make great destination wedding dresses because of their size, they’d be easier to carry around than a pouffy dress, not to mention a big, typical style wedding dress looks a little silly walking down the beach!

At Frocks, the average price for a short, white wedding dress is around $500-600, while the average long white bridesmaid dresses go for $600-900. Catherine tells me it is not unusual for white bridesmaid dresses to cost more than their coloured counterpart. The extra cost comes partly from the added care taken to make a white dress – manufacturers may make them at a separate location where only white dresses are made to lessen the risk of it getting stained or damaged in some way. In general, they need to take more care when sewing, but more importantly, a thicker lining is usually sewn into the dress to make sure it is not see-through in the lighter coloured fabric. Boning is also often added for more structure in the bridal version of the dress.  It’s a lot more work put into a dress but after all, you and your dress will be the centre of attention that day so it has to look amazing! ;)

Here are some of the more popular bridesmaid styles that brides have chosen at Frocks:

Tea-length Dresses

Colleen by Lynn Lugo – $425

Liddy by Thread Bridesmaids – $425

Dylan by Jenny Yoo – $475

Sweet Pea by Simple Silhouettes – $550

The popularity of short bridesmaid dresses has even influenced wedding dress designers over the past couple of years to start making their own short bridal gowns, like Ivy & Aster’s popular Sweet Dreams, available at Frocks for $880.

Long Bridesmaid Dresses

Sarah by Thread Bridesmaids – $550

Dakota with a long daisy skirt by Lynn Lugo – $950
(Sorry, I couldn’t find a pic of the full skirt – just imagine this skirt at floor length. Or if you don’t like this skirt, Lynn Lugo dresses have many choices for a customized look.)

Talia by Jenny Yoo – $1,068

The dresses are generally simple looking but if you want to add a little bit of sparkle, you can always add a sash or belt around your dress. Frocks has some beautiful ones from Ivy & Aster and Sara Gabriel that start at $100 a piece.

Typically, bridesmaid dresses don’t take as long to order in compared to wedding dresses. At Frocks, they ask that you place your order at least 5 months in advance of your wedding. If you are ordering elsewhere, ask your bridal salon when they recommend your order should be placed as it’s often closer to 6 or 8 months.

There are no more rules on what brides should wear, as long as you feel amazing in the dress, that should be the only thing that matters. Catherine has some advice though… if you choose to wear a short dress for your wedding, it’s not a bad idea to make sure you wear white or ivory to distinguish yourself as the Bride. It’s very likely some of your guests will be wearing short dresses too and it’s your special day so you’ll want to stand out!  You can get away with wearing a coloured wedding dress if it’s a long dress, but beware, superstitions state that if you marry wearing green, it’s considered bad luck ;) Just something to think about…

Tell me… which of these styles do you like the most?

To see more photos of Frocks, visit my Facebook page.

All store photos courtesy Vancity Bride, dress photos provided by Frocks
Vendor prices are subject to change. All prices listed are accurate to posted date.

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