Listen up brides-to-be, no matter what you’ve been told, all eyes will not just be on you on your wedding day. Before you walk down that aisle, there’s going to be a room full of people looking at your bridesmaids—and their dresses. Yes, it’s likely you’ll steal the show once you arrive, but until you do, your bridal party is undoubtedly going to get some attention. So think wisely when it comes time to pick out those bridal party dresses. If you want instant recognition as a trendsetter, outfit your girls in bridesmaid dresses with sleeves. From flutter and cap that offer a hint of vintage romance to long or lace that provide instant sophistication, a style with sleeves may be just what you need to bring your wedding day vision to life.
6 Tips for Shopping Bridesmaid Dresses with Sleeves
1. It’s All About the Season
As much as we love dresses with a bit of arm coverage, we’re not suggesting that you torture your ‘maids with long lace sleeves for a summer wedding. It goes without saying that long sleeve looks are best for fall and winter affairs, while cap and flutter designs are better suited for spring and summer celebrations. Before you set your heart on a long sleeve design, consider the season in which you’re having your nuptials. If you’re getting married in the cold weather, take advantage of the fact that you can outfit your maids in practically any silhouette. On the other hand, if you’re having a destination celebration on the beach, you might want to limit your coverage length to a cap or a short flutter silhouette.
2. Keep Your Bridal Gown Silhouette in Mind
The matchy-matchy trend may have run its course, but the importance of cohesion is one fashion concept that never goes out of style. There’s no hard and fast rule that the bride and bridesmaids have to wear the same arm or hem length, but it’s fitting for your ‘maids to wear modest bridesmaid dresses if you, as the bride, are opting for a modest look. If your bridal gown has long arms, consider outfitting your ‘maids in silhouettes with ¾-length coverage or similar. Cohesion doesn’t mean you have to match every last detail—it just means that your entire bridal party should look like they’re attending the same event in the same season.
3. Additional Elegance, Sophistication, and Class
There is a time and a place for spaghetti straps, strapless bodices, and short hemlines—and your wedding may very well be that place—but if you want your wedding to exude of-the-moment style and timeless sophistication with an element of modesty and undeniable class, bridesmaid dresses with sleeves can do that with ease. The trick to pulling off a design with sleeves is to find the right proportion. A long gown with cap details can offer a dreamy, romantic look, while a short style with long arms lets you show a bit of skin without baring it all.
When it comes time to choose your bridesmaid dresses, keep your overall theme and vision in mind, and don’t be afraid to ask a bridal consultant at the Wedding Shoppe for recommendations and suggestions!
4. Keep Your ‘Maids in Mind
Everyone can use a little support, especially busty girls and curvy ‘maids that don’t have the luxury of going bra-free. And what’s the easiest way to conceal bra straps? Yep, you guessed it—sleeves. When coverage is key and foundation garments are a must, a design with sleeves makes it that much easier to create the necessary underlying foundation. Yes, you can build a bra into a strapless gown, but most voluptuous women would prefer the option of wearing their favorite, most supportive, and most comfortable bra. If you’re shopping specifically for plus size bridesmaid dresses or plan to outfit a variety of different body types in the same silhouette, bridesmaid dresses with sleeves will make your curvy girls feel much more comfortable than a strapless silhouette altered with stitched-in cups.
5. Accessories for Every Look
Whether you’re wearing a satin ball gown to a formal affair or throwing on a tee shirt and jeans for a day of shopping, accessories can make or break any look. When it comes to dressing for a wedding, we like to think of sleeves as accessories. Keep your neckline and arm length in mind when choosing jewelry—just as a high neckline wouldn’t require the addition of a necklace, a bridesmaid dress with long arms can most likely do without a bracelet.
6. Hair Styling Tips for Your Wedding Day (and beyond)
Up, down, side-swept, half up, half down—the choices are seemingly endless, and it can be overwhelming. Again, the most important thing to keep in mind when deciding on a hairstyle is cohesion. If you’ve chosen a pretty, flowy neckline, opt for a romantic hairstyle by wearing your hair down or sweeping it to one side. On the other hand, a short shift silhouette with more coverage up top, which tends to have a more sophisticated look, can be complemented with a sleek up-do. Pairing the right hairstyle with your dress is a surefire way to show your guests that you know a thing or two about how to style a head-to-toe look.
Our 6 Favorite Bridesmaid Dresses with Sleeves:
Whether you’re looking for a sleek, glamorous silhouette or a vintage-inspired gown, we’ve picked out a few bridesmaid dresses with sleeves that work for every occasion. After Six Bridesmaid Dress 6697
This design does double duty by offering romantic cap sleeves in the much-loved off-the-shoulder silhouette. In jersey knit fabric with a ruched bodice, this gown works for any occasion in any season. B2 Bridesmaid Dress B183052
Crafted from soft chiffon with a romantic overlay that creates fluttered cap sleeves, this gown offers a dreamy, ethereal look with vintage-inspired appeal. It works for an indoor event in the fall as well as it does for a summer celebration on the beach. Adrianna Papell Bridesmaid Dress 091874600
Is there anything more glamorous than head-to-toe sequins? This gorgeous gown strikes the perfect balance between timeless glamour and modern modesty with short sleeves and a scooped back in a full length sheath silhouette. Christina Wu Bridesmaid Dress 22723
With a satin A-line skirt and an above-the-knee hemline, this is the look your ‘maids will thank you for. If you’re searching for a bridesmaid dress with lace sleeves, this one hits every mark with a belt that accentuates the waist and a pleated skirt that creates an ultra-feminine silhouette. Jenny Yoo by Dessy Bridesmaid Dress JY510
Illusion accents and a modest bateau neckline make this bridesmaid dress with lace sleeves perfect for the most casual celebrations and elegant affairs. With a scalloped hem and illusion accents, this lace style is suitable for any vintage-inspired wedding or contemporary event. Belsoie Bridesmaid Dress L164072
In a silhouette that works for any ‘maid, wedding guest, or cocktail party invitee, this long sleeve lace sheath exudes class, grace, and timeless beauty with a touch of modesty that allows you to cover up on top but still show off your legs.
Sleeves on bridesmaid dresses are no longer considered matronly, in fact, they’re quickly becoming regarded as ultra-chic. The modern bride knows that in order to make a wedding truly memorable, you need to be bold, unconventional, and one step ahead of the trends. Be the bride that embraces the trends and inspires other. Be the bride whose reception photos are posted all over Pinterest. Be the bride that will be remembered for throwing a wedding rich with class, elegance, grace, and sophistication. Find the styles shown above (and dozens more) at the Wedding Shoppe! You may also like…