Wedding To Remember

Weddings & wee ones: Shorter hems add comfort to tiny finery

Photos courtesy of the Girls @ Los Altos
Flower-girl attire still trends puffy and ruffled, but many modern dresses feature muted colors such as gray or lavender, accented with a bright color that complements a bouquet or bridesmaids’ dress. Ring-bearer wear has become less formal, with flip-flops and shorts emphasizing comfort.

If you are planning a summer or early-fall wedding, current trends may encourage you to put your flower girl in a knee-length lavender dress and your ring bearer in khaki shorts.

Children in the wedding party are no longer required to dress like miniatures of the bride and groom. Hemlines for both the flower girl and the ring bearer are shrinking.

“This lets kids be kids,” said Cecilia Chen, owner of The Girls @ Los Altos, the children’s clothing store at 239 State St., which carries outfits for flower girls and ring bearers.

Since her shop opened in fall 2014, Chen has noted a broader spectrum of color options for flower girls and fewer suit jackets for ring bearers.

“The ring boy will just wear a white shirt on top, perhaps with a bow tie to be a little more formal,” she said. “Some ring boys still wear long pants, but more and more of them choose shorts, especially when the weather is hot.”

According to Chen, khaki is king, as the neutral shorts grow in popularity for outdoor weddings – for a practical reason.

“It’s much easier for the ring boy to run around if he’s wearing shorts,” she said. “Nowadays parents don’t want to restrict their children from being active.”

It’s for the same reason that floor-length and ankle-length dresses for flower girls are waning in popularity. Today’s dresses are more commonly tea length – hitting the mid-calf – or even knee length, Chen said.

Fancy frocks

The shorter-length trend doesn’t mean less fancy, however. This year’s flower-girl dresses are generally puffy, often trimmed with ruffles around the armholes. Some are adorned with feathers, sparkles or silk flowers.

“The flower girl still gets to look like a little princess in a short dress,” Chen said.

Conventionally, the flower girl wears a dress the same color as either the bride’s gown or the bridesmaids’ dresses, but there are no hard-and-fast rules. Some brides opt for the color of their flower girls’ dresses to complement the hue of her bouquet of flowers, which can chromatically differ from the bridal gown and the bridesmaids’ dresses.

For example, Chen said, a flower girl could wear a sash color-coordinated with the bridesmaids’ dresses or, if the bridal bouquet features fuchsia tropical flowers and the bridesmaids are clad in purple, then the flower girl can don a fuchsia dress with a purple sash, a distinctive departure from the typical flower girl’s white or pastel frock.

“Today’s brides want to be different,” Chen said. “Many of them don’t want their bridesmaids and flower girl to wear pink dresses, because that’s too common.”

Rather, Chen noted that more and more brides select a grayish hue, such as dusty blue or periwinkle, as their wedding theme color for a contemporary vibe. Between the traditional pink and the modern gray tones is lavender, a chic choice of the moment.

“Lavender is hugely popular this year with flower girls,” Chen said.

No matter what the chosen dress color is, Chen helps customers find matching shoes and accessories in her boutique.

“The shoes don’t necessarily have to be matchy-matchy with the dress,” she said. “You can pick a pair of silver shoes that match the silver sparkles on the dress. Some parents really like buying silver shoes for their daughters because silver shoes can go with pretty much any dress color.”

Chen flexed a silver shoe in her store to demonstrate its softness. All of the shoes in her store are made of soft material, and all of her dresses are fully lined, with fabric that is 30 percent silk and 70 percent cotton.

“These dresses and shoes are all very comfortable,” she said. “The flower girl doesn’t have to sacrifice comfort for style.”

For more information on The Girls @ Los Altos, visit

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