The term ‘bridezilla’ is something no bride-to-be wants to be assigned to her. Unfortunately, there are plenty of brides that abuse their friends and family’s generosity and forget that “my day” is only a mere 12 hours, but they’ll have to live with the way they hurt people for years afterward!

One of the most common spots where brides go wrong is in dictating exactly how their bridesmaids must look and dress the day of the wedding. While it was common in the past for a bride to choose the bridesmaid dresses, this has started to change.

To make sure you don’t run afoul of the friends standing with you at the altar, follow these important etiquette tips for choosing your bridesmaid dresses.

Plan it early

Don’t make your bridesmaid scramble at the last minute to find or order dresses because you couldn’t make up your mind. You should be choosing the overall look of your wedding 6 to 8 months in advance to give them plenty of time to find dresses and have them tailored.

Consider cost

Not all your bridesmaids will have the same financial situation, so be aware of that when choosing bridesmaid dresses. Even if one of your wealthier bridesmaids loves a $600 dress, that may not be feasible for everyone else. You could even send out an anonymous survey to the brides with price points for them to choose from.

Give them options

Maybe you love pink bridesmaid dresses, but your girls don’t? Consider letting them have slightly different color options. Instead of just ‘pink,’ offer them any color in that spectrum, from blush to dusty rose bridesmaid dresses. This will prevent conflict and also make sure that all your bridesmaids feel pretty in their dresses.

There is no ‘universally flattering’ fit

As convenient as it would be for one dress to work for every body type, it’s just not true. Because of this, consider letting your girls have different dress styles that are all the same shade. This will keep the look cohesive without putting one of your bridesmaids in a dress that will make her deeply uncomfortable.

Make your bridesmaid gift something useful

Your bridesmaids are going to be spending a lot of money to attend your wedding, so giving them a little token of appreciation is common. That being said, make it something they’ll actually use. They don’t want a single champagne glass with you and your hubby’s initials on it. Instead, offer to cover the cost of their makeup application for the day, or give them each individualized gifts that reflect their personalities.

Think about your bridesmaids’ lives

Not all of your bridesmaids will have time to go on four-hour shopping sprees or to tan before the wedding. Take a minute to consider life events that may be coming up for your bridesmaids, whether that’s a big project at work or a pregnancy.

Don’t forget the photographs

Don’t just consider how the dresses look on the rack or on models, consider how they will photograph and how the material and color will look in the venue and in the light (depending what time of day you’re marrying).