Monday, June 20, 2011

Ugly Dress Bachelorette Party

After my June bridal shower, the fun continued into the wee hours of the night when nine wonderful ladies celebrated my upcoming marriage in style ... with a bachelorette party that had no style.

The idea came from my Maid of Honor, Katie. We've both been obsessed with the 80s since forever (thank Girls Just Want to Have Fun for that). But we didn't want anything so simple as an 80s theme. Because it's just too easy to slack off and put on some leggings and a cut-up shirt and call it 80s. That's just not us. Katie and I go all out whenever we do something, and this was my bachelorette party. 

It was time to pull out all the stops.

In makeup, getting ready for the night.

So Katie came up with the idea that we should look like we're attending an ugly wedding in the 80s. Like authentically ugly. I would wear an ugly wedding dress and the rest of the girls would find ugly party dresses to be the guests and bridesmaids. And I am happy to say nearly all of my friends loved the idea and really embraced it. Everyone headed out to Goodwill and Salvation Army and purchased the incredibly gawdy and amazing dresses you'll see below.

I found my dress at Salvation Army. It was actually pretty expensive, but I went on a day when all clothes were half off, so that helped. There was another wedding dress there that fit me that was around $20, but it was very plain and ugly. And as the bachelorette, I needed insane bridezilla and ugly. So with my husband-to-be's blessing, I made the splurge for the showstopping satiny white dress with pouffy sleeves and a huge train and it was TOTALLY WORTH IT! The dress made the evening. Everyone looked so amazing and we did our hair and makeup all crazy so as a group we were incredible. But that dress made it so easy for other people to figure out what was going on and get really excited for us. All night we had people running up to take our picture and offer congratulations and let us know they would be stealing the idea for their own bachelorette party. haha Katie should be a party planner.
I really think the key to it being such a success was that everyone really embraced the theme and just had fun with it. We all looked equally ridiculous (except my mom, who sort of half-assed it) and so no one really looked out of place. We were a team and just loved getting to be together and celebrate. Although, it is worth mentioning that the guys at the bars totally loved my mom. They all wanted to talk to her. haha
In the end, there wasn't a single detail I would have changed. This was by far the best night I could have imagined to celebrate with my girls. I'm so grateful to have such wonderful women in my life!

My lovely bridesmaids also kicked off the evening with a little game that was so fun and a great way to pre-party before going to the bars. Each guest had purchased a pair of underwear (in my size) and they put them all together in a little gift bag. Then they gave it to me and had me pull out one pair at a time and try to guess who bought me that pair of underwear. If I guessed wrong, I had to take a drink of this very strong drink they had concocted for me.

It was really fun, especially because each girl sort of picked out a pair of underwear that she would probably wear herself, so it was funny to try to match them up. And, after the party, every time I wore any of the panties they gave me, it made me smile and remember this fabulous night. Kind of like the gift that kept on giving. So I highly recommend that little game.

With my 'maids.

As you can see in the pictures, several of the girls had buttons on. Some of them were from Michaels, designating the bride, maid of honor, and bridesmaids. And then we also had some smaller ones with funny phrases and labels like "Queen Bitch" and "I'll Have Another". I'm not sure where those buttons came from, but I'm sure you could find something similar at a party store or online. You could even make a little game out of passing out the buttons if you wanted to extend the pre-party.

The infamous dress.

My bridesmaids got a chance to practice bustling before leaving the parking garage.

At Good Time Charley's. Several of the waitresses and a couple other people came over to take our pictures as well. Haha We were basically celebrities.

Andrea, Sue and Emily rockin it out

The whole crew

The dress with the bustle

Standing on the Block M in the diag at University of Michigan

Getting silly at the end of the night
Update: I was recently asked if I still had the crazy wedding dress and if I would be willing to pass it on to a fellow 80s-loving bride. Unfortunately, the dress is no longer in my possession, or else I would love to help someone else have an awesome bachelorette party with such a funky dress. My mother ended up donating it back to Goodwill for me shortly after the shower. If you live in Jackson, MI, hit up Goodwill and you just might find it. 
Otherwise, I'd just suggest making the thrift store rounds to find the perfect ugly dress for you. There are always wedding dresses at my local Salvation Army in Syracuse, NY. But I definitely recommend going on a day when clothes are discounted, since these dresses can be pretty pricey. I believe I paid $75 for my dress, and it was on a day when all clothes were half off. Definitely extravagant for a joke dress, but it was absolutely worth it. 
To all you brides-to-be out there looking for an ugly dress for your bachelorette party, I wish you the best of luck! And remember, puffy sleeves are a must!


  1. Hi Callie- I was the one who asked about your dress before. You will be happy to know I found one equally as ugly and with big puffy sleeves! My bachelorette party is this weekend! Thanks for all the ideas and pictures :)

    1. Oh I'm so happy to hear that! I hope you have an absolute blast this weekend. If you have a blog or anything, definitely send me the link. I would love to see this dress. Sounds hideous. :-)

      And congrats on your upcoming wedding!

  2. My best friend's bachelorette party is at the end of this month. It was great to see some ideas - now I need to go get out their and find my ugly dress!! Planning on hitting up some Goodwill stores ASAP.

    1. That's awesome. Good luck finding the perfect dress! Remember that the worse it looks, the better it will be! I know you guys will have a blast. :-)