If you've been a bridesmaid before you will know the pain: the pain of trying to find four (or more) bridesmaid dresses that will suit every girl despite each and every one of you having a different body shape, skin colour, hair colour and personal taste. But hey, being a bridesmaid isn't about your own personal taste, it's a wedding tradition that's been around for as long as we can remember. But have you ever stopped to think about why exactly this tradition exists in the first place?
Well, apparently having bridesmaids wearing matching dresses goes wayyyyy back. And, while some modern brides might choose to buck the tradition, it's got a pretty interesting past. According to Mental Floss, the real reason for the twinning dates back to Ancient Roman times, when bridesmaids not only wore the same dresses as each other but also as the bride. Yep, really. It was around this time that bridal parties were becoming a 'thing' but not because the bride necessarily wanted to surround herself with BFFs. Nope, she wanted to surround herself with decoys. Let us explain.
Essentially, weddings back in those days were likely to be gatecrashed by evil spirits and the bride's exes (we'd be more worried about the exes...) and that was a real problem for the couple tying the knot. The purpose of the bridesmaids was to confuse said spirits and exes - everyone looks the same! - for long enough that the bride and groom to marry without disruption or evil hailing down on them. The more you know.
So the next time you're asked to put on a matching bridesmaid dress for your friend's nuptials, just remember this fun fact. Oh, and keep an eye out for any spirits/exes that might be lurking around.