Will you be my Bridesmaid? Sure… but what do I have to do?!

Congratulations, you have been chosen to be a bridesmaid, and it is a role not to be taken lightly. The bride selected you, because you play a very important role in her life and wants you to be a part of one of the biggest days of her life, because you mean that much to her!  As a Bridesmaid or Maid of Honor you have a strong supportive role you must play during the entire wedding experience.

Below are a few tips for before and during the wedding that may assist you as you help the bride through one of the most memorable days of her life!

It’s going to cost you!

Understand that being a bridesmaid is a financial commitment that should not be taken lightly, as a bridesmaid it is your responsibility to make sure you are in a position to take care of the following:

  • Bridesmaid Dresses
  • Shoes and possible accessories
  • Makeup for wedding day
  • Hairstyling for wedding day
  • Manicures and Pedicures with color of bride’s choice
  • Hotel for day of wedding if coming from out of town
  • Cost of Bridal Shower venue, food, favors, décor divided amongst bridesmaids
  • Cost of Bachelorette party/trip and associated expenses to included but not limited to: bride’s flight, hotel, meals, excursions during bachelorette party divided amongst bridesmaids  

On average bridesmaids spend between $800-$3000, be prepared.  You know your friend and you know her taste!  It’s better to respectfully decline in the beginning, then to accept the title of bridesmaid if the financial commitment is something you may not feel comfortable with.  As your friend the bride will understand, and it will be better on your friendship in the end!

Where do I begin!

Know that getting married is both an exciting and stressful time for the bride! As her friend she may ask you to accompany her on some vendor appointments, she may even ask your opinion on things such as her venue, theme, color and décor for  the wedding.  Be there for her in reason, if you can’t be honest with her, the worst thing you can do is tell a bride you can help with something you are in able to do.  It may be a great idea to drive so she can focus and to help alleviate some of the anxiety and stress she may be feeling.

Can I ask you a favor?

It is always nice to volunteer to help with signage and personalized items as well as addressing at least some the invitations if the bride agrees. Many times a bride may outsource her invitations and stationary which is recommended,  but if they decided to DIY, your help will be key in reducing the load of tasks to complete.

Your friend may need help in ordering and choosing favors, your opinions may be helpful in making decisions for narrowing down choices and making sure the favors are in on time for the wedding, shower and bachelorette parties.

What girl doesn’t like shopping?

Be prepared the bride may ask you to join her to go wedding dress shopping! She may even invite you to be involved in picking out the bridesmaid dresses, but always remember in the end the ultimate choice is the brides! She may ask for your opinion, be honest, but not overbearing!

Please make sure to order your dress when the bride ask, it really does take 4 or more months for bridesmaids dresses to arrive, so be cognizant of that. It is very important to help make sure the dresses are ordered and arrive in enough time for alterations!

It’s a celebration!

Now for the fun part, help plan the bridal shower as well as the bachelorette party! The planner is there to assist the Maid of Honor with coming up with a theme and plan, but as bridesmaids it is your responsibility to organize the Bridal Shower and Bachelorette Party for the bride, by coming up with games, program agenda, sending out invitations and communication to guest, etc.

Communication is key!

Be a good communicator with information. Many times information prior to a wedding does not reach everyone. Friends will appreciate confirming plans of each shower and party as well as wedding day information. Some good tools to consider to keep everybody in the loop are GroupMe and Whatsapp since you can create groups for the wedding party, and is easier to collaborate real time with one another.

Rehearsal is paramount for success!

Rehearsal is mandatory so make arrangements to attend and be on time.  During the rehearsal the planner will provide you with key information regarding the day of schedule and particulars regarding how the ceremony will run. In addition,   Many times the bride, groom, and their families are pre-occupied and may forget about somethings which is where you can save the day by being supportive.

Timeliness is next to Godliness!

Be on time! Many times the bridesmaids set the tone for the brides state of mind the morning of the wedding. With larger bridal parties makeup and hair appointments are usually done as early as 5am, be ready and don’t complain, time is truly of the essence, and your understanding of that will really help the day run smoothly.

Don’t worry, I got you!

Assist the bride in getting into her dress, as well as setting out accessories for the photographer.

Ask if the bride needs anything (food, water, etc) all the way up till the time she is walking down the aisle. She will really appreciate it!

Assist the other bridesmaids on where to go and timing, especially if they show up late. The Wedding planner will provide a schedule the week of to assist you on where to be and what time to be there.

Help make sure the bride has privacy if she needs some quiet time before the ceremony.

Be the witness in the signing of the marriage license which is an honor!

Take some deep breaths and walk slow when you walk down the aisle since it is common to speed up. If a groomsman walks down the aisle with you, make him refrain from talking or fooling around.

Say Cheese!

Don’t forget to smile! Keeping a smile on your face is more important then you know.  The bride already has 1000 things on her mind, your smile can make a world of difference! Plus, you must stay camera ready at all time 🙂

Make sure to take lots of pictures at the reception. The bride and groom will appreciate them! (No pictures during the ceremony, your phone should be put away and not carried into the ceremony! The professional photographer has it covered)

Have fun and make memories!

If you are single, make sure to mingle and have a great time at the party! It is mandatory to catch the bridal bouquet 🙂

If you are with your partner, make sure to dance and socialize since it means a lot to the bride and groom to see their friends having and creating a good time for themselves and the other guests.

Gifts and all that good stuff!

Help make sure at the end of the night that the gifts are taken home for the bride and groom so they don’t have to worry about it, whether it’s with the parents of the couple or a member of the wedding party, make sure it is one less thing for them to worry about.

Is your answer still yes?

Again, the bride chose you to be by her side on one of the biggest days of her life, because you are one of the most important people in her life!  If you feel the responsibility to be too great, let the bride know before you say yes, don’t feel pressured. Be there in everyway you can to provide moral support, be a good listener, a shoulder to cry on, all the things you were that caused her to ask you to be a bridesmaid in the first place! Even on the sidelines, you can still make a difference!  As your friend the bride should understand, and trust me your friendship will be thankful in the end.

Remember, “It’s not what we have in life, but who we have in our life that matters” – Unknown