So if you’re like me you’re starting to enter the age where everyone around you seems to be getting married. And with any luck, you will be bestowed the great honor of being part of the wedding party. Now I’m not saying it’s a great honor, because you now have a title of bridesmaid/groomsmen which guarantees you a lot of free passes. BUT also because it’s like you’re part of this super elite organization that knows all the behind the scenes stuff, plus all the gossip. Needless to say, it’s a lot of fun. But with the fun comes a lot of responsibility, at least for the bridesmaids. Not to worry, I am here to help.
Weddings are unique to the couple. Some have bridezillas, some have groomzillas, some are simple, some are complex, some have the wedding party extremely involved, and some have the wedding party just showing up. Whatever style of wedding you are now a part of, these few tips should hopefully help you navigate the world of weddings. Keep in mind, most of these apply to being a bridesmaid, but it certainly can be applied to groomsmens (although you guys have A LOT less work.)
1. The Wedding Party
So you have just been asked to be a bridesmaid. That means you are someone very special to the bride. Be happy about that! I will tell you from this point on, that bridesmaid group will become some of your closest friends for the next few months, this will become especially true the closer you get to the wedding. Please keep in mind you are part of the bride’s life for one reason or another. You will all probably have very different personality and taste. (how else do you keep life interesting, if it’s not for having different friends who apply to different areas of your life and personality.) I can tell you right now, there is always a crazy one in the group, and if you can’t figure out who it is, it’s probably you! But it is of extreme importance to put your differences aside and work together, the wedding after all is about the couple NOT YOU! Also, you will probably not meet the groomsmen (unless you previously know them) until the Wedding Rehearsal.
2. NO Stress
This one is true for before and during the wedding. Always remember the couple already has A LOT on their plate, do not add more with petty things. If you are having issues with your bridesmaid, the bride may be your best friend but that is the last thing she needs right now. You have been given the responsibility to stand by her during her day, but that also means all of you are there to take the first punches before it gets to the couple. Think of it as you are her knights of the round table and what wants to hurt the couple is stress. You have to do everything in your power to make sure their stress is the least amount possible. That means taking on a few more things other than your basic duties. This one is ESPECIALLY true for the day of the wedding. When things go wrong, and they will, you are there to take control and not let any stress reach the bride. Whether someone gets a flat tire, vendors are late, the decor isn’t perfect, (god forbid) something happens to the dresses, or someone forgot something, you are her saviors for the day. You need to make sure she stays calm, and happy because this is her special day, one she has been dreaming of all her life, and has been working hard towards for at least a year.
Whatever type of wedding they are having you need to budget. Here are a few things that go into being a bridesmaid that you will need to budget for: dress, shoes, hair, makeup, accessories, bachelorette party, traveling expenses if they are far away or are having a destination wedding, bridal shower, gifts, and any other things they decide to add on like after party or hotel. Typically, a good base to start off should be $1,000, but again it depends on your couple and the wedding. Also, as a bonus sometimes the bride will provide you with a few things as your gift for being her bridesmaid. But I say, budget for all of it anyways.
This is fun and potentially stressful part of your duty. Finding the perfect dress. Some brides know exactly what they want and all you have to do is go to the store try it on and you’re done. While other leave it up to you to figure out what you want collectively as a group. Be prepared to disagree a lot and give yourselves enough time to figure out what exactly you’re all comfortable with. However, again I stress that this day is not about you. While it is totally acceptable to want to look good, you all have to find a way to compromise on a dress that makes everyone happy. This section also applies to shoes.
So you’re now asking besides the wedding, what else do you have to attend. Well I am here to say, there’s a few more events. The two obvious ones are the Bridal Shower and the Bachelorette Party. Let me break these down for you guys. The Bridal Shower is the more tame, family oriented one. This one has more to do with eating and giving gifts. There can absolutely be dancing involved and there is definitely games involved. But this is the party where both moms are there and probably grandmothers and aunts, so no swearing or bad behaviors. And then there’s the Bachelorette party, which is always A LOT of fun and kind of hazy. There will probably be a lot of drinking and dancing involved. This is the party you are allowed to let the freak flag fly. While you might hesitate a little due to not knowing most of the other girls in attendance, if all goes well they’ll be joining you in your crazy antics. So be sure to give the bride memories she should remember the next day and if she doesn’t, you can retell her the next morning. A few other events that might happen are get togethers to organize the wedding, buy dresses or help with any DIY decorations. Also the day before the wedding there is the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner. This is where you meet the groomsmen and where you have to pay attention to remember the simple instructions you’re given for the next day.
Yes there is drama, yes there are disagreements, yes there is a lot of attendance required and yes by this point your wallet is hurting. But everyone is there for a specific reason, TO HAVE FUN! You must always remember to have fun, in whatever part of the wedding you are working on. That allows you to make the process happier and stress free, and when you look back you can be like “WOW THAT WAS SO MUCH FUN!” So even if you feel like pulling out your hair, always remember to have fun because that’s what this really is all about. This is an incredibly fun experience and at the end of the day you will have such a good time with the girls that you’ll forget about all the stress and drama, enough to accept the next invitation to be a bridesmaid.
Well I hope this was a good overview of what it’s like to be a bridesmaid. I hope it made you laugh and I hope it actually does help when you accept the incredible life changing experience of being a bridesmaid.
As always much love,