50 Things to Know About Being a Bridesmaid

As a bridesmaid, I feel honored and privileged to be asked to participate in my best friend’s wedding, my sister’s wedding, my cousin’s wedding, or any other wedding I am close to. Sometimes you should say no even though there are things you must do. There’s no need for you to be a bridesmaid – you’re there to support the bride on her big day, not to serve her like a maidservant.

The bride will be able to get advice from you-when she asks for it-and run errands while you assist with the planning of the wedding. Being reliable, cheerful, and well-organized will be essential.

Bridesmaids can say no to certain things if they wish.

For the first time, will you be a bridesmaid?

What are some tips for being a good bridesmaid?

What gift do you want to give your attendants as a bride?

1. If you can’t afford it, say no.

It is okay for you to decline the invitation if you don’t have the money- among the gifts, the parties, and the wedding itself, weddings can be quite pricey, and if you don’t have the money, it is okay for you to decline. Explain to the bridal party that you are experiencing financial problems – maybe you can cut some costs so that you can be a part of the bridal party.

2. Host a local bachelorette party

There is nothing better than throwing an awesome bachelorette party in Vegas for the bride, right? The problem is, it’s so far away and costs so much to get there. It’s perfectly fine to have an awesome bachelorette party locally- do some research on popular party places in your area.

3. Help With Pre-Wedding Tasks

As a bridesmaid, you want to do whatever you can to make the life of the bride easier. So, offer to help her with pre-wedding tasks. However, be specific when you offer. Saying “Can I help you with anything?” opens you up to being asked to do all kinds of things.

4. Help With Gift Baskets For Out-Of-Town Guests

Many times, a bride will want her out of town guests to have information or souvenirs from the area so that they can remember their trip. Help her out with this by creating a welcome letter and collecting important phone numbers, maps of the area, postcards from the area, snacks, and may be list of “things to see and do.”

5. Provide emotional support to the bride

There are many women who wait with great anticipation for their wedding day since the time they are little girls. She’ll surely need someone to lean on, as there is so much excitement, anticipation, and even stress wrapped up in that one big day. Make sure that you are there for her when she gets cold feet and that you reassure her that her groom is a wonderful man and they belong together.

6. How To Host A Fabulous Bridal Shower

As a bridesmaid, you are expected to help the maid of honor plan and pay for a beautiful bridal shower for the bride-to-be. In most cases, this will happen three or six weeks before the wedding. Consider the personality of the bride when planning the type of bridal shower you want to throw for her. Do you think she’d like a nice afternoon tea or would she rather have a cocktail shower in the evening?

7. Give advice on how to dress well

On the day of her big day, the bride really does have a lot to think about. Therefore, if your future wife-to-be asks you for your opinion concerning the flowers she has chosen or the dresses and shoes she has chosen for the bridesmaids, you should feel welcome to do so.

8. Ask your significant other if they would be willing to attend the event with you

When you receive your invitation, ask the bride if she minds if you bring that special person in your life with you if it was only addressed to you. There is no reason to assume that simply because you’re a VIP at the wedding, you should be able to do whatever you like without consulting anyone. However, if the person likes to cause drama, it may be best to leave them at home if they do like to do that.

9. Remain calm – even when disaster seems imminent

Make sure that you are calm on your wedding day as a bridesmaid, as it can be quite stressful. Make sure your attitude is contagious. The bride should be made aware that if something disastrous happens, you will do what you can in order to make things right.

10. Don’t let anything get in the way of what you’re doing

It is well known that a boy scout’s motto is, “always be prepared.” Well, on the day of the wedding, the same is also true for the bridesmaids. You will need to be prepared for several things on the wedding day, such as running last minute errands, helping the bride get ready, ushering guests to their seats, handing out programs or favors, and even making sure everyone signs the guestbook. Be sure that you are always there for the bride, no matter what she needs.

What a bridesmaid should not do

11. Do Not Offer Your Opinion On Every Single Detail

The amount of decisions a bride has to make about the wedding becomes overwhelming at a certain point. Nevertheless, this is not your chance to give your two cents on every little detail. The best thing you can do is to keep your opinions to yourself unless the bride asks what you think.

12. Never turn your wedding into a game of dating

Having your eye on a one of the cute, single groomsmen is perfectly fine. However, the wedding should be centered around the bride and groom and not on the cute, single groomsmen. The bride and groom may be able to set you up with their friend later on in the evening. It’s not the right time to ask though, because it’s not about you finding your true love at the wedding.

13. Don’t Bend Over Backwards For The Bride

While it is true that you’re there to help the bride and make her day go as smoothly as possible, you’re not there to be her slave. As much as you would like to offer your help, please know that if you are unable to do so due to finances or other obligations, do not be afraid to say no. When you go overboard, you’ll be exhausted and most likely resentful towards your friend.

14. The last thing you should do is try to “one-up” your bridesmaids

You can end up with a very complicated group of incompatible women when you combine family and friends, both old and new, both from your own past and from your present. At the same time, however, you should still attend your friend’s wedding with a smile on your face, and try to get along with everyone. Make sure you do not engage in backstabbing or gossip, and do not get involved in a debate about who loves her more.

15. Drink in moderation and don’t overdo it

In the event that the happy couple has chosen to have an open bar, this does not mean that you should drink as much alcohol as possible during the reception. You want to keep it classy since you were chosen to be a bridesmaid and it’s a very special day. Relax, enjoy yourself, but know when to stop.

16. Don’t be a nitpicker

Don’t forget that it’s the bride’s big day, not yours. Although you may not like the color of the dress or the style of the shoes she has selected for you, that doesn’t give you the right to complain. Alternatively, if she has chosen a designer dress and shoes that you cannot afford, speak up. You shouldn’t have to put your friend in debt.

17. Don’t ask her what she spends

The amount of money she spends on her wedding is none of your business. The amount of money she spends on her wedding is none of your business. You shouldn’t ask her what she spent on flowers, centerpieces, the cake, or anything else.

18. Don’t force her to act wild

At some bachelorette parties, brides like to let their hair down and have a wild time. While others like to keep things low-key. How would you describe your friend’s personality? Is she a party girl or a homebody? Plan the bachelorette party around what she would enjoy.

19. If you’re a bridesmaid, don’t complain

As a bridesmaid, you can have a lot of fun. There are, however, some disadvantages. If you overspend on the bridal shower or you have to wake up early to spend the morning in the spa with your bridesmaids getting “beautified.” It’s fine to make some helpful suggestions, but it’s never okay to complain.

20. Don’t expect to be the center of attention all the time

A wedding is a celebration for the bride and groom. Despite your gorgeous dress and professionally done hair and makeup, keep in mind that it is not about you. It won’t be you that people talk about for years to come, it’ll be the bride and groom. Sometimes you have to let your friends have the spotlight for a while.

What it takes to be an amazing maid of honor

21. Don’t Be Afraid To Go On The Offense

Make sure you keep an eye out for the bride at the reception. Don’t let her get cornered by someone who likes to talk a lot! Make sure she’s free to enjoy her reception by taking her place in the conversation. She needs to be able to mingle with everyone at the wedding, not just get stuck talking about the wedding of her great aunt forty years ago.

22. Make sure the bride’s parents are taken care of

There will probably be tears in the mother of the bride’s eyes because she just gave away her baby girl. Be there to comfort her. In contrast, the groom’s father probably just wants to be alone. Most men internalize their feelings.

23. Remember the parents of the groom

A milestone in the life of the groom’s baby boy has just been reached by his parents. Dad may be proud of his son for securing the heart of such a beautiful bride, but mom may be a little sad to see her baby go. Don’t forget her.

24. Make sure you have an emergency kit

You can use a blow dryer to touch up your hair, dry your nails, and spot dry when you spill water or champagne on your dress just before pictures. Make sure you also have a sewing kit, tissues, band-aids, safety pins, tweezers, scissors, nail files, and even mints. Many wedding planning sites provide a full list of things to include in an emergency kit.

25. List The “Must-Have” Photos For The Photographer

Photographers probably do not know everyone at the wedding and have no idea how the bride and groom met. Get the bride to write down a list of photos she would like to have taken- from family poses to any inside jokes that she and the groom think would be fun. These photos will not be taken if the photographer does not have this list.

26. Keep a sense of humor

When there are young flower girls or ring bearers in the wedding, things are bound to happen. I assure you, it won’t ruin everything. If the ring bearer wants to be with his mother or if the flower girl is playing with the flowers, he may have a meltdown. Kids will be kids – that’s what makes them so fun!

27. Check the transportation schedule

Plan how the bride and groom will get to the wedding ceremony and reception, as well as how they will leave after the reception. Make sure that all vehicles are in place when they should be. Don’t forget the parents of the bride and groom- they need transportation too.

28. Pay Attention To Details

If you’re attending an out-of-town wedding, you’ll need to know things like the check-in and check-out times at the hotel. If you’re getting ready at the venue, you’ll also need to know where you can keep your stuff.

29. Don’t forget to bring supplies to the “Getting Ready” party

Especially if a lot of you are getting ready. You’ll need some drinks, snacks, and maybe even some magazines to read. With so many of you getting your hair and makeup done, you’ll have plenty of downtime.

30. Don’t forget to feed the bride

The last thing you want is for the bride to faint during the vows. As you prepare for the wedding, make sure she eats a decent breakfast and has a few snacks. But don’t force her to eat. If they eat anything, some brides will get sick.

31. Invitation assistance

As maid of honor, you should assist the bride in selecting her invitations as well as addressing them and ensuring that they are sent out, if she requests that. You shouldn’t force her to choose the ones that you like, but if she asks, feel free to give your opinion- as well as why you like those best.

32. Seating arrangements assistance

The more guests attending a wedding, the more complicated the seating arrangements can be. Therefore, this is something you can assist with- or even do for the bride. If there are any potential conflicts between guests, make sure you do not put them at the same table.

33. Make sure the bride stays cool

After all, everyone will be watching the bride on her big day. You are there to help her remain calm, cool, and collected. She may also be a bit hot in her dress, especially if it is a big dress and a hot day. Keep her cool by offering her a fan or water- the last thing you want is a bride who passed out.

34. Be the boss on the wedding day

She has a thousand things on her mind the day of the wedding. It’s your job to make sure everything runs smoothly. Ensure that everyone knows what they are responsible for and that they are doing it.

35. Choosing the wedding venue with the bride

It is possible that the bride has her eye on more than one venue. Compare and contrast them and then help her choose the best one. Visit the various venues with her so that you can assist her in making this decision. Consider how the venue will look later on in pictures: will she look back with disdain at the carpet or walls? Or will she look back with happiness?

36. Talk to everyone else

Often, the bride gets so wrapped up in the details that she forgets to relay messages to the rest of her wedding party. Be the messenger for her. Keep everyone updated on all details and any changes that may occur.

37. Preserve the cake topper

On their one year anniversary, many couples like to open the top of their cake tightly packed. Ensure that the gift is wrapped properly and taken back home if the couple is opting for this tradition. Make sure it is labeled if they want to store it in the freezer for a year! They can store it in their fridge if they want to eat it after their honeymoon, as some couples do.

38. Don’t Let The Gifts Go To Waste

Assist in getting all of the gifts from the ceremony or reception site to the bride and groom’s home after the festivities. After the reception, the happy couple will probably head off on their honeymoon- they aren’t thinking about bringing the gifts home. Make sure you remember to do this.

39. Make Sure The Dress Is Cared For

Make sure that the wedding dress makes it to the cleaners following the wedding. Once the cleaners have cleaned and/or preserved the item, be sure to pick it up and have it waiting for the couple when they return from their honeymoon.

40. Make A Fabulous Toast

You are responsible for toasting the bride and groom at the reception as the maid or matron of honor. The best man usually toasts first, followed by you. If you are typically a jokester, then feel free to give a speech that will make people laugh – just don’t give a speech that will make everyone cry just because you are a woman.

Giving The Toast

41. Congratulate her

Begin your toast by congratulating the newlyweds on the start of their new life together. The first person to give a toast should thank the guests for coming and being there for the happy couple. Take a moment to welcome the new spouse into your family if you’re a family member.

42. Share a joke or a funny story

Share a funny- but not embarrassing- story about the couple member you’re friends with. Especially if you have known both of them for a long time, tell a funny story about the two of them together. Don’t tell anything that will dampen their spirits.

43. Show Your Affection

Let the bride and groom know how much you appreciate them before you finish your toast. If you’re a close friend of the bride, you should thank her for always being there for you and how happy you are to be there for her. If you are close to the groom, tell him how happy you are that he has found a woman as wonderful as the bride.

44. Don’t take it lightly

In toasting the bride and groom, you are speaking for all the guests. However, you also have a very important story to share. Making a toast is an honor that comes with lots of responsibilities. Take it seriously, and be mature and graceful.

45. Don’t write it the night before – Plan ahead

Three weeks before the wedding, you should write out your speech. It is an honor to be in your position, so you should treat it as such. Edit your speech with someone you trust, but not the bride or groom. It is important to plan ahead to ensure a smooth speech and avoid last-minute panic.

46. Select An Appropriate Quote

Make sure that the quotation you choose fits the happy couple if you choose to include one in your speech. Make sure that it contributes to your overall message. Nevertheless, you should know that you are not required to use a quote in your speech if you don’t want to. Don’t include a quote if you think it would sound unnatural.

47. Keep it short and sweet

It is not the time to rant on and on about the bride and/or groom. In addition, now is not the time to use words that you normally wouldn’t use. Use your normal speech and keep it short. Don’t include x-rated stories, giggling, or group songs. You can speak in two lines or two minutes, but don’t go over two minutes- people will get bored.

48. Keep It Basic, But Personalize

In addition to personalizing the speech to your style and standards, there are a few basics that should be included: state how happy you are for the couple, include a memory that is significant to everyone, offer advice for the couple, and raise your glass.

49. Use your creativity

Consider singing a song, reading a poem, or even doing a dance if you think traditional speeches are too old-fashioned for you. Be careful not to embarrass the happy couple, so make sure to check with them before doing anything too extravagant.

50. Practice makes perfect!

Practice makes perfect when you’re giving a speech. Taking it seriously goes hand in hand with this. In the beginning, make sure that you can read your own writing and that you don’t have any words you might have trouble saying. Additionally, practicing will help you to overcome any potential “stage fright” you may have.

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