A bride needs something old, something new, something borrowed, and most importantly….YOU! There’s no doubt that you need a bride tribe by your side on your wedding day, but before the girls say “I Do” to your bridesmaid proposal, we’ve put together a list of duties & responsibilities the ladies should be aware of. Your girls will be filled with excitement and joy, but it can also be overwhelming, both work load wise and financially, and we want everyone to be well informed of the responsibilities at hand in order to show up and be the best I Do Crew! It’s a commitment that occurs before, during and after the wedding day but if everyone can follow these guidelines, everyone can slay together and stay together!
HELP PLAN FOR THE BRIDAL SHOWER (AND BE PREPARED TO PAY)
It’s common for the bridal shower to be a shared responsibility between the maid of honor, parents & family and often the bridesmaids, so offer a helping hand with the planning portion, but at the very least, plan on attending the shower and bring a gift for the bride to be.
SHOP FOR BRIDESMAID ATTIRE (AND BE PREPARED TO PAY)
You may be asked to go as a group or just individually shop for your bridesmaid dress, but it is super important to be supportive and give sensible feedback only if requested. You should show up on time, and be present with your information, measurements and decisions, and most importantly, be prepared to pay for your own dress, jewelry & shoes. Remember, what you wear as a bridesmaid isn’t always your decision, but be a great friend, give a smile and be there to compliment the bride and her overall vision.
HELP PLAN FOR THE BACHELORETTE PARTY (AND BE PREPARED TO PAY)
The maid of honor is typically the main party planner for the bachelorette party, but there ain’t no party like a bridal party, so again, offer to lend a hand wherever possible. This might include some research, assistance in organizing travel plans, the guest list & itinerary and decor. It’s also important to split up the costs between all of the bridesmaids so the bride’s expenses are covered for her bachelorette party.
BOOK TRAVEL & HOTEL RESERVATIONS
Plan ahead and start reserving your travel & hotel accommodations early on for the big wedding weekend. If transportation is needed at all during the weekend and it isn’t provided, come together with the other bridesmaids and figure out a plan beforehand on how to get from place to place.
ATTEND ANY OTHER PRE-WEDDING EVENTS
Be present at any other pre-wedding events, such as engagement parties, couples showers, DIY get-togethers, bridal dress shopping/alternation appointments, etc.
ATTEND THE REHEARSAL & REHEARSAL DINNER
If a rehearsal is conducted prior to the wedding, it’s imperative that the bridesmaids are there so they know what to expect, where to stand, and have a general overall idea of the wedding day. It’s also important to be present at the rehearsal dinner and honor the family that’s hosting this occasion. A lot of brides are now asking for toasts/speeches to take place at the rehearsal dinners rather than at the wedding, so it could be the perfect opportunity to pre-congratulate the newly married couple.
ASSIST WITH WEDDING PLANNING TASKS
Bridesmaids are talented and individual talents might be asked during the wedding planning process. You may find yourself stuffing envelopes, making DIY decorations, alphabetizing escort cards, learning how to bustle a dress, whatever the task that’s asked of you, be a team player and help your girl out.
BE HER SUPPORT
She’s got the engagement rock, but she also needs her rocks aka, her besties, her family, her friends. Wedding planning can come with incredible joy & pure happiness, but it can also come with stress and an overwhelming to-do list. Check on her during the process, ask what she needs, ask what you can do to help, and be there for her. If you are the type that she can bounce ideas off of, that’s a pretty cool position to be in, but also stick to your opinion and don’t be pushy or judgy on her overall decisions. Also, be there to support the maid of honor, because not all MOH are natural planners and may need and want some assistance.
BUY A WEDDING PRESENT
Check out the couple’s wedding registry and send a gift directly to their address (rather than having to bring a gift to the wedding venue day of). Or if all of the bridesmaids want to go in on a big-ticket group gift, it’s a perfect opportunity to give the couple something they really want but might not be able to purchase for themselves. If you are creative and can customize something for them, that’s always a great way to personalize a present.
SAVE THE DRAMA FOR YO MOMMA!
A group of bridesmaids come from all different parts and times in a bride’s life - some may be family members, some may be lifetime friends, some may be sorority sisters or work friends, but you all have one thing in common, the bride. It’s natural for conversations & experiences to be misconstrued and personalities to clash, but play nice, be kind and don’t leave it up to the bride to be the middleman.
WEDDING DAY RESPONSIBILITIES
GET READY WITH THE BRIDE
It’s wedding day, yay! Wherever & whenever the girls are gathering to get ready for the big day, come on time and come with all of your gear (dress, shoes, jewelry, makeup, undergarments, etc). You may also consider coming prepared with an emergency kit for the day (super glute, bobby pins, hairspray, tide pen, safety pins, eyelash glue, etc). While getting ready, check on your girl - make sure she’s eating and staying hydrated, answer any logistical questions/calls on her behalf, pour her a drink and keep her calm, smiling & laughing. She will also most likely need assistance getting into her dress, attaching her veil and accessorizing herself so be ready for when she needs you.
It’s crucial on wedding day to have plenty of drinks and snacks available (and bubbly of course!) so if arrangements for food & beverages haven’t been previously arranged, consider contributing with some quick & easy (and possibly mess free) apps & sips.
After everyone is glammed up and ready for their close up shot, make sure the bride has everything she needs for her photos and for the ceremony which can include rings, bouquet, vows, veil, water, touch-up lipstick, cell phone, tissues, etc. And of course, make sure you are ready with your bouquet and your smile.
BE THE BRIDE TRIBE
Being a bridesmaid is almost like the concept of a support crew - not only should you be focused on the bride and her needs, but you should be able to serve as a point of contact for guests. Ya, maybe you don’t know all of the details, but you can still be helpful by making sure guests know where events are taking place, showing guests where the gift & guest book table are, and double-checking that members of the wedding party are set and ready with the appropriate bouquets, corsages, flower crown, boutonneiere, etc.
LEAD BY EXAMPLE
You should also mingle and be friendly with the other guests (besides just the other bridesmaids and the couple). Participate in guest related activities, sit down for dinner when asked, witness (and even photograph) special dances, cake cutting, bouquet toss, grand exit, and be out on the dance floor even if no one else is! Oftentimes the guests don’t know what to do, but if they can follow the lead of someone who’s a part of the wedding party, it can make the day go by flawlessly. Set the mood & keep the energy up, and most importantly, drink responsibly!
BE A BATHROOM BUDDY & KNOW HOW TO BUSTLE
Bridal gowns are all stunning in their own way, but sometimes, they come with some challenges, especially in the bathroom category. If the bride's dress is extremely form filling, or the complete opposite and is full and fluffy,, they may need some assistance in the little girls room. You may also be asked to know how to (or at least assist) in bustling her dress so pay close attention to those small details. Or if the bride is changing outfits completely, we find it more comfortable for the bride to have a familiar face assisting in that process.
BRIDESMAID FOR A DAY, BUT A FRIEND FOR LIFE
Before the night ends, there’s still a few things you can do to assist in a perfect wedding night. You can start by making sure all of your personal belongings are together and out of the bridal suite and that you’ve cleaned up as much as you can. You can also assist in gathering up items that the bride will need to take home, such as getting-ready clothes, decor & signage, gifts & cards, any personal items, her bouquet, the top tier of the cake, leftover alcohol, some left over food or late night snacks, etc.You can also assist in making sure all guests find a ride home, whether they are getting on shuttle buses or are calling Ubers. You also may be responsible for making sure the couple has their overnight bags in their hotel room before heading to the after party!
HELP WITH RETURNS
Congratulations, you did it! But before you hang up your bridesmaid hat, offer to help with any returns, such as leftover items back to the hotel or to their house. Or if there are any rental items that need to be returned, you can offer assistance in that. Most couples will head out on a honeymoon after their big day, so by putting some of those after-wedding to-dos on someone else’s plates, helps them tremendously.
We know you took some selfies with your girl and snaps of the wedding day and nothing is more fun that reliving those special moments. Get with the other bridesmaids and create a shared file of pictures and videos and send them to the couple. It takes some time to get the professional pictures and videos back, so any sneak peak of behind the scenes memories, will just re-spark their happily ever after.