The Bridesmaid Guide
10 Top Tips on being the ultimate Bridesmaid
Being a Bridesmaid is quite possibly one of the biggest sisterly/friendship honours and having worked with many Bridal parties I have seen some gorgeous and hilarious moments shared between Brides and Bridesmaids. The months leading up to a wedding and getting ready on the day can involve many late night group Watsapps’s, Facetime calls and spreadsheet checking. Personally, I love being a Bridesmaid (probably my inner girl guide) but for those of you who perhaps haven’t been a Bridesmaid before, I’ve made a cheat sheet of my top tips to make sure you are the Bridesmaid of all Bridesmaids!
Watch Bridesmaids… you’re aiming for something in the middle of Annie & Helen!
Listen. That’s it, just listen. For some Brides, planning a wedding can be almost a full-time job & as a Bride you can be met with plenty of opinions on the road to making decisions and booking suppliers etc. The best thing you can do for your sister/friend is to listen to what she’s trying to decide on & then to help her make choices that are most relevant to her & her partner. It’s their day after all.
Get researching. Even if a Bride has months/years to plan her wedding, it never hurts to research suppliers and ideas to help with the big day (this is not applicable to HOBs – Highly Organised Brides!) Pinterest, Instagram, Wedding Fairs and online forums can all be great sources of ideas and contacts.
Unless you are being asked to wear an 80s inspired monstrosity of an outfit then be supportive about outfit choices if you can. At the end of the day you’re there to bring support and friendship to the Bride. If the outfit choice is unflattering or makes you feel uncomfortable then be honest as early on as you can, there’s no point making a fuss a few weeks beforehand!
Bring on the Hen. A well organised Hen Party really will make your Bride feel more loved than you’ll ever know (this is speaking from personal experience, both as a Bride myself & as an organiser). My sister sent a card to me after her hen do saying ‘thank you for an amazing hen do’s. I just hope I can do as good a job for you next time you get married’!!! Joking aside, a hen do doesn’t need to be a big flashy overseas extravaganza. The best hen do’s I’ve ever been on have been relaxed trips where the focus is on the Bride and her partner. I still have a cherished box full of homemade bunting with pictures of me & my hens along with a few pairs of fluffy handcuffs and straws you would think twice about giving your mother in law!
On the subject of Hen Do’s… We’re not great at talking about the subject of money, However, many Hen Do’s can cost a small fortune & I think we’ll start seeing a trend where Brides want more low-key style hen dos that cater for all budgets. This being said, I 100% know that it can be poisoned chalice having to rally the troops ahead of a hen do. My best advice… get all your budgets and costs together as early as possible, last minute costs never go down well and for some it’s just not affordable to commit to a pricey hen do. Many of us are getting hitched ourselves, having babies, moving houses and no doubt having to pay for other wedding commitments so find out what people can do early doors and you’ll have a smoother build up to what will no doubt be an epic send off for your bestie.
If you can, try to get 1 night options worked into what you’re hoping to do. This really helps those who can’t commit to a full trip/weekend but still want to join in.
Don’t go Big the night before the big day. This one has come from an anonymous source but lets just say this… crawling into bed with the Bride at 5am full to the brim with Jaeger bombs, half naked might mean you get some of the less appealing jobs on the morning of the wedding. We’re still great friends, so almost anything can be forgiven!
Fake It (if you have to). The morning of a wedding can go so quickly and can be intensely emotional. You may be in a totally different place to your sister or friend, we can’t all be loved up and getting married at the same time & I know it can be hard watching a loved one on the happiest days of their life when perhaps you’re not necessarily in the same boat.
But, as someone who gets to see almost everything on the morning of a wedding sometimes, I wish I could just say to some Bridesmaids… please Fake It, just for today, for her. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t justified in feeling how you feel but you’ll risk not enjoying yourself as much as you can nor enjoying those priceless moments that you’ll share forever. So, if she gets a letter/pressie from her partner, parents etc then indulge the moment. Try to put yourself in her shoes if you can.
Calm & Planned. On the big day try to keep the morning as calm as possible. You can really help by knowing what’s happening on the morning ahead of the big day. Details like knowing when the photographer/flowers/hair and make up are due to arrive can really help. If for any reason someone is running late you can be supportive to the Bride and try to reduce any stresses.
Always be prepared. My tiara broke (accidentally) on the morning of the wedding and my husband’s waistcoat was left at the suit shop 25 miles away which we didn’t discover until the morning of the wedding. In both instances it was our Bridal party who helped us sort things out. I will always remember my maid of honour’s boyfriend (at the time, now husband!) driving with 20 minutes to spare with his fuel light on to get super glue for my tiara. My husband’s Best Man negotiated with the shop to send a taxi with his waistcoat so it got to him in time. These are the good eggs in your life, who’s calm organisation will never be forgotten!
Have fun! You are never going to get this moment again so take in every little morsel of fun that comes your way. Sing, Dance & let your hair down (unless I’ve done your hair!) When the big day arrives and the ‘I Do’s’ have been said (which by the way is the most important part of the day) then it’s time to socialise and enjoy a day/night that has been entirely brought together by the happy couple.