Wedding Topics: Pondering the Selection of your
A Perfect Celebration!
Meg and Michael Weddings
As soon as you've become engaged you will likely start thinking about which of
your friends and family will make up the members of your wedding party.
are many things to consider, and it is wise to make the decisions carefully but
quickly, so those who may have to travel or budget for their roles will have
ample time to do so.
You should select bridesmaids who are reliable, flexible, and available to help
with the details and planning of your wedding. It also helps if your chosen
bridesmaids are happy for you, instead of having feelings of jealousy that may
be revealed in a passive aggressive manner.
There are several questions that I hear most often as brides struggle with whom
1. Do I have to have my fianc√©'s sister(s) in my wedding; we aren't really
No, it is not imperative that you have your fianc√©'s sister as a bridesmaid if
you do not have a close friendship with her. However, it is a nice gesture to
include your future sister-in-law if you have room in the wedding party. If you
have a very close girlfriend of many years who you would have to exclude in
order to include the sister you barely know, it is appropriate to invite the
girlfriend over the groom's sister.
2. I have sisters who I love, but I have a lot of close girlfriends, too. Who
should I have as my bridesmaids?
If you have a limit on the number of bridesmaids, include close sisters before
girlfriends. Family is forever; friends usually will understand if they are not
chosen due to family obligation.
3. Who has to pay for the bridesmaid dresses and travel expenses?
For many years it has become accepted tradition that the bridesmaids pay for
their own attire, hair and makeup, and travel. Consider a potential bridesmaid's
ability to afford the cost before asking her to be in the wedding. To invite her
is to honor her; after you invite her, it is certainly fair discuss the costs
with her. Let her know that you will understand if she feels unable to fill the
role for financial reasons. There are other roles for her without the same
financial commitment. Research the costs and set an approximate budget in
advance, so your bridesmaids can plan.
Your expenses: Even though the bridesmaids pay for their
own attire, you will not be without costs associated with their participation.
Keep that in mind when you decide how many attendants to have. You and your
fianc√©'s family will have to pay for bouquets, gifts for each person, meals at
the rehearsal dinner, and limousines if you're providing transportation for the
wedding party. It all adds up quickly.
When selecting your bridesmaids, keep in mind that those who live locally will
need to help you with the wedding preparations, so choose those who will enjoy
the pre-wedding tasks and activities. Choose really close friends or family
members with whom you do not have to feel shy about asking for help. It doesn't
make much sense to invite a friend to be a bridesmaid if you haven't talked to
her much in the last ten years. When making your selections you needn't worry
about marital status or even gender of the friends you would like to have attend
for you. If you have a close male friend or relative you want to participate,
you simply call him an honor attendant. That person would wear a suit or tuxedo
matching that worn by groomsmen and ushers, with a different boutonni√®re to
designate the different role. You are under no obligation to invite someone to
be a bridesmaid just because you may have been one in her wedding previously.
Relationships change, so stay true to your closest family and friends. If you
have friendships that have historically been on again - off again, it's probably
best not to tempt fate even if you're on good terms at the time you're making
It isn't necessary to have an equal number of attendants on each side of the
aisle. It is recommended that there be one usher for every 50 guests. You don't
have to have one lady for every man. And if you have extra ladies, don't worry.
Most groomsmen will be more than happy to escort a lady on each arm.
At A Perfect Celebration! (in Bellevue WA), we provide
you with a free Maid/Matron of Honor Guidance Kit with additional information
and tips for this very special person in your wedding party. Be sure to stop by
and pick up a kit soon so you and your honor attendant can enjoy the planning
and work well together.