The Guide to Bridesmaids

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The music starts and you watch as your beautiful bridal party elegantly glides down the aisle in rhythmic harmony. In great anticipation, you wait as each one smiles to the guests, greeting them simply with their peaceful demeanor. You can see it now, your ladies standing right beside you as you promise to love from this day forward, for better or for worse.

Bridesmaids are obviously a very important aspect to a wedding. Whether you have one or seventeen, you have to think of who you want standing next to you, what they will wear, how you will ask them, and how to show you appreciation for them. I broke this post into two parts because I believe bridesmaids are such an important part of your special day, and one post just won’t cover it!

Who to choose as bridesmaids:

Choosing the women you want to be next to you as you make the biggest commitment of your life is an essential part of wedding planning. I think the biggest mistakes that brides can make when picking their party is that they either leave important girls out with the worry of a large bridal party or they pick woman that are involved in their life based off current situations and not long term friendships. You want to look back on that day and at your pictures and remember how important these women were to you and how they made you feel so special on that day. So, I have come up with a few questions to ask yourself when deciding if a woman should be involved as a bridesmaid on your wedding day. 1. Is this person immediate family and will this person be involved in my life for many years to come? If the answer is yes, than it would be wise to have them involved since they are family and will love and support you for many years to come. 2. Am I picking this person simply because I am good friends with them now (due to work circumstances, living situations, or current interests) or do I see myself having a long term friendship with her many years down the road? As women, we can often make friends quickly as an aspect of survival. We like to have women to talk to, gossip with, and share our excitements and concerns. But you need to remember that this day is meant to be about commitment and you want women who will hold you accountable for the promise you made years down the road. 3. Am I just picking this woman out of guilt or will I actually feel better having this person support me on the day of my marriage? The last thing you want is to look back and regret choosing someone as your bridesmaid. The day is very personal and reflective and you do not want to feel any extra sense of discomfort since you will already be a little nervous that day.1932599_823410534350471_7687391488458536514_o

As you can see, I had a very large bridal party! But I really felt that all of these women were a necessary component of making this day special.  Now let’s get to the fun part!

How to pop the question:

When I first got engaged, I took time to reflect and think about who I wanted in the bridal party. Once I knew who I wanted to ask, I thought of a creative way to ask them the honor. At the time, many of my bridesmaids lived in different states. Knowing that it would be difficult and expensive to have them all together or prepare them a big package, I decided to get a really nice set of stationary and add my own personal spin. I picked up a Kate Spade card set and decided to cut out the shape of an engagement ring out of glittered paper and place the ring into the envelop. I wanted to “pop the question” and ask them to be my bridesmaids. On the back of the card I wrote a personalized message to each girl. This was both cute and cost effective, being that money was tight at the beginning of the engagement.

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What they will wear:

This was definitely a difficult decision for me. When I knew I wanted a very romantic/glam wedding, I thought that having sequin dresses would be unique and tons of fun. After running the idea by a few of the girls, I decided to just do it! I did make several mistakes in the process of picking the exact ensemble and learned a few lessons in the process. My first mistake was allow for too many options. I thought that by allowing them to choose their own exact style, it was be carefree and easy. Unfortunately, it caused more stress. So, if you are wanting to provide your bridesmaids with options, make them limited and specific. Pick only 2-3 styles and give them exact information with wear to get sized or how to purchase them. My second mistake was not having a dress deadline for purchasing. Thankfully all worked out, but we did have a few close calls with dresses not coming on time. I did do a few things right though too! I was very specific about their shoes, hair, and jewelry. I told the girls to all wear a nude heel. It didn’t care if it was peep toe, pump, etc. Their hair was to be in an updo but the particular style was up to them. And they could pick their earrings and bracelets, but no necklace. I found that the more specific I was with the girls, the happier they were. Give them options, but within limits so it is not too overwhelming! I found that it was nice to run any ideas or concerns by the Maid of Honor or other Bridesmaid first before making a final decision on something that involved the group. It is always smart to get a second opinion!

Look out for Bridesmaids Part 2 coming soon!

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