So as the saying goes ‘always the Bridesmaid, never the bride’. It’s quite fitting for me… I’ve been a Bridesmaid 4 times now, so I’d consider myself a little bit of a professional.
As a professional bridesmaid, I thought I’d give you the tips and tricks on how to be the best bridesmaid possible.
Like many other girls, I’ve had some of my bridesmaids planned out way before I even looked at a boy. As the years have gone on the bridal party I’ve had in my head has gone from around 40, to a mere 4. Bridal parties can be any size though, I mean it is the bride’s day they choose what they want.
As a bridesmaid you need to realise any stress, worry or crying she needs to have, she’ll be having it on you. Her husband-to-be doesn’t need to be scared away this close to kidnap time, let her let it all out on you.
Now, every wedding is different. I’ve been a bridesmaid to weddings I didn’t need to do ANYTHING at, rocked up at the hen do, got smashed, then a few months later rocked up at the wedding and did the usual shit again. But then I’ve been a bridesmaid for Brides that want more doing, which is where this blog will come in handy. Either way, it’s cool.
So before the wedding there may be some duties you need to do.
The Hen do
The maid of honour normally plans this, but offer your input. Planning a weekend away for a group of girls you may not know is a BIG task. One tip of advice, at both my friend’s and sister-in-law’s hen do we had an online system we were able to see everything on. It showed our itinerary and we could set up a direct debit and make payments. This meant everyone had an individual account and showed your balance with what’s left to pay. This made it SO much easier for the maid of honour when everyone was flapping about with money.
Make sure you are available, you’ve been asked to be a bridesmaid for a reason. Obviously meeting up isn’t necessary if you live hours away from one another, but its 2019 – your phone is probably your life. Send pictures of wedding things you see in shops, it makes the bride know you are excited for her day just as much as she is. Does she need you to go dress shopping with her? GO, and tell the truth as a friend. As long as you aren’t being a bitter cow, she is asking your opinion because she trusts you! This goes for the bridesmaid’s dresses too, these are ultimately the bride’s decision. Saying that the bride won’t want 5 girls looking like they would rather be anywhere but at her wedding in the dresses. Let her know if you aren’t comfortable!
Little unnecessary story here – When I was a bridesmaid for Shaunna we got given the bridesmaids dresses nearly a year in advance, when the month of the wedding came around one of the girls felt her dress was now too tight. Nowhere stocked the dresses she’d bought originally. Instead of buying 4 new dresses Shaunna ended up having 1 maid of honour dress, 2 of the original bridesmaid dress and 2 of the new one all in the same colour scheme. Shaunna asked if I would change, I absolutely LOVED my original dress but I knew what I needed to do and ended up wearing one of the new dresses, and I actually ended up loving it more! And the pictures looked AMAZING with the different dress styles!
Before a wedding there is much more interesting things you want to be doing with your time, but there will be many things to do. Guest lists, seat plans, centrepieces etc. Just be at hand for anything asked no matter how last minute. (11pm the night before my brother’s wedding I was in the hotel spraying pineapples gold and making name cards… nothing like last minute in my family).
Now onto the wedding day, and your duties. Your bride will be nervous as shit! Your one job is to make sure she looks amazing, stays amazing, and on both feet until she gets up to that altar. You’ll probably arrive at her house/hotel room early in the morning on the wedding day. You’ll have a few drinks, get your hair and makeup done and probably forget about breakfast. DON’T FORGET ABOUT BREAKFAST!
Music, getting ready you need a wedding day playlist. Single ladies, Beyoncé is a number one to get the bride in the mood. The music will calm the nerves, it’ll make the bride relax and make her think she isn’t getting ready for the biggest day of her goddamn life!
Photos, Make sure the photographer takes loads of pictures of the bride getting ready, she’ll want to remember this day where she was a bag of nerves for the rest of her life. And make sure you take as many snaps as possible too!
Ceremony, Its show time people, and the moment we’ve been waiting for. You may have practiced your walk down the aisle already, and know when you should be walking. Do everything perfect, hold your bouquet in the right position, and smile. There will be loads of cameras! I seem to have a habit of crying my eyes out whilst walking down the aisle, so I can’t give you advice on this bit! At the end of the ceremony don’t disappear, stick around (you are normally the last to leave) take as many pictures as possible and ask the bride what pictures she wants too! (Maybe with Grandparents etc. outside the church).
Reception, Now, you’ve probably drank all morning but now it’s time to chill out and party. First, you’ll have to walk in. Normally there is a groomsman picked for you to link with (he’ll probably be a similar height to you, so just go along with it even if his girlfriend is looking at you like she wants to commit a murder). Once you are in make your way to your table, and sit down for a meal. At this point make sure you aren’t awkward and check your brides guests have everything they need. The bride just doesn’t want to hear that her Grandad doesn’t like the potatoes off the £150pp meal she’s just paid for.
Speeches, now this is my favourite part. I absolutely LOVE the speeches at a wedding and normally end up crying like an emotional wreck or laughing so hard my back starts to ache. Either way, I bloody love it. If you are single, like myself, taking part in the bouquet toss is customary. Make sure every single woman at that wedding is joining in!
Dance! Nobody likes a party where no one can be arsed to dance, as the bridesmaid it’s your duty to make sure the party is as good as it can be, dance and trust me people will start to join in!
Your bride and groom may be socialising all night, so don’t be alarmed if you aren’t with your bestie like a normal night out of yours. Just make sure their drinks are always full!
The day after the night before
Now, nobody likes a hangover, fucking nobody. But especially not a Bride that has to empty the reception room of all her candles and centrepieces from her wedding. Make sure you go help her empty this room, and sweep the venue and the bridal room to make sure she hasn’t forgot anything! (Do those £20 Sephora eyelashes ring any bells Shaunna?)
YOU’VE ONLY GONE AND DONE IT! If you have followed my guide I can assure you, you were more than amazing! I hope you had the best time, and your bestie had the wedding they’ve always wished for. Thanks to you, her dress isn’t ripped, she married the man of her dreams, and you are still best friends because you weren’t a petty cow!