Congratulations! So, you’ve ticked all the boxes in the job description and your best friend has finally popped the big question. Now she has enlisted you as her wing-woman for the next 12+ months, this fool-proof bridesmaid etiquette will help you master the role like a pro.
Embrace Social Media
First things first, have you met the rest of the bridal party yet? As leader of the pack, it’s your job to ensure everyone feels comfortable and gets to know each other. Praise the lord for the invention of social media! Whatever did they do before it?
Add everyone on Facebook to set up a private messenger group or download a suitable app to your smartphone. It’s wise to set up two groups. One can include the bride and discuss general wedding chit chat – a forum where her troop can share inspirations and ideas ahead of the big day. The second group is for the bridesmaids’ eyes only. Private plans and secret surprises for the bride can be hashed out in this space.
Get Everyone Involved
This will particularly apply if there are more than two bridesmaids. Shy personalities and quieter voices can get a little lost among all the noise when everyone finally meets in person. Keep your radar on high alert and monitor the atmosphere like a true boss.
If anyone seems a little left behind, jump right in and ask their opinion or if they have any suggestions. It’s best to nip this in the bud early on to avoid unnecessary drama down the line. Also, be wary of younger bridesmaids who are in their early teens. Including them in the decision-making process is sure to give them an extra confidence boost.
Offer To Help Out Regularly
Lots of brides-to-be are happy to steamroll ahead with the finer details themselves. And chances are they probably don’t need any help – but it’s always nice to offer your services. Even if she doesn’t need to recruit you until nearer the date, your thoughtful gestures and can-do attitude will be duly noted.
Plan the Hen
This is where it gets messy. Before you head into hen territory, bear in mind that you are not going to please everyone. There’s always one Moaning Myrtle in EVERY group, so go with the group consensus when making decisions.
Most importantly, listen to the bride and what she wants. If she has firmly put in place a ban on Willy straws and blow-up dolls, then a low-key alternative is a no-brainer. Take into consideration people’s availability, budget constraints and interests when choosing between a getaway close to home or a trip abroad.
Keep the Peace
They called it bride wars for a reason. Almighty clashes are on the horizon. A few bust-ups and out-of-joint noses are guaranteed when managing a group of girls. Lead by example, act as the peacemaker and keep all antics away from the bride at all times.
Don’t Complain or Demand
Sometimes the Maid of Honour can be more ‘bridezilla’ than the actual bride. That means no complaining about bridesmaid dresses, being awkward about meet-ups and making everything about you. Take this as your first warning, all of the above will earn you a fast-pass to being cut from the bridal party and blacklisted forever.
Be 100% Honest
This is not a green light to totally rain on the bride’s parade! Keep your wits about you and do not criticise every detail – remember everyone’s taste is different. That being said, there are certain moments where your pal will appreciate your sincerity and honesty.
You are her chosen one and will be her port of call when it comes to advice on colour palettes, invitations and bridesmaid dresses. If something is genuinely hideous, feel free to rein the bride in – excitement overload could be clouding her judgement. But if her eyes are lighting up and she has a wistful look on her face, best to keep it zipped.
Go the Extra Mile
The wedding day itself, will present a whole new array of tasks. The celebrations are not an invitation to consume the contents of the bar and neglect your duties. Whether it’s fixing her veil at the altar, organising an emergency bridal kit or holding her dress up while she pees, have her back at all times throughout the festivities.
Smile & Be Happy
It may feel like you are losing your girl to the love of her life. Times are changing and now she has a ring on it, it may feel like adulthood just smacked you in the face. Just because she is about to get married doesn’t mean she will run towards the sunset and forget about you.
And if you are still single, she will be returning the favour when it’s your turn to walk up the aisle! Your cheeks are going to crack from all the smiling – but ultimately it will be worth it in the end.
Image Credits: Sixties bridesmaids – Briana Purser Photography via Ruffled.