Saying yes to the right man and yes to the dress is a breeze compared to selecting the women who will make up your bridesmaids. I’ve witnessed bridal parties where the women all look alike or are all the same size. I have seen bridesmaids where the women are all cranky about the expense or reluctant to fuss over the bride. I’ve also seen bridesmaids who were honored to be chosen, took their responsibility seriously, and did everything they could to help the bride pull off her special day.
If I could give brides to be a single tip on choosing their bridesmaids, it would be this – choose the women YOU want. Here’s why:
1. YOU Know Your Friend’s Finances
That allows you to prepare a rough estimate of the total cost of being a bridesmaid before asking your friends. Because you’ll have a pretty good idea of their financial situation, you’ll know how far ahead they need to budget and plan without creating a financial hardship for them or hurt feeling for you (should they decline your invitation due to limited finances).
2. YOU Know Your Friends Level of Commitment
Being a bridesmaid is more than just standing at the altar looking pretty – it’s a responsibility. When you choose someone to be in your bridal party, you’re leaving the responsibility of your bridal shower in their hands, asking them to plan your bachelorette party, and asking them to see to many of the last-minute details that make or break a wedding. Think carefully about your maid of honor and bridesmaid selections. You’re asking them to care for you and plan for you like you would plan for yourself – and the last thing you want or need is someone envious, selfish, or disinterested in your bridal party.
3. YOU Know Your Friend’s Locations
Take proximity into consideration when deciding your bridal party, if your friend lives five states away and you really want to include her, have a frank, honest conversation about their responsibilities and if they feel they will be able to uphold their duties. Are they willing to fully participate, fly in for each bridal event, and commit to each fitting and celebration? Don’t forget – proximity, and travel time and costs, are also a serious consideration for destination weddings!
The bottom line is that YOU know your friends and should be free to choose the ones you really want in your bridal party. Eschew outside pressure, well-meaning relatives, and other misplaced feelings of peer pressure. Choose the women who mean the world to you and who won’t mind making the world about you on your special day.