Have you been asked to be a bridesmaid? Are you excited? Do you have any idea what it is you are meant to do? No? Don’t worry, we do!
Taking on the role of bridesmaid is like taking on an oath, you’re promising to be with your bride every step that leads to the aisle and reception. Before you can kick off your heels and let your hair down, here are a list of roles and duties that will make you the best bridesmaid ever!
Plan Hen Party
This one seems unsurprising, as you probably have attended a hen party or two where the bridesmaids were running around making sure everyone was having fun, had enough to drink and eat and toasting their bride! On the surface this seems fun and easy but a lot of hard work is put in to make sure this day is perfect and worry-free for their bride. Planning the hen means knowing the bride and what it is she wants, especially if it’s a surprise one.
Unless there is a legitimate reason, your bride is going expect you to be at every dress fitting, rehearsal, flower and decoration discussion to do with the wedding. Basically if it’s got the word ‘wedding’ in it, you’re there to advise, support and guide your bride to making the decision that makes her most happy.
An average wedding costs €21,000, so don’t be surprised if the bride expects you to pay for your bridesmaid dress. Don’t press the situation, she is already under enough pressure. Nowadays, most bridesmaids dresses cost between €100 to €250, so in the grand scheme of things it will be a big help for the bride. Bridesmaids might also have to cough up for the hotel accommodation on the day of the wedding if they plan to stay. It rarely happens, but sometimes bridesmaids pay for their hair and makeup too.
Be There For When The ‘W’ Word Gets Too Much
Planning a wedding is time consuming and can be downright stressful. Your bride will need a break, and the time will come when she will ring you up asking for one. Take her out for lunch, the cinema or a long walk and talk about anything but the wedding. This will leave her feeling refreshed and ready to face it all over again!
Be Prepared For The Big Day
From trips to the beauticians to assigning the Bridal Emergency Kit, you will want to be prepared for the day to run absolutely smoothly. As well as looking flawless, you’ll need to know times of arrival, the running of the day and, if you want, having a speech ready! Sit down with your bride, or Maid of Honour/Chief Bridesmaid, to go over everything that is planned for the day in case anybody has forgotten.
Help The Bride Get Ready
The wedding morning spent getting ready with her girls is a fond memory many brides hold onto. Girly chat, giggles, and bubbly fill the time as well as being caught on camera to cherish forever. Being there will help distract your bride from any nerves she might be feeling. Also, helping her into her dress of many layers and buttons is very helpful too! She will love all the hugs and words of encouragement from her favourite girls before she walks down that aisle.
And smile! The big day is finally here and you’re all ready to go. From the moment you arrive to get ready, to the last ‘hurrah’ of the night, this is a day of smiles and laughter only, the bride doesn’t want to see grumbling maids. If something does happen, let it slide as best you can for the sake of your bride’s feelings and let her enjoy a perfect day. Besides, the photographer will be capturing it all, so you don’t to look back on sour faces – you want sore cheeks from smiling!
Lead The Way
As your bride traditionally travels with her dad, the bridesmaids precede her with the mother of the bride, arriving before her to give those standing by a preview of what’s to come. The bridesmaids await the arrival of their bride before taking photos with the soon to be Mrs! Now comes the big part; time to walk the aisle as you lead the way for the grand entrance. Nerves can take over as you concentrate on not falling over, but remember to smile! Remember you are part of your bride’s big moment.
Signing The Register
When the vows are said and done, it’s time to sign the register. Typically only the Maid of Honour/Chief Bridesmaid and Best Man actually sign it alongside the bride and groom, but the bridesmaids, groomsmen and parents are present as witnesses to the legal part of the wedding. Then, it is either the Best Man or Maid of Honour left responsible with bringing the certificate to the Registrar office!
The Line Up
A great way for brides and grooms to see their guests is by having a receiving line either outside the ceremony or on arrival to the reception. It’s common to see the rest of the bridal party taking part in this, for guests to admire the choices made by the couple and to wish everyone well. Even if it means having to shake hands with someone who just coughed on them!
Yep, that’s right. Your bride may look absolutely flawless in a princess ballgown but did anyone think how she’ll hold the eight layers herself while she pees? That’s where her bridesmaids come in. It’s not any different from holding her hair back after one too many, in fact, it’s better as there’s layers upon layers of dress covering it all. The toilets are a great place to re-assess how the bride is looking and where the Bridal Emergency Kit will come in handy. And to get some fun snaps that will be filed away for memories.
Go The Extra Mile
Whether this is by giving a speech, surprising the couple, or livening the guests up after dinner, bridesmaids should go the extra mile to ensure the bride’s hard work doesn’t go unnoticed. Point out the little details to guests, pose beside the sweet cart, talk to guests, compliment the staff. Make sure your bride is eating and drinking too, as she’ll likely have forgotten. Whatever it is you think would make your bride beam brighter than she ever has before, do it.
The Day After
Your head might be sore and your hair might be standing on you but there’s one more duty for you to do – tidy up. Whether that’s to take the wedding dress to the dry cleaners as your bride jets off on her honeymoon or take down all the decorations from the church or venue. Many hands make light work, so with the help of family and friends, it won’t be long before you’re chilling out, scrolling through the photos to see which one is worthy of the obligatory ‘thank you for including me in your special day’ post.