Selecting the Bridal Party

I get a LOT of questions about bridal parties and for some reason, the purpose of the bridal party seems to have lost it's meaning, which is sad! Many of you may not know the purpose of the bridal party and the do's and dont's when it comes to selecting your party. So today, we are going to go over the top questions that are asked of us when it comes to bridal parties.

What is the purpose of the bridal party?

The bridal party has a very special meaning and most of us really don't think of it that way...and it is truly an honor to be asked to be a part of a bridal party! These are the men and women who have been by your side and always will be by your side. They are the ones who you want up there with you, supporting you, as you make this commitment to your husband or wife. These are the ones who you are closest to and you could not imagine getting married without. They have helped you through thick and thin and would do anything and everything to make your wedding day absolutely perfect!

These are NOT the people who you know who are crafty and would be willing to make everything for you, the additional acquaintance who you added to make sure both sides are even, or the person with a lot of money who is definitely going to through an amazing bachelor party. PLEASE do not choose your party based on criteria like this!

 Christopher Todd Studios

Christopher Todd Studios

Do both sides have to be even?

Absolutely not! I had 8 and my husband had 7 and there was no problem with this! Our photos didn't turn out terrible and everyone had a partner to walk with....and that lucky groomsmen, Mike, had two ;)

You and your fiance may not have the same number of people you want up there standing by your side so don't stress about this in the least bit! Believe me, I was stressed as I begged my husband to "find" another best friend to be a groomsman. And then we finally realized that we were acting silly! His is not going to ask someone to stand up there who he barely knows and he is not going to choose out of a hat just so we can have even sides!

Do we have to ask them in a unique way?

Nope, you sure don't! But is is definitely fun to get your creative juices flowing...because you will need that throughout your wedding planning!

I made a little box which had a mini bottle of champagne and a ring pop and I "proposed" to each of my bridesmaids as they opened their box and un-rolled the scroll! And my husband gave each groomsmen a cigar with the same brand name as our wedding venue - "Portofino." Both very simple ideas, but makes it that much more exciting :)

Are future in-laws required?

This is a tough one for me and was one that I definitely had to think a lot about while choosing my bridal party. And here was my scenario - I have three sister and 5 BEST friends so I really had no choice in taking any of them out. And 8 bridesmaids is not only a TON, but gets pretty pricey! Now, I have one sister-in-law who, at the time, I wasn't super close with so in the end, she was not in my bridal party. While I think about this all of the time whether it was the right or wrong decision, it is a tough decision that you will have to make! So sorry for no better advice on that but just remember the golden rule about what a bridesmaid is for and it was help you make that decision :)

They are complaining about costs!!

This is ALWAYS going to happen...especially if your friends aren't married yet! SO a couple of tips on how to deal or try and avoid this altogether:
 - Don't buy the most expensive dress out there. They don't realize how much bridesmaid dresses actually cost so if you are in the $100-150 range, then there is not much more you can do to cut costs here.
 - Choose a dress they can wear again!
 - Let your bridesmaids choose their dresses! While all of my bridesmaids wore the same dress, they chose the dress they thought looked best on everyone so if there was someone to complain about cost, is was themselves!
- Let them choose their own shoes - I let my bridesmaids wear any black heels they wanted. In most cases, if you choose a neutral color such as black or tan, your bridesmaids may already have a pair, will be able to wear them again, and will match with any wedding colors!
 - Offer to help - You don't necessarily have to pay for their items if you can't afford to do that, but offer to use your wedding budget for their dress for the time being and they can make payment as the wedding day approaches. That way, you will still be able to use that money for final vendor/venue payments but you will be helping them out!

All in all, if a bridesmaid is a true friend, they are going to figure out a way to make it work. As you all know, I LOVE to use math to get my point across so here it goes again:

$8 drink at a bar x 13 drinks = $104
$30 meal at a restaurant x 5 meals = $150

Do you think your friends can maybe eat out 5 less times in the next year to save that money? Or have 13 less drinks at the bars over the next year and a half? I think so!

Can I kick her out of the party?

The quick answer is no. Obviously there are always exceptions but if you really chose this woman or man to be part of your wedding party because of your amazing relationship and you wanting them to be standing beside you as you say your vows, then most likely you are in a little argument that will soon blow over. Is it really life-changing? Are you really never going to be friends again? Because if you un-invite someone to be in your bridal party, believe me, that friendship is over.