A bridesmaid, at her most fabulous, transcends the role of practical helper and friend to play an even more extraordinary role in the wedding – an unwavering bridge between the bride’s old life and new. As only a best friend can, she remembers the bride’s biggest achievements and most hilarious moments…She’s an excellent friend, and an essential component of every wedding-related event.
Kate Chynoweth, The Bridesmaid Guide ~ Etiquette, Parties, and Being Fabulous.
The above quote is such a perfect encapsulation of the very important and meaningful role of bridesmaids! When choosing the lovely ladies who will stand by your side during one of the biggest moments of your life, remember that you want to be sharing your day with those near and dear to your heart. Those sweet girls who mean the world to you and who will support you as you merrily go about the wedding planning process, and who will also be there for you in your new life as a Mrs.
Both your Maid-of-Honor and your Bridesmaids, will have some very important jobs to do, so you want to ensure that you are choosing friends that you can rely on and trust. Here is a little “job description” for each role:
MAID OF HONOR: This role usually goes to a sister or best-est and most loyal friend who will ensure that all pre-wedding events, such as the shower and bachelorette party, run smoothly. This girl will also keep everyone informed about important dates and times (ie. for fittings, meetings, etc.). During the ceremony, she will be right by your side helping you arrange your train as needed and holding your bouquet during the ring exchange and vows. Speeches will also be on the MOH’s to-do list as she will likely be expected to make a lovely toast at both the rehearsal dinner and the reception.
BRIDESMAIDS: These will be those fun and true friends who will be in your life long after the party wraps up! Sisters (fiancé’s sisters), cousins and long-time friends are all candidates for this job. Bridesmaids will be expected to attend pre-wedding events, help the MOH out as needed, and attend important meetings (ie. tastings, dress fittings, etc.). On the big day, they will be there to support you in anything you need, be it welcoming guests, introducing people or keeping tabs on gifts and envelopes brought to the reception and storing them in a safe place. Although a speech is not mandatory, it will certainly be welcomed and appreciated, often times bridesmaids will pair up at speech time to make it even more lively and engaging.
And your job as the lovely bride that you are, is to be kind to your Maid-of-Honor and Bridesmaids. Although it is your day, try to be flexible whenever possible (in terms of scheduling and especially when it comes to choosing a dress they will want to wear), and most importantly be VERY grateful and appreciative of all the time and hard work that they are putting into helping you plan your day.
HELPFUL TIP: If you are asking your bridesmaids to choose their own dresses, be open and upfront about anything in particular that you may not like. Provide at least a couple of guidelines (ie. pastel colours, particular length preference, etc.) to avoid miscommunication and unpleasant surprises later.