Congratulations! If you’re reading this it means that you’ve been selected to be a bridesmaid. What an honor! Being chosen as a bridesmaid in your friend’s wedding is a great privilege. It means that you are their trusted confidant and they want you to be a part of the biggest day of their lives.
Once the initial surprise and enjoyment wear off, you may be wondering “what does a bridesmaid do”? Well, in this guide we are going to go through all the duties that a bridesmaid has. Aside from the celebrations and excitement, there is a commitment. Let’s jump into what to expect as a bridesmaid.
Pre-Wedding Bridesmaid Duties
Planning a wedding is stressful and expensive. The most important part of being a bridesmaid is to be a support system for the bride-to-be. You will have to be available as much as possible to help lighten the load for your friend. This doesn’t mean you have to be there day or night, rain or shine. But, the bride must know that you will be a shoulder to lean on.
A lot of the burden will fall on the maid of honor. This person will be responsible for organizing some of the pre-wedding events. However, it is a group effort. It is up to all the bridesmaids and maid of honor to help with the planning efforts.
Listening and Contributing
Being a bridesmaid means you are someone that the bride trusts. You will want to be a sounding board for the bride. Basically, this means, don’t be too pushy with your idea, let the bride bounce ideas off you, and give you honest feedback. However, don’t force it. After all, it’s the bride’s day and their ideas are the most important.
Be open and honest with the bride and the other bridesmaids. This means, taking some time to understand your role and what to expect. There is a financial commitment to being a bridesmaid, as well as planning responsibilities. Some of the bride’s expectations may be beyond what you can offer. Be sure to be honest and upfront about what you can and cannot handle.
Pre-Wedding Event Help
This part includes planning and paying for the bridal shower and bachelorette party. These are the two biggest roles you will be playing in the wedding as a bridesmaid. Typically, the maid of honor takes the lead and will delegate. But, as a bridesmaid, you should give as much support in the planning and payment process. For the bridal shower, you will want to cover the entire event. And, for the bachelorette party, you want to make sure the bride’s portion is covered.
Wedding Attire Assistance
Some brides will have an idea of what they want their wedding party to wear. But, the bride may also ask for help, and you can definitely give your input on the bridesmaid’s attire, hair, and makeup. Unfortunately, if the bride asks you to wear something you don’t like, you have to just roll with it.
However, if you are truly uncomfortable with the outfit like if it is too short or low cut, you can bring it up. Just be sure to do it before the bride settles on details.
There are many cases where bridesmaids don’t know each other that well. This means that there is a chance that not everyone will get along and personalities may clash. It is very important to not let the bride get in the middle of the bridesmaid drama. Be sure that you are on your best behavior. Be nice, kind, and helpful, and don’t stir the pot.
It is customary for the bridesmaid to chip in on a gift for the bride. This can be a spa day, a facial, or something you know the bride will enjoy. Or, you can all pitch in on a larger gift for the couple.
Bridesmaid Duties During The Wedding
The Rehearsal Dinner
As a bridesmaid, you will be expected to attend the rehearsal dinner. You may be asked to do a toast if you aren’t the maid of honor. If you are the maid of honor, typically you will do a speech at the wedding. If for some reason you cannot attend, be sure to give the bridal party plenty of notice.
Contact The Wedding Planner
As a bridesmaid, you will want to know the wedding planner and learn what your role is with them. You will most likely meet the planner at the rehearsal and this is when you will be given directions for the wedding day. It is extremely important to cooperate with the planner. Do what is asked of you to ensure that the wedding day runs smoothly.
Understand the Plan
You should have the timeline and plan for the wedding day a few weeks prior. Be sure to know the plan and follow it. You don’t need to have it memorized but you should have a good understanding of how the day will go.
The wedding day will be long for the entire bridal party. Be sure to not complain. This sends out negative vibes and puts pressure on the couple. You don’t want to be that annoying person complaining the whole day.
Serve The Bride
Make sure the bride has plenty of food and beverages. It’s just a nice thing to do for your friend. There is a lot going on during the wedding day, and ensuring they are hydrated and well-fed will help everyone stay cheery.
When everyone is finished getting ready, be sure to help the bride with whatever she needs during the photos and for the ceremony. The wedding planner will have all the important things like vows, rings, shoes, etc. But, a bridesmaid can hold onto other items like lipsticks, powders, blotting papers, and the bride’s cell phone.
Some brides have extremely voluminous gowns and may need some assistance in the bathroom. You may also need to help out if there are any outfit changes. The wedding planner will also be there to help, but make yourself useful and do whatever the planner and bride ask of you.
Always offer a helping hand after the wedding. You may need to help return any rentals or return any leftover items to the hotel
Create an album of photos and videos that you can share with the bridal party. It can take a while for the couple to get their wedding footage back from the photographers. Sharing your pictures can help build excitement and keep the wedding hype up even after it has died down.