Having been nominated for 24 awards and grossed over $300 million to date worldwide, the hit comedy film Bridesmaids is familiar with a lot of women. Particularly those about to get married!
Not long after my engagement, I purchased this DVD for my sister (my soon to be asked Maid of Honour) and we decided a girly night in was needed to watch this film and get us in the mindset! To sum a 132 minute film up: the action centers around two jealous women having to share the title ‘Maid of Honour’ over the course of dress fittings, a plane journey, the hen do, and bridesmaids going missing!
This got me thinking… if you are having Bridesmaids, as I am, there is a lot to think about!
Why have bridesmaids at all?
In Roman Law, bridesmaids were positioned to protect the bride from evil, confusing the spirits as to who was getting married, therefore avoiding a curse. In more recent times, bridesmaids prove just as useful; who else is going to help you go to the toilet in your ballgown?
How many bridesmaids should I have?
Ultimately this is down to you. If you are having an intimate wedding with 30 guests, you may not want five of them stood up alongside you, your fiance, and the groomsman at the front. On the other hand, over one hundred guests may work perfectly well with five bridesmaids. Is your fiance having a Best Man and Groomsmen? You may want to balance the numbers either side to ensure your pictures look perfectly symmetrical. Typically in the USA, Bridesmaids are expected to pay for their outfit (dress, shoes etc) and the bride thanks them with a gift on the wedding day for standing up with her and supporting her.
In the UK, it is more common for the Bride and Groom to purchase the attire for bridal party; it is therefore important to keep your budget in mind when choosing how many bridesmaids you may have.
Who should I ask?
Again, this is another personal question. It really is down to you. Personally, I kept my bridesmaids to family and very close friends; those who I knew have been beside me through almost everything to date, and will continue to do so in years to come, no matter what life takes us. I have asked my sister to be Maid of Honour, and then my Sister-In-Law-To-Be, my two best friends, and my two little cousins to be bridesmaids. This list didn’t start out this big, believe me! It was important to me to have those close to me involved, and as we won’t be having a huge number of readings in the ceremony for them to get involved with instead, what better way than to ask them to be bridesmaids and share this journey with me.
In my particular case, none of my bridesmaids knew eachother except my two cousins and my sister. My two best friends happened to go to school together, so knew of each other, but didn’t socialize in the same groups. My sister in law hadn’t met any one except my sister. The age range is between Age 11 and Age 37; that’s 26 years of different personalities, life experiences, body images, and expectations to deal with!
I have so far struggled to get my bridesmaids geographically close together; everybody works different hours and has different commitments, so mini meetings have been taking place as and when we can. One method I can certainly recommend is to set up a private Facebook messaging group that everybody is a part of; use it to communicate wedding thoughts and ideas to get everyone involved and used to communication together, before they actually meet in person. Luckily for me, everybody bonded straight away and in the end they all shared the same opinion!
Just remember that they do have a life outside of your wedding; don’t get upset when they don’t respond to your message the same day, or can’t make the mid-week evening get together, or express a view different to your own. Keep them on your side; they have to look happy in your wedding photos after all!
I know I have made it all sound very easy so far! I haven’t yet had ‘the bridesmaid dresses’ discussion…there is a possibility that could change everything!