One of the first tasks on your wedding checklist should be selecting the members of your wedding party. While this may seem like a fun part of planning, remember to choose wisely: There are actual responsibilities involved with being a bridesmaid or groomsman. Your best friend from college may seem like a fun bridesmaid, but will she be available and willing to complete all her tasks? Here are some things to consider when choosing your wedding party.
Maid/Matron of Honor
The maid or matron of honor (she’s a matron if she’s married and a maid if she’s not) can easily end up with the most responsibility in the wedding party (save for the bride and groom). Her number one responsibility is keeping the bride calm and cool both during the planning process and on the wedding day. Some of her many other tasks may include organizing the bridal shower and bachelorette party, assisting with pre-wedding errands and projects (such as wedding dress shopping, helping design the wedding website, invitation addressing, etc.), and wedding day responsibilities such as coordinating the bridesmaids, signing the marriage license, and giving a toast at the reception.
The groom may be tempted to choose the biggest party animal in his group of pals to be his best man, as he is head of the bachelor party planning committee. However, the best man is also responsible for keeping the groom on schedule throughout the wedding day, as well as giving the first toast at the reception. He will also hold onto the wedding bands for the ceremony, and may be asked to give remaining payments and gratuities to the wedding vendors.
In addition to helping the bride get ready for the big day, and attending and helping to organize the showers and bachelorette party, bridesmaids also serve as backup for the maid/matron of honor. Bridesmaids should be available for dress shopping, to help out with DIY wedding projects, and to share any advice the bride needs.
Although most men think their only task as a groomsman is to help plan a bachelor party for their buddy, there is a bit more to it. The groomsmen generally act as ushers before the ceremony – distributing programs and escorting guests to their seats.
Ring Bearers and Flower Girls
The youngest members of the wedding party walk down the aisle just before the bride. The ring bearer carries a small decorative pillow with the wedding rings (or fake rings, just in case). The flower girl may carry a basket of petals, scattering them as she walks. Small children always look cute dressed up in their fanciest attire, but make sure the kids in your wedding can handle the responsibility of walking down the aisle and sitting through the ceremony (or come up with an escape route for them before the vow begin).
Wedding planning can be stressful, but the right bridesmaids and groomsmen can help make the process easier and more fun. Just remember to consider the responsibilities of each role before you choose the members of your wedding party.