How to Build Your Wedding Party

So many choices to make it to the wedding day finish line in one piece. Who will you choose to help you and cheer you on? The wedding party should be composed of reliable, responsible supportive friends who will make it a stress free celebration to remember.

USA Today calculates the average cost for a bridesmaid is $1,500.00 or higher for an out of town or destination wedding. So prior to asking or accepting here are a few tips to help the decision process.

Wedding Registry

Bride and groom:
- Check to insure there are no size restrictions from the wedding venue. Some smaller places may ask you limit the number in the sanctuary. Also check if there are religious guidelines that prohibit non religious members from being in the sanctuary or being an official witness.
- Remember for every person chosen to be in the wedding party, that is another expense to consider: meals, transportation, accommodation for them and significant other and ‘thank you’ gifts to name a few.
- Family and ‘family to be’ trumps friends if the number is growing. But as nice as it is to include future in laws the rule of thumb should be to chose those that will be loyal, caring and helpful throughout .
- Traditionally it is between 4 to 6 bridesmaids/ushers (1 usher for every 55 guest to expedite seating). However a modern approach allows for odd numbered bridesmaids to ushers, more than one maid/matron of honor or best man or even a male maid of honor or female best man. If it is a thoughtful, comfortable decision, go for it.

-Aside from supporting your friend on their special day, the hope is that you will help and support them throughout the process with all the necessary details: dress/tux fittings, engagement parties, showers, addressing/assembling invitations, assembling favors and programs, speaking at events, church set up and clean up, airport shuttling of out of town guests and being a supportive shoulder and uncritical ear for them during this stressful time.
- Monetary costs may include: dress/tux, shoes, hair, hotel, rehearsal dinner, chipping in toward bachelor/bachelorette parties and gifts for bride and groom
-Maid/matron of honor and best man duties go above and beyond the normal expectation to include: planning and executing special parties, first toasts, making sure the bride and groom are always picture ready, official witnesses, holder of the rings, payer of last deposits to various hired help, and the go to person for any minor emergencies.

For both groups:
-Know your budget and time constraints
-Know your dates and costs
-Do not ask or answer right away
-Know it’s ok to include friends in other ways (guest book, readings, small jobs etc.)

Leave a comment
  • Share this on

Surviving the happiest time of your life

You’re engaged and excited to march down the aisle on that special day to marry your new love. Life couldn’t be better. Yet there seems to a nagging feeling in your head: Why are you not happy 24/7 like all those happy brides in all those happy bridal magazines? Why are you feeling uncertain, overly analytical, isolated, sad and so many more other emotions?

What is usually not consciously associated with getting married is that this is a very important rite of passage: a ceremonial transition into a new phase of one’s development. Stepping through this new door opens up a world of self-discovery. Simultaneously parts of your old self may feel like they are being left behind or put on a shelf to gather dust. Realize that during the engagement process you’re no longer “single” yet not quite “a couple”‘, hence a feeling of uncertainty. It is something all brides go through and can be overwhelming but don’t despair.

Sandy Beach Wedding

Survival tactic number one is to find someone who is going to listen to you talk about these new feelings. Just listen, not judge or try to fix (that’s important). It may be a little too much to ask your fiancĂ© or good friend to be that person as they may not be objective enough. They may want to do whatever it takes to make you happy. But that is not the purpose of sharing these feelings. You are just verbalizing them to process them.

Be aware that your friends and family are truly happy for you, but they are unsure what will happen to their relationship with you after you say “I do”. While your fiancĂ© is going to be the number one focus of your new life, your friends and family need to realize that being number two or three on your list is still being a part of your life.

Finally, preparing for the fairy tale wedding is a good way to envision what lies beyond that new door! It will help bring familiarity to life’s next transition. And while parties to celebrate will be many, don’t feel bad about taking some quiet time to help you process your soon to be new life. Just remember, with any change, there will be happy and sad moments but that is what the best memories are made of.

Leave a comment
  • Share this on