bridesmaids in leather jackets

How to Choose Your Bridesmaids

Drawing up a shortlist of bridesmaids was a tricky task – until now.

You’d think that choosing bridesmaids would be easy, right? Not always… Some brides find it to be an incredibly difficult decision to make. After all, bridesmaids play a massive role in the day, and their energy is often what fuels the vibe of the wedding party. Therefore, it’s important to select individuals who’ll create the kind of big day feeling you desire.

Right off the bat, our advice, don’t rush the decision-making process. Your wedding day is a momentous occasion, one that deserves careful thought in every area. Especially when it comes to the loved ones who’ll take a front-row seat during proceedings.

how to choose bridesmaids real in red dresses

How to Choose Your Bridesmaids

What is the best way to choose bridesmaids? And how do you get past the tricky, icky, messy parts? Here are our tips to help you make the right decision, without too much drama!

How many bridesmaids do you want?

The best way to start is to give yourself a target number. Choose how many bridesmaids you want to have with you on the day. The total may change over time, and that’s ok, but it’s good to begin with a figure in mind.

Whether it’s two bridesmaids, or ten, the total should be reflective of your personal preference. Are you someone who enjoys being surrounded by a large group of friends? Or do you usually prefer things to be more intimate, 1 on 1 even? Consider how you typically feel in social situations, and that should help you dictate group-size.

Take Your Time

This is your decision. Don’t allow yourself to be rushed into choosing bridesmaids, or let anyone pressure your selection.

If you’re constantly asked about it, just tell people you haven’t made up your mind yet. But be firm. And don’t ask someone to be your bridesmaid just because they’ve put you on the spot! It may feel awkward, in the moment, to tell someone no, but in the long run you’ll be glad you stood strong. Not asking someone to be a bridesmaid when they were expecting you to can hurt relationships. But at the end of the day, it’s your wedding, and if they don’t understand that, maybe your decision not to choose them is even more justified.

Make the right decision now, and you’ll save a lot of trouble further down the line. So, please, no sudden proposals without careful thought!

True Bride Calla M480C
True Bride Calla M480C

Friends Vs Family

If you’ve got sisters you’re close to, you’ve got a ready-made bridal party. But that doesn’t mean you can’t bring in friends to the group. Or your future sister-in-law or a friend on your partner’s side of the family, that can be a great choice too. Just don’t do it out of obligation!

When it comes to friends, consider picking ones you’ve had a long-term friendship with, rather than someone new on the scene. A lot of us don’t see our childhood friends as often as we’d like, but when we do, it’s like nothing has ever changed! Keep that in mind before you discount them over your exciting new mate from padel!

On the flip side, don’t feel obliged to pick childhood friends as bridesmaids just because you have history. It may well that your more recent friends now know you better than those you grew up with. And are less likely to share any gruesome stories from your younger years!

Ignore Politics

Stay true to what you believe in.

It’s impossible to please everyone, and you’ll undoubtably hurt some feelings during the decision process. But if you have a good reason for not asking someone to be your bridesmaid, all you need to do is communicate that.

Brides-men/Female Groomsmen

These days, it’s extremely common to have male friends as brides-men, and vice versa as groomsmen. If a mixed group of genders is reflective of your social group, and you find having male, or non-binary energy around you comforting. Then you should surround yourself with those who make you happy on your big day!

Choose Your Maid of Honour

Once you’ve settled on your squad, decide who will take the lead role as maid of honour. This can feel like an obvious, easy decision to make. But before simply selecting your best friend, or sister for the role. Consider the responsibilities that come along with the position. Jobs like directing the bridesmaids, hosting the hen party, organising friends and family, giving a speech. Can you imagine your best mate doing, and succeeding at all of those things?

Your maid of honour should be sensible, practical, and organised… While also knowing how to throw the best hen party ever!

jenny yoo bridesmaids

Maid of Honour Duties – What Am I Expected to do?

With great power comes great responsibility, and as MOH you’ll be given some pretty big responsibilities on the big day.

Congrats! Your best mate in the world has selected you to be her maid of honour! That is a major privilege, and one that must be taken seriously. Because there’s more to Maid of Honour duties than organising the hen party, or simply bossing the other bridesmaids about. You’ve been given the leading role in your friend’s biggest day, and with that comes unexpected responsibilities.

maid of honour duties in jenny yoo sparkly bridesmaid dress

These days, a maid of honour can be called many things. ‘Chief bridesmaid’, ‘matron of honour’ or even ‘best woman’. But however you are named, the maid of honour duties remain the same. And this extends further than simply helping out on the wedding day, you’ll be involved in the planning too. And this is such a fun and exciting time, one that you’ll be able to play a significant part in.

From organising the bridesmaids and advising on the best wedding dress, to giving a maid of honour speech and being armed with tissues at all times, your duties are varied, but always important.

Ready and armed with a notepad, pen and corkscrew? Answer your burning questions below, and get the low-down on how to be the best maid of honour with our go-to duties guide and tips on everything you need to know. 

What is the Difference Between the Maid of Honour and Bridesmaid?

A maid of honour and bridesmaid are both very important roles, but typically the maid of honour has more responsibilities than a bridesmaid. A bridesmaid is expected to attend the wedding, look amazing and assist where needed on the big day. Whereas the maid of honour is an integral part in the lead up to and planning of the wedding day itself.

What’s a Married Maid of Honour Called?

Traditionally, if the maid of honour is not married, they are called a ‘chief bridesmaid’ or ‘maid of honour’. If they are married, then they’re called a ‘matron of honour’. There is no difference between the duties and responsibilities of a maid of honour or a matron of honour, however the advantage of having someone who has already been married before is that they’ll have prior experience of planning a wedding.

terracotta jenny yoo bridesmaids

Why is it Called a Maid of Honour?

The term ‘maid of honour’ comes from the tradition of a maiden, a woman who has never been married, whose duty or ‘honour’ was to attend to a Queen or Princess. The actual role can also be traced back to the Ancient Romans, who believed that evil spirits haunted weddings. To protect the couple, 10 witnesses – including the maid of honour – were required to dress in the same clothing as the couple to confuse the spirits. The maid of honour would stick by the bride, and protect her from any spirits who might steal her away before the ceremony. Thankfully, your maid of honour duties are slightly less stressful these days… normally!

Maid of Honour Duties Explained

Before the Big Day

1. Go Wedding Dress Shopping

Finding the perfect wedding dress is perhaps one of the most exciting events during planning, but it can also be stressful which is why the maid of honour should be on hand to help the bride say ‘yes’ to their dream dress.

The bride might ask you to come wedding dress shopping with her, or ask for input on choosing the bridesmaid dresses.

As the maid of honour, you’re leading the rest of the maids, so make sure they’re all organised. Do your best to gather the troops for dress shopping sessions and for fittings. Take some further stress off the bride by planning the itinerary for any dress shopping trip, look for a fun place to go for lunch or celebratory drinks once you’ve all got your gowns.

It’s traditional for the bride to pay for the bridesmaid dresses, however this isn’t always the case. Make sure this is discussed – as well as accessories, professional hair and makeup – to save any awkwardness further down the line.

2. Organise the Other Bridesmaids

As the wedding date fast approaches, make sure the bridesmaids know what time they need to arrive, where everyone is getting ready and if they need to bring anything.

If the bridesmaids don’t all know each other, it’s a good idea to connect everyone on a group chat. That way everyone will be on friendly terms by the time the hen party comes around. You could even go as far getting them all together for a meet-up pre-hen party, that way they’ll be totally comfortable with each.

Also, think about useful things to have on hand – such as large umbrellas to help in case of bad weather. It’s also a nice idea to put together a bridal emergency kit for the bride. You never know when you might need tissues or plasters!

maid of honour duties in jenny yoo bridesmaid dress

3. Plan the Hen Party

The maid of honour’s real moment in the sun is the hen party. You will take the lead in organising this, so put some serious thought into it. Speak with all of the bridesmaids, ask for ideas and consult the bride to find out whom she’d like to attend.

It might be that you need to arrange two celebrations: a hen party for the girls (and boys) and a more mature, bridal shower style celebration for the bride’s mum and older relatives. Rather than asking people what dates they can do, pick two or three and ask who can make which date. This is a slightly harsher approach, but it’ll make it easier to narrow it down to just one weekend.

Make sure you’re very aware of everyone’s budget. Don’t assume everyone can, or wants to spend as much as you. They may not all have the funds for a weekend in Ibiza, so plan something that is inclusive of all budgets.

The hen party should take place up to three months before the wedding, this gives time for any bruises to fade (seriously), and for people to recover from their hangovers!

4. Help with Wedding Planning

You may be the bride’s sounding board for lots of ideas, so be prepared to consult on everything, from wedding colour schemes to the shape of the cake. The maid of honour can also help with more hands-on wedding tasks. Such as writing or addressing wedding invitations, making DIY confetti cones or assembling favours. Fun idea? Organise a DIY craft night complete with the bride’s favourite snacks and drinks.

maid of honour duties in jenny yoo bridesmaid dress terracotta

4. Be Their Rock

You know the bride better than anyone else, so the maid of honour should be there every step of the way. But remember to be supportive without being too much for the bride.

While your main responsibility is to help with the planning, ensure you’re still pencilling in some fun too. A relaxing afternoon getting your nails done, or a de-stressing night out will be just what the bride-to-be needs!

Think that’s it? We haven’t even got to the day before the wedding yet! Bookmark our blog, and we’ll have the rest of your Maid of Honour duties explained soon!

Polly & the girls xx

Add to cart