For the first time… ever, I was a bridesmaid in a wedding. My beautiful cousin, Tara, was recently married in May. I was lucky enough to be one of her bridesmaids. You know, being a bridesmaid is such an honor, but the money spent and stress can catch you off guard. For the record, I would have said yes to be a bridesmaid regardless of financial hardships or stress. If you are a new to the life of a bridesmaid, please continue reading. I am simply going to list a few things for which to be prepared!
- The dress: This can get costly. Thankfully, for me, my cousin was open to suggestions for the bridesmaids dress. She wanted all of the bridesmaids to be comfortable and, of course, be able to pay for the dress! Not all Brides are as amazing as Tara, though. So you have to be ready to fork out the dough. My dress was in the $100-150 range from David’s Bridal. If your bride wants to purchase the dresses from a boutique that is not a “chain” (for lack of a better word), you may be looking at DOUBLE the cost of my dress. Seriously. Eat out less, save $5 a week, pre-game harder before a night out at the bar, whatever you need to do to save money… do it. This is only the beginning.
- The Planning: Planning the wedding will get stressful. HELP THE BRIDE! She may not want your help… and that is okay. Some brides have everything under control. If you start to notice a change in her attitude, well being, or social media appearance, it may be time to step in.
- The Setup: In Tara’s case, set up was done by the bridal party and family. She did not hire anyone to do this daunting task for her. (Who wants to spend extra money when you have a support system?) This part, although incredibly tiring, stressful, and frustrating, was worth ever second. The result really makes it all worth it. You may see a side of friends and family that you haven’t seen before. By the time of the wedding… you will forget all about it. Do not show your stress and angst to the bride. It will only worry her more. The more worry she has… the more you will want to back out. Again, stay calm. It will all be worth it in the end.
- Wedding Day: A million people will be contacting the bride. These people may be asking for directions, giving congratulations, or asking questions that have been answered ten times prior. Take the phone away from the bride. My poor cousin Tara was being bombarded with questions whilst getting ready for her day. This portion of the wedding day should be relaxing and exciting. Not stressful and upsetting. So I took the phone away and handled those calls/texts myself. Let the bride breathe and enjoy her day. (If any guests of the wedding are reading this… don’t bother the bride. Try calling a bridesmaid, family friend, or… well anyone but the bride.)
- Listen: My final word of advice… be a good listener. If the bride wants a strawberry, don’t bring her an orange (unless that is all you are able to get). If the bride needs to cry, be her shoulder to lean on. Finally, if she wants to complain about the mother of the groom, listen to every word that comes out of her mouth. I guarantee you will get a good laugh out of it.
I will be a bridesmaid in July for my Brother and his beautiful fiancée, Kelly. With one wedding under my belt, I think I will be ready for just about anything. I cannot wait to experience another wedding. I will be sure to blog about it after! Have fun at your next wedding!