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The How-To Lounge: Choosing Your Wedding Party

There’s something really special about having your closest friends and family members stand by your side as you take your wedding vows, but oftentimes the task of picking who can be downright draining. To get some quick tips on making this particular wedding task less stressful,

.

  • Sit down with your fiancé and decide how many each of you would like to have in your party — consider the practicals like standing room and whether or not you intend to compensate their wedding outfits. Keep in mind that it’s very common to have a mismatched number of bridesmaids and groomsmen, but if you want things to be symmetrical, decide now.
  • It may sound cheesy, but you truly are supposed to be choosing the people you want nearest to you while you take this next step, so choose people you really care about. Don’t feel obligated to ask someone just because they asked you or because your parents are pressuring you.
  • When it comes to choosing the lucky few, think about your expectations for your bridal party, and if the people you have in mind are up to the challenge. For example, if one of your closest friends lives across the country, she won’t be able to do as much as one of your friends who lives in the same city. Also, if your best friend is completely unorganized and unfocused, it might be best to ask your sister to help with the maid of honor duties instead.
  • Since you're asking the people in your life who are nearest to your heart, it’s likely that they’ll be thrilled at the occasion, but don’t make that your assumption. You’re asking them to do this as a favor to you, not them, so don’t be upset if they say no. Keep in mind that people have busy lives — some might not have the time or money to participate. Give your friends the out, so when they say yes you’ll know that they are 100 percent committed.

Remember, if you’re worried about leaving someone out or hurting feelings, there are plenty of other ways they can be involved in your wedding — you can even note them in the program or on your engagement website.

To see all of our wedding coverage, check out IDoSugar.com.

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Join The Conversation
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 7 years
LOL. We each had 3 people on our sides. He had his two best friends and his best girl friend (who we have talked to once since the wedding and now she won't return his calls, I think she wanted him for herself lol). I had my cousin, my then-best friend (who I'm not friends with at all now) and his sister. Realistically he could have had his sister on his side but I wanted it to be like I wanted her to stand up for me and give me her blessing in marrying her brother. If I could go back and do it again his friend and my ex-friend and possibly my cousin wouldn't be in it at all. Choose wisely and have friends who you've known for a while not relatively new friends in your wedding party.
rpenner rpenner 7 years
See, I have a bit of an issue. I have 3 best friends. We've all been friends since high school. Now I know that 2 of them won't be mad if they're bridesmaids and not my maid of honor, but 1 of them will be upset if I don't choose her as my maid of honor. And to be honest, she's the last 1 (of the 3) that I want to be my maid of honor.
kikidawn kikidawn 7 years
Great advice! Soniabonya, is either of your sisters already married? One could be the maid of honor and the other the matron of honor. I've heard of that being done. Or if they both are married (or aren't) I don't see why you couldn't have two matrons of honor (or two maids of honor). I don't think it would be a horrible faux pas to ask them both to be the 'maid/matron of honor'
kikidawn kikidawn 7 years
Great advice!Soniabonya, is either of your sisters already married? One could be the maid of honor and the other the matron of honor. I've heard of that being done. Or if they both are married (or aren't) I don't see why you couldn't have two matrons of honor (or two maids of honor). I don't think it would be a horrible faux pas to ask them both to be the 'maid/matron of honor'
petite42 petite42 7 years
Heh heh... make sure your choices aren't already pregnant! For my sister's wedding she wound up with four bridesmaids who were all very far along in their pregnancies. It was quite funny. I was maid of honor and everyone thought I must be pregnant too, unfortunately, I was just fat. :-(For my first wedding we did the huge wedding party. I had 5 bridesmaids. Can't even remember who they were now - just know my sister was maid of honor. For my second (and last) wedding, we kept it VERY simple. We got married outside, under a bridge, by a JP. My attendants were my two daughters. They had no idea until the night before - it was a surprise wedding. And my DH, who comes from a large family, only invited his aunt and uncle, who are near and dear to his heart - and could best keep a secret!!All 6 of us fit just fine in a limo. Then afterwards we threw a big party with wedding cake and champagne. Nobody coming to the party knew we were getting married - they thought they were coming to a holiday party - so they showed up to the house to find us all decked out and a big "Just Married" sign on the doorway. The look on their faces was priceless, because everyone had been hoping we'd someday get around to making it legal. Small and intimate is the way to go. We didn't spend a fortune either. Maybe $600 tops, if you don't count the rings. Got flowers at Whole Foods - they did a great job. Bridesmaids dresses on ebay. My dress at Filene's. Cake made specially for us by a local bakery we always go to. It was very nice.
petite42 petite42 7 years
Heh heh... make sure your choices aren't already pregnant! For my sister's wedding she wound up with four bridesmaids who were all very far along in their pregnancies. It was quite funny. I was maid of honor and everyone thought I must be pregnant too, unfortunately, I was just fat. :-( For my first wedding we did the huge wedding party. I had 5 bridesmaids. Can't even remember who they were now - just know my sister was maid of honor. For my second (and last) wedding, we kept it VERY simple. We got married outside, under a bridge, by a JP. My attendants were my two daughters. They had no idea until the night before - it was a surprise wedding. And my DH, who comes from a large family, only invited his aunt and uncle, who are near and dear to his heart - and could best keep a secret!! All 6 of us fit just fine in a limo. Then afterwards we threw a big party with wedding cake and champagne. Nobody coming to the party knew we were getting married - they thought they were coming to a holiday party - so they showed up to the house to find us all decked out and a big "Just Married" sign on the doorway. The look on their faces was priceless, because everyone had been hoping we'd someday get around to making it legal. Small and intimate is the way to go. We didn't spend a fortune either. Maybe $600 tops, if you don't count the rings. Got flowers at Whole Foods - they did a great job. Bridesmaids dresses on ebay. My dress at Filene's. Cake made specially for us by a local bakery we always go to. It was very nice.
jazzybelle jazzybelle 7 years
those are great tips! my brother's fiance just asked me to be maid of honor....i don't know if when i get married i would pick her or someone else! it's kind of an awkward business isn't it!!
onion-waffle onion-waffle 7 years
This is a very, very important article for brides. Great work, guys!Here Comes The Guide also has some great articles and tips, for all of y'all getting hitched!
onion-waffle onion-waffle 7 years
This is a very, very important article for brides. Great work, guys! Here Comes The Guide also has some great articles and tips, for all of y'all getting hitched!
julieulie julieulie 7 years
My 2 best friends in the whole world are guys, so we made them ushers.I don't necessarily agree with not asking the person you want to be your Maid of Honor just on account of disorganization -- if you have good friends, the other bridesmaids will step up to the task. My Maid of Honor has been fantastic, but lives far away, so she can't help with a lot -- doesn't bother me in the least (then again, ALL my bridesmaids live far away except one and the close one has been a huge pain in the ass with not even telling me if the dress she has had since OCTOBER fits).But my point is that I am a bridesmaid in a wedding, the Maid of Honor is the bride's sister, and she is completely absentminded. As a result, I'm taking over most of her duties, but I'm not remotely offended that I'm doing more work but "only" a bridesmaid. People get so caught up with titles, but they really don't mean anything!
julieulie julieulie 7 years
My 2 best friends in the whole world are guys, so we made them ushers. I don't necessarily agree with not asking the person you want to be your Maid of Honor just on account of disorganization -- if you have good friends, the other bridesmaids will step up to the task. My Maid of Honor has been fantastic, but lives far away, so she can't help with a lot -- doesn't bother me in the least (then again, ALL my bridesmaids live far away except one and the close one has been a huge pain in the ass with not even telling me if the dress she has had since OCTOBER fits). But my point is that I am a bridesmaid in a wedding, the Maid of Honor is the bride's sister, and she is completely absentminded. As a result, I'm taking over most of her duties, but I'm not remotely offended that I'm doing more work but "only" a bridesmaid. People get so caught up with titles, but they really don't mean anything!
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
my boy has mentioned 5 guys he'd want in his party. i have 2 sisters and several girlfriends. i'm debating on if i should have a sis as a maid of honor.btw, to people being the maid of honor, have your damn speach written and prepared. i went a friends wedding and her lil sis was her maid of honor and she didn't have a thing to say other than "uhh... i hope you two have a great marriage. you're a fun sister and i uhhh... love you. yeah." i was a wee bit mortified for her.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
my boy has mentioned 5 guys he'd want in his party. i have 2 sisters and several girlfriends. i'm debating on if i should have a sis as a maid of honor. btw, to people being the maid of honor, have your damn speach written and prepared. i went a friends wedding and her lil sis was her maid of honor and she didn't have a thing to say other than "uhh... i hope you two have a great marriage. you're a fun sister and i uhhh... love you. yeah." i was a wee bit mortified for her.
emalove emalove 7 years
My advice is to be ABSOLUTELY sure before you ask people to be in your wedding. I asked a girl who I'd only known for a short time, but was very close to...we ended up having a huge falling out a few months before my wedding and we parted ways. I had someone else who I wanted to be a part of my bridal party, but it was a pain in the a** getting everything squared away with the dress and the bridal shop and all that stuff. So just be sure, ladies!
DearSugar DearSugar 7 years
Workin9to5: I would just make sure that he has a different role in the wedding. The idea of an usher is great! Guys are just not as sensitive when it comes to wedding stuff, so it's likely he won't even think of himself as left out.
Renees3 Renees3 7 years
my boyfriend and I were talking about this recently. We both have one sibling and like 2 good friends so our choices will be pretty easy :-)
workin9to5 workin9to5 7 years
I agree it's fine if the number of bridesmaids and groomsmen aren't the same. I have six and my fiance is going to ask seven or eight...Here's the thing though. He wants to ask seven (I know it's big but, we each have six or seven family members/friends we love equally and want to be part of it), but then he realized this one guy would be left out. I don't think that's a reason to include him. Any suggestions? Maybe he could be an usher? I dunno...it's up to my guy to decide I guess but he's not so great with all this wedding stuff.
workin9to5 workin9to5 7 years
I agree it's fine if the number of bridesmaids and groomsmen aren't the same. I have six and my fiance is going to ask seven or eight... Here's the thing though. He wants to ask seven (I know it's big but, we each have six or seven family members/friends we love equally and want to be part of it), but then he realized this one guy would be left out. I don't think that's a reason to include him. Any suggestions? Maybe he could be an usher? I dunno...it's up to my guy to decide I guess but he's not so great with all this wedding stuff.
ninjastarlett ninjastarlett 7 years
well-written and helpful =)
ninjastarlett ninjastarlett 7 years
well-written and helpful =)
nancita nancita 7 years
Great tips! And also good to know that the bridesmaids and groomsmen don't necessarily have to be symmetrical. I think so many people try to force this and end up with people they are only sort of friends with to even things out.
gooniette gooniette 7 years
I chose my brother to be my 'man of honor' because we're really close and I didn't want to have to inconvenience my friends who live in other cities. Plus, if I asked one of my girlfriends, I'd have to ask all of them and I don't want that big of a bridal party.
askmetostay askmetostay 7 years
"Also, if your best friend is completely unorganized and unfocused, it might be best to ask your sister to help with the maid of honor duties instead." hahaha, i'm in the exact opposite situation!! my little sis is my maid of honor, but she cannot be in charge of planning anything...my other 3 bridesmaids are gonna have to. i'd end up with a shower featuring a marathon of friends and chicken fingers as the only food...i love her, but she's definitely not the girly wedding planning type.
askmetostay askmetostay 7 years
"Also, if your best friend is completely unorganized and unfocused, it might be best to ask your sister to help with the maid of honor duties instead."hahaha, i'm in the exact opposite situation!! my little sis is my maid of honor, but she cannot be in charge of planning anything...my other 3 bridesmaids are gonna have to. i'd end up with a shower featuring a marathon of friends and chicken fingers as the only food...i love her, but she's definitely not the girly wedding planning type.
skigurl skigurl 7 years
very interesting and helpful!
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