When you get engaged and start the excitement of the planning process, one of the questions people start buzzing about who is going to be in your wedding party. Who should stand by your side? What’s the criteria for choosing? Some people choose their closest friends since grade school, some may say the more the merrier and pick friends from every stage of their life.
Personally, I think there should be a limit. At what number does it become too much? 10? 12? 14? One thing to consider is as you get older your friendships change and your close friends evolve over time – they move away, get new jobs, get married and have families, etc.. and that’s normal! Don’t feel obligated to have everyone you’ve ever known throughout your life in your wedding. Take some time and think about will these women (or men) be there for you when you absolutely need them the most? Are these true friends and relatives that have been through the best and worst times and will they continue to be?
We often don’t think about it because we get wrapped up in the fun of having everyone included, but don’t forget that sometimes less is more. It is also a lot to ask of your friends – buy a dress/shoes/jewelry/hair/makeup, attend all the wedding events, travel fares for friends who live out of town… it starts to add up! There are ways to include your friends in your wedding planning process rather than having them stand next to you in a matching dress! Assign them a task – have them help assemble favors, read a passage or a poem during the ceremony or usher wedding guests. There are ways to have them be a part of the wedding without being a part of the wedding party.
Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life, and when you look back on your wedding pictures 10 years from now you want to still be close to the people standing up there with you. Not only are your bridesmaids there to help you out on your day, but they also represent the people that are going to be there for you throughout your marriage so it’s important to choose carefully.
Photo by Leo Patrone