Tuesday, April 5, 2011

14+ Bridesmaids?

I ALWAYS knew who would be in my bridal party. My sister. Obviously. Never questioned it! But now here I am, thinking of how fortunate I am to have a sister, 2 future sisters, and a large group of amazing close girl-friends. Thinking, not stressing... ok maybe a little stress is invloved in deciding between such an amazing group of women to stand beside me on the big day. This has to be the hardest wedding task I have experienced so far!
 My life has taken many directions over the years, I have a large group of the most wonderful girlfriends from high school as well as a tight-knit group of college bffs. Basically a best friend here, a soul mate there, a unique group of amazing women from every chapter of my life!

I would love to include everyone in the big day but the problem is 14+ bridesmaids just seems a little ridiculous right? Even if I went with 10 that would be a minmum of 24 in the bridal party... Yikes!?

So I've done my homework and these are the basic "guidlines" for choosing the bridal party, I hope they are some help to anyone else going through a similar delima!

Tips for choosing your bridal party:

1) The wedding party needs to be proportionate to the guest list, more people should be in the pews than standing at the alter!

2) 1 Bridesmaid per 35-50 guests.

3) Take into consideration the size of your ceremony site, will everyone fit up front?  Anything less than a very large cathedral will have a difficult time accommodating a large wedding party. If you're committed to having a large wedding party, you'll have to look for a large site.

4) Consider the logistics -- finding a dress (or even a few styles) that 10 women will like, making sure everyone gets fitted, and so on.

5) Expensive -- While most bridesmaids and groomsmen pay for their own attire, housing and airfare, the bride and groom's expenses for each attendant will add up. Everyone will need a bouquet or boutonniere, an attendant gift, and to be included in the rehearsal dinner. There also may be other expenses such as: wedding weekend activities, special accessories, and the cost of renting additional limousines.

6) Less personal -- While very few brides may really have ten best-friends-forever, odds are most of you don't. Thus, a big wedding party will invariably include people that you don't know as well or aren't as close to you. Some of the most amazing parts of planning a wedding are daydreaming with your closest friends, and that intimate conversation that can only happen in small groups of people who've known each other for a long time. Also, think about how you'd feel being asked to be one of three bridesmaids versus being asked to be one of ten. The first is far more meaningful.

7) Herding cats -- While for the most part your wedding party will be helping you, at significant points, you'll be telling them where to stand, how to dress, and when to show up. With a large group of people, this can be a little like herding cats – unruly and frustrating. The relaxed bride knows three magic words: Simplify, simplify, and simplify. This rule doesn't stop when it comes to your bridal party.

8) Expense to them -- Keep in mind that you're asking these people to spend a considerable amount of money. Even if they don't feel very close to you, they may feel obligated to say yes. The gracious bride and groom will take this into consideration.

9) "Once best friends" -- Don't feel obliged to include your once bff from 5 years ago. If you're not close friends now, most likely you wont be 30 years from now either. Choose people you trust and see in your life years from now. That won't leave you with any regrets.

Ok great advice right? Now I just have to get down to business and decided (tear). Is anyone else going through this or have any advice?! Be sure to leave a comment!

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