First off, there are no rules as to who should be in your wedding party. However, if you want some help deciding who to have by your side during your wedding and what they can help with on the day (and before), this blog might just give you all the inspiration you need.
What is a Wedding Party?
Sometimes referred to as a bridal party, a wedding party is a group of people chosen by the couple to take part in the wedding. Traditional wedding party roles include the bridesmaids, flower girls, groomsmen, ushers and ring bearers. But remember what we said at the start, there are no rules and it’s important to remember it’s your wedding day, you can do what you want whether it upholds tradition or not!
The Maid of Honour and Bridesmaids
A bride may typically choose a sister, female relative or best friend as her maid of honour. The duties for this role traditionally include planning the hen do and helping the bride to get ready on the day. But you don’t have to have a maid of honour at all, which is sometimes the case when there’s a small wedding party or you simply can’t decide which friend to choose.
However, if you do want a maid of honour, perhaps think about the one friend or relative you want by your side all day or one who may stand out as more of a leader when it comes to planning and corralling the other bridesmaids!
You can buck tradition as much or as little as you want. Some brides include a best male friend to be a bridesman or man of honour or a non-binary friend in their wedding party as the right hand person at the wedding. You might want to consider ditching the labels altogether and simply asking each of your closest friends to be in your wedding party and for help and support leading up to and during your big day.
The Best Man and Groomsmen
Traditionally, the best man is the groom’s brother or best friend. Again, go for what works for you and who you want in your wedding party. The best man or best person is the groom’s right hand throughout the planning process and on the day of the wedding. Typically, they will organise the stag do as well as helping with wedding admin (wedmin) and keeping the groom calm!
Quite often, there’s more than one best man which means shared responsibilities for the stag do, and the embarrassing speeches! If there’s only one, they might allocate tasks to groomsmen and ushers such as giving out orders of service and showing people to their seats for the wedding ceremony.
The Ring Bearer
Arguably the most important role within your wedding party, often given to a four-legged friend. Dogs are always welcome at St Tewdrics House and we’ve been very lucky to see many perfect pooches support their pawrents on their big day over the years.
How to Choose Your Wedding Party
Before you ask, no, you don’t have to ask someone to be in your wedding party just because they asked you. A wedding isn’t an event to think of as returning a favour just because you feel you have to, it’s the best and most important day of your life. Choose the people who are closest to you at this point in time, not the people who chose you. If anyone wants to ask you about why they weren’t chosen to be in your wedding party, just be kind and tell them you had a very tough decision and there are lots of special people who you sadly couldn’t choose either.
Before you ask people to be in your wedding party, it’s a good idea to think about your guest list, which will help you determine how many people you want or need. For a small, intimate wedding of around 50 people, having 20 wedding party members will feel completely out of balance. However, if you’ve got a guest list of 150 plus, you can go as big as you like with your wedding party without leaving any ceremony seats empty. Whatever you choose, just make sure you ask everyone at the same time—especially if the potential wedding party members are all friends and socialise together.
Ideally, you should ask your friends to be in your wedding party within a few weeks of getting engaged—especially if you’re getting married within the next year or so. Life is hectic and people tend to plan holidays and events way in advance meaning diaries can get a little busy! Giving your chosen wedding party members plenty of notice means you can ask for help earlier too.
Remember, your wedding = your rules. It’s up to you who you want to be beside you for the best day of your life. Happy planning!