NSW-based wedding planner Jessica Alvial has had a hand in more than 16 weddings during her two years as a wedding planner.
Alvial, who runs For All Eternity Wedding and Event Planning, says that one of her most frequently asked questions is, “How can I be a brilliant bridesmaid?”
Below, she shares her tips on being the best bridesmaid possible for a possible spot on the Bridesmaid’s Hall of Fame rather than the Hall of Shame!
Be a good listener: The bride is likely to be either a dear friend or a relative, but if you think you know everything about her, you’re WRONG! Only accept this important role if you are in the position to be flexible and create time when needed.
Reliable friend: Some people have dreamed of their wedding day from the moment they were first mesmerized by a wedding dress, so remember that it’s their big day and it is going to be very special to them! You should spend a little time reflecting who they are as people and what they want from their big day and then try to do all you can to help her achieve this.
Immeasurable help: Expect to be called upon to do all sorts of big and little things. While the bride may seem to have it together be as attentive as you can and regularly check in to offer support or assistance. There will always be something to do when it comes to planning a weddings and, after all, you are there to help the bride – and not just on her big day, but probably many times before it.
Decision making: Leading up to the big day, your opinion on colours, dress styles, fittings, and perhaps even helping your bride find her special dress will be required. You need to keep in mind that it’s her big day and even if the dress is not your cup of tea, but she loves it, simply grit your teeth, smile and support her. Help her make the best decision possible to suit her taste not yours.
Easy and carefree: Try not to be too opinionated, regardless of the issue. Your job is to make her life easy by providing good and honest input into various decisions regarding the wedding, but you need to keep her best interests – and tastes- atop of mind. Black may not be your first choice for a wedding theme, but if she likes it, then start looking for anything black! It is only for one day, after all.
Special to the bride. You are, you know. The fact she has chosen you to be a part of her bridal party on one of the biggest days of her of life means you’re someone special to her. It may not seem it at the time, but it is actually quite an honour and a privilege to be involved in someone’s wedding, so let her know you are grateful and happy to be acknowledged in such a way.
Memories: The lead up to the wedding will be crazy and hectic and expect sore feet, but it is great bonding time. It could be one of the most fun and amazing times of your life because you will meet new people and (probably) become closer as friends because you’ll likely forge a connection she will remember for the rest of her life. Make the most of it, even when you don’t want to hear the “W” word ever again.
Assemble the girls: If you’re in charge of the Hen’s Night (or any pre-wedding celebrations), get the girls together and plan the night of her life! Be as generous as you can afford to be and if she is more tame than wild, be sure to tailor the event to her. Don’t embarrass her if she won’t take kindly to it and, whatever you decide, sense should come before fun (usually)!
Incredible wedding eve: The night before her wedding should be relaxed and stress-free. If you’re involed in it, take her for a massage or plan a lovely girl’s night in with her family. It’s her last night as a single lady and she should be relaxed and ready to face a huge day, so have fun but remember that sleep is a MUST. Don’t keep her up chatting all night – even if she wants to! Bags look terrible in wedding photos!
Dream day: The day of her dreams has finally arrived and, even if you’re nervous, she’s probably 10 times more apprehensive than you! Your objective on the day is to keep the bride calm and happy. Help her get ready, be by her side, provide a shoulder to cry on should she need it and just be there to support her and help her enjoy the day. Ensure she has a little emergency kit and that all the last-minute things are done. Remind her she is a princess for a day!
Being a bridesmaid is a lot of fun and while you do have a few formal duties to tend to on the day, make sure you enjoy yourself. It may be all about the bride on her wedding day, but you should stop and breath and enjoy it too! The best bit is, you don’t have to worry about what to wear!