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How to Choose Your Bridesmaids (Who's Joining the Bride Tribe)

Ever since you were a young little girl, you've always dreamt about the wedding of your dreams and have always imagined who would be attending your wedding, witnessing you profess your love and promise to your significant other. Most importantly, you have always thought about the girls that would be standing right by your side as you say your"I Do's" on your special day. Depending on how many close family and close friends you have in your life, you might be the bride who has tons of friends and lots of family members to choose from to participate in your bridal party, or you may be the bride who associates themselves with only a few loved ones. When choosing your bridesmaids, how many bridesmaids should you really have in your bridal party?! Honestly, it really depends on how many people you are having at your wedding. Most wedding planners or experts suggest that there should typically be 1 bridesmaid and 1 groomsmen per 50 guests. For smaller weddings, you should probably consider having no more than 4 bridesmaids, and for bigger extravagant weddings you should probably consider 6 or more bridesmaids. However, at the end of the day YOU'RE the bride and this is YOUR wedding and you can choose as many bridesmaids as you want because with today's generation, traditions are meant to be broken. The real question here is WHO should you choose to be in your bridal party?

Here are a few tips and suggestions on choosing your bridesmaids:

First things first, depending on how far away your wedding day is, you should probably give a heads up to those you want to include in your bridal party at least between 3-5 months after your engagement. Also with today's generation, not everyone in your bridal party has to be female. Now a days, some brides will even have their very close friends and family members who are male be a"Bridesman" or "Man of Honour."


It would probably be a little easier to start off with your family members first. If you're someone who has a sister(s) or even a brother(s) and you're fortunate to have a super close relationship with them, you may want to consider him/her as the first person to be in your bridal party or even give them the honour of being your maid/matron/man of honour! Then if you have any close cousins that you would want to consider, they should be the next ones down on your list.


When you're someone who tends to have so many friends but you really don't want to choose too many people to be in your bridal party, it's really tricky to narrow it down to who's worthy of being in your bride tribe. Picking your top 4-6 bridesmaids or even bridesmen depending on how big you want your bridal party to be is like picking your top 8 friends on your MySpace page in real life or even being on The Bachelor of who gets the last rose. In order to narrow it down to gets a spot in your bride tribe, ask yourself these questions: How long have you known this person? How close is your relationship with him/her? Do you talk on a day-to-day basis? How often do you hang out or spend time together? Are they the first ones you would reach out to when you're in need of help or just want to share your problems with? What other roles would suit this person for the wedding if they can't be a bridesmaid/bridesman?

Another situation that most brides debate on is whether or not they need to include someone who previously got married and had asked them to be a bridesmaid at their wedding. A lot of brides in this situation usually feel obligated to include them because they probably feel that the previous bride is expecting them to be asked. Just because they asked you doesn't mean you have to ask them. It really depends on how close your relationship with this person is throughout the years. You don't want to ask a high school bestie or college roommate that you haven't spoken to in years just to return the favour all because you were a bridesmaid at their wedding. You should definitely be asking those who are close to you and/or who is currently in your life.


As a bride, the last thing you need to deal with is D-R-A-M-A! You've already got so much on your plate while dealing with your venue, invites, and overall budget. The last thing you need is to deal with people who were expecting to be asked and are now offended that they weren't asked to be in your bridal party, which has now become a big deal. If it's really that difficult to choose between your 12 best friends, you might as well just stick with your siblings, cousins, and your top 2 best friends. You can always find other ways or roles to give to your loved ones in helping with other aspects of your wedding. Some brides even decide not to have a bridal party at all just to save people the trouble of having to spend money and mainly to avoid drama.You obviously don't want to be the one hurting people's feelings but you've got to do what's best for you.


When you ask your closest friends and family members to be in your bridal party, you need to:

  • Consider the amount of bridesmaids/bridesmen vs. the guests at your wedding - you don't want a crowded wedding party and have too many people walking down the aisle.You also got to consider how many people would fit standing at the altar next to you. You also want more guests being in the audience watching you say your vows than having a crowded wedding party that could barely fit up there with you. It could look like total chaos up there.

  • Be Honest - Honesty is the best policy! You should set honest expectations and sort out the roles you want to give to each bridesmaid/bridesman. You might want to avoid choosing those who have busy schedules or live too far away.

  • Think twice or thrice before you ask someone to join your bride tribe otherwise you can't take it back (unless under other circumstances) so take your time! No Rush! You may also want to consider if this person would mesh well with the rest of your bridal party. The last thing you want is drama and feelings being hurt (as mentioned before).

  • When it comes to budget expectations, you should really be considerate of your bridal party's financial situations. Yes, in most weddings bridesmaids are expected to purchase their own dress and plan your bachelorette party, and most likely will also be giving you a monetary gift for your wedding which could get pretty expensive real quick. When taking your bride tribe out shopping for dresses to wear on the day of your wedding, you should really consider a price range/budget that everyone would feel comfortable with and would agree on. When it comes to your bachelorette, you should also probably consider "would they be able to afford to fly out of the country?" Or "would it be more convenient to have a local gathering in the city?" "What about a road trip to a destination that's 3 hours away?"

  • Last but definitely not least and would highly recommend, you should pick those who are responsible enough to take on the roles that you have set or possibly high expectations from especially if you're deciding on who your MOH would be as they are the most expected person you would rely on and them being able to take on more roles and responsibilities before and during your wedding.

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