Post # 1
Hi, bees! I have taken some time to really think about who I want to be in my bridal party, and I’ve decided on 5 lovely ladies – 2 cousins, 2 good friends, and my future SIL. I’m going to ask them soon, starting with 2 of them I’ll be seeing this week. This will be the first time that 3 of them have been in a wedding, so I’m trying to decide what kind of information to give them up front.
I’ve seen some of you give them all the details right away, from estimated costs to dress inspiration pics. I hope my bridesmaids will be able to buy a dress, come to my bachelorette party, help host a bridal shower, and of course stand by my side on the big day. I definitely understand that most of them can’t afford a ton, and will try to make things as inexpensive as I can for them!! I don’t expect gifts past their presence at/help with these events. I’d like to give them some idea of the costs that could be involved, but I don’t want to come off as too demanding… How much information is too much? What do they need to know before agreeing to be a bridesmaid? (As you can tell I haven’t been a bridesmaid before, so I’d appreciate the insight of those who have!)
I’m also trying to decide how exactly to ask them. I plan on making DIY cards, and including basic information cards with the date/location. I also plan on including a note about how special they are to me. I’m considering making small boxes to put everything in – if I did this, I’d want to include a few cute little items, such as a ring pop and nail polish.
I appreciate any opinions and ideas you have to share, and I’d love to hear/see what your cards or boxes were like! 🙂 Thanks ladies!!
Post # 2
bridetobe24: I would drop any reference to the expectation that they will host a bridal shower. This is purely optional and the idea should come from them, not from you. It is never polite to tell someone that you expect them to host a gift giving party in your honor.
Post # 3
julies1949: Okay, that definitely makes sense. That was the part I was most on the fence about, because I understand if they aren’t able to/interested in throwing a bridal shower. It would be nice, but if they don’t then that’s okay.
Post # 4
bridetobe24: I just asked mine. They already knew the date of the wedding. Everything else was negotiable. I didn’t feel the need to put a price point on it. If someone has a serious, sudden budget crunch, we’ll work it out. Either we’ll scale something back or I’ll cover the costs. The important part to me is that my best friends are with me the day of my wedding. The finances can be sorted out. Having accessible funds was not a requirement to be in the wedding.
We picked dresses based on their budget and what they felt flattered them. (I set forth my requirements – long and either red or black. Beyond that, I didn’t care. I went shopping with them and they all chose a dress.) Bridal shower was their call (MOH is taking care of it), Bachelorette party was also their call (a different bridesmaid is taking care of it, as my Maid/Matron of Honor is writing her national certification exam 2 weeks before.)
I also didn’t have a list of things they *had* to do (they can wear any black shoes they want, everyone has black dress shoes. I’m paying to have their make up done, but only if they want to have it done. I’m not insisting they get their hair done, nails done, etc.) Also, we found a place where alterations were included in the dress price (no cap on them.) There are considerable alterations to be done on a number of dresses, since they’re adding sleeves, etc. But its not going to cost them an arm and a leg and they don’t have to worry about them being more than quoted.
Post # 5
I would ask them their budget. You shouldn’t tell them what they should be able to pay – they should tell you what they are willing to spend.
An “inexpensive” dress for you could be wildly out of my budget, or vice versa. ASK THEM their budget, don’t tell!
Post # 6
Im not going to vote, because I think even your most basic option is too much information!
Mine just said something like ‘will you stand by me on my special day?’ and had the date somewhere on the card too.
The showers were their idea, bachlorette was their idea….if you expect less, more will be given to you and you will be much happier. If you send out a card that has all of your expectations and prices and times and dates, you will come across as a bridezilla and they will pull back and not want to give you any of it.
Post # 7
- Wedding: May 2014 - Madison, WI
I agree with PPs, I just asked will you be my bridesmaid.
I gave no other information. I had been in two of my maids weddings though and the price point for their dresses was about the same as mine and we were all comfortable with it. One bridesmaid was my 22 year old cousin (broke college student) and she couldn’t afford the dress so I paid for it and her hair (even though hair/makeup was not mandatory). Everyone wore whatever shoes they wanted and did their own makeup.
I had a maid & matron of honor and they held a shower and bachelorette party for me. My SIL also had a shower for me. I think they knew it was something I wanted but I never asked for it or told them it was expected.
Post # 8
My friend sent me a picture of her ring (she was in Spain when she got in engaged) and said “Soooo…bridesmaid?”. I think people put in way too much thought and Pinterest everything up these days.
Post # 9
I’m not sure that I would immediately ask for a budget as you are putting people in a position of having to commitment to a number before they have a chance to think about what they can afford.
If someone asked me to be a bridesmaid, I would assume that the dress, shoes, and hair/makeup were my expense and, also potentially a portion of the bridal shower, unless the bride told me otherwise. I would also assume that I could opt in or out of the bachelorette, depending on what the bride wanted to do and my schedule / budget. I would have a general sense, based on life experience, of the financial commitment involved.
I think it’s up to the person that you are asking to say yes or no and to give you an indication of what they can afford, if this is a concern. Also, I wouldn’t go into detail about the dress or anything else. In my opinion, the initial conversation is “Will you be my bridesmaid?” followed by “Yes, No, or Yes with a financial or other caveat.”
Post # 10
sostobe: JiminyCricket: Bexx: Bexx: stephncollins:
Thanks for all of your input. I think I was putting too much thought into this, like stephncollins suggested. Since I haven’t been in a wedding and neither have a few of my friends, I was definitely comparing myself to pinterest and to other bee’s. Also I’ve seen posts from girls in weddings who wish they knew more up front, but it sounds like those brides were pretty demanding in their expectations. I don’t want to be demanding – I want this to be a fun experience for everyone!
Also, I definitely want to keep things as low cost as I can. I am in the middle of grad school and just graduated college last May, and most of my bridesmaids are in similar circumstances – only one is working full time. I will stay cognizant of that as we choose a dress. I will not require any specific hair, shoes, makeup, nails, etc., and I’ll always put myself in their shoes before asking anything of them.
Anyone have bridesmaid cards or boxes to share? 🙂
Post # 11
- Wedding: September 2014 - Banff, Alberta
bridetobe24: I made a “will you be my bridesmaid?” boxes! I can’t find the photos but here is the tutorial I wrote about it: http://nicoleandmitch.blogspot.ca/2013/12/will-you-be-my-bridesmaid.html
It was so fun to make and the girls loved the boxes! I would put the basic info (when, where), dress info (if you know yet) and putting the paint swatches on of our colors was really easy and cute!
Post # 12
I think it depends on what your expectations really are of them, I know you said in your post you “hope” they do these things but would they be deal breakers for you if they didn’t? If so then yes you need to give them that info, but if not why bother there will be time for that later and you can focus on the fun part of asking 🙂
Post # 13
jamb: Good point. I wanted to add some kind of note (or just say out loud) that if they don’t feel they can be a bridesmaid at this time for any reason, then I understand. Most of them don’t have a lot of money right now, so if they’re worried about the financial side we can discuss it and I’ll be clear that costs will be kept as low as possible.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
Post # 14
I just asked mine, and told them that I’d figure out what to do for colors/dresses, etc. at a later date. I have just kept them in the lopp with anything they need to do.
I had the 2 in my bridal party with a small bottle of champagnhe, nail polish in a blue I was thinking of going with, and some lip gloss.
Post # 15
stephncollins: Haha yep! That’s basically how I asked my ladies. If I saw them in person, I’d ask them straight up, if I knew I was not going to see them for a while, then I called or texted them. It got the point across the same way as boxes with butterflies, cards, champagne bottles….. And it pretty much set the easy going tone to the festivities.