Post # 1
This is an unusual question i know, but hear me out. My fiancé and I can’t decide if we should have a small bridal party or none at all. we are the first of our friends to get married on either side, and our friends are recently graduated, (read: not a ton of $ – us either!) and spread out across the country. my fiancé is similarly torn, so don’t think i haven’t taken him into account.
skipping the bridal party:
pros: no bridesmaid drama, no expectations of our friends, they can attend as guests wearing what they want etc. wouldn’t have to choose between friends, savings of dresses, bouquets etc.
cons: will i regret missing out on a ‘bridal party experience’? one friend might be quite put out by this decision.
pros: the experience of having bridesmaids, getting ready etc. (although if we forego a bridal party, i’d just ask them to come get ready with me)
cons: one potential bridesmaid is QUITE opinionated and has already made some comments that i feel are ungrateful/out of line. choosing dresses, coralling people for photos can be stressful etc. if i do have bridesmaids, she could NOT be excluded.
even if we had a bridal party, there wouldn’t be an benefit as far as planning (i don’t expect any help and they’re very far anyway) or throwing parties (i don’t expect them, and again, very far away). so part of me thinks – should i just forget the bridesmaid thing and invite them to get ready with me the morning of?
Post # 3
@peonyinlove: I voted no, but I’m actually kind of on the fence about what you sould do. I think you should ask your friends (maybe just one friend?) what they’d think about being bridesmaids, and tell them it’s totally fine whatever way they decide.
ETA: I can imgaine you’d regret not having BMs if you’re only doing it to save money. If you’re just not that crazy about the idea of a wedding arty and you think its be more trouble than it’s worth then I’m sure you won’t regret your decision. Worst case scenario you decide the week before the wedding you want BMs and tell your closest friends to pick up a forever 21 dress and a plane ticket of they can.
Post # 4
Ì’d skip the BP- any age. Just have an idea of where you will place your bouquet- give it to your mom to hold or on a table at the alter and where the rings will be- with your Fiance or the officiant. Your GFs, whether BMs or not will likeky want to host you a bridal shower and or take you out for a bachelorette party.
Post # 5
@peonyinlove: I think it’s totally up to you. If you want one, maybe keep it simple with just 2-3 people?
My brother and SIL got married recently and didn’t have one. They wanted a small wedding, and were trying to cut costs. Not having a bridal party means no bridal party gifts or added parties that would cost money. That being said, I worry that maybe my SIL felt like she missed out on some of that stuff.
I had 6 bridesmaids and honestly there wasn’t really any drama. I had two bridal showers – but the local one was thrown by a family friend and so my BMs didn’t have to plan anything or pay for anything. (the other was Out of Town thrown by my MIL) I had a bachelorette planned by my Maid/Matron of Honor, and I totally didn’t really want one, and she was insistant and foot the bill for it (minus everyone purchased their own food/drink). I paid for their hair/makeup for the wedding so that wasn’t a cost to them. Essentially the only thing my BM’s paid for were their dresses and shoes – they got off pretty easy…lol.
Post # 6
I’m only having a Maid/Matron of Honor and a Flower Girl. FH is not having any groomsmen. My Maid/Matron of Honor is his younger sister where as the Flower Girl is his cousin’s daughter. My best friend will be a reader during the ceremony. I wanted a bit of the bridal party experience, but not enough for the drama so this was my way of compromising.
Post # 7
@Ruby-Redshoes: it’s definitely not about the money. i have just heard a million horror stories about bridal parties, drama, resentment over money and i only want a bridal party if our friendships won’t be affected. and of course, no one thinks their friendships will suffer – so i’m wary.
that said, i do love these two girls, and i like the idea of honouring them in that way.
Post # 8
I didnt have a bridal party because I knew I would have a hard time choosing who would be in it and probably hurt some feelings in the process. I had a close friend volunteer to help me plan my bachelorette party, but did not have a bridal shower because I dont live in the same state as all my friends.
I am extremely happy I made this decision…..no drama, no hurt feelings, still got to spend a lot of time with all my friends at the reception & saved a lot of money (no bouquets or wedding party gifts!)
Post # 9
Like PPs said, it’s completely up to you. We decided not to have a bridal party a few months before our wedding. We just didn’t want to deal with any of the drama and to us, the day was about us getting married. We wanted our friends/family to enjoy and witness the ceremony without added stress or pressure. Now, my best friends still gave me a bridal shower and bachelorette, which they did not have to do. They were in the room the day of getting ready and drinking mimosas. We did a few “friend” photos because they’re my best friends and we wanted those. My husband did a few photos with his guy friends to and got ready with some of them. We just didn’t want to deal with shopping for Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses or renting Groomsmen tuxes or worrying if someone was reliable enough to do it. Even if my best friends elected not to have a bridal party, I would still do exactly what my friends did for me (and my husband’s friends did for him). We do not have any regrets!
Post # 10
@starfish0116: yeah my potential bridal party would be 2 friends, max 3. so maybe that’s a good compromise.
Post # 11
@KatiePi: i love that. do you think your friends felt slighted in any way? i would certainly invite them to our welcome party/rehearsal dinner, to ‘getting ready’ in the morning and carve out some time for friend photos.
Post # 12
I’m just having a maid of honor and then my sisters-in-law stand up. I said to wear whatever they want. I’m still having a bachelorette party, and my friends are just as excited for it as they would be if they were bridesmaids, and this way I can invite many more people. They are thrilled they don’t have to buy dresses, and they’ve been really helpful whenever I have asked them to do something “bridesmaidsy” like give opinions on china patterns or help me write a silly text for our website.
Post # 13
@peonyinlove: I think if you choose your BMs carefully drama shouldn’t be a problem. If you’ve ever read a ‘BM drama!’ post on the bee you’ll notice that 99% of the time the bride is either being a bridezilla, or she says something to the effect of ‘I knew she had a long history of being flaky/overly dramatic/jealous/unstable/a bad friend/selfish/a loose cannon but I overlooked that.’
The lessons here are:
A) Don’t have unrealistic expectations of your BMs. If they’re broke post grads then make sure you select cheap Bridesmaid or Best Man dresses, don’t expect them to travel a long distance for anything but the wedding. Also don’t expect your wedding to take precedent over other important things in your BMs’ lives. Also, know in your heart that your BMs do not care about chantilly lace overlay or where to source the cheapest burlap – don’t get mad at them for not wanting to talk weddings.
B) Don’t overlook any glaring flaws in your BMs’ personalities that would cause drama. I know that sounds harsh, but if you can’t rely on them to be supportive and happy for you (that is not a code for tolerating bridezilla behaviour) then you shouldn’t ask them to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man.
I think as long as you choose people you can count on to be supportive and behave like adults you’ll be fine. Bridesmaid or Best Man drama desn’t come from nowhere, and as long as you make an effort to communicate with your BMs and make sure they’re cool with your decisions everything will go along great.
Post # 14
@peonyinlove: I think they were confused at first. My husband and I did orignially asked people to be in the wedding party. We thought it was something we HAD to do. It wasn’t until about 5 months before our wedding we realized we didn’t need to do this. I think they were fine once it got closer to the day and really enjoyed being a part of the day without having worry about being in the ceremony. They very much enjoyed sitting back and watching us get married. 🙂 Whatever you chose will work out fine.
Post # 15
@peonyinlove: Not having a bridal party was definitely one of the best wedding-planning decisions we made. I hated the idea of friends feeling obligated to do things for me because of a special title! None of my friends appeared to feel slighted, in fact, one even said, “It’s so great that you aren’t making me wear a dumb matching dress! You’re wedding is already my favorite wedding ever.” I still have a lovely shower, an awesome bachelorette party (we rode a party bike all over town), and a private pre-wedding getaway with just my sister. No regrets at all!
Post # 16
I chose only 3 to purposely keep it small. I wanted to make sure these were girls I knew I was going to still be friends with on my death bed. Still, there has already been jealousy and mild drama between the three. Many other GFs have been upset they weren’t included. I’m paying for their hair and makeup, which is more expensive than I would like. Picking out their dresses and trying to make 3 very different people happy has been quite the hassle! For all of these reasons I kind of wish I could go back in time and not have any. I don’t think it would be so hard to throw my own bachelorette, or my best friend probably would anyway. All in all, I don’t think it’s necessary.