Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Top 10 Tips for Bridesmaids: At the Wedding

While I'm not quite at Katherine Heigl/"27 Dresses" numbers, it's safe to say that I have plenty of experience as a bridesmaid. I know that many ladies may roll their eyes at the seemingly old-fashioned concept of wearing the same shiny dress as five other women, and perhaps we've all vented a bit about the drama and politics that can surround bridal parties, but when all is said and done, it's a really wonderful feeling (and yes, an honor) to stand by your friend's side on one of the most important days of her life. I have loved doing it every time I've been asked, and can't wait to be a bridesmaid again in December!

After the meticulous planning of the bridal shower and bachelorette party, it can be tempting on the wedding day to act like your job is already done, but a superstar bridesmaid is always ready to go the extra mile on the big day! Here are my favorite tips for making sure that your role as the best bridesmaid ever extends to the main event itself. (And bonus: this post is chock full of gorgeous wedding photos, including some from my BFF and co-blogger M's beautiful day!)


Style yourself according to the bride's preferences.


I've been in some weddings with very specific styling requests from the bride (such as, "silver heels" or "updos only") and others where the only directive was to look however we felt best. While you might think, "I'm a grown woman, and will wear/do my hair/put on my makeup however I want!" it's important to keep things in perspective and remember that the bride may have a very specific vision of her bridal party. Even if it doesn't completely jive with yours, try to defer to her preferences on the styling details - in the end, it's a very minor detail that will make your friend very happy.

 



Face the photographer with a smile...and another smile...and some more smiles...
Photo credit: Ricky Restiano Photography
 Being a bridesmaid is like being part of an exclusive Hollywood posse, and all day long, you're rolling with the #1 celebrity. There will be cameras in your face constantly, so make sure you floss, put on some lipstick, keep a hairbrush handy, and keep on smiling, even when your face starts to hurt or if the set-up feels kind of cheesy. Your friend will cherish these photos forever, so flash those pearly whites!



Photo credit: John Arcara Photography



Walk into the ceremony like an angel...
Photo credit: John Arcara Photography
* Keep your shoulders back and your head high.

* Make eye contact and smile at the guests.

* Walk - don't run! - down the aisle.



Photo credit: Ricky Restiano Photography


...and walk into the reception like a boss!
Photo credit: John Arcara Photography
Walking into the reception is your chance to get the party started and hype up the crowd for the bride and groom's introduction, so don't just slink away awkwardly - let your personality shine through and strut into that room!



Remember: the paparazzi are ALWAYS watching!
Remember all of the millions of photos that we talked about in tip #2? Keep in mind that not all of the photos will be staged, and as a wedding VIP, you can bet that the photographer will be capturing candid snaps of you. Even when you think the spotlight is not on you, don't be caught with a pout or a sour expression - keep that smile and enthusiasm going throughout the night!

  


Get the dance party started!
Photo credit: Ricky Restiano Photography
If there is a band or DJ at the wedding, that means the bride and groom want people shaking their stuff out on that dance floor! Sometimes the dancing can be slow to start, especially if the tunes aren't the greatest, so help your pal out by busting a move as soon as the music starts playing (and it never hurts to put in a song request). It usually just takes a brave guest or two to start things off before everyone else joins in the dance party!



As you can see, I take this responsibility VERY seriously (especially if "Shout" is playing and it's time to get "a little bit softer now"):

 


Oh, and speaking of dancing - if you're flying solo at the wedding and someone asks you to dance, be a gracious bridesmaid and grant him a song (especially for a young cutie like my dance buddy below).

And here's a bonus tip for all the brides out there - take a page out of M's book and get down on that dance floor!



Participate in the fun wedding details.


 If there is a photo booth at the wedding, you know that the bride and groom can't wait to see the crazy shenanigans that the guests will get up to in there. Embrace the silliness and take time to participate in any fun activities that the couple has planned!
 



Try to catch the bouquet...
Photo credit: John Arcara Photography
Since I was single for many years, I've attended countless weddings on my own and usually felt a twinge of sadness during the bouquet toss (especially as the crowd of single ladies got thinner and thinner as the years continued to pass). When you're a bridesmaid, it's time to show that you're game for anything so suck it up and try your luck out there with the flowers. (By the way - don't you just love M's serious expression?!)


...but let the kid catch it!
Photo credit: John Arcara Photography
Oh well, guess it just wasn't my time!


Give the bride a big hug at the end of the night.
Photo credit: John Arcara Photography
The bride and groom will have tons of people to talk to at the wedding so while you won't have time for a long heart-to-heart, it's important to steal a minute to give your friend a quick hug, tell her how beautiful the day was, and thank her for including you in such a special way. After all, what are friends for?

Photo credit: Ricky Restiano Photography

What are your best tips for being an awesome bridesmaid at the wedding? Stay tuned for an upcoming post filled with bridesmaid tips for the planning phases of the wedding!


 Linking up with Meg!

32 comments :

  1. Great tips girl!! I am so thankful that this year I don't have any weddings that I'm in...just attending!! I loved being a bridesmaid...I've luckily never had a friend that was a bridezilla, but I may have had my own moment or two...but I think making sure the nail polish isn't so bright or dark to call attention in pictures is a normal request!! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

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  2. You are seriously the best girl! Such an amazing outlook! I wish I could have sent this to a few people prior to my wedding..... ;-) I was the most calm one during the whole thing what does that say?

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  3. Great tips! And I love all of the pictures!

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  4. This is an awesome list! You sound like such a wonderful and supportive friend, and your love for your friends shines through! Your friends are lucky to have had such a wonderful, thoughtful bridesmaid! :)

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  5. This is such a cute post, and you look gorgeous in all of these weddings!
    xo, Whitney and Blaire
    Peaches In A Pod

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  6. these would be great tips... if I had ever been or would ever be a bridesmaid!! nobody loves me enough :(
    but your friends are super lucky to have you!

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  7. I agree with all of your tips! I'm terrible at keeping a smile on my face when I walk down the aisle as a bridesmaid - luckily, my friends/the bride always have laughed at the photos after.

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  8. Great tips, lovely pictures.

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  9. These are fantastic! Especially the picture one - seriously I feel like a camera is always on you! Love all your photos from your different experiences!

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  10. These are really great tips! As a Bride-to-be, I appreciate many things you have mentioned. It can be difficult to wrangle several ladies together to have one cohesive look for the big day, but Bridesmaids like yourself help to get the job done! :)

    Thanks for linking up with us today!

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  11. Great tips and lovely pics! You're def the best bridesmaid ever :)

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  12. This is great advice! You sound like the perfect bridesmaid!

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  13. Aw look at you two pretties! Love the advice to walk in like a boss and also to help get the party started. It makes all the guests more comfortable to hop onto the dance floor for sure!

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  14. Great tips! You both looked gorgeous in every shot, so many pretty dresses. I was very anti-bridezilla in terms of how my girls looked. I had my MOH in the opposite color as the other bridesmaids so she would stand out, and didn't make anyone get their hair and makeup done. And the funny thing was the girls who opted out, changed their minds the day of and wished they had signed up for it :-P

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    1. Oh and LOVE the advice of entering the reception like a boss. Always the best part :-D

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  15. LOVE this, Miss B! Thanks so much for linking up with us this week :) You looked sooo pretty at all of the weddings, and I especially love that purple. #6 about getting the party started is my favorite, and my bridal party definitely helped bring everyone onto the dance fllor (and keep them there all night!).

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  16. Great tips! I've been in a lot of weddings but every time I'm a bridesmaid I have to remind myself of why I'm there. Love this!

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  17. all great tips! I wish my girls would have followed tip number 3, they mostly looked scared of tripping and basically ran down the aisle to get it over with haha. Also love that you say to let the kid get the bouquet, there was some tooth and nail fighting over the bouquet at my wedding. It was good for laughs though.

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  18. Love this! Great tips for bridesmaids!

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  19. Great tips! The one about always being "on" because of the candid photos people take is SO true!!

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  20. I obviously love this post! Such a cute idea and great tips for bridesmaids!

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  21. Great tips! I told all my bridesmaids to smile as they walk down the aisle! There is nothing worse than everyone looking like they hate their life as they enter the church haha!
    www.amemoryofus.com

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  22. I laughed out loud at the "walk into the ceremony like an angel". HAHAHA! Totally. Great post!

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  23. Sounds like you make a great bridesmaid!!!! Some little details are never given thought and they make such a big difference.

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  24. Great list! I would add helping the bride with her needs at the reception. I know she's already married and it's party time, but she's going to get caught in a lot of conversations and pictures. Make sure you offer water or the adult beverage of her choice. Get her cake. Help her go to the bathroom. Make sure she enjoys her own party!

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  25. This is so sweet- and you are right... GREAT photos!

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  26. I was creeping up in 27 dresses status before I got married:) I think these are all wonderful tips! I'm actually a bridesmaid in a wedding this year. . .on my wedding anniversary. Anything for the bride!haha

    Tif
    www.brightonabudget.com

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  27. Aww sounds like you definitely make a great bridesmaid! As much as I love being a bridesmaid I'm not overly sad most of my friends are married by now and I don't have to worry about it . It's fun but definitely a lot of work sometimes!

    <3, Pamela
    Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  28. What a gorgeous bridesmaid you are! I bet you are a phenomenal friend!!! Amazing pictures sweetie!!! xo

    livingoncloudandreanine.blogspot.com

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  29. Great tips!!!! You're such a pretty bridesmaid! <3 I think the biggest tip is to make it all about the bride. :-)

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  30. I love ALL of these, each of them are so true! Xo, Stephanie

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  31. Lovely bridesmaids dresses. Loved this purple one and wish to have a similar one for all my bridesmaids in my wedding at one of wedding venues Los Angeles. Will look unique dresses for them on online store at discounted price.

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B & M

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