Being a bridesmaid is the ultimate honor. Your friend is asking you to stand by her side on one of the biggest day of her entire life. It's pretty much like she's The Bachelorette and is handing you a beautiful rose at the rose ceremony. You get all the feels, probably start tearing up a bit, and obviously say "yes" — but what can you really expect as a bridesmaid? You may have a general idea of what's expected of you, but there are some things to know about being a bridesmaid for the first time that no movie can teach you.
There are many tasks involved that aren't just rockin' a beautiful gown and planning an epic bachelorette party. You are now officially part of the bride tribe and have to be there to support your bestie (physically and emotionally) every step of the way. You're there for her right up until her and her SO leave the reception as a married couple.
It's an extremely fun experience, but you will never know what to truly expect until you are thrown into the process. Sometimes, planning and dealing with the other bridesmaids can get a tad stressful — and that's why these nine pointers will help you prep. You'll be slaying your first bridesmaid journey in no time, girlfriend.
Here are the nine things I wish I knew the first time I was a bridesmaid.
1. The Bridesmaid Dress Situation Is All Too Real
This particular scenario is played out over and over again in TV shows and our favorite movies. You never actually thought the bridesmaid dress your bestie picked out would be horrid. It just can't be true — but yet, it is.
Even though my friend ended up allowing each of us to pick out our own bridesmaid dress, that didn't mean the task was any easier. The color was a very specific blush pink that, at the time, was unbelievably difficult to find. I ended up having to buy the first dress I found in a blush pink, and let me tell you — it was not cute.
When all is said and done, it's extremely important to remember that this is not about you. This is your friend's special day, and you should be supportive of every decision she makes — and that certainly includes the bridesmaid dresses.
2. Your Friend Will Be Preoccupied On Her Big Day
You might expect to have some major BFF bonding moments on the big day, but don't forget that there are a million things running through the bride's head. The biggest thing on her mind is getting married, and focusing on her fiancé.
Keep in mind that you are very special to your bestie; that's exactly why she picked you to be a bridesmaid. You may not get as much one-on-one time together as you would have hoped, but your girl is so thankful you are there. It's your job to be helpful in every way you can to make her special day stress-free.
3. You'll Want Someone At The Reception To Dance With
Your best friend is usually the person you're jamming out on the dance floor with at a party. At this party, however, your friend will obviously be super busy spending time with her boo, in addition to thanking everyone for being there.
The other bridesmaids are your partners in crime to chill with, so make sure to bond with them before the big day. And if they're your squad of best friends, even better. You might also be able to bring a wedding date, which definitely comes in handy if you don't know a lot of people who are attending.
4. Make Sure You Take As Many Pictures As Possible
If you didn't already notice, the wedding day will fly by. You probably won't get a lot of time with your bestie, so whenever you do have a sweet moment, seize it. You want a few solid pictures of you two together to remember the big day.
Sure, there will probably be a professional photographer there to take pictures, but you never know when or if you'll ever see that pic. Snap a selfie to ensure you have something perfect for the 'Gram.
5. Wrap Tissues Around Your Bouquet
If you're a crier like me, you'll need to have some tissues on hand for the ceremony. Since you're standing up at the alter next to your BFF, you won't have your purse by your side to dig around for a pack.
Wrap a few tissues around your bridesmaid bouquet instead. They'll be kept hidden in your hands as you walk down the aisle, and when the tears start flowing, you'll have emergency tissues right at your fingertips (literally).
6. Prepare An Emergency Kit For The Big Day
There are a lot of little things that can get forgotten on the wedding day. Important things like deodorant, hair pins, mouthwash, lipstick, hair spray, and even a few snacks are great to keep in an emergency kit. Jot down a checklist beforehand to make sure you don't forget anything.
My friend forgot her programs in the car, because there was so much going on. Writing down the small (but essential) stuff ahead of time will help ensure you don't forget anything.
7. Even The Sweetest Brides Can Turn Into Bridezillas
Try not to take it personally when your friend flips out on you. She might be incredibly stressed, and you have to keep reminding yourself of that. Even your friend who is totally calm and chill will have her moments of being a bridezilla — it happens to the best of us. Don't retaliate. Take it with a grain of salt, and see if you can help calm her down.
8. Never Forget Your Bridesmaid Duties
It's usually the MOH's job to plan the bachelorette party and bridal shower, but that doesn't stop you from playing your role. You're there to offer crucial advice and opinions, in addition to helping your friend through every step of the way with whatever she might need. You are never off the hook. Keep asking the bride what she needs you to do to take some stress off of her plate.
9. Being A Bridesmaid Is Not Cheap
Being a bridesmaid may very well make your wallet want to cringe. You'll need to dish out money for the dress, which can be a bit pricey. You also have to remember the wedding gift. I know you think your presence is a gift — and it is — but you still need to shell out for something special on your friend's wedding registry.
Don't forget about putting aside cash for the bachelorette party, and helping with the costs of the wedding shower. It all adds up. Just remember that it's all worth it for your friend, and you and your fellow bridesmaids can talk it out to try and make things work for everyone's budget.