Being a bridesmaid is hard sometimes. If you feel you are going to have the slightest amount of resentment, negative feelings or bad attitude for any reason, the best thing you can do is politely decline the offer as soon as possible. Saying no sooner rather than later will make the situation a lot easier on everyone involved. However, if you are willing to be the most helpful, cordial and supportive bridesmaid on the planet, then these tips are for you!

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  1. I’ll start with the obvious. The most important piece of advice I can give you is to remember that this is her day… the bride’s day. It’s not even a little, teeny bit about you. The day and everything leading up to it is all about HER. 
  2. If drama does happen among the other bridesmaids, steer clear. Stay out of it. Do not involve yourself. This is a huge source of stress for brides. If you are not involved, that will make things much more simple should the bride have to counsel her bridesmaids or the extreme: fire them. 
  3. Always be a team player.
  4. If you don’t already know the groom-to-be, spend some time getting to know him before the wedding day. Plan a group outing. This will not only make the wedding day run smoother, it will make the wedding day a lot more fun.
  5. If at any point, you are not clear on what the bride expects of you… ask. It’s better to clear the air with straightforward instructions than to create awkward moments because of a reluctance to step forward. Actually, there should be lots of conversations early on about what each bridesmaid is expected to do.
  6. Without being overbearing, ask for additional responsibilities when you have completed your assigned tasks.
  7. If you happen to be the maid of honor, chances are you will have many more responsibilities. Accept them with honor.
  8. Accept that the maid of honor is your leader during this time. The maid of honor, more than likely, is taking instructions directly from the bride about how, why, when and where to carry out certain errands. If your name is mentioned in any aspect of any errand, chances are it’s straight out of the bride’s mouth. Don’t buck the system. This is the wedding chain of command.
  9. If you live far away from the bride and can’t physically help with any of the wedding planning, be sure to be a HUGE moral support.
  10. Attend as many of the bridal and wedding showers as you can—all of them is ideal. The bachelorette party is mandatory! These parties are necessary to build a positive rapport with the rest of the bridesmaids prior to the wedding day—especially if you don’t know each other very well.
  11. While we’re on the topic of parties, you can expect to buy at least two gifts: one shower (or wedding gift) and a bachelorette party gift. Usually, the shower/wedding gift is a combined effort by all of the bridesmaids. If you’re feeling extra generous, you can also purchase something for the engagement party, if there is one.
  12. Even if you hate everything about the dress the bride has chosen for you, suck it up and wear it anyway. It is extremely hard to find a dress (style, color, fit) that will flatter different body types for each bridesmaid. Never, ever let the bride hear you complaining about the dress. Be a good sport and with a smile on your pretty little face.
  13. In fact, never let the bride hear you complain about anything. No matter how expensive, time consuming, or annoying one of the other bridesmaids are, never ever vent to the bride. Find someone who doesn’t know the bride to confide in. The bride has plenty of things to worry about and your happiness shouldn’t be one of them.
  14. Remember to smile all throughout the wedding ceremony. You are going to be in a lot of people’s photographs. You don’t want to have a sour or bored to death look on your face. Smile from the time you come down the aisle in the processional until you leave in the recessional order… unless of course, you are crying tears of happiness. That’s acceptable too.
  15. You should cut loose and have fun but don’t indulge in too much alcohol on the wedding day… especially before the reception even begins. Drink responsibly. Believe me, you don’t want to be the bridesmaid bent over the trashcan in the corner of the reception hall halfway through the night.
  16. Have fun at the reception! Dance with the bride. Dance with the groom. Dance with the groomsmen and the bridesmaids. Dance all by yourself!! Make this a night to remember. The bride will thank you for it.

Tips for Bridesmaids

In general, an uncooperative bridesmaid can cause a lot of headaches and problems. Don’t be that bridesmaid.

Agreeing to be a bridesmaid is an honor, but it comes with lots of commitment, expenses, stressful situations and plain ol’ responsibility. There are probably dozens of reasons why she selected you to play this integral part in one of the biggest days of her life. She obviously values your friendship—and whether it is your trustworthy nature, patience and understanding, sense of humor or optimistic personality, there is value in something you bring to the table. You can be a benefit to her every day leading up to her big walk down the aisle. She could really use that. She would really appreciate that. She will always remember that and reflect back in a positive way.

The post, Tips for Bridesmaids, first appeared on Ata-Girl Photography Co.’s website and blog. Please feel free to comment here, or share this post with your friends via Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest. Please email me if you have any questions about this article or want to share a neat idea for a future blog post with me.