Let’s face it: being a bridesmaid can be a thankless job. You’ve got all the work of a bride without any of the glory. And those dresses? Sheesh. Want to know how to keep your girls happy? Be logical, kind and flexible. But if you want to know how to make them hate you… read on.
Reason #1: The Dress. Hey, that image above was picked for a reason: if the dresses you just HAVE to have are unflattering, expensive or just outlandish, maybe take a step back. Do you remember the Friends episode when Rachel was in Barry and Mindy’s wedding? If not, here’s a refresher:
Jennifer Aniston looks good in a burlap sack, and this still looks heinous. Plus, it was probably like $600 – unacceptable. If you’re picky, find a dress on Etsy or somewhere affordable that isn’t extreme. If you’re not? Ask your bridesmaids to choose a dress in your color, but let them pick your own. That way, everyone can look great and you’re still happy. And don’t think I missed the hat in that picture! If you’re forcing your bridal party to wear matching accessories, be a good friend and cover the cost.
Reason #2: You’re too Type A. Are you planning your own bachelorette party? Or maybe you’ve selected everything for your bridesmaids, down to their perfume, hairstyles and makeup. If you can’t let some things go and leave it up to fate, you’ll all be miserable. Don’t force your personality on the people who love you, and learn the power of a recommendation over an order. It’s your day, and everyone wants it to be lovely… so don’t get in your own way.
Reason #3: Communication (or lack thereof). Just as it is with your future marriage, communication is key in your relationship with your bridesmaids. No one can read minds, so don’t expect your bridal party to have the gift. Ask them for help, be direct and, most of all, help them. Here’s an example: a friend of mine is flying cross-country to be in her friend’s wedding. She’s dropped big bucks on the dress, the flight and the hotel – but the bride-to-be has given her no information on where to stay, how to get to the wedding or whom she should be connecting with upon her arrival. Sure, she has family there, but they’re not going to the wedding. So, what should she do?
Don’t let this situation arise in your wedding plans. Be available to chat and offer all the information you can (there’s no such thing as too much information!).
Reason #4: Crazy, bridezilla-esque needs and wants. You might think you need someone misting your face with Evian every five minutes. But these girls most likely have to take trips with you to the bathroom to help you with your dress… and now you’re going to boss them around as if they’re your servants? Come on. Screaming, tantrums and pity parties are unacceptable over the age of two. You’re an adult, so act like it. Don’t forget the golden rule, because those bridesmaids you just tortured will probably end that friendship after the wedding. And no one will blame them one bit.
Reason #5: You’re ungrateful. Listen, you might think that your friends should worship the ground you walk on because you asked them to be in your bridal party. But being a bridesmaid is stressful, expensive and a bit of a hassle. They’re doing it because they love you and want your day to be as perfect as possible – remember your manners. And, I know it sounds trite, but get them a good gift, for goodness sake. A pretty necklace, some beauty items (I love Laura Mercier’s body scrub!) or even some thoughtful, personalized handmade gifts will show her how much you care.
What other tips do you have for brides-to-be that will keep their bridesmaids from seething with hatred? Or, if you’ve been a bridesmaid… what was your horrible (or fantastic) experience?!?