How to Get Ready with a Mixed-Gender Wedding Party

Tips and tricks to help you navigate your wedding morning with a coed bridal party.

How to Get Ready with a Mixed-Gender Wedding Party

Photo: Heather Kincaid Photography

Incorporating bridesmen and groomsmaids into the bridal party is a growing trend popular with couples who are close with members of the opposite sex. Fading are the days of asking your partner to include your brother, cousin, or male friend as a groomsman since you should be able to include anyone you’d like on your side of the altar. With these coed wedding parties, however, come extra obstacles that you and your beloved must jump. There is a good amount of information out their on attire suggestions and pre-wedding events; however, a certain logistical point that may be overlooked is, simply put: how is the morning-of going to work?

If you’re worried about the “getting ready” process with your coed group, here are some tips to help you figure everything out:

-  You can purchase gender-neutral, matching gear for the photo shoot. While these items are by no means required, some enjoy donning monogrammed clothing for hair, makeup, and getting dressed. These should be a gift to your bridal party (not something they’re expected to pay for) and can come in many forms. Everyone can wear robes and collared shirts – click here to see alternatives to these options! – so we recommend reviewing your options and perhaps tailoring the style or design of each clothing item to the person who will be wearing it.

-  But consider everyone’s comfort level with the process. If a bride has bridesmen or a groom has groomsmaids, they may not feel comfortable being around while everyone gets dressed. Additionally, some bridesmen don’t want to sit around while the bride and bridesmaids get their hair and makeup done and some groomsmaids might find it difficult to do their own regimen with the groom and groomsmen. They key is to have an open dialect with each member individually – ask what they would be okay with, ask if they like to take part in pictures, and ensure them that you care about them and want them to feel comfortable. If anyone feels negatively about the getting-ready experience, come up with alternatives: find a venue with multiple rooms in which to do personal preparations, get ready in a home so everyone is more spread out, etc.

-  Ask for professional opinions. If you have a wedding planner, discuss any logistical questions with them. Hopefully, they’ve already experienced a wedding with a mixed-gender bridal party and they may have tips and tricks to bestow upon you. They may even bring up problems – and solutions – you hadn’t even considered.

-  Keep the lines of communication open. The best way to design the morning of your wedding is by talking to your partner and your wedding party. Let it be known that if problems arise or questions come up, everyone should feel free to express them. Of course, there is always a line between an understandable request and an out-of-line demand, so keep a level head. Additionally, remember that you asked all of these people to stand up next to you because you care very deeply about each one – do not lose sight of that during planning; your relationships should always come first! 

Find out how to create the perfect guest list and learn about the etiquette of hosting a second wedding.

Opening photo by Heather Kincaid Photography; Floral Design by Empty Vase; Wedding Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events