bridesmaid-dress-etiquette-and-more-from-anna-post

The First Steps to Being a Bridesmaid

Discover the initial ways to prepare for both your sake and the bride's!

While you likely know that you’ll be expected to purchase a dress, and perhaps help plan a shower or bachelorette party, there are often several months that go by before anything happens. So what should you do in the meantime?

bridesmaid-dress-etiquette-and-more-from-anna-post
Photo: James Christianson

Whether you’ve been asked through text message or an elaborate gift box, it is generally an honor when a close friend or relative asks you to be a bridesmaid. There are certainly downsides to the role and reasons people may turn it down, but more often than not, the prospective bridesmaid is touched by the gesture and accepts. While you likely know that you’ll be expected to purchase a dress, and perhaps help plan a shower or bachelorette party, there are often several months that go by before anything happens. So what should you do in the meantime? Read our suggestions below for the first steps you should take after agreeing to be a bridesmaid.

group of bridesmaids in mismatched navy dresses with bride in lace gown
Photo by Carrie King Photography

- Determine your availability. You’ve probably already saved the wedding date, but it’s a good idea to examine your schedule and figure out when is best for dress shopping, a bridal shower, bachelorette weekend, and more.

- Set a budget. The costs will be spread out, but you still need to know how much you’ll be able to spend – and be sure to communicate this to the bride! 

- Connect with other attendants. In the case where you don’t already know the other members of the bridal party, it would be nice to add each other on social media or make a group chat in order to start the bonding process. 

- Research travel. While it might be too early to book, getting an idea of your flight options if the wedding is out of town will help you plan the rest of your budget. The couple will probably have hotel blocks, but you can also look into nearby options.

- Brainstorm party ideas. Even if you’re not the main party planner, having a list of possibilities will make the process more streamlined when it comes time to put together the pre-wedding festivities. 

- Browse dresses. With more and more brides having their ‘maids choose their own gowns, it’s never too early to start getting an idea of what you might want to wear. 

- Take a step back. Remember it’s not actually your wedding, and while help can be appreciated, you don’t want to overwhelm the bride with suggestions and questions too early. 

For more advice, find out what to include in a bridesmaid proposal box and what to buy after getting engaged

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