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Choosing a Bridal Party

Before selecting who your bridesmaids will be, you need to figure out exactly how many to include. This is typically determined, not by how many close friends you have, but by the size of your wedding reception.

A rule of thumb to keep in mind here: A mid-to-large-size wedding, ranging from 150 – 200 guests, can withstand a handful of bridesmaids and groomsmen. So avoid a huge bridal party if you’re having an intimate wedding. 

Once you’ve determined how many attendants you will have (more or less), each of you should jot down the names of your best buds, and then compare lists. 

Narrow down your selections until you have an even number of both genders, and then you’ll need to pair everyone up. 

Playing matchmaker requires that you take into account each of your friends’ personalities, so that bridesmaids and ushers get along and enjoy each other’s company for the duration of your wedding.  

At the same time, think about the wedding photos and try to create pairs that will look good together as they walk down the aisle.


Other things to consider when selecting your bridesmaids:

Even if you are not close, family members usually tend to appreciate being included in bridal parties. And this is a good opportunity to establish a stronger bond.

Use diplomacy at all times, but do stand your ground. If you are asked to include a relative that you absolutely dislike, remember that this is your once-in-a-lifetime celebration and there’s no reason to accommodate someone you loathe to make another person happy.

At the same time, keep in mind the big picture. If your cousin’s feelings will be greatly hurt if she’s not part of your bridal party, consider taking the high road and including her. Keeping peace within the family isn’t easy, but often worth the extra effort.

Now, if your BFF lives far away and you’d like her to be in your bridal party, think about logistics and how she will be able to participate in all of the pre-wedding related planning and parties.  

Traveling to and from her home base might get expensive and time consuming. So before asking her to participate, have a chat about whether she can handle this responsibility and commitment long-distance.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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