When it comes to planning your big day, you want your closest people by your side to get your through. Things will get crazy, overwhelming and exhausting which is where your A-team step in.
But how do you know who to ask? Who should be your maid of honour and should you even have one? There will most likely be many outside voices telling you what to do, feelings of moral obligation or pressure from your partner around who to include in your bridal party. Take a breath, we’re here to help.
If you have no idea who to ask, consider the following guidelines.
You have the right to choose
It’s your wedding. Not your mother’s, mother-in-law’s or sister’s wedding. You should be comfortable with the people around you, trust them and be able to rely on them. Choose people you know well, have a close relationship with and that you know carry your happiness at heart.
Your maid/man of honour needs certain qualities
Some traditions dictate that a bride should ask her closest female family member to be the maid of honour, while others firmly believe that it should be your longest-standing friend. While your man/maid of honour might tick both those boxes, the most important thing is that he or she must be your closest friend. They may be a sister, cousin or school friend, but they may also be a recently met colleague, sports mate or even an older person who is a role model and mentor in your life.
That being said, they will need to handle some arrangements, do a lot of planning and be hands-on during the process. As such, they would need to be at least a semi-organised person, live close enough to see you regularly and know you well enough to avoid planning things you would not enjoy.
Your bridal party don’t need to be best friends with each other
The maid of honour and bridesmaids are a group of people who all love you, but they don’t need to love each other. Yes, you want them to have a good time and getting along will be a bonus, but the main thing is that you have the people there that you want. If they really care about you, they will put any potential differences aside and work together as a team to make your dream come true.
You are allowed to exclude people
This part sounds harsh, but it might be necessary. As with guests, you can’t always have everybody there. Sometimes practicalities just won’t allow it and other times it could be that people expect things of you that are unfair. If it so happens that you and your partner’s sister just don’t see eye to eye, for example, you shouldn’t have to feel pressured to include her in the bridal party. It would probably be a relief to them as much as it is to you, if you don’t ask them.
Remember this is your big day and your happiness counts most.