With all of the excitement of a recent engagement, it can be easy to forget that you're about to ask your bridesmaids to take on a big commitment. The sooner you can have conversations about what you're expecting from your bridesmaids (and vice versa), the happier everyone will be. Here are four important topics to discuss long before you walk down the aisle.
The first big conversation you need to have with your bridesmaids is about the time you're expecting them to commit to your special day. Of course, they'll know to allot for a full weekend full of festivities (rehearsal dinner, ceremony and reception, and possibly a Sunday brunch), but if you're expecting their attendance at a bridal shower, bachelorette party, and dress fittings, it's best to let them know in advance. Be mindful if your bridesmaids live out of town, or if you're planning a bachelorette excursion to Vegas. You should share your ideas but don't be too hurt if life, work, or family gets in the way.
Money, Money, Money
Being a bridesmaid can be expensive—paying for the dress, travel expenses, and the wedding gift can all add up. Be upfront with your bridesmaids about their personal wedding costs: What you will pay for and what they are responsible for? For instance, is the hair and makeup artist your treat or will they be required to pitch in? Will they need to pay for rooms at the local hotel or will family friends offer to host them for the weekend? The more they know ahead of time, the better they can plan their savings.
A close second to the stress of picking out a wedding dress is choosing your bridesmaids' dresses. Trying to please different personalities, styles, and body types while not breaking the bank can be quite the task. If you're expecting your 'maids to choose their own dresses, give them plenty of time and guidelines to help. If you're picking for them, take time to let them know what you have in mind, and be aware of their budgets. While it's your special day, happy bridesmaids can make an even happier bride!
One last thing to chat about before the wedding is the type of support you're looking for in your bridesmaids. Do you want them to let you know if they think your first dance song is tacky or are you just looking for understanding? It's also a good idea to let them know what your stressors are, what they can do to help ahead of time, and how they can calm your nerves. Having a glass of champagne at the ready or a quick pep talk prepared can work miracles for a nervous bride-to-be—just let them know what you need!
Though it's your special day, having an open line of communication with your bridesmaids can help everyone have a good time. The bridesmaids will only be able to assist you if they know what you need or what you're looking for. The sooner everyone is on the same page, the more fun and relaxed you and your wedding will be!