While some women dream up elaborate ways to pop the question to their bridal party, others are trying to figure out how to explain there won't be one at all. We've seen the "no bridal party" trend pop up a number of times in recent years, so we spoke with two seasoned wedding planners about what it's really like to skip the attendants. Here, they share their thoughts on weddings without bridesmaids and groomsmen, and offer tips that will help you determine if this trend is the right one for you.
What to expect.
Bridal parties are by no means necessary, but the men and women who make up a traditional group of attendants are typically responsible for certain tasks. With no bridal party for responsibilities to fall upon, there's no "law of the land" when it comes to organizing events. "There may not be a bridal shower or bachelorette party, unless you plan it yourself or ask a friend or family member to," points out Jove Meyer, the owner and creative director of Jove Meyer Events. To avoid any confusion, be sure to communicate clearly any expectations you may have with a close friend or parent so everyone is clear.
And while you may not think it's a big deal to go solo on your big day, your besties might feel differently. Be cognizant of any hurt feelings and try to find different ways to recognize those important to you. Whether it's asking them to do a reading, mentioning them in the program, or inviting them to get ready with you that morning, a small gesture could go a long way in keeping spirits high. "The work around to a no wedding party wedding is having a squad," says Meyer. "All the fun with none of the responsibilities!"
Consider the trend if...
If your number one goal for the big day is to keep stress to a minimum, choosing to forego attendants could be a big help. With no schedules to arrange, conflicting fashion senses to satisfy, or lengthy "reminder!" emails to write, your planning process just got a whole lot simpler. "It is rare to have a drama free, work free, stress free wedding party," says Meyer. "Rather than risk it more and more couples are just letting go of the official roles of the wedding party but keeping the fun parts of it so everyone is happy."
You're on a budget.
Everyone knows being a bridesmaid can often be an expensive endeavor. But Emily Peterson, owner of Emily Weddings Inc., points out something most don't realize: It's more expensive for the bride and groom, too! "For the couple, it allows them to save money by not purchasing bouquets, bridal party gifts, and additional party expenses." If you're a bride on a tight budget, it might make sense to eliminate the bridal party—plus, sparing your friends the expense that comes along with bridesmaid duties makes it a win/win for all involved.
You want no distractions.
This is a day about you and your future spouse. While it's nice to recognize the friends and family who supported you along the way, it's not mandatory. "This day is all about celebrating your love and commitment to one another and that is the most important detail," reminds Peterson. If standing up at the altar with only your betrothed helps keep you both present and focused on each other, then what friend could possibly object?