It's a big deal to be asked to be someone's maid of honor. In fact, it's arguably one of the most important positions anyone could have on the big day. As expected, such a crucial job comes with a huge set of responsibilities, both during the wedding and in the months and days leading up to it. "The maid of honor is the advocate, best friend, and keeper of the bride on wedding day," says Suzanne Reinhard, wedding planner and owner of Suzanne Reinhard Events in Atlanta, Georgia. "Leading up to the big day, the maid of honor may organize the pre-wedding events. On the wedding day, she's responsible for looking after the bride."
But that's not all she's in charge of. Here, Reinhard outlines some other, more unexpected duties that maid of honor is generally tasked with.
Be her fashion consultant.
Although you'll probably be there when she chooses her wedding dress and the bridesmaids' attire, these aren't your main "fashion consultant" jobs. Your role as maid of honor is essentially "head bridesmaid," so you'll likely be responsible for making sure each 'maid orders and alters her dress. On the wedding day, you'll help the bride get dressed, carry her train for photos, bustle her gown after the ceremony, and help her with bathroom visits, changing shoes (if she plans to), and any other attire adjustments or changes that happen throughout the course of the party.
Serve as her sounding board.
Maybe her mother-in-law is driving her crazy and she needs to figure out who is in the wrong, or else she's upset because her florist gave her a pricey quote for those out-of-season flowers she thinks she absolutely has to have. Whether she just wants to vent, needs practical advice, or is looking for someone to bring her back to reality, your job as maid of honor is to listen and help where you can.
Keep her organized on the wedding day.
"Even if there is a wedding planner, assist the bride by making sure she has her belongings in the right places, at the right time," Reinhard says. "The bridal suite can become a mess quickly and locating a left shoe or a pair of Spanx might take a few minutes." For this reason, it's important to try to stay ahead of the bride's schedule and expect what she will need next. And when last-minute tasks pop up, be ready to complete them. From helping the makeup artist find your room to delivering a note to the groom, you'll essentially be the third (and fourth!) hand your bride needs while she's busy. "Your involvement will help the day run smoothly without those little headaches."
Be her advocate and peacekeeper.
Remember that your bride entrusted you with this responsibility for a reason—likely because of the close bond you share. She knows that you'll help keep her calm when stressful scenarios arise. "Figuratively, keep taking the bride's 'stress level temperature' throughout the day," suggests Reinhard. "If you feel the bridal suite is starting to get too loud or busy and stressing the bride, turn the music down or ask everyone to leave to give the bride a few quiet moments to herself."
Help keep a pulse on how the bridesmaids are feeling, too.
As head bridesmaid, part of your role is paying attention to the needs and desires of the rest of the bridal party. "Whether a bridesmaid doesn't like her hair and makeup or her dress strap breaks, none of these concerns should ever be brought to the bride," Reinhard says. "If you hear any of the bridesmaids complaining, try to solve the issue with the help of the wedding planner."