I want to talk about our wedding party.
There seem to be a lot of traditions and rules in North American/European anglophone culture surrounding bridesmaids and groomsmen that there is heavy pressure to follow. I imagine that if you have been reading my posts thus far, you probably know how I feel about arbitrary rules, especially if they are outdated, rooted in sexism or classism and/or expensive.
(Coincidentally, its also how I feel about using outdated memes.)
Here are some of the rules that I have observed (Although, I know that some of them are undergoing shifts, and there are many regional and cultural variations):
- The bride must have a maid of honor and the groom must have a best man.
- There must be an equal number of bridesmaids and groomsmen.
- Brides have bridesmaids, grooms have groomsmen.
So, unsurprisingly, I am rejecting some of these rules.
First of all neither of us have a clearly delineated “best friend” who we feel comfortable elevating over the others, and we both have multiple siblings. For some people, there’s an easy answer for who will be the best man and maid of honor. For us, there isn’t — so we aren’t going to have them.
Second, Ev and I have friends of all genders, so we have a couple of bridesmen, and groomswomen.
Given that we’ve known each other for 11 years, and have been dating for five, There are a few people who are as much my friend as his, and could as easily be on my “side” as his. He also makes friends more easily than I do, and has moved all over the country, so he’s asked seven people (five men, two of which are the potential overlappers, and two women) while I’ve asked four women. Whether separated by gender or by side, there’s not going to be symmetry. In lieu of either cutting people out, or asking more people, I just threw up my hands and said, “screw it.” The photos of us all together will be lopsided. We will deal.
Therefore, we’ve established that it’s more of a collective “wedding party” than two separate ones.
I know that this will create a few questions in terms of how that’s going to look in terms of bachelor/bachelorette parties, getting ready the morning of and so on, but I’m sure we will figure it out along the way, and handle it.
To be continued …
My Pinterest board is filled to the brim with ideas. I’ve considered everything from building an altar from used pallet boards to growing my own rose garden and assembling the bridal bouquet. It’s time for an intervention!
I’ve known for years, well before I was officially engaged that I would be a “do it yourself” bride. Not just because of the cost savings but also because I am a crafty person — or at least I would like to think that I am. I just love the personal satisfaction of seeing an idea become a reality. My only challenge is that creating over 20 centerpieces for the best day of my life might be a bit more time consuming than the seasonal centerpieces that adorn my dining room table. With that being said and considering that I claim to be a time management guru, constantly on the hunt to find my balance, it’s basically required that I find the time to master all of my wedding DIY projects.
What’s the fun in doing it alone? There isn’t any, so I decided to reach out to my bridesmaids and host a party! Below are 4 tips to assembling your gal pals for a low cost and productive crafting session.
Tip 1: Plan in advance. I can appreciate that the favorite ladies in my life are movers and shakers. I decided in November 2016 after several conversations trying to explain my wedding vision that it would be best to corral everyone in the same space and share all of the updates while tying bows and spray painting. I created a GroupMe event with the date, time and location information for the January 2017 party. You should have seen the look on my face when my Matron of Honor who lives in Austin, flew to Atlanta and surprised me for the weekend. I guess that the pre-planning worked in my favor!
My Matron of Honor is the best!
Tip 2: Be prepared, yet flexible. I have a general idea of how I want the wedding day to look and feel however I haven’t vetted every single idea and that’s OK. When I created the original plan for the day, I thought that we would spray paint over 200 vases. Well in order to do that I needed to confirm if we will have candles or flowers in the vases, what color should we spray paint them and where would we paint them considering that it was 30 degrees outside. So at the last minute I aborted that plan and decided we should de-label some wine bottles and focus on jazzing up the invitations. We didn’t finish every project but it was fun to brainstorm with my bridesmaids and they helped me firm up a lot of the ideas that were floating in my head.
Soak, apply Goo Gone, rinse, polish and repeat.
Tip 3: Snacks and drinks are a must. What type of host would I be if I didn’t have something for us to munch on and drink while we viewed “making a bow” Youtube videos? I invited everyone to come over after lunch but before traditional dinner hours, so I prepared a Crockpot queso dip and ensured that we had plenty of wine and ingredients for cocktails.
Tip 4: Maximize the time! We didn’t finish every project and that’s OK. The best part about the day was hanging out with my friends! My Matron of Honor was able to meet one of the other bridesmaids for the first time, we spent quality time together catching up and swapping stories, we squeezed in some planning time for the rehearsal lunch and bridal shower and most importantly we were able to just hang out and enjoy ourselves in a relaxed environment.
The Dream Team!
Do you have some big DIY plans? How are you going to wrangle your team to help? Share in the comments!