An Effective Guide to Choosing Your Bridesmaids

From the moment word of your engagement gets out, the questions start pouring in. What church are you booking? When is the big day? What’s the dress code? And of course: Who are your bridesmaids going to be?

You might not even have decided yet and we urge you not to rush into it. Your bride tribe will play an important role in the wedding, whatever you envision that role to be. Still, choosing who to include comes easily to some, but for most of us it can be a bit of a challenge. So, we’ve put together this guide to help you figure things out. Read on!

An Effective Guide to Choosing Your Bridesmaids

You’ll make better decisions when you’re calm and not under any pressure. So don’t feel like you have to answer those prying questions right away. You can fend people off in a number of ways, but telling the honest truth makes for a safe approach. For example: “I haven’t decided yet and I’m taking my time. Besides, I’m not over the engagement high just yet!”

On a side note, while you don’t have to decide immediately, you do want the girls on board for a bulk of the planning process. So don’t dilly dally either! Once you’ve assembled, all the fun (and some work) can begin.


This is important and often overlooked or taken for granted. To your mind, what does it mean to be a bridesmaid? What does a bridesmaid do and what will their role in your wedding be? Do you picture them standing beside you just for the photographs or will they have a more active part to play, both in planning and on the day itself? In other words, is the role more symbolic or practical?

Asking these questions will help you determine your expectations and lay down your bridesmaids’ responsibilities clearly. You’ll want to select people who can realistically fulfill your expectations, whether practical or symbolic (or both). Having that picture of what a bridesmaid is in your mind will help you match the best girls in your life to the role.


Politics and drama do tend to creep into the picture, especially in Asian cultures (but not limited to them!). Some brides will feel obligated to include a distant cousin they hardly speak to and sometimes selection of the Maid of Honour becomes difficult because of jealousy among friends. Some brides even feel pressured to designate a friend as a bridesmaid because they were a bridesmaid at that friend’s wedding. These pressures feel heavy because they are focused on pleasing others more than they are about pleasing you. And while it is not bad at all to make others happy, this is your wedding and anything that makes you uncomfortable should be avoided at all costs.


1. Make a rough list. Do this quickly and without thinking too much— kind of like writing a draft essay. The family and friends who come to mind easily will be those who you are close to and have kept in touch with over the years. 2. Decide on your number. There is no right or wrong number of bridesmaids to have. This is completely up to you! 3. Ask the right questions. Wether you’re narrowing or expanding that rough list you drafted earlier, craft these questions with the goal of matching the people in your list to the "job." For example: Who can I call at any time and any day? Who has made an effort to stay in my life over the years? Who can give me their objective, honest opinion about anything (helpful when dress shopping!)? Will this person willingly help me on my wedding day? Who do I have a good time with? Who brings good energy with them? 4. Have a look at the group’s chemistry. Take a look at the group you have so far and assess their chemistry with one another. If they’re going to be working on things like throwing you a bridal shower together, then it’s best that they get along.  5. Visualize. Finally, visualize it— picture it in your mind. Who are the people beside you? Does it feel right to see the girls you’ve come up with standing there? If the answer is yes, then congratulations! You've got your bride tribe.  If you find yourself struggling still, repeat the process.

Tagged: / / / /

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.