By Ann Cronin
It’s easy to get caught up in the post-engagement excitement and promise all of your pals that they’ll have a spot on your bridal party while they’re gushing over your ring, but it might be worth putting some more thought into this decision. Your bridal party should be a fun and cheerful bunch of your faves who ultimately serve to help you get through the stressful months of planning ahead, so here are some factors you should consider when choosing your support circle.
Don’t rush the decision
You don’t want to regret your bridal party choices further down the line, just because you tried to get it over and done with as quickly as possible. Take your time considering all your options. Consider who in your life you couldn’t imagine going through this planning process without, and make sure you allow yourself the headspace to figure out what kind of people you want and need around you.
Family are always a clear choice as they’re usually the people who know you best. It can be a nice sentiment to include someone from your future partner’s side of the family as well as your own, as it really demonstrates the unity that this wedding is centred around. It is also a great way of including children and making them feel like an important aspect of your day. If in true Irish fashion, you have a huge amount of cousins that you were tight with throughout your entire life, be sure to consider them as well.
Evaluate your own strengths and weaknesses
What aspects of planning your big day do you think you will be able to manage best? What do you think you will need the most support with? Evaluating the areas which you may find stressful to plan can be a good way to decide what kind of skills you would value in your team. Try highlight what you will need your second-hand ladies to support you with and organise for you and consider who in your life may be best at helping with this.
Your bridal party does not need to be a ladies-only club
Contrary to what tradition may tell you, gender doesn’t have to be a constraint on who you elect to be in your support network. If you have a guy friend who is particularly good at lowering your stress levels, or the only one you want on hand for the day is your beloved Labrador puppy, then that’s completely valid! In addition, there is no issue with opting for a Man of Honour if you wish. Your bridal party just needs to consist of those who will be there with you through the ups and downs of this process, so don’t rule anyone out because you think tradition has told you to.
Prioritise the need for good company
It can be easy to get overwhelmed with weighing out the pros and cons of every potential bridal party candidate and trying to ensure you do not offend anyone by not including them. Decisions like this can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that this is your big day and you should be allowed to choose the people who you feel most comfortable having around you. Don’t let little technicalities stop you from choosing the people who make you happiest and you have the most fun with, because more than anything you need your bridal party to ensure you can keep your spirits high right up until you say ‘I Do.’