Bridal Party Q&As

Guidelines about the roles and responsibilities of everyone involved, from maid of honor on down.

Q: We plan on having an all-white wedding (flowers, linens, candles), but I’m not sure what color the bridesmaid dresses should be: I don’t want them to detract from the décor. Any suggestions? 

A: Colors in light, soft hues are sure to complement your all-white décor. Depending on the time of day and the season in which you’ll marry, you have a variety of options to choose from. The spring and summer months, for example, favor pastels like lavender, pale blue, soft pink, yellow and mint. In autumn and winter, consider platinum, pale gold, champagne and taupe, shades that are always elegant and chic—especially if you plan on having a candlelit evening wedding. Just don’t forget to consider your bridesmaids’ hair color and skin tone when making your selection: You’ll want to choose a shade that’s sure to flatter every one of your friends.

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Wedding etiquette is a popular subject because they are so many horror stories. It's expensive to be in a bridal party, and it's expensive and stressful to have a large one. One budget line item that often gets overlooked by the future Mr. and Mrs. is the THANK YOU gift for each bridal party member. You should plan to spend at least half the amount of the cost of the bridesmaid dress/suit rental for each person. So if the dress they bought is $300, then be prepared to thank each one with ~$150 worth of gratitude. Bridal showers, bachelorette parties, flights/hotels, hair/shoes/makeup/hair styling -- all these things add up, and some bridesmaids spend over $1000 just to be in your wedding party. These are your most important witnesses to your wedding. And chances are they supported you before, during, and after the big day. Thank you gifts are not the area to skimp. Good luck! Lisa |

I've selected my matron of honor (and asked her) who is engaged and was supposed to get married before me but then had to postpone her wedding. Can she still be my matron of honor??