Bridal Party Q&As

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

Q: Is it appropriate to have an all-female wedding party? If so, how would we handle the first dance? 

A: Traditional etiquette rules dictate that you are supposed to have an usher for every 50 guests. But no one says that ushers have to be groomsmen (they could be guys who are not in the wedding party), nor do they have to be men (your bridesmaids might help seat guests). So I do not see why you could not have an all-female wedding party.

As for the first dance, your female attendants could simply join in with their spouses or dates, or the two of you could keep the spotlight to yourselves until the end of the song. A final option: The emcee could ask all guests to join in.

<< More Bridal Party Advice



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??