Do's And Don'ts Of Being A Bridesmaid: Tips for Bridesmaids

tips for being best bridesmaid for friend

Are you a bridesmaid and wondering where to start or what to do? Did your friend or family member ask you to be in her bridal party as a bridesmaid and you just don’t know how you’re supposed to act or what your exact role is in her wedding? We’ve got you covered in today’s wedding planning advice post. These tips and advice go out to all the bridesmaids.

stylish bridesmaid dresses

Photo Credit: Cicinia

We’re all about helping out our best girlfriends today as we talk about the do’s and don'ts of being a bridesmaid. Also, if you need any additional help in this department, we have lots of blog posts full of bridesmaid advice right here.

Being a bridesmaid can feel overwhelming and confusing, especially if you’ve never done it before. So, if you’re in a wedding and you’re a bridesmaid, you’ll want to pay close attention today. This is everything you need to know about being a bridesmaid.  

As the bride's closest companions, bridesmaids can get caught up in the excitement of a wedding and it can be hard to see the big picture of the whole day and to understand your role. We’ve got your back today and we’ll give you all the tips and tricks to being the best, most supportive bridesmaid you can be.

You may have heard that being a bridesmaid is all about the dress. While the bridesmaid dress is a big part of being a bridesmaid, there’s a lot more to being in a wedding and supporting the bride. 

Speaking of bridesmaid dresses, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out our favoritedusty blue bridesmaid dresses from Cicinia. Dusty blue is our signature color here at The Garter Girl and we can’t pass up a dusty blue wedding moment!

We’re going to start off with the do’s of being a bridesmaid. This is everything for you to keep in mind to do when you’re in a wedding.

Do: Be Supportive

Being the bridesmaid is a beautiful experience. As a bridesmaid, you want to make the bride happy on her special day and support her in any way possible. This can mean everything from making sure she is fed and hydrated on her wedding day to calming her down when she’s stressed out during the planning process.

As a bridesmaid your goal is to be a supportive friend and lend, not just a helping hand, but a compassionate ear to whatever the bride needs.  Be an ally to the bride, and make sure she always knows she can count on you for anything.

Just remember that when your friend, the bride, gets stressed out either on the wedding or before the wedding with all of the planning chaos, your number one job as a bridesmaid is to be supportive. That’s it. The main role of the bridesmaids is to be there and to support the bride. 

Do:  Be Aware Of The Costs

When you’re a bridesmaid or in a bridal party, it is important that you keep your eye on the cost of being a bridesmaid. You’ve probably heard the rumors or read the advice: it can get expensive to be a bridesmaid. But, the good news is that it doesn’t have to be. 

You might be expected to pay for things like a gift at the bridal shower as well as a wedding gift for the couple. You might also have to pay for your bridesmaid dress and accessories as well as your hair and make up on the wedding day. You might also be on the hook for contributing to or hosting a bachelorette party. 

Be aware that the cost of being a bridesmaid can add up. However, the costs are different for every bride, bridesmaid, and bridal party. For example, some brides will give their bridesmaids hair and make up on the wedding day. Or, your fellow bridesmaids might all join together to pay for the bachelorette party, so it isn’t so expensive for any one bridesmaid. 

There are many options for affordable bridesmaids dresses too. We love theselace bridesmaid dresses and thesetulle bridesmaid dresses for under $100.

There are lots of options on how to fund being a bridesmaid. Just keep the lines of communication open between you, the bride and your fellow bridesmaids. If you’re uncomfortable with the cost of bridesmaid duty or you can’t afford it, speak up. There’s no need to go into debt to be a bridesmaid. 

Do: Be Available For All Of The Events

If you are a bridesmaid, your priority should be to the bride. This means being supportive and also being available for all of the events that go along with being a bridesmaid. 

As a bridesmaid you might be expected to attend engagement parties, bridal showers, bachelorette parties and, of course, the wedding day, or all of the wedding weekend activities. All of the wedding events can be a lot, especially if you’re working and you don’t live close to the events, but do your best. 

Just like with the cost, keep those lines of communication open with the bride and your fellow bridesmaids. Let them know if you can’t make it to an event, like the bachelorette party. Maybe you can help out in other ways, such as prepping favors or sending a bottle of wine to the dinner table.

If you can’t make it to all of the events, that’s OK. After all, you have a life too and obligations of your own. Just do your best to be present for your friend at as many events as you can as it relates to the wedding.

Do:  Be Positive & Cooperative

The most vital thing about being a bridesmaid is to make sure that your bride is happy. Put yourself in her shoes for a moment. Getting married is a major life event and planning a wedding is overwhelming to say the least. 

Your friend, the bride, is probably stressed out. Your job as a bridesmaid is to be possible and cooperative.  Help make things easier for everyone, not harder. Maybe your friend, the bride, didn’t pick the bridesmaid dress that you would have picked or maybe the other bridesmaids chose a bachelorette party location that was not your first choice. But, that’s OK. As a bridesmaid, one of the best things that you can do for yourself and for the bride is to be flexible and adaptable to the situation. 

It's a big day for the bride, so try not to stress her out with unnecessary drama. A wedding can be stressful for everyone involved, but the more laughs you have, the better. When she's feeling overwhelmed with wedding planning, let her know you're there for her. Remember that emotions will run high with a wedding. It's always better to be positive and supportive than negative, no matter what's happening.

Do:  Be On Time

No one likes a bridesmaid who is late. One of the best and easiest ways to be a supportive bridesmaid is to be one time. 

Be on time with your payments or cost contributions. Be on time to events, like a bridal shower or on the wedding day. Be on time with your RSVP’s and responses to questions. 

Being on time and on schedule might be the only thing that is free when it comes to being a bridesmaid. It seems so simple, but, not running late or holding anything up when it comes to your friend’s wedding matters. This is someone else’s wedding, not your own, and there are lots of other factors and personalities involved with being in a wedding. 

As a bridesmaid, being on time is so, so important. And it’s free.

advice for being bridesmaid

Photo Credit: Cicinia 

Don’ts Tips for Bridesmaids

Now that we talked all about things that bridesmaids should do, it’s time to move onto the “don’ts” of being a bridesmaid. Let’s talk about the things that bridesmaids should avoid at all costs. 

Being a bridesmaid can be an honor and a pleasure, if you are well prepared. The more research you do before the wedding, the more help you will be to your friend and the happier your experience will be. Be mindful and supportive of your friend, the bride. Help to make this day easy and memorable for everyone involved.

Here are some of our best tips for what NOT to do as a bridesmaid.

Don’t:  Buy Bridesmaid Dresses At The Last Minute

One of the most important parts of being a bridesmaid, in addition to supporting the bride, of course, is what you’re going to wear. The bridesmaid dress is a huge part of being in a wedding. Don't wait to buy your bridesmaid dress until the last minute before the wedding.

There are so many reasons not to wait to purchase bridesmaid dresses. Most, notably, if you wait, you might not have your pick of the best dresses. You might not have the coordinating colors that you want orthe best bridesmaid dress styles that you want.

We love a colorful bridal party around here and we love the option ofshopping for your bridesmaids dresses by color. But, if you wait too long you might be able to get what you want.

The color of the bridesmaid dress is one of the first things brides think about when planning a wedding. If you wait too long, you’ll be limited with the bridesmaids dresses that you can order in time for the wedding. 

Prepare in advance for the bridesmaids’ dresses. You don’t want to run to the store with only a few days or hours to spare before the wedding. Order the bridesmaids dresses and the entire bridesmaid style early.

Don’t:  Be Unresponsive

Do not be an unresponsive bridesmaid. Don’t take forever to get back to your friend when she asks you a question. Don’t take too long to RSVP. Don’t be silent and unresponsive with the other bridesmaids when planning things like bridesmaid dress shopping or the bachelorette party. 

If your friend asked to be in her wedding to be a bridesmaid, it means that she needs you. (Let’s just assume that she didn’t ask you to be a bridesmaid out of obligation.) She needs your help and she values your opinion. The bride wants you as a bridesmaid because she wants you there, by her side, on one of the biggest days of her life. 

If you have too much going on in your life, for whatever reason, and you think that you can’t be the kind of bridesmaid that your friend needs, it’s OK to politely tell her that you can’t be in the wedding. It is better to say “no” to being a bridesmaid than to say “yes” and be unresponsive and unhelpful. 

Don’t:  Post Anything Without Bride's Consent

When it comes to the wedding and posting on social media, it is critical that you check with the bride before you post or share anything. If you’re at the bachelorette party or the bridal shower or on the wedding day, it is important that you check with the bride before you post and share photos or videos. 

Talk to the bride before the event and gauge her thoughts on social media posting and sharing photos and video outside of those that are present, in person. Maybe she really wants you to post and share. In which case, that’s great that you know this. Just be sure to ask her if she has any special hashtags for the wedding. 

But, the bride might not want anything posted or shared. Maybe she is hoping for the wedding to be published and doesn’t want any photos leaked. Or maybe she wants to keep the event private and would rather not share. Maybe she wants to keep thosestunning, floor length black bridesmaid dresses hidden. Or maybe when you’re wedding dress shopping she doesn’t want anyone to see her wedding dress before the big reveal walking down the aisle.

No matter her reason, it’s her call on posting and sharing photos from her wedding. 

As a bridesmaid, you should always check with the bride before posting about her wedding events. And if she says “no” to posting a photo or sharing on social media about an event, it’s your job as a bridesmaid to respect her wishes. You might not understand it, but you still need to respect it. 

tips for how to be best bridesmaid

Photo Credit: Cicinia

So, there you have it. We hope that you learned more about being a bridesmaid with our list of do’s and don’ts when it comes to being in a wedding. It can feel overwhelming, but it’s worth it - we promise. Your friend, the bride, loves you and needs you there by her side on the biggest day of her life. 

For more help with being a bridesmaid be sure to check out our other advice posts:


This post was sponsored by Cicinia, a stylish bridesmaid dress company. The words and opinions are my own. Sponsorships make this blog possible. Thank you for supporting our amazing sponsors, like Cicinia.