- I’ve attended over 125 weddings as a professional bridesmaid, so I’ve seen a lot of mishaps.
- As a member of the bridal party, you should never do anything to embarrass or sabotage the couple.
- Also, don’t sneak extra people, arrive late, or get too drunk to the wedding.
For the past seven years, my full-time job has been as a hired a bridesmaid for strangers.
After working on hundreds of weddings, I have seen many wonderful bridal parties. But I’ve also seen some incredibly bad accidents.
Here’s what not to do as part of a wedding party.
If you must quit, do so respectfully and well in advance
When friends or family members accept a role in the bridal party, they are not signing a contract. There’s really no guarantee they’ll make it on the runway.
A few times a year, brides hire me because people quit.
I have also seen bridesmaids get into big fights with the couple before the wedding, ending their relationship.
If you know the friendship is difficult, work it out before you say yes to the bridal party or wait until after the big day.
You can have fun at the wedding, but don’t get sloppy drunk
Weddings are full of opportunities to get really drunk, from the bachelor/bachelorette party to the reception.
At one of my craziest weddings, three bridesmaids got super wasted and broke the centerpieces. They caused so much damage and their friendship with the couple was broken.
A few festive drinks are fine, but don’t overdo it. You don’t want to stand out for the wrong reasons.
Don’t go behind the couple’s back to purposefully upset them
Weddings bring out a lot of emotions and feelings, which can either bring people closer or drive them apart.
At least three weddings I’ve worked on were disasters because members of the bridal party sabotaged the bride.
One group decided not to buy the dress the bride asked them to wear and instead chose one in a different style and color. Another group became so enraged with the bride that they ended up boycotting the wedding.
Before you do something that might hurt the couple, think about how much you are affecting their lives.
Secrets, especially about sleeping with someone who is getting married, only lead to drama
One of the worst things I’ve seen at a wedding was when two members of the bridal party secretly slept with the groom.
One slept with him years before he met the bride and the other a month before the wedding. I got this news the same day the bride did and had to do some major damage control.
Don’t keep such a secret, even if you think it’s ancient history.
Be responsible and show up on time
My biggest pet peeve is dealing with late arriving wedding party members.
I once worked at a wedding where the bridesmaids were supposed to be there by 9am to do their hair and makeup. Some of them didn’t show up until noon, so the whole wedding was delayed by hours.
The bride was beside herself. As it turned out, the bridesmaids just slept in and decided to have breakfast, ignoring all the phone calls and texts I sent them.
When you are in the wedding party, show up on time. Even better, arrive early in case the couple needs help.
You don’t have the power to invite marriage barkers
It’s often a big debate whether members of the bridal party should automatically get a plus-one. There’s no official rule, but I’ve seen couples say no to people who aren’t in serious relationships.
A few times a year, bridal parties rebel against this by inviting not just a co-ed, but a few people to take advantage of the open bar at the reception.
In most cases, the couple called security (or the police) to remove the wedding crashers.
You might think no one will notice if some of your friends show up, but you’ll probably end up causing a scene.
It’s your job to support people getting married, not shame them
There’s a lot that should be left out of a wedding toast, namely tall tales, inside jokes and anything embarrassing.
The creepiest moments often come when toasts include extremely embarrassing details about past relationships or one-night stands.
Always look at another couple in your speech to make sure you don’t say anything that will inspire someone to throw a glass of champagne at you.