Singaporebrides | Weddings 101

December 2014

Maid of Honour Do’s and Don’t’s

Being asked to be a bridesmaid is an honour but along with that honour comes obligations and duties.

Being made maid of honour, however, is a double honour and comes along with twice the amount of responsibilities and obligations. The bridesmaids and her duties differ slightly from the maid of honour’s, and if you’ve been made the maid of honour, we’ve listed out 5 Do’s and Don’t’s to help you ace your duties.

1. Be There For The Bride, No Matter What

Maid of Honour Do's and Dont's 1 Image cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Mandy Mayberry / cropped from original

Do’s:

It is an unspoken rule but as the maid of honour, you’re expected to be there for the bride, no matter what. As her left and right arm, you are expected to take on the responsibility of managing her wedding planning and lend a helping hand whenever she needs you to. Send some wedding styling inspirations her way if she needs help determining a wedding theme or bridesmaids’ dresses, or suss out wedding vendors who match her criteria and price range and send her their links. If she needs a crafty pair of hands to DIY her wedding, offer to help her out wherever you can.

As her support system, you are responsible for her well-being. Soothe her stress and worries away with words of assurance or by offering your help or listen to her inner bridezilla rant when the planning isn’t going as well as she had planned. If she needs help dressing or slipping on her Cinderella shoes, you’re the person who should be lending her a hand with these tasks. You are also responsible for her physical well-being by making sure that she is on a healthy and proper diet to stay healthy for her wedding and keeping an eye on her to keep her out of trouble during her bachelorette party.

Don’t’s:

Don’t let the bride down by being unavailable or unresponsive when she needs your help. You were chosen because she finds you reliable, responsible, organised and able to work under stress and deadlines. Don’t sit around waiting for her to ask you for help; take the initiative to ask what you can do to help her with her planning. Don’t add onto her unhappiness by joining in her rants or unloading your own personal problems onto her on her wedding day. It is her day; she ought to be enjoying it without having to cheer you up or dishing out advice to you.

And just because you’re part of her bachelorette’s party doesn’t mean you can get drunk and party the night away too. Remember, you’re responsible for getting the bride home safe if she gets too tipsy from all that partying.

2. Always Be Present and Available

Maid of Honour Do's and Dont's 2 Image from DIY of The Month: Chiffon and Tulle Wedding Corsage

Do’s:

As the maid of honour, you are required to attend every wedding planning meeting, bridal shower, dress fitting and rehearsal dinner. Why? Well, if you’ve noticed, once you’ve said “yes” to the whole maid-of-honour shenanigan, there is very little (read: no) room to say “no” to anything else because you are now the bride’s personal assistant, event planner, coordinator and helper, and anything else she needs you to be.

If the bride hasn’t engaged a wedding planner or stylist and has taken it upon herself to plan and decorate her big day, you might find yourself DIY-ing wedding favours, setting up chairs, arranging flowers and hanging decorations for her wedding. If she has a wedding planner or stylist, then you’ll be expected to attend meetings together with the bride to keep yourself in the loop, so that you are able to liaise with her planner independently when she needs you to. She’ll also need you to pay attention to how her dress is being worn during dress fittings as you’ll be responsible for dressing her on her actual day without the help of a professional.

Don’t’s:

The bride depends on you to be reliable and present whenever she needs your help with something, so don’t shrink away from your responsibilities as her maid of honour. If your schedule doesn’t allow you to attend a dress fitting or meet with the wedding planner together with her, don’t skip it altogether. Instead, discuss if her dress fitting or meeting could be postponed to another time or day so that you are able to join in.

Try not to leave the bride’s side for too long on her wedding day, as she might need your help with her train or smoothing her gown out to make sure it looks picture-perfect. Also, don’t be too focused on taking selfies with your friends and forget about rounding up friends and relatives when it’s time for photo-taking with the bride and groom.

3. Be Compliant and Never Complain

Maid of Honour Do's and Dont's 3 Image cc licensed flickr photo by outreachr.com

Do’s:

It is her big day, so she has the final say in every aspect of her wedding, even if you or the other bridesmaids disagree with her decision. Do give your honest feedback on how a pink-and-gold colour scheme or a bridesmaid’s dress in a more flattering silhouette and colour would look better for her wedding, but if she still decides to go ahead with a pink-and-red colour scheme or a slim-cut mermaid dress in a matching colour, do her and yourself a favour and say “yes” to the dress (or colour theme!) despite your protests, especially if she is paying for the dress. Think about it this way: the day’s about her and what she thinks will look good for her once-in-a-lifetime after all. And besides, you’ll only be wearing it for 24 hours at most and she doesn’t need to know what you do with it afterwards, so why rock your friendship by challenging her decision?

Don’t’s:

Don’t complain incessantly on how the dress exposes your wobbly bits, or how your hair and makeup looks. Remember, it’s about her, not you. Refrain from insisting on a better look for you because in her bid to keep you happy, she might concede and cut herself short by having a wedding look that she did not want to begin with.

4. Assume As Much of Her Responsibilities As Possible

Maid of Honour Do's and Dont's 4 Image from You Found Me by Chris Ling International Photographers

Do’s:

Your role as a maid of honour doesn’t end when her wedding starts. Take over the responsibility of running the day’s programs from the bride to allow her to fully enjoy her day. Make sure the morning gatecrash does not go beyond its allocated time to avoid missing the auspicious hour for picking the bride up. Hold up her train as she walks, hang onto her bouquet when she says her vows and hand them back to her when its photo time, make sure her hair and dress is in place at all times, man the reception table and ensure all the guests are seated and carry a bag of essential wedding day emergency items for any unwanted mishaps like her mascara smudging or a loose thread that threatens to unravel. In fact, keep two sets of these – one in the bridal car that you bring along with you, and the other in the bridal suite so you’ll always have the necessary remedies at hand whenever you need them.

But your job as the maid of honour doesn’t end at the end of her wedding either! Send the happy couple up to their suite to rest and enjoy the rest of the night, while you stay back to tie up any loose ends after the celebration. Ask the other bridesmaids to chip in to make sure the vendors turn up to collect their respective items, and all gifts and red packets are packed and delivered safely to the newlywed’s room. As the maid of honour, you’ll be in charge of the rest of the bridesmaids, and that means you have to be the one to organise meetings with them to discuss on ideas for the bridal shower and inform them of any bridal fittings or rehearsals. You’ll also be the peacemaker of the group and resolve any conflicts amongst your fellow bridesmaids or between the bride and a particular bridesmaid diplomatically.

Don’t’s:

It’s okay to get your fellow bridesmaids to help with the wedding planning and management, but don’t delegate all the tasks to them whilst you go on pampering manicure sessions with the bride. Don’t bring your complaints to the bride if you or another bridesmaid cannot get along with the rest. Being maid of honour also means you’re the peacemaker of the group and it is your onus to resolve the problem cordially and make sure everyone is in agreement.

5. Plan Her a Bridal Shower She Won’t Forget

Maid of Honour Do's and Dont's 5 Image from Style Me Pretty by Je T’aime Beauty

Do’s:

Find out what the bride would like or want for her bridal shower or bachelorette’s party before gathering the rest of the bridal party to plan an unforgettable celebration for her nuptials. Take everyone’s suggestions, budget and schedules into consideration, especially if you intend to take the party overseas or throw a lavish affair on home ground before you make a decision. If anyone strays off topic, be the person to pull them back to the one at hand and subtly remind them that the bridal shower is for the bride. Assign your fellow bridesmaids tasks for the bridal shower, or ask them to volunteer for the tasks that they’ll like to do.

Don’t’s:

Don’t plan a bridal shower based on what you or another bridesmaid would like to have. It is meant to be a celebration for the bride; so plan one that she wants. Never lose your cool when emotions flare amongst the bridesmaids. Remain levelheaded so you can offer a solution for the problem at hand. Don’t be bossy and insist on an expensive affair or an overseas bridal shower if your fellow bridesmaids cannot afford to. Just because you were made the maid of honour doesn’t mean you have the rights to tell the others what to do. And besides, the whole point of a bridal shower is for the bride to celebrate her upcoming wedding whilst being surrounded by her dearest friends and not to have the most expensive one.


Credits: Feature Image from My Garden Romance by Lightedpixels Pixies