Being chosen as someone’s maid of honour is an incredibly special experience. They have chosen you to stand by their side and help them get everything ready for their big day. Maid of honour is actually a slightly inaccurate name, really it should be more along the lines of ‘super planner, emotional support giver, make-up fixer, family wrangler and emergency support specialist’! But we wouldn’t be able to fit that on the hen do t-shirts now would we?
Maid of Honour Duties – Before The Wedding
You might think maid of honour duties just include support on the big day and helping to choose a dress. Of course both of those are key roles for any maid of honour, however, there are plenty of other roles you can take on to help your bride.
1. Chief of the vision board
A bride has a lot of decisions to make about her wedding. Since it’s not your wedding you can’t make decisions for her, but what you can do is be there to bounce ideas off.
Whether it’s invitations, flowers or colour schemes you need to be the voice of reason and gentle support. You need to help the bride realise what her own vision is and help her put it together.
Now your bride might be really confident and already know everything she wants, if that’s the case then you have an easier job! However, for those brides who aren’t very confident or used to making decisions, you’re going to be the one there supporting them.
2. Wedding dress scout
The best thing about being a maid of honour is helping to choose the wedding dress! Whether you go with the bride to one or twenty wedding dress shops you are one of the first people to see her in that white dress.
So advice for wedding dress shopping? Help her look for what she wants if she’s on a budget help her to find a dress that fits that. Whenever she tries a dress on look at how happy she is rather than the style of the dress.
If she’s happy then it’s a good dress, even if you don’t like the style so much. If you don’t think a particular dress suits her, try to say that gently and find a different dress she might like.
3. Group leader
As maid of honour, you are the chief bridesmaid. This means helping to make sure the other bridesmaids are organised. So check they all have the right shoes, their dresses all fit and everyone essentially matches.
You are also the point person for organising the hen do. Usually, this is done with the help of both the bride and the bridesmaids (unless it’s a surprise) but you are the main organiser of the event.
Think about the bride. If she’s not into partying then how about something more her speed? Spa days, yoga retreats and craft workshops are all great options for something a little different. Of course, if she loves to party you could always do something relaxing in the day and head out on the town in the evening!
4. Emotional support guru
Your bride might have a little wobble or two before the big day. She is under a lot of stress trying to organise everything. Be the person who helps her to feel calm.
Don’t stress her out by planning too much when she’s tired. Be the person who makes her a cup of tea and runs her a bubble bath. If she has a hotel room for the night before the wedding, offer to stay with her and bring her favourite box set and plenty of snacks. The night before the wedding your job is to keep her distracted and stop her from stressing, she needs beauty sleep!
Maid of Honour Duties – On the Big Day
1. Emergency support specialist
Now, this is one of the most important things to remember. On the big day, you need to be prepared for as many potential emergencies as possible. You might want to opt for a big handbag and just store it somewhere at the venue when you’re doing the actual ceremony and photos afterwards.
So what do you need? Safety pins and a needle and thread for the bridesmaid dresses are a must. Painkillers, blister plasters, mints and makeup for touching up are great to have. If it’s a sunny day sun cream and cooling spray or a mini fan are godsends. Anything you can think of that the bride of one of the bridesmaids might suddenly need.
2. Point of contact
When it comes to the big day often the venue or vendors might have a lot of questions. While the bride is getting ready she doesn’t need the extra stress. So make sure you get yourself ready nice and early so that anyone who shows up with a question you can step up and answer them.
The night before the wedding have the bride talk you through where she wants everything and how she wants the day to run, that way you have all the answers on the day.
3. Family wrangler
If you’re lucky, absolutely every member of the bride and groom’s family will be lovely and helpful people. However, most weddings are not quite that relaxed. Often there will be a troublesome family member.
It’s your job to make sure the bride has a brilliant day and is completely unaware of any family problems. That might mean organising lifts and taxis at the end of the night or stopping a family argument in the middle of the wedding. Everyone only needs to be calm and polite for one day, should be easy right?
4. Mistress of ceremonies
The maid of honour role does include some work during the actual ceremony. As maid of honour, you walk down the aisle and wait for the bride at the top. When she arrives double check everything is in the right place. She will hand you her bouquet to hold during the ceremony.
You might have extra tasks like reading a poem or story or signing the marriage license as a witness. You can also give a speech during the toasts portion of the evening. Try to tell funny but appropriate stories about the couple and essentially tell the bride how much you love her and how happy you are for them both.
We hope you’re excited to help the bride on her journey and support her on the big day. Congratulations on getting chosen to be the maid of honour. If you follow all the advice in this article you should be able to keep your bride calm and help her to make amazing memories. Don’t forget to send her this article when she’s going to be your maid of honour!