Eenie, meenie, minee, moe, catch a piggy by the toe….

Maybe I’m aging myself here, but as a child, this was one of the ways we picked teams when playing outside with our friends.  It seemed to keep it fair & random, with the least chance of someone getting their feelings hurt (although there was always one person who seemed to find an issue because they didn’t get picked).

While that childhood trick worked for choosing teams, it’s not the best idea for choosing your wedding party, your team for your big day.   Instead, here are a few tips for choosing your crew of guys or gals to serve as your bridesmaids, groomsmen, or attendants and strive to reach your #SquadGoals.

Size really does matter!

Can you image attending a wedding with 50 guests and the wedding party has 10 people on each side?  That’s 22 people in the wedding party….almost half the guest list! Half the guests are seated; the other half standing upfront. Crazy visual right? You also have to consider your venue.  If you’ve chosen a small venue, you have to consider how it will look to have a large wedding party all standing across the front on your space.  As amazing as those dresses or suits might be, there will be a point when it will be too crowded to appreciate them, and you will just be another speck in the clutter, rather than the center of attention.

Start with your siblings

If you & your spouse-to-be have siblings, especially ones that you’re close to, consider allowing them to stand with you.  Chances are, these are the people who have known you the longest, and maybe, even know you the best. And, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with mixing it up. Ladies, let your brother be bridesman. Guys, let your sister be a groomslady.Chicago Wedding Planner SouthWind Events bride and bridemaids in blue robes. Photograph taken by J Lauryn Photography.                                                                                                   

Think first, ask later

You’ve known each other forever.  Been there through thick & thin.  Love each like family.   They’re a shoe-in, right?  Well….you know they desperately want to be married, like to make things about themselves and tend to be overly selfish.  They interject their opinion whether requested or not and always want to have their way.   You know they can be fickle and sometimes just don’t show up when they say they will, but when they do show up, they are a great time! The point here is, you know your friends/family.  You know their strengths and weaknesses, pain points and struggles.  Your wedding will not make these go away.  So after you’ve made your list, take some time to think it over and make sure you are ok with dealing with all their quirks during (what can be) a very stressful time.  Because once you ask and they say yes, it’s really hard to go back and undo that.

Know who/what you’re working with

Before you send out those proposal boxes, look at your list and consider each person’s personality.  How well will they get along?  Certainly, they don’t have to be besties, but if one person on your list has a much stronger, even abrasive, personality and tends to rub people the wrong way, it’s a potential set up for drama & stress – neither of which you want, and should absolutely avoid if you can.Chicago Wedding Planner SouthWind Events groom and groomsmen in blue suits. Photograph taken by J Lauryn Photography on the rooftop of the Ivy Hotel Chicago.                                                                                                

Consider what you need going in

What do you think a wedding party is supposed to do? What are they responsible for?  Do you need/expect them to provide emotional support, attend every event you plan, host huge showers/parties for you, go shopping, venue/vendor scouting, or wherever else with you, spend an undetermined amount of money?  If you’re a DIY person & want help from your squad, are they crafty?   Will you be able to pay for their attire, hair, makeup, shoes, & jewelry?  Or will they have to incur some/all of that cost?   Think about what you need & want from your party, and be sure to communicate these expectations (up front) to those you invite to stand with you – allowing them to make a fully informed decision.

Chicago Wedding Planner SouthWind Events bridal party wedding party in blue suits and gold sequin dresses. Photograph taken by J Lauryn Photography.

Remember these not hard & fast rules for choosing your wedding party. At the end of the day, you choose who takes this wedding planning journey with you, and ultimately stands who beside you on your big day.  None of these are hard and fast rules.  So be mindful, be honest, and remember….this is YOUR DAY!

Happy Planning!

All photos featured in this blog were taken by  J Lauryn Photography.

For details on the wedding featured above, check out our blog post here.

Check out our blog 5 Things to Discuss Before You Get Married for insight on how to start your marriage off right, or check out our blog home page for more tips, tricks & insight from your #WeddingPlanningCoach.
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