Preparing for your upcoming role as a maid of honor? First, congrats! Being the maid of honor for your BFF is an incredibly special privilege. But what does being a maid of honor actually entail?
From managing the bridal party to providing emotional support, there are a few key things you’ll be responsible for as the bride’s right-hand woman. Keep reading as we round up 13 important maid of honor duties you can’t forget to do (and our top tips on being the best maid of honor, ever!)
BEFORE THE DAY
Your role as maid of honor kicks in from the very moment your bestie begins planning her wedding. Here’s what you’ll be responsible for in the lead-up to the big day:
Manage the Bridesmaids
As the head of the bridal party, you’ll need to manage and coordinate anything that involves you and the bridesmaids. This includes tasks like:
- Researching bridesmaid gowns/accessories and ensuring gowns are ordered on time
- Researching hair and makeup ideas and confirming final looks with the bride
- Delegating any tasks the bride might need assistance with (such as DIY crafts or running errands)
- Acting as a go-to person for any questions the bridesmaids might have
Coordinating a group of bridesmaids can be tricky (especially for large bridal parties) so try to streamline the process where possible. Create a group chat, start an email thread, or use a project management platform to stay organized along the way. Our digital planner here at WedSites allows you to create checklists, assign tasks and set automated reminders to keep everyone accountable and on track!
Provide Emotional Support
One of the most important roles as maid of honor is simply to be a reliable support system for the bride. It’s no secret that planning a wedding can get seriously stressful, so try to be a positive influence and help your bestie enjoy her planning experience.
Let her know you’re always available as a sounding board for ideas, or as a safe space to vent when she needs to. If you can sense that the bride is feeling overwhelmed, help her take a breather by organizing a spa day, movie night or girls dinner.
Attend Wedding Dress Fittings
As maid of honor, you may be invited to accompany the bride to her wedding dress appointments and help her find “the one”. During these fittings, your role is to offer support and encouragement, take plenty of photos, and help the bride feel beautiful.
Our tip: allow the bride to decide how she feels about each gown first, before offering your own thoughts and suggestions. Remember, it’s ultimately the bride’s decision (and a very personal one at that) so keep any comments thoughtful and tactful – never critical.
Plan The Bachelorette Party
It’s time to put your party planning hat on and organize an epic bachelorette bash for the bride! As maid of honor, you’ll need to coordinate everything from the venue and guest list to catering, activities, and decor. It’s generally expected that the costs of a bachelorette party will be covered by the attendees, so you’ll also need to come up with a budget, request payments and manage the money side of things, too.
Before you make any big decisions, have an upfront chat with the bride to establish her expectations. Some brides may want a wild night out, some may have their heart set on a weekend away, while others may prefer something totally casual and low-key. It’s important to plan a bachelorette party the bride will actually enjoy, so check in with her first!
Attend Pre-Wedding Events
Make sure you’re aware of any important pre-wedding events like engagement parties and rehearsals, so you can clear your calendar accordingly. While you aren’t responsible for organizing these events, you’ll definitely want to be in attendance to show your support.
Prepare an Emergency Kit
With so much on her plate already, preparing an emergency kit (and stashing it somewhere safe on the day) is definitely something the bride will appreciate. Make sure you’re prepared for a range of scenarios by including practical items like tissues, hairpins, deodorant, band-aids, mints, sewing kits, pain relief, and snacks.
ON THE DAY
So the big day has arrived – and as maid of honor, it’s your time to shine! Here’s how you can help the bride have the best day ever:
Keep the Bride Calm (and Fed)
You’ll be spending the entire morning with the bride, so don’t be surprised if she experiences some pre-wedding nerves and jitters. Do your best to keep her calm, make her laugh and keep the mood light and upbeat. You can create an epic getting ready playlist to set the scene, enjoy a glass of champagne, and encourage your bestie to relax and be present in the moment.
Brides are also notorious for forgetting to eat on their wedding day, so make sure you remind her to snack and stay hydrated throughout the entire event.
Be a Spokesperson For The Bride
The last thing any bride wants to be dealing with on the morning of her wedding is phone calls or text messages from vendors and guests! Step in as the bride’s unofficial spokesperson to field any last-minute questions, convey messages, and handle any minor emergencies on her behalf.
Make sure you also have a copy of the wedding day timeline and contact details for any key people involved in the event.
Arrange the Bride’s Train and Veil
Before walking down the aisle, you’ll be responsible for making any final arrangements to the bride’s train and veil. Once the bride is standing at the altar, do another quick touch-up before the ceremony begins.
Hold the Bride’s Bouquet and Groom’s Ring
Along with touching up the bride’s attire, you’ll also be responsible for holding her bouquet throughout the ceremony. Usually, the maid of honor will also be the one holding the groom’s wedding ring and handing it over at the appropriate time.
Give a Toast
One of the most memorable (and intimidating!) moments as a maid of honor is delivering a toast to the happy couple. Public speaking can feel daunting, but don’t stress – your toast doesn’t have to be long or overly sentimental. Keep it simple by talking about the love shared between the bride and groom, their best qualities individually and as a couple, and your favorite memory with them.
You can read our guide to writing a great wedding speech here, including etiquette tips and examples.
Be the First on the Dance Floor
An empty dance floor is a couple’s worst nightmare. Take the lead and break the ice by being the first person up there!
Collect and Store Cards and Gifts
The wedding day will go by in an absolute whirlwind, so make sure all of the couple’s cards and gifts end up in the right hands. Take some time to collect any gifts and personal belongings at the end of the night, and store them safely for collection after the day.
Cherish The Experience
Remember, being a maid of honor is exactly that – an honor. Although the title comes with some extra responsibilities, it can also be extremely rewarding and fun. Enjoy this experience and make the most of it, because this is a memory you and the bride will cherish for a lifetime!