Times are changing, people are adapting and the traditional rules that govern your wedding are not as strict as they once were. Outdated traditions no longer reflect who we are today. You define roles and responsibilities and who does what for you. There is no right or wrong way, it's your wedding celebration.
A dedicated group of people that you and your partner choose to support and guide you before, during and after the wedding will be directly involved in your special day. While there are many different roles that can be fulfilled, ultimately you and your chosen one will decide how large or small this group of people will be. If you are unsure of what the different roles are and who is who at weddings, we bring you a few of the most important guidelines.
This role should belong to someone you love, are close to and whom you trust. This can be your sister, cousin or closest friend. The chosen person will be your right hand, support and will help you plan your special day. If the woman whom the bride chooses is married, she is called a matron of honour. If she is not married, she is the maid of honour. And if the bride has chosen a man to be her wingman on her big day, he is called the man of honour.
Before the wedding, she or he helps the bride with preparations, which may include finding a wedding dress, choosing invitations and organizing a ceremony and reception. She organizes a hens party, also informs the bridesmaids of all the plans, directs and organizes the pre-wedding celebrations with the help of the bridesmaids.
On the day of the wedding, the maid of honour helps the bride dress and accompanies her to the place of the ceremony. As maid of honour, she signs the wedding permit, holds the bride's bouquet at the altar and arranges the bride's veil and train during the ceremony. She makes sure the bride's makeup and hairstyle are always neat. She will gather the bridesmaids for festive pictures, talk and dance with the best man and other important guests.
Every bride will need support. Emotions will be very high, so it is necessary to be compassionate, understanding and very organized. Here are detailed instructions on the duties of the maid of honour.
Even the most relaxed groom needs a friend he can rely on. His best man will be a huge help when it comes to preparations before, during and after the wedding. Also known as the right hand man of the groom, the best man is the groom's biggest support. He is usually either the groom's brother or best friend.
Before the wedding, he organizes the groomsmen and delegates all the necessary tasks. One of the biggest tasks is to plan and host a bucks party with the groomsmen. He also needs to assist the groom with alterations and suit selection and takes over when a suit is ready. Provides advice, support and assistance to the groom in leading the conduct of the day before.
On the day of the wedding, he helps the groom dress, gets him to the ceremony on time, signs the couple's marriage certificate, and stands beside the groom during the ceremony. He is also responsible for the toast and for keeping the dance party going during the reception. Here is more information on what the official instructions are for the best man's responsibilities.
These are trusted friends and family members who make up the bride's entourage. They are a support team that helps with the tasks around the whole wedding. It is up to you how many bridesmaids you want to have. Bridesmaids can be any age, but girls ages 8-16 become younger bridesmaids with a reduced number of responsibilities. The bridesmaids' job is mainly to help the maid of honour plan the wedding and assist the bride when needed. They contribute to the decision-making process for details, address invitations, plan the hens party and are also present for all formalities, including wedding photos.
Just as the bridesmaids are there to support the bride on her big day, so the groomsmen will support the groom. These are the men who help the best man plan for the bucks party. On the wedding day, they help decorate the getaway car, greet and entertain guests at the ceremony, walk down the aisle with the bridesmaids and dance with the bridesmaids and other guests at the reception. They make sure the groom arrives at his destination on time and keep him happy until the ceremony begins.
Younger family members who are between nine and 16 years old and are involved in the wedding activities with slightly less responsibility. The junior bridesmaid wears a dress of the same color and fabric as the adult bridesmaids, but one that is more appropriate for her age. The junior groomsmen is the male counterpart to the junior bridesmaid, attending rehearsals and walking down the aisle. Neither the junior bridesmaid nor the groomsmen attends the hens and bucks party.
Little ones (usually aged 4 to 8) walking down the aisle in front of the bride, scattering flower petals from the basket. The children are members of the bride's or groom's extended family, but nowadays the bride chooses who she wants, it has even become less important what age the flower girl or page boy is. After the child walks down the aisle in front of the bride, he usually sits down with his family.
The ring bearer is a child who carries the rings of the bride and groom to the altar. Usually, it is a boy between the ages of 4 and 8. The ring bearer walks behind the flower girl. He carries the wedding rings, which are attached to a small pillow. Even in modern times, age and gender are less important, what is important is who the bride and groom choose for their special day.
Given these roles and responsibilities, you could now figure out who from your circle of family and close friends will suit your needs. Whoever you choose, it is important to make the process as easy and enjoyable as possible, but also that you have a good time.
The roles and responsibilities don't end when the ceremony and fun are over. The people you have chosen to be closest to you on that day are people who will be witnesses to your love, for better or for worse, and who need to be close to you and ready to help you throughout your entire life.