Want to know who does what in the preparations and ceremony?
I've broken it down for you, in order for you to make an informed decision on the best way in which to run your wedding day.
The traditional and conventional ways of wedding etiquette won't suit everyone but it's very important to be aware of them.
The bride traditionally makes the main decisions and selects the type of service she wishes. She oversees all the preparations, which include choosing the date and the venues, who will be there, her dress and accessories, as well as the bridesmaids. She will choose the flowers, help with the guest list and seating arrangements, and attend to the many small details which will contribute to her perfect day.
The groom has to arrange his own transport, the bride's transport and the wedding party transport, as well as booking the venues and honeymoon. However, this will of course all be done with direction from his future wife. The groom chooses his best man and ushers, of which is it traditional to have three, and he doesn't get much responsibility for anything else! The bride and groom will already be discussing most aspects of the day as it is both of their wedding days.
The Best Man
Traditionally, the best man is responsible for what both he and the groom wear. He makes sure the transport for them both has been arranged and more importantly (in his eyes), the stag do. Preferably a month in advance but no later than a week before if he wants to successfully fulfil his duty of escorting the groom to the ceremony on time!
On the day, the best man has to ensure that the entire day runs smoothly, he is also responsible for the safe keeping of the rings. After the ceremony, he is responsible for making sure all the guests have been transported safely to the reception. The best man will speak at the reception, replying to the groom's toast to the bridesmaids, and will read out some letters or cards from any guests that were unable to attend. His final duty is to ensure that the newlyweds leave the reception in good time, and that their transport has been arranged.
The Maid of Honour or the Chief Bridesmaid
The maid of honour or chief bridesmaid is chosen by the bride to assist her during all the preparations. On the day itself, it is her job to ensure that all the attendants are in their proper places. She will arrange the bride's dress and veil when she arrives, ready for her entry into the ceremony. During the service, she holds the bride's bouquet. She also signs the register, along with the best man, and will be on hand all day to assist the bride.
The ushers greet the guests as they arrive at the ceremony. They will distribute any order of service sheets and show people to their seats. If it is raining, they will help escort the guests and bridal party from their cars under umbrellas.
The Father of the Bride
It is traditionally known that the bride's parents pay for the bulk of the wedding costs, mainly the bride's father. These days though, it is more than likely that the bride and groom pay a lot of the expenses themselves and also a possibility that the groom's parents will make a contribution too.
On the day, the bride will be accompanied to the ceremony by her father, who will escort her up the aisle and give her away during the ceremony. He will sit next to her on the top table during the wedding breakfast and will make a speech, in which he proposes a toast to the bride and groom.
The Mother of the Bride
The bride's mother will not only be proud to see her daughter get married but be there to oversee all the arrangements. She may have a big part to play in the decision making, especially if she is contributing financially. She will compile the guest list, in consultation with the groom and his parents. She will help organise the sending of the invitations, and the display of the wedding gifts.
The Grooms Parents
There is no specific traditional role for the groom's parents, but it is important that they don't feel left out. It is not unusual for them to make a contribution to the organising and payments. It is good manners for the bride to ask for their advice and approval and ensure that they are included in the preparations as much as possible.
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