I’ve been a bride and I’ve been a bridesmaid.  I’ve been the wedding planner, the wedding guest, and the “I-don’t-really-know-my-official-role-but-have-definitely-saved-this-event-from-disaster”. In every situation, I’ve learned that 3 key phrases are essential to help encourage and calm the bride!  For those of you who will be bridesmaids this wedding season or who have friends planning weddings for the future, take note!

1. “You are beautiful” – Seems like a silly tip, right? Who DOESN’T say that to a bride?! Not everyone remembers as they absorb the details of the wedding. And although her father/father-figure will surely tell her, hearing it from you: the honest friend/bridesmaid/guest will mean the world to her.  Note: Now, I find that “beautiful” is completely overused.  I prefer “stunning”, “breathtaking” or “exquisite” ’cause they sound super fancy! 😉

2. “Everything is going to be perfect” – Huh? Yep, it’s necessary.  For those of you who have planned a wedding, you know how stressful the big day can be.  Will the band show up on time?  Is the cake falling over?  Where is my grandmother?  As a bridesmaid/close friend, you may be put in a position to save the day, especially if a wedding planner/coordinator is not involved (AHH!!).  Be attentive to her. Pay attention.  Dote on your sweet bride-friend: she is STRESSED OUT!  Encourage her, keep her calm and take initiative should something need fixing/mending/smoothing over.  Remind her that a wedding is a party, not a performance. At the end of the day, she will be married to the one she loves…THAT is what is most important!

3. “Take your time and enjoy today” – For those of you who have been in the bridal shoes, you know how crazy your wedding day becomes.  Your guests and events are a blur and before you know it, your candles are being blown out and the band is packing up.  Often, brides forget to take it all in.  They are worried with greeting all of their guests and making sure the photographer captures all of their “must-have” photographs.  Remind your sweet bride-friend to enjoy her new husband.  Dance.  EAT.  Marvel at the beauty of your bouquet. Step back and observe the bridal party being goofy on the dance floor.  Thank her parents and new in-laws.  Enjoy her signature cocktail.  BREATH! Take it all in, because it’s over before you realize it.

In sum, strive to be an incredible support system. Being a bridesmaid can be tough work, but you were chosen for a reason! Encourage her, help her and remember that this is her special day!

Ariel Renae Photography