Wedding Tips

Emily Post – Bridal Party Wedding Etiquette

May 30, 2011

I’m sure most of you are currently in the process of planning your wedding.  A huge part of that process is choosing your bridesmaids & groomsmen.  I know when I was getting married, I wasn’t really sure what roles our bridal party needed to play.  It’s not really until you get to your wedding day how much you realize you need help!  It’s always good to know who you can depend on and what roles certain people are suppose to play to make everything run smoothly.  When asking your friends/family to be a part of your wedding, some of them may need a little help in knowing what they need to do.  If so, you can direct them to Emily Post.  She knows it all when it comes to etiquette!  Below is a quick breakdown from her website for the roles your bridal party should play:

Maid or Matron of Honor

  • Helps the bride select the bridesmaids’ attire.
  • Organizes the bridesmaids’ gift to the bride.
  • Makes sure bridesmaids have their attire.
  • Holds the groom’s wedding ring and the bride’s bouquet during the ceremony.
  • Witnesses the signing of the marriage certificate.
  • Stands in the receiving line, if there is one.
  • Helps the bride during the reception (gathering guests for the cake cutting, dancing, the bouquet toss).
  • Helps the bride change into her going-away clothes, and takes care of the bride’s wedding dress and accessories after the reception.


  • Attend the bridesmaids’ luncheon, if there is one.
  • Supervise flower girl(s) and ring bearer(s) if asked.
  • Assist the bride at the reception as requested.
  • Participate in activities such as a receiving line and a bouquet toss.
  • Contribute to the bridesmaids’ gift to the bride.

Best Man

  • Coordinates the groomsmen and ushers’ gift to the groom.
  • Organizes the bachelor party for the groom, if there is one.
  • Makes sure that the groom’s wedding-related payments are prepared; delivers prearranged payments to officiants, assistants, musicians, and singers at the ceremony.
  • Sees that the groomsmen and ushers arrive on time and are properly attired.
  • Instructs the ushers in the correct seating of guests.
  • Keeps the bride’s wedding ring during the ceremony.
  • Witnesses the signing of the marriage certificate.
  • Drives the bride and groom to the reception if there’s no hired driver; has the car ready for the couple to leave after the reception and may drive them to their next destination.
  • Offers a toast to the bride and groom at the reception; dances with the bride, the mothers, the maid of honor, and other single female guests.
  • Gathers and takes care of the groom’s wedding clothes (returning rental items on the next business day).

Groomsmen and Ushers

  • Attend the bachelor party, if there is one.
  • Contribute to the ushers’ gift to the groom.
  • Lay the aisle runner, if one is used, before the processional.
  • Greet guests and escort them to their seats.
  • Know the seating order; review special seating arrangements prior to the ceremony.
  • Hand each guest a program, if programs are provided.
  • Remove pew ribbons, close windows, re-roll the aisle runner, retrieve any programs or articles left behind after the ceremony.
  • Help guests who need directions to the reception site.
  • Be on hand to assist any guests who are infirm or disabled.
  • Dance with the bride, the mothers, the bridesmaids, and other single female guests.
  • Coordinate the return of rental clothing with the head usher or best man.

Visit Emily Post for more great information on Wedding Etiquette // Image by Denise Bovee



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1 Comment

  • Reply cleesmile June 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    soo helpful!! thanks for sharing!

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