Originally published at Camo Rings Direct
One of your closest friends has asked you to be in her bridal party, and you have ecstatically said yes!
But do you really know what you're getting yourself into?
Being a bridesmaid isn't all sparkly fun and parties; it requires a lot of time, patience, and money.
Don't freak out! A bridesmaid's job requires balance between the good and the bad (and sometimes the ugly).
Check out this infographic to see what you're getting yourself into.
Trouble viewing the infographic? See what you missed:
Surviving a Millennial Wedding: A Bridesmaid's Guide
The Millennial Wedding is a Battlefield
Many millennial brides today are Pinterest-crazy. They expect handcrafted perfection and single-minded dedication - perhaps one of the reasons the average cost a wedding in the U.S. is $26,444.
Millennial grooms are getting in on some of this action too. Today 20% of grooms are playing a significant role in planning. Whether by choice or force is hard to say, either way - Hats off to you fellas! Though now you have one more person to keep calm and gracefully guide out of the way so you can get things done.
You can't hope for any traditions to save you. More and more - millennials are eschewing the idea of a traditional wedding. Even if your best friend is the opposite sex you can still be called on to serve in the wedding party.
With the advent of social media, geographical distances no longer pose as significant a problem, so the bride can spam your Facebook page with all things wedding.
Things will get crazy. But don't worry, we're here to help. The rest of this guide will cover the basics you need to know to survive.
Becoming the Perfect Bridesmaid: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
Bridezilla may try to grind you into a pulp for looking at her wrong, and she'll probably be a total mess more than once.
There will be blood and tears. Some of it may be yours.
You have to pay for a new dress.
You actually do have to arrive at events on time, and you won't have the luxury to complain about it (or anything else for that matter).
You don't get to be the center of attention even if that is your personality.
You'll be in charge of getting people on the dance floor at the reception, and you;ll have to diffuse any drama (keep on eye on Aunt Marge).
You'll have lots of alcohol handy. Just don't get so sloshed that you puke all over the bride.
Everyone loves a hero. Pack a first aid kit with tissues, band-aids, make-up, tampons/pads, water, and paper bags for the inevitable dry heaving. Then you can come to the rescue when disaster strikes.
You get to buy a new dress! (And you may even be able to talk the bride into letting you choose your own.)
You get to help plan super fun parties with as much alcohol and as many strippers as the bride deems appropriate!
You get to lavish attention on the gorgeous bride and enjoy basically all of the same perks (strippers, alcohol, spa days, etc.).
Dance for days.
If you make the mistake of posting pics on social media pre-ceremony, you'll have to endure dirty looks for the rest of the wedding (and you may lose all your friends).
Making every event about you will inevitably cause major drama, which may lead to hair pulling and face clawing.
How to Avoid Bankruptcy: Without Robbing a Bank
You can break the bank as a bridesmaid if you're not careful. So, before you accept a role as a bridesmaid, ask the bride what will be financially expected of you. Don't be afraid of hurting her feelings; if she's a true friend she will understand you budget constraints.
It should go without saying that you shouldn't volunteer to pay for things that exceed your budget. Don't have a budget? Girl - where's your head at?
Once you've accepted your role as bridesmaid it's really difficult to step down, unless you're okay with losing friends. If the bride starts choosing activities and dresses that are outside of your budget, offer alternatives that are more budget-friendly. But step lightly, Bridezilla is unpredictable.
Don't be afraid to say NO. The number of pre-wedding events has risen dramatically in recent years, but you don't have to attend every event (seriously). Just continue to have open communication with the bride about what you can and can't afford to do. I mean, a trip to Vegas sounds nice, but your bills won't pay themselves.
In general, what should you expect to pay for? This question always depends on the individual bride, but in general you should expect to pay for the following: the bridesmaid dress, a wedding and shower gift, and your own hair and makeup. You should also expect to split the cost of the bridal shower and bachelorette party with the rest of the bridal party.
How the heck do I survive this? What it all boils down to is being a team-player and communicating with the bride about her expectations. It's her day, but you're not a doormat or an endless supply of money.
Being a Bridesmaid Really is Beautiful
If you're not totally turned off by being a bridesmaid, then kudos to you. It's tough surviving the whirlwind of weddings, but there really are some great perks to being a bridesmaid.
You will be one of the first people to see the bride in her wedding dress (and her new lingerie!)
You have an excuse to party with some of your closest friends and be a total goofball without judgment (mostly).
You'll look absolutely fabulous in those wedding photos (way better than the other bridesmaids).
First in line at the bar, first in line for food. Need I say more?
You have the honor of standing by your friend as she solidifies a major decision in her life. Nothing can beat that.