If you’re on the non-traditional side, you’ve probably asked yourself: Should I have a wedding party? And to be honest, we don’t blame you for asking this! Wedding planning can be quite overwhelming and the thought of having to choose which friends to get to stand by you and which are left out can leave lots of couples feeling even more anxious than ever.
Well, we’ve spotted couples having a big wedding party, some having a mixed wedding party of guys and girls on both side, and some who choose to rather give this honour to their children. There really is no right or wrong way to do it! So today we are breaking it down for you and offering the pros and cons of having a wedding party! We hope this helps you make your decision.
Featured image credit: Alex Zarodov Photography
What is a wedding party?
A wedding party is a group of friends who are invited to stand with the couple on their Big Day. Usually, each person is given a responsibility to do something on the day, such as hold the bouquet, keep the rings, make a speech, and so on. Leading up to the wedding, the wedding party gets to host the pre-wedding events, like a hen and stag party. During the wedding planning, the wedding party is there to offer support. Lots of couples include their wedding party in the planning too and give them tasks to do.
The pros of having no wedding party
Traditionally, the couple pays for the wedding party’s attire and a few extras too, like hair and makeup. Even if you aren’t paying for those costs, you probably want to give each person a thank you gift on the day. Having no wedding party at all means that you are saving money and can spend it elsewhere.
Nobody’s feelings get hurt
The brilliant thing about having no wedding party is that nobody’s feelings will get hurt. Everybody is on an even playing field and you can involve them however you want to! This way, nobody feels less special or left out.
Every wedding presents itself with some form of conflict or drama, and wedding parties are no different. Having no wedding party means you’re spared of the drama of explaining why you picked one friend to be the Maid of Honour over the other. You may get along with everyone individually, but when they’re together, it’s another story.
The cons of having no wedding party
Less moral support
The beauty of having a wedding party is that you’ve got your besties with you throughout the wedding planning season. They’ll be involved somehow and they’ll be asking how you’re doing and how they can support you. If you’ve got no wedding party, people may not know to reach out and ask how they can help and support you.
Nobody to hold the bouquet or rings
Traditionally, somebody in the wedding party will take care of the rings and someone else will hold the bouquet during the wedding ceremony. Not having a wedding party means you’ve got to fill these roles tactfully.
No-one to get ready with
Your ‘getting ready squad’ is there to create atmosphere on the morning of your wedding. Without a wedding party, you may feel like you’re on your own on the morning of your own wedding.
Are there alternatives?
Ask them to pay
If the only reason you’re considering skipping the wedding party is to save some money, then find a way to compromise here. For example, you could let your wedding party wear whatever they want to, and ask them to pay. They could help one another with hair and makeup, so you aren’t paying for that either. Then, on the day, thank them with a small, affordable gift and a thoughtful, handwritten note. Please note that if you are asking your wedding party to pay, it’s considered rude to force them to wear or buy something specific. Each person’s budget will be different, so keep that in mind.
Get your friends involved
Even if you don’t have a wedding party, you can find creative ways to get your friends involved. Ask them to help with wedding planning tasks, give them roles on the day and help them to feel included!
Create a ‘getting ready squad’
Sure, you aren’t having a wedding party but that doesn’t mean you can’t rally your besties together to get ready with you on the day! Pop the champagne, put on a fun playlist and enjoy your wedding morning with the ones you love most.
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Kelly is a former wedding planner and a lover of anything pink. She believes that any bride can plan her own wedding, with a few tips and helpful tools.