There are many people that are “necessary” for a wedding, the members of the bridal party are just one example. The “traditional” bridal party consists of the bride, the groom, the bridesmaids, best man, groomsmen, ushers, flower girl, pageboy and mother and father of the bride. However with traditions changing and becoming more modernised it has become normal practice to have more than one best man and in some cases the mother of the bride is the one to give the bride away on the day.
Brides fear not the overarching traditions, this is your day (well technically you have to share it with the groom) and if you choose to have things a certain way then you should do so.
In the case of our wedding, there will be no Maid of Honour, but 2 bridesmaids of equal standing and 2 best men/groomsmen. The father of the bride is not invited to the wedding so it’s a fight to the death between the mother of the bride and the brother of the bride to see who will be giving me away!! To further break from tradition the bride will be giving the first speech at the wedding reception.
Each member of the bridal party has a specific set of tasks associated with their role.
The best man for instance is primarily charged with looking after the groom on his stag night and the morning of the wedding. The best man traditionally gives a speech at the wedding banquet, loaded with jokes and good humour.
The bridesmaids, apart from looking absolutely glamorous are in charge of the hen night planning and keeping the bride calm. On the day they should help the bride get ready and prepare her for the ceremony. Generally they help with all details of wedding planning, from making up favours to blowing up balloons the list of tasks is endless!
The ushers are meant to look presentable and direct the guests to the right side of the church or ceremony venue whilst handing out the Order of Service booklets. Unless you are our ushers who are planning on causing havoc and directing people randomly to seats…..we shall see how long they live after that! Ha ha
Lets not forget the witnesses. In Scotland you are required to have 2 witnesses, both over the age of 16 to bear witness to the marriage and to sign the register to that effect. These can be 2 random people off the street if you so wish, however most couples choose to ask the best man and the chief bridesmaid. A growing trend is to ask the mother of the bride and the father of the groom so that all parents have a "role" in the wedding.
In our case we have opted for 2 close friends to act as our witnesses.
It has long been tradition to have both a flower girl and a pageboy at your wedding, however they have no specific "fixed" role, other than to look abslolutely adorable. The Pageboy can be asked to carry a ring box up the aisle to the groom and best man, but depending on his age this might be a risky idea - often young boys will try and keep the box!
As for the flowergirl, she generally walks down the aisle ahead of the bridal party scattering petals or confetti before the bride makes her way down the aisle.