Is this the first time you’ve been asked to be the Maid of Honor for a close friend? If so (or even if you’ve been a Maid of Honor before) you may be asking yourself the question “What does a Maid of Honor have to do?” You may also be wondering when to carry out each duty. When do you start ordering bridesmaids dresses? How do you begin organizing the bachelorette party? All these questions can seem quite daunting, despite how exciting it is to be given such an honorable role.
We’ve created the ultimate list to ensure you’re covering all bases when it comes to carrying out your Maid of Honor duties to the best of your ability.
- Before the Wedding Day
- On the Wedding Day: (Pre-Ceremony)
- On the Wedding Day – During the Ceremony
- On the Wedding Day – During the Reception
- After the Ceremony – Post-Ceremony
Before the Wedding Day
Be there for the bride (lend an ear and a hand):
Depending on what type of person the bride is, she may want to tackle most of the wedding plans herself or hire a wedding planner to take care of the most important duties. On the other hand, she may require your help throughout the wedding planning process. The fundamental building block to being the best Maid of Honor, are to be there for the bride when she needs you. Lend a helping hand when she needs one, no matter how big or small the task may be and listen to her concerns.
Wedding dress shopping:
The bride is likely to want your opinion on her chosen wedding dress. Not only that but you can provide additional support in finding all the best places to shop around to suit her budget. In some cases, the bride may not ask you to attend the wedding dress fitting, especially if other friends or family want to attend. Don’t take offense, however. There’s plenty of other exciting roles that the Maid of Honor can fulfil.
Being your bride’s style guru:
There’s plenty of behind-the-scenes planning that goes into the big day. Being a Maid of Honor you get to help the bride choose her bridesmaids’ dresses as well as the finishing touches like hairstyles and makeup details. You will need to book the hairstylists and the makeup artists for the morning of the wedding, as well as ordering the bridesmaids’ dresses in good time to ensure everything fits perfectly.
Being a point of contact:
Whether the bride has chosen to display the details of the wedding on a website or chosen to send invites through the post, you’ll need to make sure the details of the wedding arrangements are clear and precise. You can even help with the website if you’re technically-minded. Part of your Maid of Honor role will include being the first point-of-contact on the other end of the phone, confirming details like where the couple is getting hitched and whether there’s a post-wedding brunch, etc.
Hosting the bridal shower:
From picking your invitation to choosing the venue and the décor, to design upon the theme of the get-together, planning the bridal shower is one of the most fun duties that you as the Maid of Honor will be given. Go that extra mile to make the bridal shower a memorable and fun experience for everyone involved. And don’t forget to write down all the gifts the bride receives so that she can make her “thank you” cards as personal as possible.
Plan the bachelorette party:
Another fun task, but one that requires a lot of responsibility and takes a lot of thorough planning. Attention to detail is key. So is getting the theme of the party just right. You don’t want to plan something that will make the bride feel uncomfortable. You know her best, so planning a night that she can reminisce fondly over is really important.
Attending pre-wedding events:
A Maid of Honor needs to keep herself present throughout the entire wedding panning prices. You may not be involved in the wedding rehearsal or the engagement party, but you’ll still want to attend these events. Getting to know all those involved in the big day along with familiarizing yourself with the smaller details that mean a lot the bride can guide you in how to coordinate the rest of your plans to better suit her desires.
On the Wedding Day: (Pre-Ceremony)
Get dressed with the bride:
The bridal suite is usually where the bridal party get ready before the wedding. Helping to add the finishing touches to the bride’s dress and hair is a memorable and honorable moment that you’ll take from the day as a precious memory.
Be the messenger:
Serving as a messenger between the bride and the groom is a great way to capture special moments shared between them. As Maid of Honor, you’ll be expected to meet the groom on the morning of the wedding and hand over a note or gift from the bride before you report back to the bride. You’ll also be required to keep on track of the time to ensure the day stays on track, whilst keeping the bride calm.
On the Wedding Day – During the Ceremony
Walk down the aisle:
You’ll be in the spotlight once the bridesmaids have walked down the aisle, following the journey past the bride’s family and friends before the flower girl, the ring bearer and the bride herself join you.
Assisting the bride:
When the bride has taken up her position at the front of the alter or room, you’ll be in charge of rearranging her dress and veil to make sure she looks her best in front of all her nearest and dearest. You’ll also be required to hold the bride’s bouquet whilst the exchanging of the rings takes place.
Signing as a witness:
As Maid of Honor, one of the most important duties you’ll typically carry out is to sign the marriage license with the bride and the groom.
On the Wedding Day – During the Reception
Accompany the best man:
If the bride wishes to have the emcee announce the members of the wedding party as they arrive, you will more than likely arrive alongside the best man, as friends and family wait to sit down. You may choose a special greeting, a curtsy or a silly dance depending on the general vibe of the reception event.
Bustle the bride’s train:
There are tips and tutorials available if you aren’t quite sure how to bustle the bride’s train, but this is an integral role of the Maid OF Honor since you’ll be assisting her to move from one room to the next comfortably, as well as positioning the train so that the bride can dance the evening away on the dancefloor.
General host duties:
You’ll be surprised how many guests have questions upon arriving at the reception, as well as throughout the night. Questions you may need to answer could include “Where is the cake cutting going to take place?”, “Where do we put our gifts” and “Where do I sign the guest book?”.
Dance with the best man:
To start the party off, the Maid of Honor normally dances with the best man, just after the couple’s first dance. It’s not, however, a necessity, so if you don’t feel comfortable with all eyes being on you, ensure you choose someone who will set the mood and encourage others to get on the dancefloor.
Give a toast:
After the best man’s speech, you’ll be required to make a toast however short or detailed. Show your appreciation for the bride and your happiness in their marriage together.
After the Ceremony – Post-Ceremony
Tie up loose ends:
When the newlywed couple set off on their honeymoon, make sure they know you’re there to help with tying up any loose ends after the wedding, or available to check in on the security of their home whilst they’re away.
Whilst the duties of a Maid of Honor can vary from one wedding to another, the most important role is to support the bride both on an emotional level and a practical one. Make sure she knows you’re there to help assist or fully take ownership of pre-wedding events like the bridal shower and the bachelorette party. Be the point of contact for those seeking details on the wedding day, and more importantly, add fun vibes to the reception, finishing the evening off in true party style.