It is a dreary, rainy day here in Southern Wisconsin and we at Panda’s Corner are trying to stay ahead of the rainy day blues. We’re fueled with coffee, we shopped a fabulous sale at The Trendy Sparrow all whilst having Gossip Girl on in the background.
On gloomy days like this I tend to daydream of brighter, sunnier days. Bright sunny days also reminds me of wedding season – a time of year that all of us here at Panda’s Corner love! I have held both the roles of bride and bridesmaid in retrospect, I failed my first time as a bridesmaid. I tend to use the excuse that I was more focused on my own wedding than hers seeing as she set her wedding date two weeks before my own, nonetheless I should have been more active. I was too smug about the fact that she set her date that close to my own wedding when mine had been booked months before she became engaged. Then again she was not involved in mine either, all she did was show up late the day of but she’s my cousin so everything had to be excused. The whole experience really defined my view of bridesmaids and taught me how to do it right. Just last month I was a bridesmaid again in my sisters wedding and it was a completely different experience.
My sister got engaged in November 2013,one month after my own wedding. She officially asked me to be a bridesmaid in January 2015 by buying M a onesie with text asking me to be a bridesmaid as well as an engraved goodie box.
Of course I said yes, it’s my sister. However, I should not have based on finances. Technically I could not afford to be in her wedding! I had just left my job a few months earlier to be a stay at home mom, we were trying to buy a house and this wedding was going to be halfway across the United States! Thankfully I had two and a half years total to plan for this or there was no way I could have made it happen.
When asked to be a bridesmaid know your responsibilities!
A bridesmaid is responsible for purchasing and putting money towards several things leading up to the wedding
- The bridesmaids dress – cannot be in the wedding without it
- Hair and makeup for the wedding – sometimes the bride pays for one or both of these, but always plan for the worst! Budget to pay for both.
- Accessories – same as hair and makeup budget to pay!
- Bridal Shower – This is not solely the maid of honor’s thing! All girls in the wedding party should help plan, decorate, and pay for part of the shower!
- Bridal shower gift – Even as a host you cannot show up without a gift for the bride!
- Bachelorette party – Yes, this too is not all on the maid of honor, she does not want to pay for your night out! All members of the party should plan, pay for themselves and part of the bride
- Your wedding weekend travel – whether it be as simple as getting yourself to where all the girls are meeting for the day or plane tickets and a rental car for your family, make sure its in the budget!
- Wedding weekend/night accommodations – Whether you plan to drive home after the wedding, get a room or have to get a room for the whole weekend plan for it!
- Wedding gift – I saved this for last because it can go either way. Some people and brides feel that if they were given a gift at the shower one at the wedding is excessive however this is up to you on what you would like to do. My advice, pick one or the other and do something then, personally I like giving items at the shower where you can watch the bride open it.
- Day after brunch – If the bride chooses to have one be prepared to pay for your own meal.
See ladies, that is at least ten things! Most of which cost money. I know when all was said and done I spent roughly $3,000 on my sister’s wedding, I honestly do not know the exact amount and I do not want to so I am estimating. Hopefully most of you will not have to spend that much but if you do BE PREPARED for it! Do not whine to the bride about how much you are spending on her day, remember it is her party, most likely she is spending a lot more money on it than you are! If you must vent have a friend outside of the wedding to vent your frustrations too knowing that it will not get back to the bride. Do not cause drama for her or the other girls. Do everything you can to make her big day perfect. Enjoy the day and the celebration of love! She did pick you for a reason, make sure she knows you appreciate it. Finally, enjoy all the good photos of yourself you will have when it is all over!
Next time in Panda on Weddings, we will be talking about the Bridal Shower gift bag! How to shop for the perfect gift for the bride to be! Stay tuned!