Okay – so you have a dozen best buds and you couldn’t ever imagine not having all of them as part of your big day. You find yourself torn between including all your closest friends and working with a budget, venue and transport restrictions. So, how can you make it work when you have a large wedding party? Never fear – I’m here to help! Today I’m breaking down my top tips for large wedding parties – covering all the areas where things can get a little tricky when
1. WHAT ABOUT THE DRESSES AND THE SUITS?
Everyone has different body shapes, sizes, hair colour and skin tones, so why not let everyone choose an outfit they feel comfortable and flattered in? You don’t necessarily have to let them have complete free reign, but perhaps give them a broad colour, style or cut to go for, and let them wear pieces they already have, or buy something that they’ll wear again.
For example – not everyone will feel comfortable in the strapless yellow dress you had in mind, but you could let everyone choose a mid-length dress in an orange colour palette and be a bit more flexible! Mismatched outfits can actually look fantastic in photos and let everyone show their individuality. Also, don’t be afraid to ask your bridal party to contribute to the cost of the dresses or suits – be honest and open. The most important thing is to have your people by your side as you marry the love of your life.
2. HOW DO WE GET FROM VENUE A TO B WITH A LARGE WEDDING PARTY?
It’s easy to do the math here – because unless you have a school bus, you won’t all fit in one car! You could arrange a fleet of vehicles, but it can end up to be a bit of a logistical nightmare (not to mention the costs involved in hiring 5 matching classic Rolls-Royces). My top tip here is to go for an all-inclusive venue, where you can all get ready onsite, then wander across to the ceremony and stroll to the reception. If you’re keen on this idea but have one special photo spot in mind that’s not at your chosen venue, why not dash out, just the two of you and your wedding photographer? You only need to worry about one car and your squad can kick back, relax, and enjoy the food and entertainment.
3. WHERE DO THEY ALL SIT WHEN YOU HAVE A LARGE WEDDING PARTY?
Traditionally, the bridal party sits together at the front of the reception hall – but who says you need to stick with tradition? A table designed for 6 is not going to be comfortable for a party of 14 – so why not spread the bridal party out? Let them sit with their partners, their families or other friends. You could sit at the head table by yourselves and enjoy an intimate dinner together, or else you could choose a couple of close friends or family to sit with you instead.
4. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE BUDGET WHEN WORKING WITH A LARGE WEDDNG PARTY?
This is one of the hardest topics to tackle when it comes to opting for a larger bridal party. My advice? Don’t sweat it! Like all the other elements of your wedding day, establish your priorities, and then make do with the rest. Maybe everyone has different shoes they already own or they buy themselves, so you don’t need to fork out for 7 new pairs of heels and 7 matching sets of boots. Let your crew know that, most importantly, you want them to be by your side, and that you just need a little help when it comes to covering the costs. And if they say no – that’s okay too!
5. AND MY TOP TIP…
everyone you feel special!
Yes, they are your besties, and yes, of course you want them to feel included and have a great time. But if they’re really your besties, they’ll understand that the day is for the two of you as a couple! Make sure you focus on you and your partner, have the best day imaginable, and don’t forget that your bridal crew are there to help you. So if you need someone to get you a drink while you’re stuck in the make-up chair, ask away!