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Getting the Bridesmaids On Board

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Before you start trying on dresses and sampling hors d’oeuvres, there’s one more proposal to take care of: asking your closest ladies to join your bridal entourage.

While you may be tempted to blurt out the question as soon as the ring is on your finger, pause first. Agreeing to be a bridesmaid is a big commitment, in terms of both time and money, so show appreciation for your potential ladies-in-waiting right from the start by popping the question in the right way.

Posing It Politely

Traditionally, you have several options when choosing how to ask. “It is fine to either ask in person, on the phone or by sending a card or letter,” says Kristen Finello, co-author of “Bridal Guide Magazine’s New Etiquette for Today’s Bride” (Warner Books, 2004).

If you live near your future bridesmaids, however, opt for some face time, such as taking them out for lunch or coffee.

For a long-distance bridesmaid, both experts recommend sending a personalized “Will you be my bridesmaid?” card. “This way the maid has time to decide if she’ll be able to afford the travel and expenses and won’t be put on the spot by a phone call,” Roney says.

Inquiring with Imagination

Traditional methods of asking are tasteful and classic, but modern brides may wish to pose the question a little more creatively. If you can gather your future bridesmaids in one place, surprise them all at once and celebrate together.

One way is to have a girls’ night before popping the question. “Use your computer to put together a slideshow of photos of you and the girls and set it to music,” Finello says. At the end, flash the big question on the screen. For the more ambitious bride-to-be, round up your bridal party for a night of Chinese food. “End the meal by passing out personalized fortune cookies that say, ‘Will you be my bridesmaid?’” Finello says. “What a sweet surprise!”

If you’re asking far-off friends from different stages in your life, harken back to the early days of your friendship through the card you send.

Requesting Respectfully

Regardless of how you choose to pop the question, remember to treat your bridesmaids well. “After all, these girls are your nearest and dearest,” says Finello. “In the case of someone like a future sister-in-law, your interactions now can set the tone for your relationship once you’re married.”

Be courteous and considerate of your entourage from the start, and when the time comes to pop your question, you’ll be sure to hear a chorus of “I Do's.”

© Brides 365

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