So back to important information and expectations when it comes to all things bridesmaids. The big question that needs to be answered and communicated upfront is "how much is all this going to cost?" The Knot shared these basic and general guidelines in a Q & A of what bridesmaids should expect financially when saying yes to being in the bridal party. There are exceptions to every rule. The key theme is just to communicate your expectations as early as possible to avoid turmoil down the line.
Wedding Day Attire
Bridesmaids are generally expected to pay for their own wedding-day ensemble (shoes and jewelry included). Talk to your bridesmaids individually about any financial concerns, and tactfully work out a solution that suits both of you -- maybe you will pay for half or all of the cost, or you can set up a payment plan. Above all, try to choose a dress that's reasonably priced, or consider letting your maids choose their own gown. If you are open to them finding their own dress, give some color/style requirements (i.e., black and ankle length), and ask them to show you the dress for final approval.
Hair, Nails & Makeup
Tradition dictates that bridesmaid’s pay for their own personal pampering but you have to let them know this. Do you want their makeup professionally done? Can they wear their hair and nails any way they choose? Sometimes bride takes her bridesmaids to the salon together to get their hair done together the morning of the wedding – her treat. While this is an exception to the rule, it just shows that these things need to be discussed at the beginning of the planning process.
Let's face it. These days friends and family are scattered all across the country so travel is another cost incurred when participating in a wedding. The attendants are responsible for paying their own way, just like they pay for what they'll wear to your wedding and for getting there. And usually, if you have out-of-towners in for your wedding, you'll be able to reserve a block of rooms at a discount, which ought to help them save cash. Going halvesies is perfectly fine, but know that you and your family shouldn't be expected to pay.
Bridal Shower & Bachelorette Festivities
Often times it is expected for the bridemaids to throw the bridal shower and bachelorette party. However, it is more common for the mother of the bride and groom to offer to help with this. Sometimes the bride even chips in if her expectations (out-of-town trips, lavish design) are more than what her girls can manage.
Photo Credit: Ross Oscar Knight