Choosing Your Maid of Honor

by | March 23, 2012

Your maid of honor is a very important part of your wedding planning and wedding day. Most often, the maid of honor is the go-to-gal for the bride; helping to choose the gown, host the wedding shower, plan the bachelorette party, fret over details and generally assist the bride in all stages of wedding planning. So how do you choose the perfect maid of honor?

You want to be sure your choice doesn’t offend someone and you need someone who will be there for you through the last moments of the wedding reception. This person goes beyond bridesmaid and her involvement should have special meaning for your wedding day.

When choosing your maid of honor, it’s helpful to understand the main roles she will play.


Bride’s advisor. One of the most important roles of the maid of honor is to act as a sounding board for the bride. This special friend should share in your excitement in the planning of your wedding – and have the patience to discuss the qualities of pink versus blush roses if that’s what is needed.

Act as a surrogate for the bride. The maid of honor is the “chief of staff” for your wedding. This person should have diplomatic grace when dealing with the bridesmaids or assisting with wedding duties. She should be someone you communicate well with and can delegate tasks too – confident she will act in your best interest.


Host or assist with bridal shower. The bride is not in charge of her bridal shower, but is an honored guest. The maid of honor will typically host or assist the bride’s female relatives with this event. That includes invitations, RSVP count, games and prizes and gift recording.

Planning the bachelorette party. The maid of honor, assisted by the bridesmaids, plans and pays for the bachelorette party. It is her job to arrange all of the night’s festivities to give her friend a proper send off. She does not pay for it all out of pocket, but coordinates the fees and collects from everyone involved. The bride should not pay any of the costs for this party.


Assist you on your wedding day. The maid of honor assists the bride as she gets ready, and throughout the day. This includes carrying the train, holding the bouquet during the ceremony, reminding her to retouch lip gloss and more – a role best filled by someone who can spend the day being selfless.




Wedding reception toast. The maid of honor shares special memories of the bride and honors her at the wedding reception. This person will be speaking to your closest family and friends so should be someone you trust.




Reasons not to ask someone. There are times when it may just be too much for someone to be your maid of honor. Your wedding will require a commitment from this special friend, and despite her intentions, she may not be up to the task. Some situations you should consider:

  • Does she have a new baby?
  • Will this be a financial burden?
  • Did she recently start a demanding job?
  • Is she relocating?
  • Is she planning her own wedding?

If these or other circumstances may present a problem, talk to her and let her know that she would be your first choice, but you understand it may be a lot to ask right now. Don’t take it personally if she declines. Maybe she could assist you on specific items or act as a reader for your ceremony – without being your maid of honor.

There is also no rule that you must ask someone to be your maid of honor if you were theirs. This is your wedding day and you should choose the person that makes the most sense for you. If you are part of a tight circle of friends, it might be best to ask a family member to avoid hurt feelings.

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