How Do I Handle an Uneven Number of Groomsmen and Bridesmaids?

Etiquette
puppy wedding party

Photo: One Love Photo

Crashing cousins? A scandalous sister? A few too many besties? Lisa Birnbach, author of The Official Preppy Handbook, helps you navigate often-rocky wedding waters. Her tips will help you keep your sanity—and your wedding party—intact.

How should the wedding party walk in and out of the ceremony when there is an uneven number of groomsmen and bridesmaids? We have five and three...and a dog. —Jessica O. of Salem, Ore., via Facebook

Dear Jessica,

The good news is this isn't a problem at all! Lots of couples have an uneven number of attendants. For the processional, tradition dictates that the groomsmen stand with the groom before any of the women in the bridal party walk down the aisle. (Remember Harry standing next to Prince William, whispering how beautiful Kate looked as she made her way toward the altar?) Follow this rule and the uneven number is of no consequence. Now, when it comes to the dog, choose an attendant who is particularly comfortable with your four-legged friend to walk the pup in—on an adorned wedding leash, natch. (Make sure this attendant gets to practice with Fido, as well.) When the ceremony is over, the attendants can all leave single-file (one with dog), or two of the bridesmaids can do double duty and put a groomsman on each arm, followed by the remaining pair (one bridesmaid, one groomsman), who can take your pet.

—Lisa Birnbach

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