Got Groomsmen Questions? We Have Answers!

Etiquette, Grooms

Photo: Gia Canali

Bridal parties of any size invite a lot of tough questions: How many bridesmaids and groomsmen to have, what they should wear, how to get them to behave, and so on. It's important to make sure they help you have the best wedding ever! With groomsmen always a rowdy wildcard, we rounded up some helpful etiquette tips to guarantee a fun, flawless day.

How can I make sure the groomsmen don't get too rowdy at the wedding?
The first thing to do is talk with your groom about your concerns. Tread carefully, though, because these guys are his closest friends. Come prepared with facts ("remember how he acted at Tom and Whitney's wedding?") and avoid slamming their character ("he gets drunk all the time"). Once you've shared your concerns, then he should take steps to head off any potential trouble. He should talk to his buddies — and he should say these are his concerns, not yours. It's also a good idea to give each groomsman a copy of the wedding-day schedule; this way they know exactly where and when they need to be throughout the day.

Clue your wedding vendors in on your concerns, too. Ask your planner or day-of coordinator to check in with the groomsmen the morning of the wedding to make sure they're ready on time. Lastly, don't forget to feed them! The wedding day is going to be a long, exhausting day for everyone involved, so be sure to provide breakfast and lunch, and pack extra snacks and drinks so that everyone is eating and sufficiently hydrated throughout the day.

My fiancé and his groomsmen would prefer to wear their own tuxes instead of renting them for our black-tie wedding. Will it look strange if they have different lapels and notches?
If he and most of his groomsmen already own tuxedos, then there's no sense in renting ones just for the wedding. Save the additional expense because no one will notice the slight lapel or notch differences. Groomsmen in classic black tuxedos will always look polished and coordinated, even if their tuxes are by different designers. And even though it's a black-tie wedding and most male guests will be in tuxedoes, the groomsmen will stand out, thanks to their boutonnieres!

My fiancé doesn't want to have a best man, but I've already asked my friend to be my maid of honor. Will this be OK?
Definitely. If your groom doesn't want to choose a best man, that is totally fine. But the best man traditionally takes on many important wedding roles: he typically plans the bachelor party, keeps the rest of the groomsmen in the loop about suit fittings and other wedding-related scheduling, hangs on to the wedding rings during the ceremony, and offers a toast (either at the rehearsal dinner or reception). So your fiancé will need to divvy up these tasks among all the groomsmen to make sure everything has been taken care of. Also, the best man usually serves as a witness and signs the marriage license after the ceremony. So your groom can assign this role to one of the groomsmen or ask someone close to him (his dad or mom, a female friend, an aunt — anyone he'd like, really).

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