Photo: Evynn LeValley Photography
Choosing who will be in your bridal party can seem like an impossible task. After all, who wants to play favorites among friends? And with all the excitement around planning a wedding, it's easy to get ahead of yourself and end up with a list of a dozen close friends whom you've asked to stand by you on your special day. But a larger bridal party means more than just the number of people you'll send down the aisle ahead of you. It comes with logistical challenges, from cost to personalities, that cutting down on bridesmaids can help avoid. Here's why experts say a smaller wedding party could be your best bet.
It's easier to keep everyone organized.
"Having an intimate bridal party is an especially good idea if you don't have a wedding planner to help wrangle everyone before the ceremony," says Amanda Savory of Bespoke Moments. Someone has to keep everyone organized and on time, and you won't want to be the one checking your watch as you're trying to get your gown on.
It saves time.
With fewer bridesmaids, you'll be in and out of portraits in no time! "It's easier to get everyone lined up, and you'll have fewer individual portraits. This allows you to start hair and makeup later or spend more (or all) of your time at cocktail hour," says Savory.
It keeps costs down.
"From buying gifts to ordering bouquets and even transportation, a larger wedding party means more money," Savory explains. If a bouquet costs $75, four bridesmaids will cost $300 and ten will cost $750 — and that's just the bridesmaids! If you're also paying for things like hair and makeup, or are chipping in for the dress, small costs can quickly become big ones just by increasing how many people you're paying for.
It gives you fashion flexibility.
A wedding is really the only occasion when it's acceptable to show up at a party in the same dress as someone else — but why would you want to? "Having a smaller bridal party can give you a bit more confidence in letting your bridesmaids choose their own dresses for an effortless mix-and-match look," say Nikki and Vicky Lirantonakis, owners of Best Dressed in Boston. "You can even encourage your bridesmaids to rent their dresses, meaning no one will be uncomfortable all night, or stuck with a dress they'll never wear again. Happy bridesmaids are the prettiest!"