Do you have a sister, niece, or close family friend who you’d love to include in the wedding party but she’s too old to be a flower girl and too young to be a bridesmaid? Luckily, there’s another super special way to honor her role in your life and to include her in your big day. Make her a junior bridesmaid to be sure is still a part of the celebration.
But what exactly does being a junior bridesmaid entail? With your bridesmaids planning your bridal shower, organizing the bachelorette party, and popping the champagne while you get your hair and makeup done, is there much left for a junior bridesmaid to do? The answer is yes! Continue reading for all the junior bridesmaid details you need to know.
What is a Junior Bridesmaid?
A junior bridesmaid is a younger member of the wedding party who falls into that age gap between flower girl and bridesmaid (usually about eight to 16, or whatever ages you feel are appropriate). She might be a younger sister or sister-in-law, a niece, a cousin, a daughter, or a close family friend. Essentially, if she is important to you and your partner and falls in the age range you’ve determined, she’s the perfect candidate for this special role.
What Does a Junior Bridesmaid Do?
A junior bridesmaid’s responsibilities will vary depending on your wedding plans, but there are a few key duties she should be present for. Before the wedding, she should attend the ceremony rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. On your big day, she will walk down the aisle (traditionally, ahead of your bridesmaids) and stand at the altar during the ceremony. And when it’s all over? If you’re having a sparkler send-off, she should help pass out those sparklers (but leave the lighting to an adult).
Your junior bridesmaid may also participate in pre-wedding events, as long as they are appropriate for her age group. An afternoon luncheon and tea for your bridal shower? Bring her (and the flower girl) along for the fun! Your junior bridesmaid should plan to help assemble favors, participate in games, and assist your bridesmaids with the clean up when it’s over. But bringing her to a bachelorette weekend in Vegas? Not so much.
If you two are particularly close—and especially if she’s your sister or daughter—you may want to include her in some of your wedding planning outings, like dress shopping or cake tasting. You never know what a fresh set of eyes might bring to the table.
What Should a Junior Bridesmaid Wear?
As a member of the bridal party, your junior bridesmaid should match the rest of the special people standing by your side. Many bridesmaid designers also create coordinating gowns for younger women, so she’ll fit right in. These dresses often have more age-appropriate lengths and necklines.
You may also consider the idea of having her stand out by putting your junior bridesmaid in a matching floral print or a slightly lighter color than the rest of your bridesmaids. She should carry a bouquet that is smaller than the bridesmaid bouquets but choose something that coordinates with their flowers.
Do You Need a Junior Bridesmaid?
While including younger women in your bridal party is a great way to honor them and acknowledge the important role they play in your life, a junior bridesmaid isn’t a must-have. If there aren’t any special young women in your life who you’d like to include, don’t sweat it. On the other hand, if there's a younger gentleman in your life you'd rather include—go for it. The most important thing to remember is that it's your party, so include (or don't include) anyone you want.