Even if a bride doesn't mean to annoy her bridesmaids, it can happen. What with all the decision-making, etiquette rules, and other specifications a bridal party needs to follow, no amount of good intentions can stop the inevitable. To help you be more cognizant of your 'maids during the wedding-planning process, here are eight ways you might be getting on their nerves without being any the wiser.
1. You talk about your wedding nonstop.
Your wedding is pretty darn exciting, so who could blame you for wanting to talk about it 24/7? But "even though you’re just excited to share all of the details, you may be unintentionally annoying your bridesmaids by talking about the wedding nonstop," warns Jaclyn Fisher, owner of Two Little Birds Planning in Philadelphia. So remember to ask what your friends have going on too.
2. You're blowing up their phones with wedding-related messages.
Dress news? You text your 'maids. Caterer drama? You send 'em an email. "You may be a slave to your iPhone and your email, but that doesn't mean everyone else wants to read 10 emails a day," says Amy Nichols, owner of Amy Nichols Special events and cofounder of the Poppy Group. Send succinct, necessary messages only.
3. You won't let them bring a date.
You're trying to keep your guest count down—and we get it. But Fisher says, "A surefire way to irritate your bridesmaids is inviting them to your wedding without a date. They’ve shelled out a pretty penny being your bridesmaid, so let them share your special day with someone who is special to them."
4. You expect them to spend a lot of money.
Weddings are expensive—for your bridesmaids too. "If your bridesmaids' dresses are $300 each and you're insisting that they also wear matching $250 shoes, that may turn a few 'maids a shade of green," warns Nichols. "Be respectful of everyone's budgets where possible, and if need be, offer to help any bridesmaids who might truly be in a money or budget crunch." And if they need to bow out, make it easy.
5. You're micromanaging their duties.
If you've hijacked the planning of your own bridal shower or bachelorette party, you're micromanaging your 'maids to an annoying degree. "Let your bridesmaids do their job and plan something nice for you," says Fisher, "because trying to take the reins makes you seem ungracious and annoying."
6. You've booked them for too many DIY days.
Yes, bridesmaids love to help. "But if you just crafted a giant to-do list that included DIY flower day, program-folding day, menu-ribbon-tying day, and more, they might be calling you a bridezilla behind your back," says Nichols. "Consider leaving the DIY days up to them as an option instead of a requirement. Some aunts or cousins might jump at the chance to help."
7. You're treating your bridesmaids differently.
You have different relationships with all of your bridesmaids, but that doesn't mean you can treat them all differently. "It’s annoying when you treat them differently in terms of wedding planning," says Fisher. "If you have a small bridal party, consider inviting all of your bridesmaids to check out your venue or go dress shopping, not just your two childhood besties. All of your bridesmaids should feel special and included in the same ways."
8. Your picked a bridesmaids' dress that you like, not one that looks good.
Just because it looks pretty on the hanger—or even on you—doesn't mean a dress is right for your best gal pals. "While you may have gorgeous olive skin and can rock a peach bridesmaid dress, your paler bridesmaids may feel like they're going to disappear," explains Nichols. "When in doubt, stick with solid colors in more saturated tones. White, pale pink, and nude can be really tough for many people to wear, but a pretty blue or even a deep red can work on a variety of skin tones."