Time flies by so fast. It’s literally been exactly one month since my sister and her now husband got married! As some of you may already know, I had the great honor to serve as the maid of of honor (no pun intended) for her wedding. I’ve always figured that she would ask me to be hers whenever she would get married, but I was still amazed and highly grateful when she did ask me after her engagement. It will be something I always look back on and forever cherish her beautiful day that I got to be a part of ❤️
Even though I had a big role, I actually wasn’t involved in every aspect of wedding planning, especially budgeting which the parents, bride and groom mostly took care of 😂 But I still helped out a lot and shared my opinions. I was there with my sister during wedding dress shopping to help her find her dress, sending out invitations, looking at venues and of course, helping out with the bridal showers, bachelorette weekend and the wedding day (obviously). I figured it would be great to share the tips that were helpful for me as maid of honor with upcoming maids of honor! Here’s what I learned and did:
Dress Fittings (For Bride, MOH, and Bridesmaids)
This occasion really depends on a person’s schedule, but I definitely think it’s important for the maid of honor to attend dress fittings for the bride for moral support. Thankfully, my sister started dress shopping the summer, so my schedule was more available. Dress shopping can be an overwhelming experience for the bride, especially when the stylists at the boutiques encourage you to buy every single dress you try on. The key thing to remember is to make sure the bride wears the dress, not let the dress wear the bride! So as the MOH, it was helpful for her with me there to help her tell her what I liked and didn’t like, along with our mom. And eventually, we found THE most beautiful and perfect dress for her that made her look and feel like Cinderella (literally, she did!), and I was grateful enough to be there and see her try it on for the first time. So if you can, definitely try to be there for her when she picks out a dress. It’s a special part of the whole wedding planning process!
As for MOH and bridesmaid dress shopping, it’s pretty basic. It’s mostly up to the bride to decide what looks good and what doesn’t, and making sure the girls look and feel good, as well as picking out the right colors. I don’t need to go into too much more detail. To sum it up, me and all the other girls found dresses that made us all happy and especially Lauren happy!
The bridal showers are mostly taken care of by the mother, mother-in-law and aunts, but the MOH can still play a big role in helping out. I met with my aunts out for coffee to discuss decor and the setup for Lauren’s bridal shower, including food, drinks, games, a location, etc. I was put in charge of games, which maids of honor usually are in charge of at the bridal showers! I decided to do three games total, two of which I found and ordered from Etsy.com: Would She Rather and Wedding A-Z (and I had my mom print it in brown paper to go along with the rustic theme of the shower!). The other game was “Find The Guest” where a present had to be passed to a guest with a certain characteristic, such as “has been married for more than 10 years” or “who came the farthest”. And the gift was wrapped 12 times, so it was passed to different guests 12 times and each time that guest had to unwrap it, and whoever unwrapped the actual hidden was the winner. How fun is that? And it’s a great icebreaker! I was also in charge of writing down names of guests who brought gifts and what they got for Lauren and Jordan. What I did to make it a little easier was write down the gift on the card from that specific guest, that way I saved some time from writing everything!
Believe it or not, we actually had two separate bridal showers for my sisters! Our family and Jordan’s family are both so big (just one of those perks that run in Italian blood), so we had them split up for both our family and his family. I wasn’t in charge of most of that bridal shower since Jordan’s mom and sister did a lot of the planning and hosting, but I still helped out with gifts and making sure all the names for gifts were written down! My sister and I also made sure to have a few glasses of mimosas because that’s definitely an essential for every bridal shower 🥂
The big event that the bride and whole bride tribe get most excited for! Not counting the wedding day of course 😂 Lauren’s bachelorette weekend was an unforgettable one, and in the absolute best way. Unlike your typical trip spent in Nashville or Chicago, we chose to go to Toronto, Ontario. I know it’s a random place to go for a bachelorette weekend, but it made sense because it was the weekend of the 4th of July and the Canadians don’t celebrate it. It wasn’t as crazy or chaotic, so it was perfect!
Bachelorette parties/weekends are traditionally planned by the maid of honor and the bridesmaids. However, I didn’t get to help out much with planning due to the fact that I was in Italy for the whole month of June. I actually felt really guilty about not helping out much and I felt like I was doing a really bad job at fulfilling my duties as MOH. However, my sister, who always gives me the best advice when I’m having low self-esteem, consulted with me and said that the reason she picked me as MOH wasn’t because of my decorating skills, but because I’m her best friend and that my only job was to make sure she’s happy. And thankfully, I fulfilled that duty because she had the most amazing time over the weekend, and that’s what matters most!
The bridesmaids were a huge help with planning the weekend by renting a cheap yet super nice Airbnb right around Chinatown, as well as getting a table reserved at the Cabana Pool Bar and two other awesome restaurants. They also did a very fabulous job with decorations, including a Prosecco Pong setup, a “She Said Okkkuurr” banner (nothing like a good ol’ Cardi B reference), a flower garland backdrop for pictures, bride squad fanny packs, and of course, hangover kits 😂 We even created a bachelorette-themed scavenger hunt where, during the whole weekend, we were challenged to ask random strangers questions like if they were engaged or married, love advice, if they were also having a bachelorette weekend, if they were from Cleveland, etc. etc. We got way more responses than we expected, even meeting a few people actually from Cleveland! Safe to say the weekend overall was a fulfilled success!
The Big Day (aka the Wedding)
This obviously is THE most important day of the entire wedding segment. It’s the reason for all the planning and budgeting. It’s the big turnout! My role as MOH was absolutely important. I was at it when it came to fluffing Lauren’s wedding dress, holding her bouquet and making sure she wasn’t too overwhelmed. Another fun thing me and the bridesmaids did was an Instagram takeover on Lauren’s phone while getting ready since she obviously couldn't do the takeover herself as the bride. That was Lauren’s idea for us, and it’s perfect because Instagram takeovers are so insanely fun!
The whole day overall was a blur, but it was absolutely beautiful and amazing. There was so much love in the air after the wedding bells rang, both from the newly wedded couple and all our families and friends who came out to celebrate them. And of course, I gave a speech/toast at the reception. Like most people are, I was a bit nervous about speaking in front of over two hundred guests, despite knowing who most of them are. However, with a good confidence booster beforehand and encouragement from the bridal party (as well as a few drinks in my system 😂), the speech went EXTREMELY well! Instead of the traditional MOH speech where you tell a funny story about how you know the bride, I decided to make it a Friends theme, Lauren and I’s favorite show, and compared her personality to all the six characters. I was a little unsure of how that was going to work, but the reaction I received from people afterwards made me feel so good. Lauren loved it, Jordan loved it, the bridal party and groomsmen loved it, and all the guests who I saw told me I did a good job! And then of course, I danced the night away with everybody on the dance floor after. I wish it hadn't flown by so fast, but I’m grateful for everything that happened that day. And I’ll forever be grateful for how happy Lauren was and how her and Jordan will be happy together for the rest of eternity ❤️
It’s funny because the day after the wedding is somewhat weird. It’s a little sad because the wedding festivities are finally over, but also the planning and spending loads of money is finally over as well 😂 There’s not much for the maid of honor to do the day after. However, there’s a good chance the bride and groom will open their wedding gifts the next morning, so it’s helpful to be there to write down names of people who bought them gifts (pretty much the same thing as the bridal showers). And plus, it’s a great opportunity to relax and talk about the amazing day with everybody!
The point of this whole post is not to tell you what to do based on my own experience, but to help you feel confident and ready to fulfill your duty on the big day for your sister, best friend or whoever. I also want to remind you that you don’t have to be the most perfect maid of honor in the world because that doesn’t even exist (just watch Bridesmaids and you’ll definitely understand). There were both highs and lows while I was MOH, moments when I felt so good at it but then moments when I felt like I wasn’t good enough. But based on the aftermath of the whole series of wedding planning for Lauren, I honestly wouldn’t change anything that happened, even the littlest things. I want to encourage y’all to be your genuine, unique self as you get ready to help out with the big day. And no matter what happens, just enjoy every minute and detail you can experience. It really does fly by, but the happy memories are worthwhile!
If you’ve ever served as MOH, what are some of your tips for your experience? And if you are going to be MOH for an upcoming wedding, what questions to you have? Comment below!