Wedding Etiquette, Part 4: Role of the Groomsmen

Hello groomsmen! Yes, you have the easier job compared to the best man, but your role is still very important. Here is a simplified list of your duties as a groomsman:

 Groomsmen, Shaun & Skyla Watson Photography

Groomsmen, Shaun & Skyla Watson Photography

 

1. Help plan the bachelor party, then attend the party. While the best man will be the main person organizing it, it is a lot of work so help him out by volunteering some time. Don't forget that you will be paying for your share of the trip as it is NOT the best man's duty to pay for all the expenses. 

2. Attend all pre-wedding festivals and the rehearsal. Engagement party, couple shower, rehearsal dinner. Don't be a flake, especially at the rehearsal. You'll want to know what's going on so you don't mess up their big day. Make sure to be at the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner!

3. Get fitted and buy your suit! From paying for the bachelor party to your wedding attire, being a groomsmen is not cheap. 

4. Buy a wedding present! You can work with one or two other groomsmen to buy one nice present if you want.  

5. Find accommodations and transportation to all events pre-wedding and on wedding day. 

6. Attend the ceremony and reception. You may be asked to help usher guests, so make sure to know where the bride's guests sit and where the groom's guests sit. Then at the reception, you may have to dance with the bridesmaids. They will go over all of this at the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner so don't miss it! 

7. Decorate the couple's getaway car with the bridal party!

8. Most importantly: be there for the groom for whatever he may need! It's his day, not yours, meaning, yes, you can take some shots and definitely have some fun, but it's not the time to get wasted. After all, it should be a day you want to remember!

Wedding Etiquette, Part 3: Role of the Maid of Honor

Recently I've been asked by my best friend to be her maid of honor. Such an honor! (: Well, it was especially for me because she has sisters she could have asked, but she chose me. Without a doubt, I said yes, but there is a lot that comes with accepting the role as the MOH (Maid of Honor). 

 Bridesmaids (Movie)

Bridesmaids (Movie)

Before the Wedding:

1. Help with any pre-wedding tasks. This includes:

  • Working with planner to brainstorm wedding colors and theme 
  • Researching venues and vendors with planner
  • Going wedding dress shopping
  • Getting your hands dirty with any DIY projects
  • Providing Emotional support
  • Spread the news on their bridal registry
  • Buying bridesmaids dresses

2. Plan the bachelorette party with the bridesmaids! (And possible host the bridal shower.) All costs should be split evenly among all bridesmaids attending.

 Bachelorette Party, Popping Champagne!, Courtesy of BrideBox

Bachelorette Party, Popping Champagne!, Courtesy of BrideBox

3. Make sure all the bridesmaids attend the rehearsal! They need to know where to stand so make sure they are there. Additionally, they will learn more about the timeline of the wedding day, which everyone should know pretty well.

On the Wedding Day:

1. Make sure the bridesmaids know what they should be doing and where they should be. 

2. Know when to say no to more alcohol. Yes, it's a celebration but let's not ruin it by drinking too much! Some champagne, mimosas, wine, but limit any hard liquor, especially shots! The planner will try to limit the alcohol but she cannot be patrolling the bridal party 24/7 so it's your job to prevent any alcoholic disasters!

3. Always be by the bride and make sure she is okay. Make sure she gets what she needs, you can delegate tasks to bridesmaids. The planner should be constantly checking in, but you should be there for her at all times for anything she may need. 

 Taylor Swift as Maid of Honor, Courtesy of ET Online

Taylor Swift as Maid of Honor, Courtesy of ET Online

During Ceremony:

1. Make sure the bride's train and veil are arranged properly before she enters! The wedding planner will make sure but an extra pair of hands and eyes is always helpful.

2. Walk down the aisle, you are standing right next to the bride!

3. Hold the bride's bouquet when they exchange vows. 

4. Witness and sign the marriage certificate!

During Reception:

1. Help bride bustle her dress if she doesn't have a planner to do so.

2. The most frightening part for some people: Toasting to the new couple! If you have stage fright/are scared of public speaking, make sure to practice, practice, practice your speech! A glass of wine may also help. 

3. Make sure the new couple gets some time to eat. A lot of couples will be bombarded by guests around their table so they won't have any time to eat. We don't want the bride to faint so make sure they eat!

4. Dance with the best man and other groomsmen if required. Some weddings do this, some don't. Regardless, when it's time to open up the dance floor, you should be encouraging all guests to come up and dance! I encourage you to work with the DJ to get guests on the floor. 

5. Collect any gift envelopes and make sure they are put in a safe place. I've had gift boxes stolen--it's devastating both for the guests who gave the gifts and for the couple, so make sure to keep an eye on it!

6. Get the bride ready for takeoff! 

Being a MOH is NOT an easy job. It takes a lot of time, effort, and money, but in the end, it will all be worth it when you see how happy the bride is at the end of the night! 

Wedding Etiquette, Part 2: Role of the Best Man

Your best friend asked you to be his best man at his wedding? Well, you've been there for each other through it all, and he considers you to be one of most important human beings in his life. Congrats!! But what does the best man really do?

 Best Man Speech, Courtest of The Wedding Crashers

Best Man Speech, Courtest of The Wedding Crashers

 

Here's a simplified list of your tasks:

Before the Wedding Day:

 1. Provide any advice or help he may need. It can be anything from helping him choose his tuxedo to doing research on venues. You are there to support him for whatever wedding or non-wedding needs! 

2. Plan the bachelor party. This would be your main task before the wedding! Don't know where to start? There's an app for that! (I am pretty sure there is haha!), but feel free to do some Googling and you'll become an expert in no time. Costs should be split evenly among all the groomsmen attending!

3. Attend the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner. Given, right? You have to know where you will be walking and standing on the big day! Don't be late to the rehearsal as you are the grooms' right hand, and they can't start without you. 

On the Wedding Day:

Before the Ceremony:

1. Keep the groom company and help him with anything he may need. Don't forget to  make sure that he has everything he needs: rings, marriage license, passport and tickets (if applicable), etc. 

2. Drive him to the ceremony site and make sure he's there at least 30 minutes before the ceremony! 

3. Every groomsmen needs to have their boutonniere properly on their suits. Left lapel, either in buttonhole or pinned there. 

 Boutonniere, Photo taken by Millie Holloman

Boutonniere, Photo taken by Millie Holloman

During the Ceremony:

1. Walk down the aisle. Order may vary depending on ceremony order, but you should remember what you're doing since you practiced it at the rehearsal! You will be standing next to the groom.

2. Hold the rings until the bride and groom are ready to exchange vows. Please, please don't lose them or leave them at home/hotel! This has happened numerous times in my weddings no matter how many times I stress it!

3. Escort the Maid of Honor back down the aisle. 

4. Sign the marriage license if you are asked to be a witness. (: Also you are responsible for giving the officiant/priest the fee in a sealed envelope after the ceremony. 

During the Reception

1. Be a part of the grand entrance (if applicable)! Usually similar to ceremony entrance, except in reverse order of bridal party. Get your best dance moves on!

2. Dance with the matron/maid of honor, the bride, and possibly the bridesmaids. It varies depending on what the couple wants but you will need to get your dancing shoes ready!

3. Give the first toast to the newlywed! Yes, this is probably the most nerve-wracking part, especially if you hate public speaking or have stage fright. Yes, your best friend for this might be Google once again!

4. Collect any gifts and cards guests bring, you may be asked to drop them off at the newlywed's homes or keep them until they come back from their honeymoond.

5. Traditionally, you would be the one responsible for decorating the getaway car. Grab the whole bridal party and sneak out to decorate their car! Tie some cans on the bottom rear of the car, tie some ribbons and balloons around, get some paint markers to write on the windows, get creative! However, if they have rented a limo or a classic car, you may have to skip the paint and just get some ribbons to tie around.

 Getaway car, Photo taken by Sarah Kate Photographer

Getaway car, Photo taken by Sarah Kate Photographer

6. Drive or hire someone to drive the couple to their hotel or airport. The big day is nearly over!

After the Reception:

1. Take the groom's tuxedo either to the cleaners or back to the rental shop. You don't have to do this right away, as you've had a long day that surprisingly ended in the blink of an eye. Get home, get some rest, and take care of it in the following week!

Beautiful Engagement Rings We Love! Featuring Cartel-Free & Sustainable Diamonds.

Conflict-free diamonds are associated with human rights abuses, child labor, violence, or environmental degradation so why wouldn't you want to get diamonds that are guaranteed to be conflict-free? Conflict-free and sustainable? Double win. 

Here is a short list of some companies that guarantee their diamonds are conflict-free and/or sustainable:

Diamond Foundry: https://www.diamondfoundry.com/

Their diamonds are lab-created, right in California! Did you know that Leonardo DiCaprio is one of their main investors? A majority of lab-created diamonds are created by Diamond Foundry! You can buy loose diamonds and take it elsewhere if you have a specific setting you like with another company.

Brilliant Earth: http://www.brilliantearth.com/

They have diamonds that go "above and beyond conflict-free" as well as lab-created diamonds.

VOW by Vrai and Oro: https://vow.vraiandoro.com/

They recently launched engagement rings! They pride themselves in fine jewelry without the retail mark-up. We love their simplicity. 

James Allen: https://www.jamesallen.com/

They don't seem to have lab-made diamonds, but they say their internal guidelines exceed government requirements.

Now on to the fun part! Here are some designs that we personally love! Yes, we prefer our diamonds to be at least 1 carat. These designs can be customized and purchased at most stores and may or may not be from the above listed websites. (:

 Courtesy of VOW by Vrai and Oro, Instagram @vow.engagement

Courtesy of VOW by Vrai and Oro, Instagram @vow.engagement

We love the simplicity in these rings! The top engagement ring and middle wedding band are our favorite, but we can definitely see a lot of brides going for the bottom ring!

 Courtsesy of The Jewelry Box of Lake Forest, Instagram @thejewelryboxlf

Courtsesy of The Jewelry Box of Lake Forest, Instagram @thejewelryboxlf

We love princess cut diamonds! We don't know how we feel about the twisted band, a simple non-patterned gold band would have done the job for us.

 Courtesy of Brilliant Earth, Instagram @brilliantearth

Courtesy of Brilliant Earth, Instagram @brilliantearth

Oval diamonds? Yes, we love it paired with this setting in rose gold. In fact, we love this band with any cut! Simple and elegant. 

 Courtesty of James Allen, Instagram @jamesallenrings, Style  17086W14

Courtesty of James Allen, Instagram @jamesallenrings, Style 17086W14

We don't always go for diamond halos, but this one caught our eye! We love that that it's not too circular or too square/rectangular. 

 Courtesy of Andrea Bonelli Jewelry, Etsy

Courtesy of Andrea Bonelli Jewelry, Etsy

Above and below, you'll see two different types of pear-shaped engagement rings. 

 Source unknown. 

Source unknown. 

What are your favorite diamond cuts? Types of bands? Feel free to comment.