10 Tips for the Maid of Honor

    So your bestie is getting married and of course, who else would be the Maid of Honor besides Y.O.U.? The bride-to-be has selected you to assist her with the many tasks of planning a wedding as well as to be there for her for emotional support throughout the entire process. And let's be honest, aside from the romantic ceremony and amazing reception that is soon to come, right now it's a little scary. Since you're going to be right by her side throughout the whole process, here are some helpful tips that will make your life (and the bride's) a little easier.

    #10. Create a Timeline - This will help you stay organized and manage the many tasks coming your way. Check in with the bride and make sure you have the right dates that she is available for the bridal shower and bachelorette party. Staying on top of things will allow you to be the dependable Maid of Honor that the bride so desperately needs you to be.

    #9. Plan the Bridal Shower - Be sure to do this well in advance so that everyone can attend.  Also be sure to pick a venue that the bride deems convenient. Although bridal showers are typically held a few weeks prior to the ceremony, the bride may have family coming into town for the wedding. Therefore, you may need to plan for a shower closer to the date of the ceremony.

    #8. Plan the Bachelorette Party - Like the bridal shower, this location needs to be a place that the bride is comfortable with. Ask her what she has in mind and then come up with a few suggestions. If she's looking for a quiet get away with some R and R, then Las Vegas isn't going to be an option. Also find out ahead of time if the bride's fiancé is attending because chances are he probably won't enjoy a Magic Mike themed bachelorette party.

    #7. Keep a Record of Gifts Received – The bride will be receiving tons of gifts between the bridal shower, bachelorette party and wedding. Keep a list of these gifts so the bride and groom can write thank-you notes. Extra Tip: Maintain the RSVP list ahead of time to make this task a little easier.

    #6. Offer Additional Help – Yes, you already have a long to-do list but there are sure to be additional tasks that the bride needs help with. Be sure to check in with her periodically leading up to the ceremony and be specific. Instead of, “What can I do to help?”, try “Would you like me to stuff invitations?” or “Do you need help packing for the honeymoon?”. You are much more likely to be of greater assistance to the bride by asking for specific tasks than simply waiting for one to be assigned to you.

    #5. Prepare the Toast Early - "Winging it" is NOT an option. Your best friend has just married the love of her life. This is your one chance to tell her and everyone else how much she means to you and how happy you are for her and her new husband. Start out the toast strong, keep it short and sweet, and when in doubt, leave it out. No one wants to hear about that one time in college...especially the bride's in-laws.

    #4. Not All Eyes Are on the Bride…- Even though you will be just as happy to celebrate the nuptials as the bride and groom, don’t go too crazy at the reception. You hold a very important role and you will be receiving almost as much attention as the happy couple. The ceremony isn’t the end of your duties. Keep in mind that you still have to give a toast and wish the bride farewell at the end of the night.

    #3. Minimize Gossip – Between the hideous dresses, the bride’s many whims and the happy couple’s ups and downs throughout the process, the wedding party is sure to gossip. Remind the fellow bridesmaids (and yourself) that the bride and groom’s romance is not for entertainment. And while the bride is sure to be wearing on everyone’s nerves with her many requests, planning a wedding would be stressful for anyone. And finally, let the bridesmaids know that maybe one day they will love burnt orange, shorten the dress, and wear it again!

    #2. Remember She’s Your Best Friend – The bride chose you to be the Maid of Honor because she trusts you and values your friendship. She is going through a big change in her life and planning a wedding is very stressful and time consuming. Be there for her not only with the planning but also as her best friend. If it seems like she needs a breather, take her to your favorite nail salon or plan a wine night for just the two of you.

    #1. It's about the Bride - No matter what, never forget that it's the bride's special day and no one else's. So the other bridesmaids are complaining about the butterflies they have to wear in their hair? Too bad. The last thing you need is a bestie turned bridezilla. So remember that it is her day and regardless of other opinions or preferences, whatever the bride wants is your priority.