How Many Bridesmaids Can You Have?

Planning your wedding is one of the most exciting yet challenging experiences of your life. Preparing, booking, and organizing everything for your special day can build up a lot of anxiety for the day as you just want everything to run smoothly and to enjoy the day as much as possible with your partner.

One way to get through the tougher parts of arranging a wedding is being able to lean on your bridesmaids for comfort and reassurance. 

Typically, bridesmaids will be some of your closest friends or family, however, you can choose whoever you want to walk you down the aisle and to stand by your side whilst you say your ‘I Dos’.

However, how many bridesmaids can you have and what number is considered too many?

We’ll be answering this question in this article and also giving you some great advice speaking from experience. 

How Many Bridesmaids Should You Have?

Unfortunately, there is no correct number of bridesmaids you should have at your wedding, it’s completely up to you. If you have too many friends and you don’t want anyone’s feelings to get hurt then you could opt for no bridesmaids at all, or even just choose your female siblings. However, if you’re a true social butterfly who has lots of friendship groups then you could choose up to over 10 bridesmaids if your venue will accommodate it. 

Whilst, having lots of bridesmaids may seem like it would be an absolute blast (which it probably is) there are some things you’ll need to consider before you start popping the question to your ladies. 

The average number of bridesmaids at a wedding is between 3 and 5

Things To Consider When Choosing Your Bridesmaids

The Costs

Weddings aren’t cheap to say the least and having bridesmaids will come at an additional cost. You’ll need to cover the cost of your bridesmaid’s food, flowers, and transportation on your wedding day as a standard, however, most brides will also pay for their bridesmaids to have their hair or makeup done on the big day.

Traditionally, the bride pays for the dresses, shoes, accessories that their bridesmaids will wear on the day, especially if they want them to have a specific look. If your budget is tight then you could consider asking your bridesmaids to contribute to their outfits, however, if this is the case then keep your numbers lower.

It’s also courtesy for the bride to also grant their bridesmaids a Thank You gift for being there on their special day, this could be as extravagant or simple as you wish.

So before you ask your bridesmaids, make sure your budget accommodates the numbers that you want. 

The Venue For Your Wedding

Hopefully, you should have booked a venue before asking your bridesmaids, therefore you’ll know how much space you have at the altar. If you’re getting married in a smaller venue, then a bridal party of more than 5+ may look a bit crowded, whereas a huge ballroom venue may look empty if you’ve only got 1-2 bridesmaids standing behind you.

The Formality of Your Wedding

If you’re having your wedding at a registry office, then a bridal party of over 10 people will look rather strange in the casual and smaller environment. However, formal weddings in a church or a fancy venue will normally have around 5-10 bridesmaids as well as a flower girl and a page boy. 

Who Really Matters

It can be tempting to ask all your girlfriends to be a part of your bridal party, however, this can be very costly and you may regret it in the future. Whilst the length of a friendship doesn’t depict how close you are, it may be something to consider when picking your bridesmaids. 

Many brides will pick their female siblings or childhood/lifelong friends to join them on their special day, which is normally the ones with whom they have frequent contact. Many people just choose their siblings as it prevents any friends from feeling left out if they don’t pick them.

Just make sure the bridesmaids you pick are those you can rely on and you know will always be by your side in years to come. 

Friendship Dynamics Between Your Bridesmaids

You’ll want to think about the dynamics between the bridesmaids you’re picking and how that might impact your special day. If you’ve got 4 sisters and 1 friend, then it may leave your friend feeling left out as it will feel more like a family occasion.

You will also want to make sure all your chosen bridesmaids get on or are unproblematic as you don’t want any tension or arguments on your bachelorette party or your wedding day. 

The Bachelorette Party

Traditionally, the bridesmaids are the ones who organize the bachelorette party for you, so the more bridesmaids you have, the more guaranteed attendees you’ll have there. You may want to have a handful of bridesmaids to allocate responsibilities for the bachelorette party so it’s not just down to one individual to organize everything. 

Additional Things To Remember 

If You Were Someone Else’s Bridesmaids, They Do Not Have To Be Yours

There is no set rule that you must repay the favor to someone who invited you to be a part of their bridal party. If that person remains a dear friend to you then feel free to extend the invite, however, if you’ve drifted since their wedding or maybe you don’t consider them as close a friend as they do you, then don’t feel obliged to ask them to be your bridesmaid.

The Groomsmen Numbers Don’t Have To Match The Bridesmaid Numbers

It can be tempting to try and make the bridal and grooms parties equal so it looks balanced when you’re at the altar. However, no guest notices this and your wedding photographer can stage the group photos differently so it looks balanced.

If your partner has a smaller friendship group than you and only has 1-2 groomsmen but you have a large group of best friends, then don’t worry about trying to match the numbers.