The custom of bridesmaids is believed to have originated during the Anglo Saxon period, when young maidens would be dressed similarly to the bride and accompany her as protectors on her way to the groom’s village. They were meant to prevent spurned suitors from kidnapping the bride or stealing her dowry.
Traditionally, the Maid of Honour helps the bride dress before the wedding and helps her weave the wreath of aromatic flowers to ward off evil spirits. The term ‘Maid of Honour’ is believed to have originated from the United Kingdom, and means ‘female attendants to the Queen.’
Today, the Maid of Honour is no longer a decoy to deflect spurned suitors but nevertheless, her responsibilities are many. Avoid being pressured into making someone your Maid of Honour; ideally, said person must be able to work with you and, if necessary, even tolerate the bride-zilla in you.
The MOH does not necessarily have to be a female, it is perfectly fine to include a brother or a male best friend as your ‘Man of Honour’. After all, the bridal party is meant to consist of your closest and dearest, and should not be limited to a certain gender.
Maid of Honour vs Matron of Honour. Is There is Difference?
The roles between the two are the same. The title of Matron of Honour is bestowed to a married woman.
Tips on selecting your Maid of Honour:
#01 Family First
Blood is supposedly thicker than water, therefore looking within you family is a great way to start. However, if you and your siblings are always rubbing each other the wrong way, don’t feel pressured to pick him or her as your MOH. The last thing you’ll want is uninvited drama during wedding planning and the day of.
#02 Your BFF
For some, picking your MOH is as straight-forward as it gets. Even before you met your fiancé, you may already have decided who your MOH was going to be. To this, I say, ‘Lucky you!’. The best person for the role is the person with your best interest at heart and you’re more than blessed to have someone who wants better than the best for you. If you have already decided on having your BFF as your MOH, the following tips would highlight certain things that may require your attention to avoid potentially compromising this special relationship.
#03 Responsible and Dependable
Have a few close friends and have difficulty picking one over the other? Consider the responsibilities of a Maid of Honour; choose someone responsible and meticulous, and who preferably has good taste as he or she will have to help choose your wedding gown, pick the flowers, etc. During the actual day, you’ll need to delegate duties to several people and your MOH will be someone you can rely on to keep tabs on everyone’s roles. On top of that, she’ll need to attend to you throughout the day; for example, lend help in the ladies’ room or make sure you’ve eaten or drank enough to keep you on your feet all day. Furthermore, she may need to make decisions on your behalf when issues pop out during the wedding so as you’ll get to enjoy your big day.
#04 Support System
As Maid of Honour, she is your go-to gal for emotional support. Let’s face it, planning a wedding is no easy task. Things will go wrong. And when they do, you need someone who will be able to give you the support you need, help you make tough decisions and keep you level headed.
#05 A Well-Liked Personality
A great personality and a well-liked person will be able to keep the whole bridal party united. Consider the whole dynamics of the bridal party when selecting your MOH. Will she be able to ensure roles are carried out? Will the other bridesmaids be able to assist your MOH? Will there be potential conflict? These are some questions to consider when hand-picking the entire bridal party. Finally, she’ll be playing hostess at your bridal shower or bachelorette party so a naturally outgoing personality would be great. However, if this is not an area of strength, enlist another friend to help your MOH in certain duties.
#06 Consider Finances
Being included in a bridal party may be costly, be mindful of your MOH’s financially standing. Naturally, she or he will be expected to chip in more than the rest of the bridal party. Make sure you run this over him/ her before making them official. If they are in a financially tight spot, consider throwing only one party; either a bridal shower or bachelorette party instead of both. Alternatively, insist on keeping things simple – an afternoon tea party or dinner at home.