Wight Wedding Blog

Maid of Honor or made of money?

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Budgeting for Isle of Wight Bridesmaids

One of the main differences between English and American weddings is the cost of being a bridesmaid. In America, the bridesmaid is obliged to pay for her own dress, her hair, the bride's hair, the entire hen party (including guests), a wedding shower and matching jewellery and shoes. Now, we’re pretty sure that if us UK gals had to pay for all that lot, our brides would be enjoying a Pizza Hut party and a bridal entourage head to foot in Primark and Claire’s Accessories. Luckily, being a Wight bridesmaid will cost you a lot less, and while it’s traditional in the UK for the bride to contribute as much as possible to the cost of having bridesmaids, we would recommend setting aside a little bit of cash just in case.

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We suggest you prepare to contribute to the following:

Dress: Depending on how many bridesmaids there are and how fussy you are about what you wear you might want to offer a bit more to the budget to ensure you get a dress you’re happy with and can possibly wear again.

Shoes: Again, the bride may be able to cover the cost of this, but if you’re willing to add a little extra to get a pair you’ll cherish for a while, it might just be worth it.

Jewellery: Same goes for the bling. I know a lot of brides who have treated their maids to the jewellery as part of their bridesmaid thank you gifts – but don’t assume that’s the case.

Hair and make up: With so many ways to blow the wedding budget, some brides are happy to go it alone when it comes to hair and make up, so it’s best to check in advance whether you’ll be tended to by a hairdresser and make up artist. If, to your horror, the bride has decided to go without professionals, consider taking her on a trip to a hairdresser prior to the big day for help on how best to style your hair. It will cost less than having a pro there on the morning and reduce the likelihood of you sporting a hair don’t!

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Travel: If any part of the big day involves travel e.g. if you don’t live near the location or if the hen party’s a way away, then you’ll need to factor in money to get there. Of course, it’s worth remembering that if you have any say in planning the hen do you’ll be spoilt for choice for venues on the Island. So there’s no need to travel too far, eh?

The Hen do: Luckily, all British hen party guests recognise that if they want to attend the party, they are going to need to cough up, so you’ll only be covering yourself. Average hen party spend is around £150 if you’re making a weekend of it. Depending on how close you bridesmaids are, you may want to arrange a few special treats for the hen - this might cost a little extra.

Wedding gift: You’ll also need to remember to put some cash aside for the wedding gift. Have a word with your friends though, as it might work out better for you all to contribute towards a big gift. Chances are you’ll be let off the present hook – but it’s best never to assume.

These are the main expenses, and as with everything there might be a few surprises along the way, but as long as you plan you should have everything covered. It may a case that you actually spend a lot less than you had anticipated!

 The main thing is to be patient and supportive and if you do have to dig deeper than expected, then make sure you spend every penny with good grace because your time will come!

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