Friday, April 3, 2009

Choosing your groomsmen

The Usual Suspects
Picking the groomsmen can be more difficult, even though you have several slots open. This is because guys tend to have a group of really awesome friends from high school, college or work. However, if you're unfamiliar with wedding etiquette, here are the "usual" rules for including groomsmen in your wedding party:

Your Family

No matter what your family or friends say, there aren't people who "must" be in the wedding party. Be sure to pick buddies you're close with - not guys you feel obligated to ask. If you loved beating up your brother, but he's not your "best man", don't let your mother force your hand. However, family typically comes first when it comes to the groomsmen. Unless there are some unusual circumstances involved (such as, for example, you aren't on speaking terms), if you have brothers, they're in the wedding party. That's one slot down, a few more to go.

Her Family

The same goes for her brothers. The two of you are going to be family soon, and including her brothers is a great way to start things off. This should be based on mutual agreement with your fiancee. If she is trying to force your hand and by picking her slightly annoying and boring brother, you are within your rights to ask Bridezilla to back off. It can be more challenging if your bride has two brothers who are equally qualified to be groomsmen. suggests that you either pick neither of them, or leave it for your bride to figure it out. There is no point in starting off on the wrong foot.
Closest Friends

Your closest friends are great choices. But, remember, they have to be responsible guys. Just because you love to go out drinking with a guy on a Friday night doesn't mean he can handle the responsibility of being in the wedding party. He might be a great guy, but if he's going to show up late to the tuxedo fitting session, he's going to be a pain to keep in line. Let's face it: some guys just aren't wedding party material. If the first image that pops into your head when you think of a guy is him passed out and covered in permanent marker, he's probably not the right guy for the job.

Great Expectations
When you begin asking your friends to stand up in your wedding, be sure to explain what is expected of them, and importantly, how much it is going to cost.

The basics include:

* Travel and accommodations
* Attending the rehearsal and dinner
* Renting tuxedo and shoes and attending tuxedo fittings (or buying a suit and tie)
* Planning and attending the bachelor party
* Seating guests at the wedding
* Walking down the aisle with a bridesmaid (maybe)
* Dancing with same bridesmaid
* Wedding gift (unspoken requirement, of course!)

If this is manageable for your buds, then you're in business.
A Short Word About Wedding Costs

Weddings can be expensive affairs. You need to keep in mind that not everybody in your wedding party will have the financial means to buy a brand new suit with matching navy blue tie that you've picked out. Further, if a groomsman (and his wife and kids) are flying in from California and staying at a hotel, these costs add up. You are likely to be asking your groomsmen to shell out at least $250, not including transportation.

And Finally...

At the end of a smooth flight with a smooth landing, a cabin full of passengers will sometimes applaud. If you choose the right co-pilot and crew for your wedding, that allows you to focus on what you need to do to reach that altar, expect applause at the end of this flight.

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