Monday, August 14, 2006

WALKING DOWN THE AISLE CAN BE JUST AS STRESSFUL FOR YOUR BRIDESMAIDS AS IT IS FOR YOU (BELIEVE ME) (PART I)

Although I haven't yet walked down the aisle as a bride, I can imagine the pressure. EVERYONE's eyes are on you, you want to look PERFECT for your husband-to-be waiting for you at the end of the runner, and the moment MUST be JUST RIGHT. All of this while trying not to cry and ruin your makeup - right?

I completely understand--even if I can't really relate--about the anxiety brides go through when it comes to the BIG MOMENT. And the relief when it's all over, and a bride is arm-and-arm with her newly minted husband, about to go and join in the celebration (like these pretty young things, to the left!)

When it comes to the bridesmaids, however, there's an added pressure --- if you screw up (whether it's a scuffle, a trip, a shoe falling off, or a simple a nervous laugh), you will feel the burden of the screw-up potentially dampening the bride's evening, as well as the embarassment of being "that bridesmaid" who couldn't carry her weight (um, literally)....

Fair enough, you say (if you're a bride-to-be). Your response may be: But what can I do about it?

As a former and potentially future bridesmaid (so far, I have not been asked to be a bridesmaid again -- do you think it's the result of my blog writing? My friends may be scared to ever use me after my posts), I will say that one piece of advice is this: MAKE IT AS EASY AS POSSIBLE FOR YOUR NERVOUS NELLY BRIDESMAIDS TO MAKE IT DOWN THE AISLE--WITHOUT TRIPPING.

When I say "easy", I don't mean that you need to put them in a stroller and have their groomsan/escort them down the aisle. (Though that's kind of a funny image!)

However, make sure the conditions are such that your lovely ladies will be at ease.

My friend Stephanie was recently in a wedding where she had to walk down a long flight of stairs before she even MADE IT TO THE BEGINNING OF THE AISLE -- so that, during the ceremony, all eyes were on her as she climbed down the stairs (which were pretty deep, as she informs me), AND THEN as she walked down the runner -- Steph did all of this in high heels--and without a groomsman/escort.

Is this necessary?
Although I don't have a picture of the ceremony set-up, I would THINK that there HAD to be some alternative to the bridesmaids having to descend a flight of stairs with the entire audience watching -- at least, the bridesmaids could have walked in with an escort (which is a great trick for keeping one's balance, as I've discovered).

While it's inevitable that you're going to focus on your trip down the aisle, keep ours in mind as well. Steph's friend here should have realized that if SHE were doing the same route (without her father escorting her), it would have been extremely nervewracking and difficult.

Remember us.... please! Otherwise, you may have an embarassing situation on your hands -- which is certainly not what you want - and it's definitely not what we want either.

It's scary enough for us to do "the walk" - please make sure you think of these things in advance so you can help us maintain both our mental and physical balance.

Stay tuned!

2 comments:

Megan said...

Especially for outdoor weddings- my cousin had an outdoor wedding on grass, and they had an aisle runner. It didn't stay down properly and got all twisted up. Most of the bridesmaid walked down the side of the aisle runner on the grass so that their heels wouldn't pierce the runner or get all tangled up in it. It was horrible!

Twistie said...

The only time I had any misery as a bridesmaid (well, aside from the dusty rose dress my SIL asked me to wear, which was at least VERY inexpensive, so I was willing to do it) wasn't anything the bride could have helped.

As I headed up the aisle on the arm of one of the groom's brothers, my ankle started itching. It wasn't one of those little tickles, either, but a nasty, insistent, right down to the bone ITCH. Of course there wasn't a darn thing I could do about it. Luckily, my theatrical experience stood me in good stead and I pasted on my best smile.

My ankle continued to itch for the entire forty-five minute ceremony. All I could think as I walked back down the aisle was how I couldn't wait to get out of sight of the guests so I could scratch my ankle to my heart's content.

Of course, one second after we turned the corner, my ankle finally stopped itching. Sigh.

Luckily all of my bridesmaids had either been brides or bridesmaids before except for the twelve-year-old junior bridesmaid who liked to act. Everybody knew what they were getting themselves in for, most of them knew the site from other weddings, and almost all of them were hams, to boot! Thanks, girls! You were great.