Bridesmaids and groomsmen are often part of a traditional wedding day, but are they really necessary? According to Bustle, the tradition of having bridesmaids goes back to Ancient Roman times. The bridesmaids dressed identically to the bride to ward off ghosts and demonic spirits. “Whether it was a spirit or a jealous ex coming to crash the wedding, they figured if all the bridesmaids looked the same, it would provide enough confusion so the couple could get married without being targeted,” the website says.
Groomsmen, however, have a much darker back story.
Their history comes from the the practice of marriages by kidnapping, when a bride was literally abducted from her family, Reader’s Digest reports. The groomsmen would help capture the bride and ensure the marriage took place. This practice started as early as Biblical times and still continues today in many parts of the world.
The purpose behind bridesmaids and groomsmen is no longer necessary in modern weddings. However, many couples still choose to have their close friends and family members serve in a bridal party to help them both plan and celebrate.
The pros of having bridesmaids and groomsmen includes having extra help with wedding details such as planning, setting up and day-of coordination. It’s also fun to have your closest buds with you on your big day!
However, cons include difficulties choosing among your friends, potential hurt feelings and additional costs as you’ll need to purchase gifts for the bridal party, as well as meals and booze.
Those who choose to forego a bridal party often designate roles to honored family and friends, such as readers, ring bearers and bouquet holders. You can also invite those closest to you to help you get ready on your wedding day.
Bottom line: You don’t need to have a bridal party to have a wedding. Instead, consider placing close family and friends in roles that can help your day run smoothly.
To learn more about how brides are “bucking tradition,” read our blogs on bridal party dances, flowers, first dances, rings, wedding cakes, the bouquet toss, the garter toss and whether white is always right.