I’ve always considered myself extremely lucky when it comes to friends and lady friends in particular. I have arguably the most incredible, inspiring, strong, beautiful, hilarious, and intelligent women surrounding me. Because having fifteen bridesmaids is what one might consider, excessive, I chose six of my best ladies to be my bridesmaids with the plan to continue including the other ten or so in other meaningful ways. The first and most important way to make my six bridesmaids feel special was how to “pop the question”.
I have heard horror stories from friends who have been bridesmaids in countless weddings and I have to be honest, you get a lot more negative stories than positive ones. In contemplating “the ask” I wanted to ensure my bridesmaids felt cherished, loved, and that just as I am asking them to do this favor for me, I too would do anything for them. My bridesmaids are spread out across the country from California to Washington to Oregon to Texas and Montana making it important that distance did not mean they got skimped on a personal ask. All of these considerations led me to the obvious, a bridesmaid box filled with a mixture of things that represent both the wedding weekend (Yosemite National Park, adventure, etc) and our friendship.
I chose unfinished cigar boxes so that I could paint them myself (with some help from my wonderful fiance, both emotional and technical). Painting the boxes turned out to take several days and it was not exactly the most fun task. In the end it felt good to spend so much time on something for each of the ladies who are undoubtedly going to spend much of their own time helping out on our wedding weekend, bridal shower, and bachelorette party. Next, I went on a hunt for the perfect trinkets to fill the boxes, which ended up being: Malvi Marshmallows, trail mix, bandanas, a cute Instagram print of myself with each bridesmaid, an airplane sized Fireball shot, and a Yosemite postcard with a love note written on each one. Thankfully, each of my bridesmaids accepted my proposal because let’s be real, they all knew this was coming for at least a year before I was even engaged.
In the end, I would recommend putting a little time into asking your own leading ladies (or gentlemen or both) when asking them to stand next to you on such a big day. Consider their likes, dislikes, and what would bring a smile to their face. If your bridal party happens to live near you consider asking them in person over brunch and bloody marys (because nothing is better than a good bloody)! My fiance also spent time asking each of his groomsmen in a personal way. As he is not one to talk on the phone generally, making the effort to call each of his six besties to ask them individually was a truly special gesture. This goes to show even the smallest action can make the biggest impact and that the best part about this whole thing is having your favorite people by your side.