Nigerian Bridesmaids: Do you need them? All you should know
WHO IS A BRIDESMAID?
My definition of ” Bridesmaid” is Brides’MAID’, with emphasis on the MAID.
In case you didn’t know, a bridesmaid is literally supposed to be the bride’s MAID for the day or duration of the wedding planning process…
I see a lot of brides choose their prettiest friends, best friends or sisters for this role, which is alright but be sure that they have what it takes to be your bridesmaid, as it is very important that they understand the assignment.
A lot of Nigerian bridesmaids are of the impression that the work of a bridesmaid starts and ends on the wedding day… but this is not the case
If you know that their disposition to the duties will be dishonourable, then it might be best to look for someone else you are certain will be up to the task.
This article will help you understand how Nigerian bridesmaids act, duties of Bridesmaids and how to avoid picking the wrong Nigerian bridesmaids for your wedding.
The Origin of Bridesmaids
You probably must have wondered what the essence of bridesmaids are or why they were often asked to wear matching dresses to support the bride at a wedding ceremony.
Well, in early Roman time, bridesmaids originally wore similar dresses to the bride’s wedding dress, to confuse her exes and outsmart evil spirits. That way, the evil spirits wouldn’t know which woman in the group was getting married.
The group of women, who were similarly dressed, were expected to intervene if any vengeful secret lover tried to hurt the bride or steal her dowry.
What You Should Know About Nigerian Bridesmaids
– Nigerian Bridesmaids are entitled. They probably feel this sense of entitlement because of the thousands of Naira they have spent to acquire the bridesmaids outfits and other things. So they feel they should be treated specially and they sure do know how to act like it.
– A lot of Nigerian bridesmaids are rude. They talk to the planner and vendors anyhow, they expect vendors to worship the very ground that they walk on.
– Nigerian Bridesmaids are mostly unsupportive. They show no form of support whatsoever to the bride.
– Nigerian Bridesmaids mostly only care about looking pretty, with their make-up on fleek, and hooking any available bachelor at the event.
– Nigerian bridesmaids are the first to tell the bride of any mishap that may be going wrong at her wedding. They are the first to complain to the bride about not getting food to eat.
– Many Nigerian Bridesmaids are unhappy for the bride. They would rather wear moody faces and affect the bride’s mood with their own gloomy faces and nonchalant attitudes.
– Nigerian Bridesmaids can be very unreasonable. They don’t care about how the wedding planning is going. If hotel rooms aren’t booked for them or they have to do anything at all to assist with the day being memorable, they complain bitterly.
Note: Sadly, the bride may not even get to see or hear these things but the wedding planner and any other person that cares to listen to what they have to say, will have a ear-full of complaints before the end of the day.
Sadly, only a fraction of Nigerian Bridesmaids understand the assignment of being a bridesmaid.
Duties Of The Roman Era Bridesmaid Vs The New Era Bridesmaid?
IN THE EARLY ROMAN ERA
As far as bridesmaid duty is concerned, in early Roman times, bridesmaids would line up to form somewhat of a protective shield while walking the bride to the groom’s village.
The group of women, who were similarly dressed, were expected to intervene if any vengeful secret lover or spirit tried to hurt the bride or steal her dowry. The bridesmaids were to form some sort of disguise in case any of this should happen.
FAST FORWARD TO NOW!
These days, many Nigerian bridesmaids are only about “slaying” their dresses, ensuring their make up doesn’t smear till the end of the wedding and most importantly, for the reception after-party (if it does smear, they have their own make up artist or kit handy for momentary touch-ups), smiling while carrying a bouquet (some won’t even smile).
I’m sorry to break it to you but the duties of a bridesmaid goes way beyond just looking pretty and acting all posh at your friend’s wedding. It is a job description that has to be properly handled, to ensure further happiness for the bride on her wedding day.
The Actual Duties Of A Nigerian Bridesmaid
1. ACT AS THE POINT PERSON
No wedding planner? No problem.
The maid of honor should stand in gap between the vendors and the bride. She should give out her phone number to all of the key vendors and family members in advance so she can help field any questions for the bride and keep everyone on track.
2. FEED THE BRIDE (not literally)
The morning of the wedding can be a fast and frantic experience and some brides simply forget to eat. And let’s be honest, no one likes a cranky bridezilla. The bridesmaids maid of honour should ensure that the bride takes her breakfast as it’s going to be a long day.
3. HELP HER GET DRESSED
Getting a nervous woman into possibly the most expensive, elaborate dress she’ll wear in her life is no small task.
You’ll want to be certain everything is laid out in advance, from undergarments to shoes to jewelry. There will be a lot of lifting and rearranging involved, the bridesmaids should be available to get these sorted, and ensuring that she doesn’t miss any accessories.
4. BE AT THE BRIDE’S BECK AND CALL.
While your bride sits for hours getting gorgeous, she’ll need your help fetching things, dealing with her phone and generally calming her nerves the whole time.
5. ACT AS A GATEKEEPER.
If there are family members or friends that are known to seriously stress out the bride, it’s your job to keep them away from her, as best you can. Emotionally supporting the bride at all times throughout the wedding planning and ceremony.
6. ASSISTING THE MAID OF HONOUR
Bridesmaids should assist in planning and paying for the bridal shower and bachelorette party, and of course, assisting the Maid of Honor throughout the wedding day.
7. ATTENDING ALL PRE-WEDDING EVENTS
Like the engagement party, wedding shower, Bachelorette party, rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, etc.
8. RUNNING NECESSARY ERRANDS
The bride may need to pick up items like her outfits and accessories during wedding planning, at pre-ceremony events, and even on the day of the wedding, if needed. Bridesmaids should be able to help out.
9. ORGANISING THE PURCHASE OF THEIR OWN GOWNS AND OTHER ACCESSORIES.
The bride shouldn’t be the one worrying about purchasing the bridesmaids gowns and accessories, including shoes, jewelry, and undergarments. Bridesmaids are also responsible for attending all fittings for their dresses.
10. ACTING AS A PLANNER WHEN THERE IS NO WEDDING PLANNER FOR THE EVENT.
Coordinating any day-of communications with vendors, guests, etc.
Walking down the aisle Attending to wedding guests and encouraging dancing and ensuring that everybody is well taken care of.
11. STAYING AT THE RECEPTION UNTIL IT ENDS
Bridesmaids are to help the bride with packing gifts, packing the money sprayed on the bride and keeping it safe, helping the bride undress into a more comfortable outfit for the receptionnafter-party, distribution of the wedding cake to families etc…
How To Avoid Choosing The Wrong Nigerian Bridesmaids For Your Wedding
1. Look beyond the pretty faces.
You have known your friends and family the longest and you already know the kind of vibe and energy you need around you that daym if the pretty face won’t give you the kind of positive vibes that you need, then you may want to consider replacing that person with a more suitable option.
2. Don’t be emotional about it
Not everybody have the qualities of a good bridesmaid. Don’t be guilt-tripped into feeling like you have to add a particular person to your bridesmaids list, if you don’t feel positive vibes from the person, then cut her off.
WEDDING TIP: You can always remove anybody from your bridesmaids list, even if she has been informed prior to your decision to remove her from your list. Don’t be scared to do this, as whatever it is that you feel about her being a part of your bridal party will probably not go away on your wedding day.
3. Be reasonable and think about your expectations from your bridesmaids.
Be reasonable about your expectations. In as much as you want happy people around you, you as the bride also have a role to play in this. Make it convenient and a happy environment for your bridesmaids to be able to give you happy vibes too. Don’t be a bridezilla to your bridesmaids as this can totally ruin their moods, which will in turn ruin your mood.
4. You don’t need to return the favour
Just because you were a bridesmaids at one of your friend’s wedding, it does not mean that you have to return the favour. You may not not be that close anymore… besides, not all friends should be on the bridesmaids list.
5. Your bridal party does not need to be an even number.
Many Nigerian brides in a quest to even up the number with the groomsmen, they just look for people to fill up the number. DON’T DO IT! You may end up regretting that decision.
6. Make sure You choose a supportive squad.
You definitely want a squad that would cheer you on no matter what and not one who are only concerned about looking glamorous. I’m personally tired of seeing these set of artificial Nigerian bridesmaids who care about nothing but themselves at their supposed friends wedding. We even have to beg some of them to take pictures with the bride.
5 Signs That You Have Picked The Wrong bridesmaid
1. She makes fun of your wedding ideas or choice of vendors
These ladies are going to be the closest to you on your wedding day, if anytime you bring up the topic about your wedding planning ideas and choice of vendors and she doesn’t support you or mocks your choices, then chances are that she will be a killjoy on your wedding day. Ditch her!
2. You feel uncomfortable around her
There are some people who may make you feel uncomfortable. It may be their energies or aura or something just seems off whenever she is around you. It may even be the things that she says… If you find yourself not wanting to discuss some things in her presence or just feeling uncomfortable talking about her being in the same space with you, then she has no business being on your bridal party.
3. She doesn’t get along with the other bridesmaids
There is always that one bridesmaid that just would not get along with the other ladies. She always has a counter opinion or just wants to do things her way or just enjoys being a trouble maker… if this is something you can deal with, then fine and if not, then let her go.
4. You feel like she emotionally blackmailed you into putting her on your bridesmaids list
You initially wanted 6 bridesmaids but somehow found yourself having 7 bridesmaids, just because the last bridesmaid guilt-tripped you and because you wanted to avoid an awkward situation, you accepted to have her on your bridesmaids list… You will just be creating unnecessary problems for yourself.
WEDDING TIP: Don’t be afraid to stand your ground. It is your wedding and you know the people you want closest to you and cheering you on on your big day. Don’t ruin it by bowing to peer pressure.
5. She is unavailable for the important things like fittings, bridal shower etc
Why accept to be a bridesmaids if you know you won’t be available for the important stuff?
In as much as I understand that people can be busy, but the moment you accept to be a bridesmaid, means that you have accepted the responsibilities that comes with the bridesmaid job description and that includes being available. It’s like accepting a remote job offer and then start giving excuses as to why you cannot attend online meetings… You gerrit? Exactly!
6. You don’t know her well enough
Someone you barely know has no business in being on your bridal party to begin with.
Do You Really Need Nigerian Bridesmaids At Your Wedding?
Left to me, I would say a resounding NO!
From the experience I’ve had as a Nigerian Wedding Planner for almost 7 years and having planned over 150 weddings, I can tell you for a fact that most of the Nigerian bridesmaids I have had the privilege of working with are just NOT what bridesmaids are supposed to be.
I honestly do not understand the criteria in which our brides choose their bridesmaids, but if I go by what I have seen in my time as a Nigerian Wedding Planner, then I would tell new Nigerian brides to do away with having Nigerian Bridesmaids if they can.
And if you must, you should look beyond the pretty faces and picture perfect looks. You need a supportive squad like I have mentioned above, it takes more than a pretty face to be a bridesmaid. Ensure that whoever that you would be picking will exhibit all the qualities of a good bridesmaid. All the best!
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and find it helpful. Share your bridesmaid experience with us in the comment section.
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