A Guide To Honorary Bridesmaids

Honorary Bridesmaid - Invite

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For many brides during the wedding planning process, the problem arises of whom to select to be bridesmaids. Many women have a lot of close friends, and they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings by leaving them out. Yet, at the same time, we can’t have 30 bridesmaids—so what is the best way to handle this delicate issue?

If the subject does come up with the girl(s) in question, the best way to handle it is to be very sensitive and understanding, but also firm and clear. Explain your reasons the best you can, and assure them that you love them, but simply can’t have all your friends be your bridesmaids.

Appointing An Honorary Bridesmaid

However, if you’re concerned that a specific friend or two someone will be particularly hurt (but you know you aren’t going to ask them be a bridesmaid), you may want to consider asking them to be an honorary bridesmaid instead.

If you’re not quite sure what an honorary bridesmaid is, she is someone who isn’t fully a part of the wedding party, but is more than a regular wedding guest.


An honorary bridesmaid(s) doesn’t get a bridesmaid dress, but she can have a corsage made with the same flowers as the bridesmaid’s bouquets. This is something you’ll need to request from your florist.

Honorary Bridesmaid - Blue Fingernails with Wrist Corsage
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Often, the honorary bridesmaid(s) are mentioned in the wedding program. She doesn’t walk down the aisle with the wedding party, but she typically gets an honored seat near the front during the ceremony. Honorary bridesmaids can also do things like ceremony readings, singing, or making a special toast during the reception.


It’s completely up to the bride if an honorary bridesmaid is invited to wedding events such as the bachelorette party and rehearsal dinner. If the entire reason that she isn’t a “full” bridesmaid is because she causes drama, then obviously she probably shouldn’t come to these events. However, if she isn’t a “full” bridesmaid because of other reasons and you enjoy her company, feel free to invite her to the events.

Other Reasons For Honorary Bridesmaids

Sometimes making a friend or family member an honorary bridesmaid is the ideal way to smooth over hurt feelings. It can be an extra step taken to show this particular person—or people—that you truly do care about them, even though you just aren’t able to make them a bridesmaid.

Besides helping with those who may feel left out, the title of honorary bridesmaid is also perfect for cousins, aunts, or the sister of your partner (if they aren’t already a bridesmaid).

Other reasons that a bride may appoint honorary bridesmaids is if she has chosen to only have family members be official bridesmaids, and she wants her friends to be a part of the wedding. Sometimes when a bride has a lot of sisters, this is the easiest route.

Honorary Bridesmaid - Hugging The Bride
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Choosing your wedding party can be stressful if you’re trying to please everyone, but remember: it’s your wedding, and your bridesmaids and wedding party should be exactly who you want them to be. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

If you’re currently in the midst of planning your own wedding and you’re still on the hunt for the perfect Los Angeles wedding venue, check us our at Platinum Banquet Hall! Be sure to take a look at our gallery to see if you think it would be a good fit for your big day! And if you have any questions for us or would like an in-person tour, please don’t hesitate to contact us!