Roles of Wedding-Party Participants – Looking Good

Adella Miesner

A wedding can be a wonderful and memorable experience for all of those involved. That’s why you ask friends or relatives to share in the event and serve in your wedding party. Your offer is a wonderful honor, one that goes with it varying degrees […]

A wedding can be a wonderful and memorable experience for all of those involved. That’s why you ask friends or relatives to share in the event and serve in your wedding party. Your offer is a wonderful honor, one that goes with it varying degrees of responsibility depending on the role each person will be playing. To help you decide who to ask to be in your wedding party, here is a list of titles and responsibilities for each participant’s role.

Maid of Honor

The maid of honor is a role typically filled by a sister or a very close friend. It is the equivalent of the groom’s best man. The maid of monor’s role, therefore, is typically very involved. Among her many responsibilities, the maid of monor accompanies the bride on shopping trips for her wedding dress while also planning the bridal shower, bachelorette party and coordinating the bridal party gift for the bride. Also, the maid of monor helps the bride get dressed on her wedding day, holds the groom’s wedding ring during the wedding and may also help in the writing of invitations. The maid of monor will also typically act as a witness to the wedding and dance with the best man at the reception. If the woman you’re asking is married, her title will be matron of honor.

Best Man

Perhaps the most well-known responsibilities of the best man are organizing the bachelor party and giving the toast at the reception. But the best man, who is typically a brother or best friend of the groom, also has a slew of other responsibilities. In addition to helping the groom choose his tuxedo and get dressed before the wedding, the best man coordinates the couple’s gift from the groomsmen and takes care of the newlyweds’ transportation to the airport after the reception or the next morning. The best man may also hold onto any payment that’s due to the reception site or the donation for the house of worship, and take care of any final financial details. He also holds the bride’s wedding ring during the ceremony.


Along with walking in the wedding procession, bridesmaids attend the shower and contribute to the bridal gifts. bridesmaids, who are typically sisters or friends of the bride or groom, also dance with the groomsmen during the reception. To be further involved, each can be given specific roles, like reading a religious passage at the ceremony, providing assistance with choosing wedding vendors, or helping to address wedding invitations.


Groomsmen are the male equivalent of the bridesmaids, typically having nearly identical responsibilities. Sometimes, groomsmen can act as ushers for guests arriving at the ceremony. groomsmen walk in the wedding processional and attend and help organize the bachelor party as well.

Flower Girl

If the bride has a sister who is especially young, that sister typically fills the role of flower girl. Since most flower girls are very young, their responsibilities are generally limited to carrying a basket of flowers during the processional and, depending on the bride’s preference, tossing flower petals on the ground to mark the bride’s entrance.

Ring Bearer

Like the flower girl, the ring bearer is a very young member of the family, only the ring bearer is a male. The ring bearer’s role is to carry a pillow with the rings sewn on it during the processional. Some couples choose to have the ring bearer and the flower girl walk next to one another during the processional.

Parents of the Bride

The bride’s parents may be responsible for hosting the wedding, if they will be completely financially responsible for the event. In some cases, the father of the bride escorts his daughter down the aisle alone, but in other instances or in religious ceremonies, both parents may accompany the bride. In all cases, it’s her preference. The mother of the bride may help fund or contribute to the planning of the bridal shower if the Maid of Honor needs assistance. These parents may also foot the cost of an engagement party or dinner to meet the groom’s family.

Parents of the Groom

The groom’s parents should host a rehearsal dinner prior to the wedding. They may also choose to contribute to the wedding if they desire. In most cases, the groom’s parents have limited responsibilities, but can be involved as much as the wedding couple would like. Traditionally, the groom’s mother confers with the bride’s mother on what color gown she is wearing, so as not to go with the same shade. The groom’s parents may walk down the aisle in advance of the rest of the wedding processional and take their seats.

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