September 26, 2023


Business Woman

How Many Bridesmaids Should You Have? + How To Choose Them

6 min read

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Feeling confused or perhaps worried about how many bridesmaids you should choose to have for your wedding?

Don’t fret, by the end of this article you’ll have the answer, plus with any luck, you’ll feel much happier and relaxed about your wedding party choice. Hoorah!

How Many Bridesmaids Should You Have?

Let’s get straight to it, there are no rules about how many bridesmaids/bridesmen you should or shouldn’t have at your wedding. It all comes down to personal preference and the style of your day. Most couples have between 2-5 bridesmaids/bridesmen, but some weddings have 12 or more, averages really do vary.

Always go with your gut, what feels right for you both and the number of bridesmaids/bridesmen that fits with your budget. If you actually don’t want to have any bridesmaids/bridesmen, that’s totally fine.

I have featured weddings with a large wedding party and weddings with no wedding party. Guess what? All of these weddings were great, happy and filled with fantastic memories too!

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How To Decide Wedding Party Size

Now we’re going to dive into what things to consider if you are unsure about how many bridesmaids/bridesmen to have. Thinking about all of these factors should help you to really nail down those final wedding party numbers.

1. Your Budget

First and foremost, I am all about sticking to a wedding budget. No one should ever feel that they have to get into debt or spend beyond their means to have an awesome wedding.

It really isn’t necessary, I’ve featured many budget weddings over the years to prove it too!.

So when thinking about the number of bridesmaids consider whether you are willing to cover these costs/purchase these items:

Bridesmaids Bridesman How Choose Many Jules Barron Photography

Photo: Jules Barron via Mickleton Hills Farm Wedding


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👉 Average Cost Of Each Bridesmaid/Bridesman

The below figures are estimates of the costs of having each bridesmaid/bridesman and you should get your own quotes/do research to check they are accurate. Don’t forget about factoring alterations for outfits if need be.

It’s also worth noting that you don’t have to spend in all of these areas. There are ways to save and be savvy about the cost of your wedding party.

Bridesmaid Item Minimum Spend Each Could Spend Each
Outfit £30 £120+
Shoes £25 £60+
Jewellery £15 £150+
Hair Accessory £20 £40+
Hair Stylist £40 £70+
Make Up Artist £40 £100+
Robe/PJs £20 £60+
Gift £20 £60+
Bouquet £40 £100+
Total £460 £760+

💡 Save Money On Bridesmaids By:

  • Asking bridesmaids/bridesmen to wear something they already own in a certain colour
  • Going DIY on hair/makeup
  • Keeping accessories minimal, head to the high street or ask bridesmaids to wear something they already own
  • Doubling up gifts to use as accessories
  • Finding cheap gifts or write a meaningful thank you card instead of giving a pressie

How Many Bridesmaid Choose Firefly and Embers Photography

Photo: Firefly and Embers Photography via Elsick House Wedding


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2. Wedding Party Photos

Iconic wedding images often include those lineup shots with your wedding party. So you may want to think about how they will look depending on the number of bridesmaids/bridesmen you choose.

Do you mind having an unsymmetrical lineup? Honestly, it doesn’t really matter, but you may want your photos to look even. That being said, don’t choose a bridesmaid just to make up numbers, that wouldn’t feel right for anyone.

A skilled wedding photographer and wedding videographer will know exactly how to capture your bridesmaids/bridesmen.

how many bridesmaids choose Laura Williams Photography

Photo: Laura Williams Weddings via Autumn Wedding Colours


3. Space Constraints

Do you have a plan on where you are getting ready in the morning? Are you hoping for your wedding party to be by your side?

Then you’re going to need ample room for them to get ready. Complete with bathroom amenities, mirrors and storage.

Bridesmaids How Many Choose Wedding Kerry Ann Duffy

Photo: Kerry Ann Duffy via Greatest Showman Wedding


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4. Other’s Opinions

Perhaps you worry about what others may think about you having no bridesmaids or lots of bridesmaids? Well, that isn’t relevant, this is your day, you do you!

We are in the 21st century and when it comes to weddings anything really does go now.

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Bloom Weddings

Photo: Bloom Weddings via Granary On The Common Wedding


5. Friend/Family Dynamics

Let’s face facts, we are never going to please every single person in life and the same goes for your wedding.

It’s hard to navigate family and friend politics. If you are concerned about leaving someone out, be honest and tell them. They will appreciate that they were thought of and hopefully will understand your explanation.

If you are really struggling and it’s too much, keep it simple. Have immediate family or one bridesmaid/bridesman, or none if it’s too complicated. That’s absolutely fine!

You can always give out other wedding day roles too to make those not part of your wedding party feel included and special.

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Alisa Nicholle Co

Photo: Alisa Nicholle Co via Modern City Wedding Ideas


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6. Pre-Wedding Parties

If you are planning a hen or stag do, will the number of bridesmaids you have affect these parties? Will there be too many bridesmaids helping out or not enough hands on deck?

Does it really matter to you if your faves are officially bridesmaids/bridesmen, or not? It’s a good idea to ask yourself these questions so you can envision how the logistics will work out.

How Choose Bridesmaids Many Jonny Gouldstone Photography

Photo: Jonny Gouldstone Photography via Hertfordshire Farm Wedding


7. Aisle Walk

Do you imagine strutting down the aisle behind a large number of bridesmaids/bridesmen, or following a small wedding party?

You may need a longer song and more space to seat your maids. If you have a small wedding party, will the ceremony feel sparse to you?

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Aurora Grey Photography

Photo: Aurora Grey Photography via Norfolk Barn Wedding


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8. Number Of Guests

The number of guests you’re inviting to your wedding doesn’t need to dictate the size of your wedding party. Go with your gut and chose your bridesmaids/bridesmen depending on what your heart tells you, not the size of your wedding.

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Michelle Huggleston Photography

Photo: Michelle Huggleston via Celtic Manor Resort Wedding


Bridesmaid Choosing FAQ

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How do you pick bridesmaids?

Go with your heart. Think about friends/family that mean the most to you and you have a real connection with.

Do you have a strong relationship where you support one another and feel as though you’ll be close long-term? Are they able to be involved in the wedding and attend too? Ask yourself these questions and if they are yeses, that should help you to decide.

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Emma Lawson Photography

Photo: Emma Lawson via Fife Wedding


I was a bridesmaid for a family member/friend, should I ask them to be my bridesmaid?

This is a tricky one! It comes down to how you feel and your relationship with them whether you’d like them to be your bridesmaid.

Don’t feel like you have to ask them to be your bridesmaid. If it isn’t right, don’t feel like it’s a prerequisite. But, it could hurt their feelings if they have this expectation.

The best thing to do is to speak to them honestly and explain before they hear about your wedding party choice. Hopefully, they will get your reasoning and you can also give them a special role on the day to make them feel included too.

Bridesmaids How Many Choose Charlie and Em Photography

Photo: Charlie and Em Photography via Staffordshire Garden Wedding


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How many bridesmaids are too many/too little?

There is no such thing as too many or too few bridesmaids. It really is your choice and yours alone.

Do what feels right and makes you both happy. You won’t want to look back and regret your choices based on what others may think.

If you want 20 bridesmaids then go for it, if you don’t want any bridesmaids, you don’t have to. It really is that simple.

How Many Bridesmaids Choose Wedding Sasha Weddings


Photo: Sasha Weddings via Riverside Buckinghamshire Wedding


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Can you have a bridesman?

Yes, yes, yes! Gender should not dictate your wedding squad. If you want a bridesman then you go for it. More and more couples are now having bridesmen and groomswomen, which is awesome to see.

How Choose Bridesman Bridesmaid Many Oxi Photography

Photo: Oxi Photography via Wedding By The Sea


Is it OK to have an odd number of bridesmaids and groomsmen?

Absolutely. There is no need to even things up on both sides of your wedding party. Simply choose the people you want by your side and don’t fret about the symmetry.

How Choose Bridesmaids Many Thyme Lane Photography

Photo: Thyme Lane Photography via Barn Norfolk Wedding


So there we have it, all you need to know before you choose how many bridesmaids to have. Now you have the lowdown to make your decision.

Happy bridesmaid proposing!


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Further Reading

Who pays for bridesmaid dresses? | Newsphere by AF themes.