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Pre-wedding Parties

Engagement Party: What do I do when one of my maids didn't show up?

I wanted to have a small engagement party just for the bridal party, so that everyone could meet and get to know each other. It was stressful enough to find a date that would work with everyone's busy work schedules, college schedules, etc. I also kind of made it obvious on the invitation that it was really important for everyone to be there. So everyone said they were coming, but two hours before the party, one of maids texted me and basically said she was too tired from work too come. Is this a liable excuse for me to be upset? I'm just concerned that she isn't going to be reliable for other way more important events. Plus my maid of honor was hoping to meet all of the girls too so she can start getting the bridal shower planned. I haven't really said anything to this girl yet, I'm not really sure what I should say or how I should approach it. What do you guys think?
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Re: Engagement Party: What do I do when one of my maids didn't show up?

  • In a nice way I put that it would be nice for everyone to come out and get to know each other. Yes, me and my fiance did throw our own engagement party. How is that against etiquette? I wasn't asking for gifts, it wasn't a formal affair at all. We gathered at a pizza place, ate and had a blast. I just called it an engagement party because I wanted to slap a name on it. We have a lot of people in our party from different parts of our lives, so there's several people that don't know each other. My biggest intent was for everyone to try to get to know each other so it's not so awkward on our wedding day. It was also really important for me to talk budget with my girls. One of my biggest things I don't want them going broke over a wedding, so I wanted to get everyone together to set up a budget that everyone felt comfortable with. Also to talk about what sort of dress, color, etc they all feel most comfortable in.

    I don't know how I would approach it either, that's why I'm asking for advice. I will more than likely just leave it go because I am really not a confrontational person. I was just really frustrated that that was her excuse. She was basically too tired because she went out with a couple of friends the night before, and worked the next morning. I'm not trying to change her personal life or whatever. But my point is, I sent out invitations for this gathering a month in advance so that people could do the proper preparations to be there. Also, my other girls put in a lot of effort to be able to come (which no I did not ask for but it's just nice that they did). For example, a couple of them work at retail stores and worked really ridiculous hours on thanksgiving / black friday and were still capable of showing up. Also, there are some people that are still in school. One stopped in to see us on his way back to college, while another stopped in on his way back from being home for break.

    I'm not trying to be a bridezilla. I'm frustrated at the fact that everyone else put in so much effort to come and support us and she didn't. Everyone else realized how important this was. The wedding will go a lot nicer and smoother if everyone knows each other, or at least knows who they are walking down the aisle with so it's not completely awkward on the wedding day.

    I'm not asking my bridesmaids to be my own personal slaves, but geez there is a little bit more to it than just "showing up in a dress I pick out." Like I said, I wanted to talk about budget at this party. It was a little difficult to talk about it when we don't have any clue how she feels about anything. Plus, I obviously don't expect every bridesmaid to come to the dress shopping, but I do want majority there.
    MalMondo1020
  • There is no way you can say anything to your friend about missing your party without sounding crazy. Yes it sucks that she bailed at the last minute but it is not vital that your wedding party meet before the wedding and it is not the end of the world that she missed the party.

    I also think you need to lower your expectations of your bridesmaids or you will be in for a lot of disappointment. Yes the only requirement is that they buy the dress and show up the day of the wedding. Anything else that is offered is nice but should not be treated as a requirement. Also please discuss budget individually with each bridesmaid. It is very awkward to speak up if everyone else agrees to a larger budget than one maid is comfortable with.

    I was just in a wedding as a bridesmaid and guess what I didn't meet the guy I was walking with until the rehearsal. Went completely fine. Didn't meet one of the other bridesmaids until the wedding either because she couldn't make the bachelorette party or shower (which is completely understandable). We still got along fine and socialized like adults at the wedding.  Many of my wedding party didn't meet until the rehearsal, again went completely fine. Also I didn't go dress shopping with any of my bridesmaids because none of us live in the same state (all of them still managed to get the dress). Your wedding party does not have to become best friends, and you are likely to run into more issues if you keep trying to force them to all socialize with each other or attend a bunch of mandatory pre-wedding events.


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    southernbelle0915SKPM[Deleted User]
  • Okay, obviously we are not all on the same page and that's fine. Everyone is different, I accept that all of your views are slightly different than mine. Now, accept that my views are different than yours and stop attacking me for it. 

    I do not believe I did anything wrong by throwing myself an engagement party. I did a lot of research on the subject prior to making the decision, and it actually turns out that most sources said the following: Typically, an engagement party is thrown by the bride or groom's parents or a close family member, but it can also in some cases be thrown by the bride and groom themselves. Plenty of people have said that this is PERFECTLY NORMAL. That being said, again, I did not ask for money or gifts or anything. All my bridal party had to do was show up. They did not have to pay for food or drinks.

    It might not be necessary for the bridal party to meet and get to know each other beforehand. But you know what? Our bridal party had an absolute blast at this party and they all have told me they really appreciate a chance getting to know each other. Especially my MOH because she is more than willing to throw me a bachlerotte party & bridal shower, and she was grateful to have a chance to get all my bridesmaids contact information who were also ALL willing to help out with both things. Obviously, it's rude to expect these things. But I've honestly never heard of a bride not having a bridal shower. Maybe the bachlerotte party can be skipped but not have a shower? That's a tradition from where I come from. Again, everyone has their different beliefs so I guess this is one of those instances. I've just never heard of bridesmaids not being willing to help out with those things. My girls are more than willing and I'm grateful for that and will definitely do my best to thank them when it's all over. If I was a bridesmaid, I would want to do a lot more than just show up in a dress. 

    I'm aware that I will not be able to get a lot of the bridesmaids together for dress shopping. However, I do have a few different body types and height lengths in the party, so I wanted to get a good majority of them to go dress shopping so we make sure that all of them feel comfortable in the same dress. The girls are all looking forward to going dress shopping.

    Again, I'm not trying to make them all be best friends. I just wanted one opportunity for everyone to meet. Everyone that came, really appreciated it. Thanks for the input, but I'm done with the negative feedback. If that's all you guys have to say, I'm out of this conversation. Thanks again.


  • No one is attacking you. You posted a question on a public forum and people responded with their personal thoughts. Just like you've responded with yours. No one is attacking anyone.

    Obviously you don't care about anyone's feedback on the engagement party or any other pre-wedding parties, tips on dealing with your BMs, or anything else. Which is kind of perplexing since you posted a thread asking for feedback, but whatever.

    About shopping for dresses, I had 4 BMs in 3 different states who have totally different body types. It was for sure a challenge, but it was completely unreasonable to expect that we'd go shopping together or that I'd expect them to go to a bridal shop by themselves and try on different styles. So here's what I did: I picked a designer (Ann Taylor), a fabric (silk georgette), a color (navy) and a length (knee) and told them to get whatever they wanted. So basically the only thing that was different was the top - I think there was a strapless option, a one-shoulder, a tank, a y-neck and a spahgetti strap style. They picked whatever they thought was best for their body and we never had to go shopping - all done via email. Just a thought.
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  • Well, I was hoping for more positive feedback. But I know I should have been expecting both, because well this is the internet and people have a wide variety of different opinions. Which is fine, I know better now.

    I wasn't really asking for advice on whether or not to have an engagement party, how to talk budget, how to get my bridesmaids together for dress shopping, or what a bridesmaid is supposed to do. I simply just wanted to know how I could approach this particular no-show situation with my bridesmaid. I was upset when I posted it. It was better for me to post it here than to have said these feelings to her face, because now I realize I just got angry in the heat of the moment and I'm content with how things happened now.

    That's a nice idea, and I'm glad that worked for you. For me, all of my BMS live in the same general area. It will not be a difficult task to at least get half of them to go shopping, which is really all I need. I'm not really a fan of everyone having a different style dress, it's just not my style. That works for you, that's fine. I appreciate your advice, and am sorry if I came off as rude. Thank you again for your input.
    MalMondo1020
  • I wouldn't worry about her being "unreliable".  Sh*t happens, life goes on.  If she has a history of being "unreliable", you really shouldn't be terribly surprised that she couldn't make it.  However, if she hasn't skipped out on a get together before, it's not very nice to start saying that you aren't sure if she's going to not show up for your wedding.

    If she's close enough to be in your wedding party, please, let this go.
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  • Yeah, I'm realizing that this is probably just a one time thing. She has a very busy work schedule, but I have faith that she will make time to call off for the wedding.

    Thanks again :)
  • edited December 2013
    Edit: I said you had a good attitude.  Apparently not.
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  •  Is this a liable excuse for me to be upset?
    No, definitely no.
    Blue_Birdsouthernbelle0915[Deleted User]
  • positivekpositivek member
    Second Anniversary 10 Comments 5 Love Its
    edited December 2013

    I suppose if you call it “engagement party” then traditionalists are going to say “Ok, gifts”. But if that’s not really done or expected in your circle (always know your crowd), personally, I don’t think it’s a big deal that you called it an engagement party in this case, as it clearly more had the tone of a meet and greet. If you called it a meet-and-greet, no one on the outside would say you hosting it is rude- but with limited information, people tend to define things through labels. But I think the people invited have a better sense of context because they know you, they know the tone of the event from your invite, which says a lot more about the particulars of an event than a label does.

    People generally do take the wedding more seriously than the pre-parties, so I don't think you have to worry about the big day, anyway. I sure wish though that there was “bridal party etiquette”; it always seems it’s on the bride to be completely on point while bridal party members are entitled to flake on gatherings that are rather important- including non-wedding related events- two hours in advance, and no one really calls it out, so they don’t really learn that it’s hurtful. I wonder if someone wrote in here saying “there’s an engagement/meet and greet party in two hours but I’m just not feeling it. Cool if I bail by text?”, how they’d be advised (although chances are they wouldn’t write in for advice at all- and you are, so isn’t that a testament to your concerns about someone else’s feelings?). I would feel pretty rude calling in tired, or for any non-emergency reason less than 24 hours in advance. For a friend who asked me to be in their bridal party, I’d drag my butt there, discuss the business at hand to give her some peace of mind, and then just leave early. Just know though if you do call it out you should be prepared for some friction if she’s resistant to what you have to say. So I can understand wanting to say something, but only you can know whether it’s worth whatever fallout to actually act on it.

  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    Okay, obviously we are not all on the same page and that's fine. Everyone is different, I accept that all of your views are slightly different than mine. Now, accept that my views are different than yours and stop attacking me for it. 

    I do not believe I did anything wrong by throwing myself an engagement party. I did a lot of research on the subject prior to making the decision, and it actually turns out that most sources said the following: Typically, an engagement party is thrown by the bride or groom's parents or a close family member, but it can also in some cases be thrown by the bride and groom themselves. Plenty of people have said that this is PERFECTLY NORMAL. That being said, again, I did not ask for money or gifts or anything. All my bridal party had to do was show up. They did not have to pay for food or drinks.

    It might not be necessary for the bridal party to meet and get to know each other beforehand. But you know what? Our bridal party had an absolute blast at this party and they all have told me they really appreciate a chance getting to know each other. Especially my MOH because she is more than willing to throw me a bachlerotte party & bridal shower, and she was grateful to have a chance to get all my bridesmaids contact information who were also ALL willing to help out with both things. Obviously, it's rude to expect these things. But I've honestly never heard of a bride not having a bridal shower. Maybe the bachlerotte party can be skipped but not have a shower? That's a tradition from where I come from. Again, everyone has their different beliefs so I guess this is one of those instances. I've just never heard of bridesmaids not being willing to help out with those things. My girls are more than willing and I'm grateful for that and will definitely do my best to thank them when it's all over. If I was a bridesmaid, I would want to do a lot more than just show up in a dress. 

    I'm aware that I will not be able to get a lot of the bridesmaids together for dress shopping. However, I do have a few different body types and height lengths in the party, so I wanted to get a good majority of them to go dress shopping so we make sure that all of them feel comfortable in the same dress. The girls are all looking forward to going dress shopping.

    Again, I'm not trying to make them all be best friends. I just wanted one opportunity for everyone to meet. Everyone that came, really appreciated it. Thanks for the input, but I'm done with the negative feedback. If that's all you guys have to say, I'm out of this conversation. Thanks again.


    Obviously not all of them, since one didn't make it to the party.  And lo and behold, the world did not end!  It's a miracle.



    AddieCake[Deleted User]aspoonfulofsugar
  • positivek said:

    I suppose if you call it “engagement party” then traditionalists are going to say “Ok, gifts”. But if that’s not really done or expected in your circle (always know your crowd), personally, I don’t think it’s a big deal that you called it an engagement party in this case, as it clearly more had the tone of a meet and greet. If you called it a meet-and-greet, no one on the outside would say you hosting it is rude- but with limited information, people tend to define things through labels. But I think the people invited have a better sense of context because they know you, they know the tone of the event from your invite, which says a lot more about the particulars of an event than a label does.

    People generally do take the wedding more seriously than the pre-parties, so I don't think you have to worry about the big day, anyway. I sure wish though that there was “bridal party etiquette”; it always seems it’s on the bride to be completely on point while bridal party members are entitled to flake on gatherings that are rather important- including non-wedding related events- two hours in advance, and no one really calls it out, so they don’t really learn that it’s hurtful. I wonder if someone wrote in here saying “there’s an engagement/meet and greet party in two hours but I’m just not feeling it. Cool if I bail by text?”, how they’d be advised (although chances are they wouldn’t write in for advice at all- and you are, so isn’t that a testament to your concerns about someone else’s feelings?). I would feel pretty rude calling in tired, or for any non-emergency reason less than 24 hours in advance. For a friend who asked me to be in their bridal party, I’d drag my butt there, discuss the business at hand to give her some peace of mind, and then just leave early. Just know though if you do call it out you should be prepared for some friction if she’s resistant to what you have to say. So I can understand wanting to say something, but only you can know whether it’s worth whatever fallout to actually act on it.

    Thank you! Ugh, glad to know i'm not crazy. I'm not going to say anything to her, I'm over it. But thanks for agreeing with me. My bridal party all understood I wasn't asking for gifts, no one was offended. They all were kind of offended that the one girl didn't show up because she was tired. They were all a little upset that they put in so much effort to make it and this girl didn't. So that's why I kind of wanted to say something to her, but decided not to. I agree, if I were a bridesmaid I would make every effort to support the bride because I'd be so honored she asked me to be in her wedding.

    Thanks again :)
  • I love the snarky-ness on here. Is this all you guys have to do? Damn, that's sad :)
    MalMondo1020Ms2MrsViney
  • I love the snarky-ness on here. Is this all you guys have to do? Damn, that's sad :)

    I think you should listen to the "snark" because it really sounds like if you DON'T listen to these ladies, you are not going to have any friends left once your married.  Your bridal party does not have to attend anything except the wedding itself.  Get a grip.
    Sorry if your bridal party felt this way about you, is that why you call yourself anti bride maybe? But my friends actually care about me and are willing to do as much as they can to help out :) the missing maid is sorry she missed it, and will be at future events! So again, I'm sorry that your friends were flaky. Maybe you should get a grip on them (:
    MalMondo1020
  • I love the snarky-ness on here. Is this all you guys have to do? Damn, that's sad :)

    I think you should listen to the "snark" because it really sounds like if you DON'T listen to these ladies, you are not going to have any friends left once your married.  Your bridal party does not have to attend anything except the wedding itself.  Get a grip.
    Sorry if your bridal party felt this way about you, is that why you call yourself anti bride maybe? But my friends actually care about me and are willing to do as much as they can to help out :) the missing maid is sorry she missed it, and will be at future events! So again, I'm sorry that your friends were flaky. Maybe you should get a grip on them (:
    Yea, @antibride2013, maybe you should crack the whip on your friends and start controlling them more. Obviously that's the best way to maintain your friends and make them do whatever you want. /*sarcasm

    @bmydesigner - putting smiley faces all over your post doesn't make it any less bitchy. Why would you say that antibride's friends are flaky, don't care about her, etc? She revealed exactly zero about herself in that post and you come out with the personal insults? YOU'RE the one who came here, told your story and asked for opinions. She's commenting on what YOU wrote. And frankly, I tend to agree with what she said. Especially if you take constructive criticism like this by putting other people down, tossing out insults and trying to make it seem less bitchy by slapping a smiley face on it. Sorry, no. 

    I actually didn't have any bridesmaids, didn't want any.  But even if I did, I would not ever demand that they be at a self hosted engagement party, then get pissed when my friend is tired working to not be at my beck and call.

    You wanted feedback, which is what you got.  Sorry no one is going to validate your shitty behavior.  I feel so terribly bad for your bridesmaids. 

    [Deleted User]SKPMaurorajanettegrumbledore
  • I'm really not all that sure I'm the one who got bitchy first?  I even kindly admitted that I was being unreasonable and just got upset in the heat of the moment, and the thread stopped getting attention for a few days. Then out of nowhere I get more snarky comments after we've already pretty much ended the discussion? That's what pissed me off. You guys don't know me, that's fine. But I'm a very nice person and easy to get along with. I work in an environment where I am getting constructive criticism all the time. I'm used to it and I can handle it just fine.

    The top of this thread does have a lot of reasonable, constructive criticism. We got into a debate / discussion about engagement parties, and what duties are expected of bridesmaids. I was slightly annoyed that the discussion got into the debate of whether or not I should have hosted my own engagement party, being that that wasn't what I asked about at all. Regardless though, no one was rude. Then, after I admitted that I was wrong for being upset and the discussion was over - in came the snarky, rude replies. Such as, "Obviously not all of them, since one didn't make it to the party.  And lo and behold, the world did not end!  It's a miracle." and "If anyone needs me, I'll be on the floor. You know, where I fell down laughing." 

    Which I thought was uncalled for. Those two comments above are not constructive criticism. They are flat our rude and unnecessary. So only after seeing those, did I get a little "rude" back. And the other reply, "think you should listen to the "snark" because it really sounds like if you DON'T listen to these ladies, you are not going to have any friends left once your married.  Your bridal party does not have to attend anything except the wedding itself.  Get a grip." was indeed getting a little bit personal with me, so I got personal back. I'm sorry, but I was not the first one being rude and if you're going to be rude, someone is going to call you out on it. That's just how life is.
    [Deleted User]MalMondo1020aleighc3
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I'm really not all that sure I'm the one who got bitchy first?  I even kindly admitted that I was being unreasonable and just got upset in the heat of the moment, and the thread stopped getting attention for a few days. Then out of nowhere I get more snarky comments after we've already pretty much ended the discussion? That's what pissed me off. You guys don't know me, that's fine. But I'm a very nice person and easy to get along with. I work in an environment where I am getting constructive criticism all the time. I'm used to it and I can handle it just fine.

    The top of this thread does have a lot of reasonable, constructive criticism. We got into a debate / discussion about engagement parties, and what duties are expected of bridesmaids. I was slightly annoyed that the discussion got into the debate of whether or not I should have hosted my own engagement party, being that that wasn't what I asked about at all. Regardless though, no one was rude. Then, after I admitted that I was wrong for being upset and the discussion was over - in came the snarky, rude replies. Such as, "Obviously not all of them, since one didn't make it to the party.  And lo and behold, the world did not end!  It's a miracle." and "If anyone needs me, I'll be on the floor. You know, where I fell down laughing." 

    Which I thought was uncalled for. Those two comments above are not constructive criticism. They are flat our rude and unnecessary. So only after seeing those, did I get a little "rude" back. And the other reply, "think you should listen to the "snark" because it really sounds like if you DON'T listen to these ladies, you are not going to have any friends left once your married.  Your bridal party does not have to attend anything except the wedding itself.  Get a grip." was indeed getting a little bit personal with me, so I got personal back. I'm sorry, but I was not the first one being rude and if you're going to be rude, someone is going to call you out on it. That's just how life is.
    Regardless of what you specifically asked about, if you comment here (or for that matter anywhere else on the Internet, or even live) people are going to respond about what you posted about-even if you didn't ask about it.

    To complain about that suggests a lack of familiarity with how the Internet, this forum, and life itself work.  If you don't want commentary about something, then don't bring it up.


  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    You felt it was uncalled for that I fell down laughing. And I felt it was uncalled for and hilarious that you think your bridesmaid not coming to your engagement party is an issue and makes her "unreliable."  The last line of your OP is "So what do you guys think?" and then when we tell you what we think, you take issue with us? Sure, that seems fair. If you don't want to know what people think, don't ask them. 




    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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    [Deleted User]grumbledore
  •  I'm well aware that's how the internet and life works. But like I said, there's a big difference between giving an opinion on something and just being flat out rude. When someone asks for advice, if you don't agree with how they handled that situation then fine tell them what you would do (that's advice)! However, simply saying that you fell down laughing is not advice, is not a well rounded justified opinion, and was just a rude comment. Therefore, I called you out on it. If you don't want people to call you out on things, don't post rude comments.
    MalMondo1020
  • pinkcow13pinkcow13 The Concrete Jungle member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2013
    Geez, things sure got heated! @bmydesigner, did you ever say anything to your friend? I understand where you are coming from, My FI and I are having members of our WP over the weekend, just to hang out. For the most part, they all know each other, and we've hung out plenty of times. The only person that no one  - except for my BFF -  knows is my cousin. I told her weeks in advance that if she could, we would be having a gathering, and would love for her to come. She was really excited [honestly, she is soooo excited to be a bridesmaid lol. She's already made suggestions about dress colors and styles, and has asked about who she would be paired with]. 

    Lately though, she has been going through some personal stuff and has completely stopped talking to me. It sucks, but I'm not going to reach out about this weekend since she has more important things going on. In an ideal world things would work out differently, but right now I understand she need time. When she's ready, my MOH can reach out to her [she has asked me for all my bridesmaids contact info], and there is plenty of time until the wedding to discuss dresses, etc. I would say cut your friend some slack, and don't say anything. When it comes time to seriously discuss details such as the dress, rehearsal dinner, etc, chances are things will be fine. I think there will always be people that are more into it than others, and that are able to dedicate time more than others.
                                 Anniversary
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    MalMondo1020[Deleted User]
  • I organized a cook out for everyone in my Bridal party and the families to meet. Not everyone was able to come. The best advice I can give you is not to let the little things like that stress you out. One thing that I did is send all of the BM a list of the names, address, phone numbers & email addresses of each other. I did the same for the GM. I let them work it out amongst themselves on organizing the bridal shower and the bachlor & bachlorette parties. I know for the BM they did a lot of communicating via email because my MOH was working full time & school part time, another BM was going school & work both full time, another BM had a teenage daughters school/volleyball schedule to work around  the last one didn't have a traditional work schedule (lots of nights & weekends). Going forward if you plan events or things like hey I'm working on favors and could use some help, the best thing you can do is send out an email to them with as much notice as possible & hope for the best. Whoever is able to come, great, but just try be understanding of those who can't. As long as they order their dresses by the ordering deadline and show up on time for the rehersal and wedding, that is what really matters. THe same thing goes for the dress, you can let them know when you want to go BM dress shopping and whoever is available, well they get a say in the dress that gets picked, those who can't make it, it sucks just give them a deadline (I would say 1-2 weeks before the absolute deadline so you have a buffer) of when the dress has to be ordered. Hopefully it won't happen too often that this BM or any of them won't be able to make it to stuff. But try not stress out about it (sometimes easier said then done) because you will just drive yourself crazy and it's not worth it.
  • Thanks for your advice :) I really made this post in the heat of the moment and have realized that I was overreacting. I understand life happens and sometimes people won't always be able to be there, nor should they have to be. I'm definitely not stressing out about these types of issues anymore. I don't even expect my girls to throw me a shower / bach party but I know they want to so I want to do my best to make it the easiest it can be for them. Thanks for all your input everyone.
    [Deleted User]
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers


    Erikan73 said:
    I organized a cook out for everyone in my Bridal party and the families to meet. Not everyone was able to come. The best advice I can give you is not to let the little things like that stress you out. One thing that I did is send all of the BM a list of the names, address, phone numbers & email addresses of each other. I did the same for the GM. I let them work it out amongst themselves on organizing the bridal shower and the bachlor & bachlorette parties. I know for the BM they did a lot of communicating via email because my MOH was working full time & school part time, another BM was going school & work both full time, another BM had a teenage daughters school/volleyball schedule to work around  the last one didn't have a traditional work schedule (lots of nights & weekends). Going forward if you plan events or things like hey I'm working on favors and could use some help, the best thing you can do is send out an email to them with as much notice as possible & hope for the best. Whoever is able to come, great, but just try be understanding of those who can't. As long as they order their dresses by the ordering deadline and show up on time for the rehersal and wedding, that is what really matters. THe same thing goes for the dress, you can let them know when you want to go BM dress shopping and whoever is available, well they get a say in the dress that gets picked, those who can't make it, it sucks just give them a deadline (I would say 1-2 weeks before the absolute deadline so you have a buffer) of when the dress has to be ordered. Hopefully it won't happen too often that this BM or any of them won't be able to make it to stuff. But try not stress out about it (sometimes easier said then done) because you will just drive yourself crazy and it's not worth it.




    **STUCK in box.....
    The bride should have NOTHING to do with showers or other pre-wedding parties, INCLUDING assuming/suggesting when or how they should be organized.  If anyone from your bridal party wants to throw one, it should be their idea alone.  Even hinting at this is really poor form.

    It is NEVER appropriate to ask for help or solicit for it in any communication.  If anyone ASKS, you can say, "I'm working on favors in two weeks.  Do you have any interest in helping?"  There is no need to be "understanding" if someone cannot help because they are under NO obligation to do so.

    Dress selection should not be done the day of the shopping trip.  You should privately ask each BM what she can afford PRIOR to any dress selection.  You should also ask if there is any particular style of dress that would cause your BM to feel uncomfortable or immodest.  If not every BM can attend the shopping "event", you must afford those BM's the opportunity to see what choices you are considering.  In no way is it ever appropriate to just inform a BM of the dress she must purchase, sight unseen.  I can tell you right now that not every BM will be able to make the same appointment, nor should they have to.  At the very least you need to give them enough time to look at the choices on their own.
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