By Sara Doerrier
Traditionally, the bride and groom will honor their friends by inviting them to stand by their side as a bridesmaid or groomsmen. If you and your partner find yourselves wanting to honor your friends and family, but for whatever reason, are not incorporating them into your wedding party, don’t fret. There are many ways to include those who mean the most to you on your special day. This will not only let those people know how much they mean to you, but also avoid hurt feelings.
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Toasts and Speeches
One of the most traditional ways you can honor a friend or family member is by asking them to give a toast or a speech during your reception. This, of course, doesn’t have to only be given during the reception; asking them to read a passage or a poem during the ceremony is a nice way to share your day as well.
If public speaking is not their forte, have them serve as ushers at your wedding. One can greet guests as they arrive, handing them programs and showing them to their seats. Another friend can be in charge of the ceremony or guest book. One friend can distribute bubbles, seeds, or petals for your send-off. Be sure to even out the responsibilities, you don’t want them “working” at your wedding, and don’t force this onto your friend, they should be willing.
If you have a friend or a relative that can sing well, have them preform for you and your guests. Same goes with any musical instruments or talents that can be shown off. This can also serve in part as your evening’s entertainment.
For those you want to honor, but have your ceremony and reception planned out already, think about gifting something small but memorable. Give your pals a corsage, simple jewelry that they can wear at the wedding, or even a hand written letter from the heart. They will appreciate the gesture and a little goes a long way.
Invite your friends to go out and get your hair done together, nails or ask them to be there to help you get into your elaborate train wedding dress – a more private way to spend time together.
If you plan to toast your guests and make a speech, you can specially thank those that are dear to you during your toast. On the other hand, if you have wedding programs, include a bit about your friends or “honorary attendants”. Even though they are not included in your wedding party, you still let them know how much they mean to you.
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