Getting married is one of the most exciting times in a person’s life. As you plan your special day, one of the fun parts is selecting your wedding party – your nearest and dearest who will stand by your side as you say “I do.”
Your wedding party typically consists of a maid of honor, bridesmaids, best man, and groomsmen. While tradition dictates that these roles are reserved for friends and family members of similar age and life stage, many modern couples want to break free and include their loved ones, regardless of age or gender.
So can your grandma be a bridesmaid? The short answer is – yes! Here is what you need to know about choosing grandma as part of your bridal party:
Why Have Grandma be a Bridesmaid?
There are many good reasons to include grandma in your wedding party:
- She’s special to you – If your grandma played an important role in your upbringing, it makes sense to honor her on your wedding day. This shows how much you value your relationship.
- For sentimental reasons – Having grandma get ready with you and stand by your side adds extra meaning and creates special memories.
- She’s spunky and fun – Just because she’s older doesn’t mean grandma can’t have a good time! She’ll enjoy the wedding planning festivities.
- To represent family – If your grandma is the matriarch of your family, having her up with you symbolizes the joining of two families.
Potential Concerns About Having Grandma be a Bridesmaid
While including grandma in your bridal party can be meaningful, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Mobility issues – Make sure grandma is comfortable standing during the ceremony and walking down the aisle. Consider providing a chair or having an escort.
- Stamina for wedding events – Full days of celebrations may be tiring. Be prepared to have backup help or allow grandma to skip non-essential activities.
- Finding a flattering dress – Work with your seamstress to choose a style and color that is figure-flattering and age-appropriate. Consider a shawl or jacket.
- Keeping up with bridesmaid duties – Manage expectations around grandma’s involvement with showers, bachelorette parties, etc. Modify her role as needed.
- Interacting with the wedding party – Personalities and age differences can sometimes be challenging. Offer support as needed.
How to Include Grandma Seamlessly
With some forethought, you can ensure that having grandma as a bridesmaid is a success:
Choose the Right Role
Think about grandma’s needs and limitations. Bridesmaid may be too much. Consider:
- Honorary bridesmaid – Participates in some key elements without all the responsibilities.
- Junior bridesmaid – A young member who may partner with grandma.
- Readings during the ceremony – Give grandma a special role without standing the whole time.
Help With Dress Shopping
Make sure Grandma feels comfortable and confident with her attire.
- Set aside time for just you and grandma to focus, without distractions.
- Select a few styles in her size to try on. Offer encouraging feedback.
- Consider shoes she can easily walk in, and comfortable undergarments.
- If needed, have alterations tailored to flatter her shape.
Handle Logistics Sensitively
Respect Grandma’s physical needs and limitations.
- Arrange travel and accommodations convenient for her.
- Allow time for rest breaks when planning wedding events.
- Seat her conveniently during the reception to limit walking.
- Assign a family member to assist grandma as needed.
Make Grandma Feel Special
Do little things to show your love and make it fun for her.
- Have a robe or sash monogrammed with “Grandma of the Bride.”
- Schedule a spa day or high tea for the girls to pamper grandma.
- Display photos at the reception highlighting your relationship.
Making It Work
Including grandma in your wedding party can add deep meaning to your special day. With some adjustments and TLC along the way, you can make sure it’s a rewarding experience that creates treasured memories for both of you. T
he most important thing is keeping the focus on your love and appreciation for your grandma, rather than logistics. So if having your beloved grandma by your side on your wedding day feels right, don’t let anything stop you!
Just embrace all the joy and fun ahead as you plan this milestone event together.
Frequently Asked Questions
Many brides want to honor their grandmothers by including them in the wedding party. But they often have lots of practical questions about how to make it work smoothly. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:
What are the most important things to consider when deciding?
The key considerations are:
- Grandma’s physical abilities – assess mobility, endurance, and overall health honestly.
- Grandma’s comfort level – gauge whether she will enjoy the activities or feel nervous or overwhelmed.
- Logistics – evaluate travel requirements, timeline, attire, shoes, etc.
- Grandma’s relationships – does she get along well with the other bridesmaids?
How can I ensure Grandma feels included with the other bridesmaids?
- Make personal invitations for dress shopping and wedding party events.
- Pair grandma up with someone she connects with for getting ready, photos, transportation, etc.
- Modify activities as needed to accommodate Grandma while keeping her involved.
- Provide extra assistance discreetly, such as an escort for walking long distances.
- Consider giving grandma her own special bridesmaid gifts.
What unique role ideas work well for honor grandma?
If being a bridesmaid is too much, other meaningful roles for grandma include:
- Reading a poem or meaningful words during the ceremony.
- Handing out programs to guests as they arrive.
- Helping greet and seat guests.
- Presenting a toast at the reception.
- Wearing a corsage and sitting in the front row.
- Carrying and displaying a framed photo of deceased loved ones.
How can I help Grandma feel comfortable with bridesmaid fashion?
- Choose a style and color that flatters grandma’s shape and skin tone.
- Allow grandma to wear sensible, supportive shoes rather than high heels.
- Make any needed dress alterations to ensure comfort and coverage.
- Consider a shawl or jacket to stay warm at the ceremony.
- Apply professional makeup lightly to enhance grandma’s natural beauty.
What reception tips make it enjoyable for grandma?
- Reserve a table near the dance floor so grandma can watch.
- Serve grandma’s meal first so she can retire early if needed.
- Provide a comfortable chair with arms during dancing and mingling.
- Introduce grandma to guests but don’t overwhelm her.
- Check-in frequently and have someone assist Grandma as required.
How can I thank Grandma for being part of my special day?
- Gift grandma something meaningful like a piece of jewelry.
- Create a photo album from the wedding just for Grandma.
- Write a heartfelt letter expressing what her support has meant.
- Treat grandma to a visit or meal after returning from the honeymoon.
- Send anniversary flowers each year to celebrate.
Having your beloved grandma as a bridesmaid or honored member of your wedding party can add so much joy and meaning to your celebration.
With proper planning and care, you can ensure it’s a special experience you’ll treasure forever. Focus on adapting activities to Grandma’s abilities and making her feel valued. The memories you create together will be priceless.