Real bride Jenni’s diary: how to ask your best gals to be your bridesmaids in style

Welcome back to real bride diaries. Jenni, a 26-year-old teacher from Portsmouth, has been filling us in on her pre-wedding plans for her 2014 vintage nautical-themed wedding to fiancé Paul. Her latest instalment is filled with fabulous ideas about how to ask your best gals to be your bridesmaids!


How I chose my bridal party

I know that some people struggle with how to choose their bridesmaids. How they can pick one friend over another, how to involve both sides of the family, “if I ask her I should ask her too” etc.

I am happy to report that I got really lucky, I always knew who I wanted to be my bridesmaids and there was no agonising whatsoever.

I decided to have four bridesmaids and one flower girl in my bridal party. I have my lovely twin sister, Andie, as my maid of honour, my beautiful younger sister, Katie, my fabulous best friend, Sarah, and a very dear friend, Emma. The little flower girl will be my gorgeous (and oh-so adorable) cousin, Olivia.

How I popped the question

I wanted to ask the girls in an imaginative way. It was really funny as my sisters were starting to get annoyed I hadn’t asked them but little did they know that I was secretly working on a project to do just that.

I had seen a really lovely way to ask your closest friends to be your bridesmaids on Pinterest and wanted to put my own little spin on it.


I created a box which had some personalised gifts inside.The box contained:

♥ Some sweets (to keep them sweet)
♥ A small notepad (for writing important dates)
♥ A mug which had an inspiring phrase on it
♥ A cut out of a dress (showing them that I wouldn’t make them wear an awful dress)
♥ A picture of myself asking them to be my bridesmaids.

These boxes were a massive hit and made everyone cry! It makes me so happy going into their houses now and seeing the photograph displayed proudly.

Down to business

We have a group on Facebook for all of the bridesmaids where we discuss ideas and post images of dresses we like. As you know, my theme is vintage and nautical. We were looking at dresses that matched this criteria. A big front runner was this style of dress, however the fabric wasn’t right, so we arranged a date to go bridesmaid dress shopping.

I am so excited about my big day and the wedding itself, but this wedding is more than just the one day. We have lots of small things to look forward to which all lead up to the big day and it makes the journey even more exciting and special. Bridesmaids’ dress shopping was one of these exciting trips.


I invited all of the girls to my mum’s house. I also invited Paul’s mum to take part in the day, and it was so lovely having everyone there. We went to a big shopping centre in London and headed straight to the department stores. We had loads of fun trying on different dresses.

As the girls are different shapes and have different complexions I didn’t think we would find one dress to suit them all. I went in with a very open mind: if we found a dress they liked and they wanted it in different colours that would be fine, likewise if they wanted different styles in the same colour I also wouldn’t mind. I just want the girls to feel pretty on the day.

Incredibly, we found one dress that all of the girls like and despite their very different looks, it suits them all! What was even better was the fact that they were in budget! Well, I cheated a tiny bit by opening a store card which gave me 10% off, but hey, brides have to be resourceful!

We then had lunch at a champagne bar to celebrate a successful day’s shopping as we were all on such a high! I felt very spoilt and loved by the lovely ladies in my life and so glad that I picked them to be my bridesmaids. I’m really looking forward to more days like this one.

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