Maid of honor duties aren't always clearly defined ... this list will help.
Now that you’re engaged, there are lots of decisions to be made. The wedding date, budget, venues, style, vision, colors, flowers—oh and choosing your wedding party, of course! As the bride-to-be, it’s likely up to you who you’d like to stand right next to you as you say your I Do’s on the big day. We’re talking about your bridal party, and even more specifically (and more difficult choice to make)—your MOH (maid- or matron-of-honor … or even man of honor).
And what exactly sets the MOH apart from the rest of your bridal party? Knowing that certainly will impact your decision, along with knowing the types of responsibilities and to-dos she/he will do leading up to and on your big day.
First, picking your MOH
Choosing the special person(s) you want as your MOH is obviously important. While there isn’t an exact formula that every bride can follow, these are a few tips that can help you narrow down your decision—and hopefully keep it drama free.
- Family first. If you’re close to your sister but have a life-long BFF, it’s best to go with your sister as MOH. Hopefully your BFF relationship will last forever, but certainly your sister will always be your sister.
- Have 2+ sisters? It’s okay to pick one that you’re closest to. Or make them all MOHs. If it’s all just too much to pick, then your BFF can be your MOH go-to so that all your sisters feel equal.
- More than 1 MOH is okay. If you simply can’t decide, why not choose them all? Just split up their duties during the wedding planning process and day-of tasks.
- Having no MOH is okay, too. Maybe you’re a really close friend/sister to a lot of people—that’s great! Don’t feel forced to pick one or two. Keep your party equal as attendants and divvy out responsibilities throughout your whole squad.
- Yes, your MOH can be a man! Your brother, best guy friend, or your favorite cousin growing up—your MOH can be a bridesman or man of honor and still do everything for you that a female would. There are lots of cool clothing options for including members of any sex in your wedding party.
- Pick a responsible MOH. Remember, your MOH has a lot of responsibilities to help you tackle as you plan … and more importantly to help you with on YOUR big day. If your first MOH choice doesn’t have the greatest track record for following through, then consider another who does.
Maid of Honor Duties & To-Dos
Now it’s time for your MOH to get to work! From big to not-so-big, there are lots of tasks your MOH may have no idea she's responsible for. To help set you up for a stress-free, fun planning process together, we’ve rounded up common maid of honor duties.
Go dress shopping
Quite possibly one of the most fun parts of wedding planning—shopping for THE dress! If the bride is making an event of dress shopping, the MOH should definitely be on the guest list. She’ll be there to help the bride travel to and from the fitting room and provide honest, constructive feedback on dress options. The MOH can help narrow down bridesmaids dress colors and styles, too.
Keep the bride tribe organized
The MOH serves as the main contact for anything bridesmaid related. This covers everything from project managing other bridesmaids through their duties and making sure everyone gets their dresses, to assuring bridesmaids make it to hair and make-up appointments on time.
Listen and advise when the bride needs it
With the MOH as the closest cohort, she’ll be there to assist the bride with any tasks or simply be there to listen to ideas and provide guidance and advice. Helping choose cake flavors, providing constructive feedback on decor, or offering advice on dealing with opinionated family members falls into this MOH duty.
DIY project sidekick
If there are DIY projects involved, then the MOH is the perfect sidekick to get them done—anything from reception favors to centerpieces and more. She can also help address save the date and invitation envelopes. Turn these get-togethers into fun girl nights where you pop open a bottle of wine, listen to fun music, chat, and craft together!
Plan and help host the wedding shower & bachelorette parties
The MOH should work with the other bridesmaids to divvy out responsibilities and costs for the wedding shower and bachelorette party, including finding a venue, sending out invites, ordering food, and writing down all the gifts received so the bride can write thank you cards easily.
Wedding guest point person
No matter how much info you put on your website or invite, wedding guests tend to have lots of questions around your wedding day, and you will just be too busy planning to answer them all! Your MOH can be the contact for wedding guest questions including gift registries, adults-only event, venue directions, and the like.
Wedding day coordinator
No, this isn’t taking the actual wedding coordinator’s duties (if you have one)! The MOH can keep a copy of the wedding day timeline that the bridal party and vendors will be using. She’ll be able to keep track of the time allotted in the bridal suite, make sure hair and makeup appointments are on track, and keep the bride on track with getting ready and dressed on time, for instance.
Other day-of duties
These MOH to-dos are especially important! They include holding the bride's bouquet during the ceremony, attending to the bride's train and veil during photos (the personal attendant may do this, too), toasting the couple at the reception, helping keep the bride looking beautiful all day long, and definitely busting moves with the bride on the reception dance floor after a wonderful (and long) day. Oh, and we can’t forget that the MOH also signs the couples’ marriage certificate.
And finally, be the best moral support through it all!
The MOH is ultimately a VIP in the bride’s life and she is going to be there for the bride through all the hard decisions, emotional times, and belly-laughing moments.
You can definitely pass this onto your MOH after she accepts. We actually suggest grabbing this list and scheduling a date with your MOH to talk through it so you're on the same page ... and to keep the planning process fun for everyone! Not all of these will apply to you or your MOH, which is another great reason to sit down ahead of time to talk it through. Happy planning!