Flower Girl and Ring Bearer Etiquette

Published: 04th May 2007
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Flower girls and ring bearers are adorable, but they do come with a wee bit of fine print. Who pays for their outfits? Where do they sit? Do the bridesmaids have to baby-sit them? For solutions to your little ones dilemmas, read our roundup of etiquette Q&As.


Inviting children to take part in your celebration can make it even more special. However, the last thing you want to worry about on your wedding day is your little flower girl and ring bearer becoming impatient, restless or fidgety on the day of your wedding. Here are some helpful tips to ensure that the day goes smoothly and without any surprises.

1.As a general rule, when choosing children to take part in your wedding as a flower girl or ring bearer, it is usually best (or at least more predictable) to have children ages four and above. Of course, each child is different and you'll want to consider their individual personality (very shy vs. outgoing) and maturity level as well. If a child is so nervous about going down the isle, do not push the issue, simply find something else in the wedding for them to do.

One of our staff members had a boy who was terrified to walk down the isle with the pillow, so we simply re-designated him to hand out the wedding programs before the ceremony.

He was thrilled and relieved that he did not have to do this task and was very happy that he was still a part of the wedding. Also, an idea for a girl would be to hand out the rice or bubbles for the celebration as the bride and groom leave.

These are great ways to involve family children without hurting anyones feelings by not having them as the ring bearer or flower girl. It always makes for great pictures of the bride and groom surrounded by a bunch of children.

2. In the weeks before the wedding day, start talking to your flower girl and ring bearer about the events that will take place before and throughout the wedding day. Get them excited! Explain what they will wear, where they will go, where they will stand and what they will have to do.

The better young children can visualize their role in the wedding, the better prepared they will be to cooperate and participate as you would like them to. Children want to please, so make sure that the bride, planner or parents teach the children what is expected of them before the big day.

3. Most importantly, choose outfits for the children that are comfortable. Choose comfortable fabrics - - ones that don't scratch or irritate the skin. Just know how you feel when you are wearing something you want to tear off! The most important tip that we can give you is buy something that the child LIKES to wear. Do you remember how you were when you were a kid? Involve them in the selection of their wedding attire. If they feel pretty or handsome, it will show in their attitude and behavior. Be sure the children wear comfortable shoes, and if the shoes are new - that they have a chance to "break them in" prior to the wedding day.

In August, one of our staff members attended a wedding in Florida (hottest month) and the child was dressed in tights and a long sleeved dress. The bride had chosen it because she too had long sleeves on her dress. However, what she failed to realize is that her dress had the removable jacket (for the ceremony) and was strapless for the reception and the childs DID NOT.

The child was wanting to get undressed before she went down the isle and ended up being taken home to change right after the ceremony. This is the last thing that you want. Think about what you choose for them!

4. Purchase some wedding books- - there are some wonderful books that not only inform flower girls and ring bearers of their role in the wedding, but also welcome and celebrate them as a very special part of the bridal party.

5. Invite all of your children involved and their parents to the rehearsal. Let the children practice walking down the aisle several times so that they will feel more comfortable of their role on the "big day". If the parents or the bride or groom are able to practice with the child before the rehearsal, the more the better. Remember, the night of the rehearsal there are a lot of things going on and the children may need extra practice ahead of time.

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