Being asked to be the maid of honor is a big deal - even if it's your sister's wedding - the MOH is considered to be the bride's bestie, closest confidante, and the one woman she most trusts to help her get through the joys and tribulations of her wedding planning.
The MOH is responsible for making sure there will be bridal showers (even if she doesn't host one), planning the bachelorette party, and helping to corral the other bridesmaids for dress fittings and other necessary pre-wedding activities.
But there are also a number of things that the MOH is responsible for on the actual wedding weekend that no etiquette book will warn her about. These five are perfect examples:
1. Monitoring every member of the bridal party's alcohol intake on the wedding day.
Nobody likes to be the party pooper, but sometimes the MOH has to step up to the plate and tell the girls doing shots while they're dressing to cool it before the ceremony. Giggling on the altar, or tripping on your way down the aisle, isn't acceptable.
2. Knowing where the bride's personal items are at all times.
She'll probably have an evening bag that has her lipstick, tissues, her phone, and other personal items in it. She'll need to be able retouch lipstick during final photos and she'll need to refresh before her big entrance, toasts and cutting the cake. It's the MOH's job to have things on hand as needed.
3. Straightening up the bridal suite before the reception ends.
If the wedding venue is in the same place as the where the couple is staying, it's easy for the MOH to grab another bridesmaid and slip away to triage the bride and groom's bedroom before they retire for the evening. All the detritus of the bridal party dressing should be removed, the pillows should be fluffed and she might even consider leaving a romantic touch on the pillow.
4. Keeping safe the envelopes of cash.
Depending on the kind of wedding group and where they're getting married, there may not be a special place to put envelopes holding monetary gifts. Sometimes the wedding planner will hold them for the couple until after the wedding, but if there isn't somebody there to do that, the MOH needs to find a hidey-hole in the master suite or elsewhere to stash the booty.
5. Making sure the bride drinks as much water as she does alcohol.
It's easy for a bride to accidentally get drunk. Seriously. With the stress of the day, she may not eat even if there's food in front of her. And if the girls keep pouring champagne or cocktails and that's what she has to drink, she'll be downing it. Switching up between water and wine, so to speak, is a good way to help her make sure she's hydrated and sober when she heads down the aisle.
Owner of Weddings in Vieques, a destination-wedding planning company off the coast of Puerto Rico, Sandy Malone has helped countless couples plan their big day since 2007.