If you’ve ever wondered if there is a perfect number of bridesmaids or groomsmen, then you’re in the right place. Let’s get right to it: the short answer is no, but from a photography perspective, there is an ideal number. So while we are all for you having twelve bridesmaids and twelve groomsmen, we find that it is very difficult to photograph that many people in a single frame. When you have twenty four people plus the bride and groom in your bridal party, we find that the photo becomes so wide to include everyone that we can actually hardly see who each individual person is.
The solution to this is stacking and having some of the bridesmaids/groomsmen sitting in chairs, but we find that we’re often not near chairs to make that happen. So if you have twenty four awesome friends that you definitely want to include in your bridal party, then go for it, but know that photographing that many people becomes difficult.
We find that the ideal number is first and foremost making sure your bridesmaids and groomsmen are an even number. That means that you should have four, six, eight, etc., bridesmaids or groomsmen. As long as the number is not an odd number then we can put the bride in the middle and have her evenly surrounded by bridesmaids. The same thing goes for the groomsmen. This is totally just an ideal situation from a photography standpoint for our own tastes. We love symmetry and order. When there is symmetry on both sides of the couple, that’s what is most compelling for us.
When it comes to the ideal number of bridesmaids and groomsmen, we find that the sweet-spot is either six or eight people. This ensures we’re really able to fill the frame with lots of great color from the bridesmaids dresses, to the florals and it just looks great. Photographically, four just seems a little too light and ten people seems like a crowd, where six to eight just feel right. This is just our own personal taste based on all of the weddings we’ve photographed. Working with a total of fourteen or sixteen people in the bridal party is pretty simple as well and it means we can still be close enough to get that full group shot and still see faces well enough to make out the emotion.
When it comes down to picking bridal party there are really no rules. If you want to include fourteen people on each side, go for it! If you only want four people, that’s totally cool, too! Or if you want to have no bridal party, great! Do it! It’s your wedding day. You do you! From our experience, we love when bridal parties are even numbers and land somewhere around six or eight people on each side. Keep that in mind while you’re figuring out who is in your wedding.
The most important thing to remember is to have the people you love most standing next to you. Don’t sacrifice your relationships for the photography. What that means is if you find you have seven bridesmaids and want that even number, instead of getting rid of a person, maybe ask yourself, “who is someone that I love, who has supported me, who would enjoy standing next to me at my wedding?”
Just our two cents!