Since I have many brides as well as BMs reading, I thought I would share my readers the way in which I was asked to play a special part in each of my brides' days.
Bride #1 invited us all over for dinner. Right before we ate, she said she had a special announcement. One of her (now) sister-in-laws didn't live in NY, so she called her and put her on speaker. She then read us a beautiful and hysterical poem (I may or may not have shed a tear), where we all had our own special stanzas (the groom video taped the entire thing!). Of course we all said yes, ate a delicious home-cooked meal, and got copies of our poem to take home. I still have mine in my memory box today.
Bride #2 asked those who lived in NY individually, but sent the out of towners' their requests in the mail. Bride #2 got married on 7/7/07 and coincidentally had 7 bridesmaids. She made us this beautiful card with a poem asking us to be part of her "Lucky 7". In the card was a folder with seven "Lucky 7" lottery tickets- very creative and so apropos! I may not have made big bucks off the lottery, but was very "lucky" to have been chosen.
Bride #3 works in catering sales, and one of her colleagues was a semi-professional baker. She enlisted her help, and dropped off at all of our apartments a cookie basket. In it there were decorated cookies of a bride (with the bride's name on it), a bridesmaid (with our names on it) and a wedding cake. Included in the basket was the cutest "Will you be my bridesmaid card" asking us to be a part of the big day. You can order similar cookies here.
Bride #4 also dropped off a package at our buildings. This time I got a bottle of champagne with a clever note that said "Groom #4 popped a question to me, now I am popping one to you. Will you be my bridesmaid?" I'll toast to that!
Bride #5 doesn't live in the same city as me- and she wanted to make sure to send her BMs something practical they would use. She sent us all deliciously-smelling dress sachets with a gorgeous handmade "Will you be my bridesmaid?" card- with the most sentimental poem inside.
Bride #6 really impressed me. She is not known for being the planner or organizer in my group of friends- but one Sunday night she organized a group of gals to go for (what else?) Chinese food. We went to a restaurant that does not serve fortune cookies, but at the end of the meal- the owner came over to check on us. She said that as we know, they typically do not serve fortune cookies- but tonight was a special occasion. She handed us all gigantic fortune cookies- and sure enough, the fortune inside said "Will you be my bridesmaid? Love, Bride #6 and her wedding date" How do you say "yes" in Chinese? Like this idea? You can order yours at customfortunecookies.com.
Bride #7 asked all of her BMs in different meaningful ways. I have a group of friends from high school who do "group" dinners every now and then. She happen to organize one shortly after she got engaged so we could all catch up and dish some gossip from our recent 10 year reunion (which some of the girls had to miss). At dinner- she gave us all these really heartfelt sentimental cards and included a friendship poem inside. Her grandfather had recently passed away and while cleaning out his desk- they came across this anonymous poem. It really resonated with Bride #7 and reminded her of all of her wonderful friends, so she included it while asking us to stand up in her wedding.
I was at dinner with another friend last night who is recently engaged and is currently brainstorming about how to ask her BMs. I loved her idea so much, I just had to write about it. She is ordering custom M&Ms. One one, she'll print her and the groom's monogram and wedding date. On the next she'll print "will you be my..." and on the third "bridesmaid". So cute!
Some other ideas I have seen, are build-a-bears with customized printed t-shirts that said "BM Name, Will you be my bridesmaid? Love, Bride", picture frames with a picture of the bride & BM, cookie cakes that say "Will you be my bridesmaid?" and even a Hanky Panky bridesmaid thong.
Any way you do it- the most important part is definitely the card. This is the bride's opportunity to be sincere and speak from the heart. This is where she can tell her BM why she is so important, and special, and why she wants her by her side on her special day. Of course, you can use any card you want- but why not be festive and get one made specially for the occasion, like this "Will you be my bridesmaid" card. (FYI, also available in flower girl, Maid of Honor, etc).