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How to Choose Your Wedding Groomsmen / Ushers

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Choosing your wedding groomsmen (or wedding ushers - whichever you prefer) is a task that falls firmly at the feet of the Groom. This article provides suggestions on how to choose your wedding groomsmen and ideas on how to determine how many you need.




The wedding groomsmen will have a role to play throughout the day, and sometimes in the build up to the wedding as well. From seating the guests at the wedding ceremony through to assisting with the plans for the Stag night, wedding groomsmen need to be committed to the role from the outset and be prepared to get stuck into whichever duties fall their way (for a full list of a groomsman's role and responsibilities, check out our wedding ushers guide).


With this in mind, choosing the wedding groomsmen is no easy task. Whilst the final decision should rest with the Groom, unlike with the role of the Best Man, this time the Bride can get involved a little (and no doubt she will!) in determining who, and how many, wedding groomsmen will be present on the day. 



How Many Wedding Groomsmen?

As a guide, there should roughly be one wedding groomsman to every fifty guests (traditionally the ushers are also unmarried, but this tradition has now largely died out) and it is often the case that a minimum of two wedding groomsmen are appointed.


When two or more wedding groomsmen are to be present, it is wise to have at least one from the Groom's side, and at least one from the Bride's side - this will help avoid any uneccessary quizical looks and 'who are you?' questions as the guests begin to arrive.



How to Choose Your Wedding Groomsmen

Wedding groomsmen don’t have to be close friends of the Groom nor do they have to be over eighteen – younger relatives (cousins etc) are often given ushering duties and it is commonplace for the Bride to have an opinion on who (at least one) groomsman should be – likewise the Groom can influence the choice of the Bridesmaids.


One recent modern trend of interest is that the role of usher is longer a solely male domain – Groom’s with close friendships to members of the fairer sex are appointing them to the position, and who better than a woman when it comes to organising things (a man, I guess you could argue!). Either way, whether it's a man or a woman filling the role, the key is to choose someone who has as many of the characteristics (see below) that a good usher should possess.



Wedding Groomsmen Characteristics

A top-notch wedding groomsman should posess the four characteristics in abundance:


Weddingsday Good organisational skills - the seating of the guests at a wedding ceremony can be quite tricky you know!


Weddingsday An air of confidence - as a 'meeter and greeter', wedding groomsmen will be one of the few people throughout the whole day who will definitely speak to everyone.


Weddingsday The ability to cope under pressure - they will need to cope discretely with latecomers, answer questions asked to them by the guests and assist the Groom should anything go astray during the day.


Weddingsday Perhaps most importantly, a good sense of humour – a Groom surrounded by wedding groomsmen who are quiet and dull is not a good idea!


There are no pre-requesites for who to choose when it comes down to the ushers, so take your time and make sure the best guys (or gals!) for the job are chosen.



Related: There are hundreds of wedding articles on the site, each filled with superb ideas, advice and inspiration. Check out the links in the left hand column to read more. Alternatively, to search for a local wedding venue, product or service provider, try our Wedding Directory. With over 13,000 companies already listed, you're sure to find what you're looking for.

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