So you’ve been asked to be a groomsman. Congratulations.
It’s often glossed over just how much of an honour it is to be asked by someone to stand up next to them on arguably one of the biggest days of their life.
But with great power comes great responsibility.
And for some, it can be a daunting experience. After all, there isn’t really a manual on how to be a good groomsman.
Enter Mr Houndstooth to save the day.
See below for a simple and easy-to-follow list to keep in your back pocket when the big day arrives.
The Morning Of
It’s funny how after months and sometimes years of planning, you can find yourself with spare time on the morning of the wedding. As a groomsman, it’s a good idea to have a few activities planned for the morning of the wedding. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here, paintball is probably out of the question. Think more along the lines of teeing up some quality movies to watch (we watched Die Hard the morning of my wedding), or head to a local café for breakfast or brunch. It can be a nice distraction for the groom and helps fill any spare time before you finally head off to the venue.
We all know it’s the job of the best man to ensure the rings make it to the big day. If the groom is anything like the typical groom, his head will be all over the place; so it’s important that you take charge of such an important detail. I was best man at a wedding recently, and spent most of the morning double checking my pocket to make sure I had the rings, but it was worth it. Even when the celebrant asked: do you have the rings? My heart skipped a beat when the groom turned to me hand outstretched. So do yourself a favour. Grab the rings nice and early. Choose a pocket – I suggest interior jacket pocket – then you can both relax for the rest of the day.
It’s funny how so much planning can go into weddings that often the most basic things can be overlooked. In my experience, this is often the tie. Picture this: Waking up on the morning of a wedding with the rest of the groomsman and nervous groom, and then someone asking: does anyone know how to tie a tie? It’s funny, but after all this preparation, we’d all forgot that our ties hadn’t been tied. I gave it a crack but talk about pressure. In short, get someone to tie your ties the night before the wedding, and hang them up ready to go. Or at the very least, canvas the groomsmen to ensure someone is adept at the art of tying.
As mentioned, a café breakfast can be a great activity for the morning of your wedding. And if there’s one thing that anyone who’s been married will tell you, eating on your wedding day is surprisingly not at the top of your list of things to do. It’s a great idea for a groomsman to organise food for the morning of the wedding in advance. Sometimes the groom can be too nervous to eat, or sometimes he will have just forgotten to due to all the rushing around. It’s your job to make sure he has a full stomach before the ceremony. And the job doesn’t end there, a good groomsman will also make sure the groom has something to eat during the reception too. It can be tough to take some time to nibble when you’re the star of the show.
Before the Ceremony
The few minutes waiting for their significant other to arrive at the venue can be one of the most awkward moments for a groom. It’s the moment when they’re most nervous. It can also be nerve-wracking for a groomsman, after all, the entire party of wedding guests is essentially staring at you with nowhere else to look. Keep a few conversation ideas in your back pocket to help calm and even distract the groom. Think about a fun time you’ve had together, or tell him that the outfits look good, or the place looks great. You can even get a bit more emotional and tell him that this is the biggest day of his life and he will remember this forever. Don’t go too far into that well though, you don’t want to tip him over the edge. Tears before the ceremony can make things tough going forward.
Bonus points: Smile
It seems like a basic one, but how many weddings have you been to when the groomsman look disinterested at the top of the aisle? Remember you are representing your friend who has chosen you out of everyone to stand beside them on such an important moment. Stand up straight, don’t fidget (I suggest clasping your hands in front of you), and for goodness sake, SMILE!
Ms Zigzag says: Small gestures like these will go a long way to making the groom’s day 10 out of 10.
About Mr Houndstooth: I am a happily married man. I enjoy a fine whisky, a new suit and swashbuckling around town with my beautiful bride. Looking back on my wedding day always makes me smile, even though it began to rain just as I said ‘I do’.