Hair for Bridal Occasions(2)

Wedding hairstyle
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In addition, bridesmaids' hairstyles should have at least some element of uniformity, ideally (i.e. the same type of up-do, the same accessories, etc.) although in many cases, this is not easily achieved. There is an allowable variance for the maid or matron of honor. The maid of honor's hairstyle can be a little more elaborate than the other bridesmaids' styles, but should never outshine the bride under any circumstances.
 
Tips for Choosing the Hairstyles:
 
A couple of summers ago, a childhood friend got married in a lovely afternoon garden wedding. The hairstyles worn by the bride and her party are a good example of what I'm trying to describe. The bride wore her hair in a braided circlet at the crown of her head with a fall of spiral curls coming from inside the circlet and wispy curls at her temples. The braid provided a secure anchor point for her tiara of pearl-beaded flowers and
 
Her maid of honor wore her hair in a double French braid whose ends were coiled into a knot at the nape of her neck. This was adorned with a small spray of flowers and a tail of ribbons in colors to coordinate with the bridesmaids' dresses. The remaining three bridesmaids all wore their hair in French braids that had been woven with the matching ribbons and were accented with small sprigs of baby's breath along the braid.
 
As you can see, the bride's style was by far the most elaborate. The maid of honor and bridesmaids all wore styles that were similar, with the maid of honor's style being slightly more intricate. Another point was that the bridesmaids' hair was all of different lengths, but all had hair long enough to create a French braid.
 
Now that we've determined the hierarchy of the hairstyle designs for the bridal party, we should address the issue of what type of style is appropriate to different wedding settings.
 
Nighttime/Evening weddings or Fall/Winter weddings are generally the more formal affairs. Styles for an "after-dark" wedding or for a wedding held in the fall/winter months call for sleek and ophisticated or more elaborate hairstyles. For these occasions, an up-style is almost always called for, though an afternoon/daytime wedding in the fall/winter months would allow for wearing the hair down if the wedding is outdoors.
 
Daytime/Afternoon weddings or Spring/Summer weddings allow for a more casual atmosphere to the celebration of marriage. Many spring/summer weddings are held outdoors with a garden party atmosphere. Softer, more romantic styles suit these weddings well. Long curly falls, or partial up-styles look lovely without seeming over-dressed.
 
Bridesmaids
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The Mother of the Bride:
 
The mother of the bride and the groom's mother are usually honored in some special way as part of the ceremony. Many brides choose to include two single long-stemmed roses as part of the flowers they carry down the aisle, and will stop briefly to gift both mother and mother-in-law-to-be with a rose. Aside from this gesture, neither the bride's nor the groom's mothers have any active part in the ceremony. It is important on this special occasion for the two women to look their best, but their choices of hairstyle don't need to have any correlation to the bridal party's.
 
Extra Note: Few people realize that many of the traditions in modern wedding ceremonies have long-standing historical significance. The list of these is far too long to include them all here, but there are a few that are pertinent to our discussion. The act of paying homage to the mother of the bride and future mother in law comes from the fact that in ages past, the only time there was a big celebration was at the wedding of noble (if not royal) individuals. These were the only people whose families could afford to throw these kinds of lavish celebrations.
 
The bride (princess) would pay honor to her mother (the queen) for raising her, and then to her mother in law (also usually a queen) for becoming her new 'mother'. Not attempting to bring politics into the subject, but women were little more than property (even princesses) unless they were at the apex of their possible stations (queen). And the bridal party of today's bride represents the bride's (princess') ladies-in-waiting. These women would have been part of her household and would have acted as both servants and companions for the princess, since her social interactions and opportunities to make other friends would have been limited.
 
The most senior of these women would have served as her maid of honor and historically would have gone with the princess to her new life along with one or more of the other bridesmaids. Modern brides choose to give the maid of honor role to either a sister or cherished friend since not many women today have handmaidens or ladies-in-waiting.
 
This information is offered to illustrate the historical significance behind the tradition, and therefore the reason for the hierarchy represented in each detail of the preparations.
 
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See also:
 
Photos of updos
 
Wedding hair tips
 
How to wear flowers in your hair