by I Do magazine
Sugar and spice and all things nice.
The flower girl is a real scene-stealer at almost every wedding. However, since children are unpredictable, you should ensure that the child you choose can handle the excitement of a wedding. Here are some tips to ensure that both you and your flower girl are still smiling at the end of your big day.
Just as you will with every other member of your bridal party, the selection of a flower girl should be carefully thought out. Typically, the flower girl is a close member of the family, perhaps a niece, a cousin or a little sister.
In cases where it is a second marriage, or even marriages after children have arrived, your flower girl may, of course, be your or your husband's daughter. Times have changed, and with more tolerance about these things in Maltese society, such arrangements are now longer frowned upon or considered ‘scandalous’.
Should you find yourself in the awkward and delicate position of having more than one child from whom to make your choice, consider having them both be your flower girls. They can walk down the aisle arm in arm. They can toss petals from a single basket that they both hold, or they can walk down the aisle one after the other.
Make your decision not only based on the level of closeness you and the young lady share, but other factors as well.
The question of what age is appropriate for a flower girl is a difficult one to answer. In a nutshell, maturity level is more important than chronological age. Children of any age have different personalities. While an ‘older’, but shy flower girl may become frightened and refuse to walk down the aisle, a younger one, who is more outgoing may be quite comfortable performing her duties. Conversely to the shy child, a very active child might unpleasantly surprise you by running up and down the aisle.
If you are faced with the dilemma of a young lady who is too old to be a flower girl, consider asking her if she might instead prefer to be a junior bridesmaid. There is no hard and fast rule for a cut-off age. Again, it depends on the girl. If she is really comfortable being a flower girl, you have your answer. If she thinks that being a flower girl is too babyish, then consider asking her to do something else. Know the disposition of the child you choose and make your decision based on that information.
Know that when dealing with children of any age, regardless of how well you plan or how carefully you pick, anything can happen and probably will.
Especially when working with children, rehearsal is the key to success. Go over your flower girl's duties with her, several times. Make sure that your last run-through is really close to the date of the wedding. Explain clearly the functions she is expected to perform and then pick an adult buddy (preferably someone she knows well) to coach her on the day of the actual event.
It is typically the bride's responsibility to choose and pay for her flower girl's dress, although this, like other wedding ‘rules’, is not etched in stone. If you are paying and wish to keep to a budget, check your local stores around spring and winter holiday time when you will find lots of formal dresses for little girls. Be sure to have your flower girl accompany you, so you are certain that the dress you pick will suit her. If your wedding is just a few months away, estimate on size and buy the dress one size larger. Keep the tags on and hold on to the receipt, just in case. Children grow quickly. If your wedding is more than six months away, consider waiting to purchase the dress until the wedding date is closer.
Reproduced courtesy I Do magazine published by Standard Publications Ltd.