My name is Barbara Esses and I do events for a living. I'm Ruthie Hecht; I'm an event planner and I work with and for my mother. We're going to teach you the do's and don'ts for the perfect wedding.
When picking your wedding party, remember that everybody you've ever met does not need to walk down your aisle. Whittle it down to your lifelong friends, and then whittle it down again. Bridesmaids are there to help you on the day of your wedding going to the bathroom, fixing your makeup, not worrying that they're wearing a fuchsia dress and their lipstick is coming off. They'll also be crucial during the engagement and planning the wedding shower and any other events. Make sure they're fun and understand you and aren't going to completely embarrass you.
Just because you were a bridesmaid in somebody else's wedding doesn't mean they have to be one in yours. It's a great rule of thumb to eliminate all married women and then you can really keep the numbers down. The truth is that bridesmaids are a really nice thing to have, but they are titles. So if you feel like there is conflict between two of them, have everyone be a bridesmaid - no need to assign four maids of honor. There are no rules about groomsmen versus bridesmaids and how many you have to have. If you have one best friend and your husband has four, that's perfectly fine. The maid of honor can walk down the aisle alone and the men can walk down either alone or as couples.