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Bridesmaids: 10 Ways Bridesmaids Can Help the Bride

There's something to be said for going above and beyond. Here are 10 nifty ways to give the bride 110 percent.

There's more to being a bridesmaid than parading down the aisle in pink taffeta. Celebrate your friend and her groom by helping her out and adding some extra fun to this often stressful, but very special time. Here are some of our best ideas, to inspire you to go above and beyond your bridesmaid duties.

Take responsibility for the gift baskets or bags for out-of-town guests' hotel rooms. Include a welcome letter, maps, relevant phone numbers, snacks, postcards, city souvenirs, and suggestions for fun activities.

Ask the bride when she expects the wedding invitations to be ready and plan an informal gathering. Ask each bridesmaid to bring something to eat, turn on the stereo, and divide the duties of writing addresses, stuffing envelopes, and putting on stamps. Not only will you have fun, but you'll also be helping the bride finish a very tedious job!

Offer to supply wedding favors or escort cards for the rehearsal dinner. If it's a more casual affair, offer to make simple centerpieces.

Ward off prewedding jitters by creating a distraction -- get tickets to a play or dance performance, one that you know she'd be dying to see if she weren't so busy planning the wedding.

Ask what she's drinking at the reception and keep her cup full. Brides seldom make it through the crowd to the bar (just be sure her cup doesn't run over).

Collect disposable reception-table cameras at the end of the night and get them developed.

Offer to be the end-of-the-party, final once-over girl -- collect the cake topper and toasting flutes, make sure Grandma is escorted to her car, etc.

Take her gown to the cleaners after the wedding. Get her gown preserved for when she returns from the honeymoon.

Pack a honeymoon "in case you forget" bag: Include a disposable camera, sunscreen, sunglasses, moisturizer, saline, and other toiletries a harried bride might forget to pack.

Stock the couple's kitchen with food for their return. The worst trip is the one to the grocery store the night you return from paradise. Help them avoid reality for just one more day.

-- Donna Lambeth

See More: Basics for Bridesmaids