Who Will You Invite To Your Wedding?
Wedding invitations decisions regarding family, friends, children and plus one. Deciding who makes the cut.
First Things First
Before jotting down names on paper, you and your fiancé need to come up with a number: an estimate of how many guests to invite. Create four lists and label them “A” through “D.”
- “A” list should include those people, beyond close family members, whom you can’t imagine getting married without, such as your college roommate and the friends you hang out with every weekend.
- “B” list is for aunts, uncles, cousins and high school friends you’ve stayed in touch with.
- “C” list includes coworkers, your parents’ friends and neighbors you’ve known forever.
- “D” list can tally up distant cousins, friends you’ve lost contact with and your parents’ bridge partners.
Start eliminating with your “D” list and work your way backward.
Sometimes Mom and Dad have a guest list agenda of their own. If you are dreaming of having an intimate wedding a ballooning guest list is an issue. Here is one guideline for clarity – to not invite anyone that your fiancé and you haven’t seen in the last six months.
Make things clear to both your families early on. Traditionally, each family invites half the guests. You may choose to divide your list in thirds: one-third for the bride’s family; one-third for the groom’s; and one-third for the couple. This is a neat formula, but real life may not be so simple. Once you do, give each set of parents a pre-determined number of invites, and stick to it!
Children at the wedding? Consider management, meal, and entertainment for the children if you are including them. If you do invite children to keep a sense of humor about having the little ones there: If Isabel can’t keep her hands off the cake, don’t throw a fit. Instead, laugh and tell the photographer to catch it on film.
A plus-one is a must for anyone who is married, engaged, or in a long-term relationship. No exceptions there! A plus-one is also thoughtful for anyone who is single, but won’t have any other friends attending. But if someone is single and will be amongst friends or family, giving them a plus-one is not necessary.
When planning a small wedding the guest list can become a real dilemma. How do you have your small intimate wedding without offending family and friends that don’t make the list? This can quickly derail the joys of planning your intimate wedding. As the invitation list is compiled; concern, frustration, and confusion begin to mount. The bottom line is the fear and worries overhearing from someone who isn’t on your guest list expressing confusion, concern, or even anger. WHY WASN’T I INVITED!?
Dealing with your wedding’s guest list and deciding who’s in and who’s out can be a hard-line to draw. It becomes clear there’s no way to make everyone happy. Here are some key phrases you can use if an uninvited guest asks you if they’re invited.
If someone asks you if they’re invited, there are ways you can tell them that you love them, you SO appreciate their interest, but no, they’re not invited. Don’t get into the specifics of how many people you’re inviting or how you’re choosing guests. Keep it vague and loving.
Ideas To Consider
“Of course we want to invite everyone… but we’re really trying to kick off our marriage by being financially responsible for our wedding. We made the choice to keep our wedding pretty intimate, which means there are a lot of friends and family who won’t be there on our wedding day. I hope you can respect our wishes to keep our sacred event small.”
Ultimately no matter how loving or articulate you are, people are entitled to their feelings of disappointment. Try to remember that their disappointment comes from a place of LOVE: they want to be with you on your wedding day! You’re not responsible for their disappointment, nor can you control it — all you can do is try your best to be respectful kind, lovely and make sure they know that you understand how much they care.
Focus on who is coming and the lovely wedding day to come and enjoy! Remember this wedding is all about your marriage and how the two of you begin to make decisions together. Move from the love between the two of you, extend that love to everyone in appreciation for their interest and love.
If it’s possible to have a larger gathering later, let people know they are invited to come to share in your joy. Perhaps play a video of your wedding ceremony so that everyone can feel included.
Deciding who will and won’t be there to witness your marriage can be very stressful, once you’ve finalized your list then the fun begins. Cake tasting anyone?