When planning a wedding, some things will go according to plan, while others may not. But, when the big day arrives, you’ll discover that if you communicate thoughtfully, most problems can be overcome with a little creativity and calm. Remember that your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event that you will cherish for years to come. Consider the faces you want to see in your wedding album when you’re celebrating your anniversary years from now while making your guest list.
Who does what, when, and in what manner?
Everything from invites to thank-you cards, as well as everything in between, is covered in our wedding etiquette blog today! Lists of the most frequently asked questions about wedding preparation
1. Is it necessary for us to invite all of our guests with a plus one?
When listing down your guest lists, it is always advisable to make sure that the numbers of guests are in the capacity of your wedding budget. In general, parents’ friend lists are usually invited with plus one. It is advisable to identify guests that are sure or necessary to have a plus one such as your wedding party, parent’s VIPs, and close friends. Couples should ensure each invitation card to be sent out has the right guest numbers, if with plus one.
2. Can we make certain exceptions for our wedding with only adults?
The guest list is one of the most difficult aspects of wedding preparation since you’ll have to select who cuts—and who doesn’t. One of the simplest methods to reduce your guest list is to declare your wedding to be an adults-only affair and stick to it. Many couples could be concerned that guests with children will be offended if they aren’t invited with the rest of their family (which can happen), but you’d be amazed at how many will appreciate the opportunity to have a night out where they can have their fun.
3. Is it necessary to invite all of our coworkers to the wedding?
When you look at your existing job scenario and try to figure out who to invite from there, difficulties may happen. If you are friendly with your coworkers and see them socially outside of work, invite a handful of them. Don’t feel forced to add everyone, though. To avoid any awkwardness, keep wedding talk to a minimum at work.
4. Do we have to reciprocate if we’ve been invited to a friend’s wedding?
Wedding invites are not sent out of duty or as “payback” for being invited to their wedding or other formal occasions. There’s no need to add them to your guest list solely to repay the favor if you’re no longer close or want to keep the wedding small. Couples should not feel obligated to invite if they were invited to another’s wedding.
5. Do we need to invite our single friends with a plus one?
Giving them a plus-one isn’t a priority if the guest in question tends to have a new significant other every few months or hasn’t been dating the same person for more than a year, however, it is considerate if you have the budget. Simply ask if you are unsure of her status. You never know when the person you thought she’d just dated once or twice has just moved in with her. If she’s casually dating and it’s not serious, on the other hand, you can certainly invite her on her own without offending anyone.
6. What should we do if we have last minute guests?
In some cases, such as if you want to bring a new friend to your wedding or if your in-laws need to add a last-minute guest, adding additional guests to your wedding list is simple, but not in others. It’s worth remembering that the size of the venue, seating capacity, and price may all have an impact on your ability to accommodate your new guest. Add more guests to your guest list when it’s convenient. Otherwise, explain that you wish you could invite them to the wedding but that due to a lack of space at the reception, you are unable to do so.
7. Are bridal party dates required to attend the rehearsal dinner?
Rehearsal dinners are typically reserved for immediate family and members of the wedding party. If you don’t know your bridesmaid’s date, you don’t have to invite them. If a member of your bridal party is invited to your wedding with a date, they should be allowed to bring the date to the wedding eve supper party as well. Others believe that the “plus-one” option should only be used on your wedding day. It is entirely up to the couples and bridal party; if it is possible to avoid having a rehearsal date, you may discuss it with each other.
8. How can we help our guests in saving money on destination weddings?
Some of your guests may incur significant costs as a result of your destination wedding. Make sure to provide travel and lodging information to guests and couples as soon as possible so they can plan ahead of time and look for booking deals. If possible, provide them information with low-cost lodging, a shared room, and transportation to your wedding location. Be understanding if someone is unable to attend due to financial constraints.
9. How do we plan a black-tie wedding that isn’t too formal?
Consider a “black tie optional” dress code to give your guests more options. It conveys to your guests that dark suits or cocktail dresses are acceptable while still ensuring that you’ll have a group of gentlemen dressed in bow ties and satin lapels. Although the term “black-tie wedding” generally refers to the expected attire, it is not limited to the big day. In general, it indicates that the couple will have a more formal, traditional ceremony and reception.
10. How so we express that we don’t accept gifts?
Because registries and gifts for happy couples are such a tradition, it can be difficult to explain your point of view to your guests, especially the older ones. Simply inform your visitors that their attendance is sufficient as a gift. Consider setting up a charity registry so that guests who want to show their affection with presents can do so in your honor. Finally, accept a gift from a guest with gratitude and send a thank you card, even if you don’t keep it. Being grateful for what you’ve received makes the giver happy since it reflects that you appreciate the time and effort they’ve put in for you.
11. How can friends who aren’t in the bridal party be included in the party?
When you have close friends who aren’t at your wedding party but still want to be a part of the celebrations. During the ceremony, your friends can also provide readings, conduct prayers, or sing music. Everyone has that one friend who is the first to enter and the last to depart the dance floor. “Why not nominate that individual to be the captain of the dance floor?” Shannon Tarrant, wedding expert and founder of WeddingVenueMap.com. They not only have amazing rhythm, but they aren’t afraid to bring the fun and get creative and their duty will be to keep the dance floor full and ensure that everyone has a good time.
12. Can we invite everyone to the rehearsal dinner if we are having a small wedding?
Yes! If space and budget allow, feel free to invite everyone. Though it is typical to invite family and close friends, you can also invite your officiant, as well as both of your extended families, including grandparents, aunts and uncles, and close cousins, because the rehearsal dinner is a great way for both families to get to know one another.
13. How Can We Prevent Guests from Photographing the Ceremony?
Make it clear to your guests that you’ll be leaving the photos to the professionals. Set up a notice at the venue’s entrance stating that you’re having an “unplugged” ceremony, and ask your officiant to declare your request to the crowd before the ceremony begins. With an invite inclusion, you’ve added even more opportunities to let attendees know ahead of time that they shouldn’t step on your professional photographer’s sight. Then, by placing a reminder in the program, they will remember the information.
14. Is it inconsiderate to not serve meat to guests?
How many entree options do you believe are typical? If the pair is a vegan couple, I don’t think it’s disrespectful. I’ve had some delicious vegetarian and vegan dinners that I enjoyed. Keeping your guests in mind when preparing, on the other hand, is a hallmark of a good host. If any of your family or friends eat meat, you might want to add a single meat entrée to the vegetarian selections.
15. We don’t drink alcohol but our guests do—how should we handle the bar?
Even if you don’t drink alcohol, it’s thoughtful of you to think about your guests’ satisfaction. But since your visitors already know you don’t drink, they won’t hold it against you if the bar isn’t stocked. Plus, they could thank you for the next-day brunch without a hangover. However, let’s face it: dealing with an alcoholic friend or family member can be difficult; however, it’s occasionally required when someone insists on driving, a fight breaks out, or a group of people is doing something unsafe at your party. Deal with each scenario as best you can without placing yourself at risk.
16. How can we meet all of our guests’ dietary requirements?
Work with chefs to accommodate as many dietary restrictions as possible while maintaining quality, taste, and presentation. It not only helps cut expenses and save time, but it also helps eliminate superfluous plates and reduces the chance of cross-contamination. Offer a vegetarian alternative to your guests/couples as well as a meat or fish dish for seated dinners. Vegetarian foods can frequently be readily changed to vegan dishes by omitting certain ingredients. It will make everyone feel included rather than left out.
17. Can we un-invite couples who had a fight with us during our engagement?
Yes, it is possible! You might even avoid seeing them on the wedding day if they persisted in coming. If you can’t stand seeing their faces at the reception, meet with them in person or call them—don’t text or email them—and explain why you don’t believe they should come. Understand that choosing this attitude almost always means the friendship is ended, and be ready to face the consequences of your actions. However, they must believe that what transpired was only a trivial quarrel based on the fact that they made an effort to attend your wedding day.
18. Is it okay to send thank you notes via email?
Because your guests invested time, money, and effort to join you in your celebration, handwritten thank-you notes are always a great way to express your gratitude. Write each guest a handwritten thank-you message, stating how much you enjoyed having them at the party and appreciating any gifts they brought. However, if a circumstance requires you to send your thank-you cards by email, that is also acceptable.
It takes a lot of effort to plan a wedding. Have you seen how extensive the list of things to do is? And those are merely duties to be completed. When you factor in the emotions, personal contacts, and potentially unpleasant situations you’ll face along the path, having a guide to assist you is a must. That’s why as your professional wedding photographer, It always excites me to write something that I know will be very useful for my couples.
Please leave a comment if you have a specific wedding topic you’d want me to cover.