When it comes to wedding planning besides the wedding budget I don’t know if there is another touchy subject than the guest list. This can often be stressful for couples when others want to offer their opinions. It is important to take other people’s feelings into consideration to avoid friction with your family and your future in-laws. Even if you are paying for the wedding yourselves, my advice is to sit down with your Fiancé and both sets of parents during this task. Ultimately, however, the decision is yours but I’ve created a list of things to consider when creating your wedding guest list.
1. Start With Percentages
After you have selected your venue and the number of guests you can afford, you want to decide on the percentage of guests each person can invite. Assign 50% to you and your fiancé, and 25% to each set of parents. If your families are paying for the majority or all of your wedding day then you may want to consider giving them a bigger say.
2. Establish Hierarchy When Choosing Guests For Your Wedding
Obviously, immediate family members come first, followed by close friends, and finally acquaintances. If there are situations in which a friend has been a part of your life more than a family member, then that needs to be taken into consideration.
3. Determine Whether Children Are Invited
This can be a very controversial topic. Some people prefer that children not be invited for fear that they will be loud during the ceremony or cause havoc while others feel that a wedding is a family event and children are part of the family. I’m going to be very honest with you here. I was one of those who did not want any children at our wedding for the reasons described above but in the end, I made a compromise with my family and included them. At the end of the day, we had a beautiful ceremony and the reception was probably more fun WITH the kids there.
Being in a family is all about making compromises for the ones we love and planning a wedding is certainly no exception. If you are strongly against having children at your wedding (hey, I totally get it) then an option perhaps for you is to have children only attend the reception. Understand though that some guests may choose not to come if their children are not invited.
4. Assume That Approximately 20 Percent Of Your Invited Guests Will Not Be Able To Attend. Hard Rule or Myth?
If there is one piece of advice you can take from carats & confetti it is this: when creating a wedding guest list consider that everyone you invite WILL attend. I have read far too many advice articles telling brides and grooms that they should remember that not everyone they invite is going to attend. Well, let me tell you that every one of our invited guests attended (we actually had more attend than invited but that’s a whole other story for another day).
This is certainly not an anomaly. I have many East Coast friends and family who share the exact same experience. The traditional rule of attendance may be true for other parts of the country but it seems as though East Coasters love a good ol’ party and who can blame them?
Remain in control of the wedding guest count by accounting for guests’ guests. When sending out your invites, write “wedding guests” on the envelope if the person you are inviting is allowed to bring a date. If you leave this off, it is understood that the individual is expected to attend alone.
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