Weddings are an exciting time for everyone involved. Couples spend a lot of time and money on their big day, so we have compiled a list of things that you can do as a guest to make the couples special day a little less stressful.
-RSVP and RSVP on time and don’t skip if you decide not to go. The couple more than likely spent a lot of money on your plate. Most catering vendors need a months notice for the couple’s guest head count, and you don’t want to stress out the couple by making them have to reach out to you because you missed the deadline or chose not to respond. RSVP A.S.A.P.—don’t let the invitation get lost. If you know you can’t go, let them know. Please don’t show up after not responding to the RSVP. You may end up without a spot to sit, or food to eat. If, for whatever reason, you can’t make it after you RSVP’d ‘yes,’ let the couple know as soon as possible, but try your absolute best to be there!
-Read the invitation over and look over their wedding website (if they have one) carefully before asking them questions— especially the day of. If you can’t find the answer to your question, try to reach out to anyone that may know the answer other than the bride or groom. The couple spent a lot of time putting together their website and invitations.
-Dress appropriately. Most couples will state what their desired dress code for the wedding is. You wouldn’t want to show up to a black-tie wedding in a summer dress or khakis and a polo. That will make you feel uncomfortable and out of place, and it may seem disrespectful to the couple. If the couple states jeans and a button down are acceptable, great! But, make sure you know before you go!
-Avoid wearing white or ivories. It’s tradition for the bride to wear white and comes off very disrespectful if you show up wearing a white dress. There are SO many colors to choose from—save that new white cocktail dress for a dinner date with your Hubby.
-Avoid using your electronics during the ceremony. Most couples prioritize photography and spend a lot of money for a professional to take their wedding pictures. The last thing they want is a picture full of phones and cameras sticking up. Not only does it ruin the professional photos and videos, but sticking your arm up to get a good photo may block the view of people behind you. Not only that, but you may be getting in the way of the photographers and videographers, ruining that special shot that the couple requested they get! Respect the couples wishes on electronics if there is a posted sign or the officiant makes an announcement & stay out of the photographer and videographer’s way.
-Don’t assume you get a plus one. I can’t tell you how many times we have heard of guests inviting themselves or assuming they get a plus one (or more!) to weddings. Assuming you are invited or you get a plus one and asking the couple puts them in a very uncomfortable position. The invitations will address those who are invited and how many plus ones you get. Most couples will give you one if you are married, engaged, or have been dating for a while. However, this is completely up to the couple and is usually based off venue space and their budget.
-Bring a card to the wedding, but avoid bringing large gifts. If the couple has a registry, send the gift to the address on the registry. Couples will have a spot for cards, but when guests bring physical gifts to the wedding, the couple has to find a secure spot to keep it and figure out a way to get it home.
-Arrive to the ceremony on time. You don’t want to arrive as the bride’s about to walk down the aisle. Talk about awkward...and rude. Plan to arrive 20-30 minutes early. This allows you to find where you need to be and find a seat. However, it’s also important that you don’t show up too early. Many brides and grooms do first looks these days, and take pictures beforehand. You don’t want to stress out the couple by showing up while they are still taking pictures!
-Attempt to say goodbye to the couple or parents before heading out, but don’t talk forever. The bride and groom have many people they want to talk to or songs they want to dance to. Wish them well and tell them how beautiful their wedding is. Keep the conversation short so they can get to all of their guests and get out on the dance floor.
-Stick around till after the cake cutting. Most couples spend lots of money for you to come to their wedding. Stay for dinner and the toasts. Once the cake cutting is over, it is now appropriate to leave. Leaving beforehand, unless it’s an emergency, makes it seem like you just came for the food.
-Don’t add commentary to the toasts. Ever been to a wedding where Uncle Larry has to make a comment after every sentence the Best Man or Maid of Honor say during their toasts? It’s awkward and usually not funny, not to mention disrespectful. Don’t be an Uncle Larry. Listen and laugh when appropriate, but don’t make the toasts about you.
FEb 8, 2021
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PHOTOGRAPHY BY Janelle Elise Photography Lulle PHoto, Mark Fierst Photography, Sarah Chacos Photography, Ester Knowlen
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